After you’ve said “I do” to your forever person, the dreamiest way to celebrate your nuptials is, of course, jetting off to a stunning destination to create memories together as newlyweds. Since your honeymoon is a once-in-a-lifetime trip, it’s important to select a location that suits your lifestyle. If you’re an outdoorsy couple whose idea of the perfect date is spent picnicking in the park or hiking across natural terrain, Aruba (also known as the “One Happy Island”) is the Caribbean island you need to have on your radar. For newlyweds who prefer spending their free time among nature, the tropical destination offers a balance of outdoor adventure and leisure that will make your romantic getaway one for the books. “Aruba is home to award-winning beaches with white sand and bright blue waters, ideal for breathtaking honeymoon photos and toes-in-the-sand romance,” says Sjeidy Feliciano of the Aruba Tourism Authority.
Meet the Expert
- Sjeidy Feliciano is the communications manager at the Aruba Tourism Authority. She’s been a tourism specialist on the island for more than 20 years.
- Vasco v. Baselli is the general manager at Hilton Aruba Caribbean Resort & Casino. He’s been working in the hotel and hospitality industry for 30 years.
Conveniently located outside of the hurricane belt, Aruba boasts blue skies and sunshine almost every day of the year. According to the official website for Aruba tourism, the scenic location accumulates the least amount of precipitation out of all 700 (and counting) Caribbean islands, so you can spend every second outside knowing that an unpredictable forecast won’t interfere with your plans. An average temperature of a low 80 degrees provides the most inviting conditions for a honeymoon within nature. And with a consistent Caribbean breeze, you’ll never feel overheated.
The idyllic weather is one of the top reasons why Aruba is such a popular destination for honeymooners. Since the forecast almost always promises balmy temperatures and sunshine, couples make the trek to Aruba all times of the year, but Feliciano says winter is the most common season for honeymoon visits since couples often want to escape the cold. Newlyweds usually stay for five to six days on average, Feliciano notes.
The “One Happy Island” offers an abundance of hotels and resorts with amenities and activities that suit all outdoor lovers. Most properties are located on Eagle Beach or Palm Beach, and each exhibits stunning views of the shoreline. The Hilton Aruba Caribbean Resort & Casino is one place that’s pure paradise for couples who enjoy the great outdoors. Nestled on 15 acres and located on the widest stretch of Palm Beach, the upscale resort is a favorable spot for honeymooners—with more than 100 couples choosing the Hilton Aruba for their stay every year, according to General Manager Vasco v. Baselli. “Our resort provides a place to discover the Caribbean sun, cool ocean breeze, white sands, and lush tropical palm trees with a touch of romance, elegance, and picturesque scenery,” Baselli describes of the hotel experience.
At the Hilton Aruba, all 357 guest rooms and suites are complete with a private balcony or patio with picturesque views of the gardens, the ocean, or the island, so you have instant access to fresh air and nature even while you’re lodging. If you want to spend your vacation resting while soaking up the sun’s rays, you can lounge in cabanas on the deck of two zero-entry pools or relax in personal palapas on the beach. For those who prefer a more active trip outside, the property has it all, from vinyasa yoga and tennis overlooking the ocean to parasailing and paddle boarding on the water. To unwind while listening to the rhythmic sound of waves crashing on the shore, book a couples’ massage in an outdoor cabana at the beachfront eforea Spa with treatments that use locally-inspired ingredients.
The high-end resort is also home to several restaurants, which each offer outdoor dining options overlooking the Caribbean Sea and the hotel’s lush grounds. Try Laguna for endless breakfast by the hotel’s stream, Gilligan’s Seafood Shack for lunch by the beach, Sunset Grille for dinner on the terrace, and Mira Solo Lobby Bar for cocktails and live music with a backdrop of the vibrant gardens. Want a romantic dinner for two? Sunset Concierge is a private dining experience on the white sand, where you can nosh on local cuisine while watching the sunset.
Although Aruba’s hotels cater to the outdoorsy couple, the island itself is brimming with natural scenery and open-air experiences that will entice you to do some exploring off property. “There is so much to do around the island, whether couples are looking for a luxury or adventurous outdoor experience on land or sea,” Feliciano notes. “There’s no shortage of outdoor activities on ‘One Happy Island’ for couples to explore together.”
One of the top attractions for newlyweds who want to be immersed in nature is Arikok National Park, which comprises 20 percent of the island. Learn about the native plants and wildlife by booking a guided hike from a park ranger. Or, sign up for a jeep tour around the untouched natural landscape to take in jaw-dropping sights, such as the Conchi Natural Pool, Quadiriki Cave, and Blackstone Beach. Some other must-see spots around the striking oasis are the Natural Bridge, California Lighthouse, Alto Vista Chapel, and San Nicolas murals.
The outdoor adventure doesn’t stop there. Swim with yellowtail snappers, butterfly fish, and parrotfish while snorkeling or scuba diving in the Caribbean. You can also skim the waters by kayaking in Mangel Halto, a premier location for water activities in the San Nicolas region, or taking a luncheon boat cruise. To finish it off, find your zen in an aerial yoga class on the beach.
From waterfront dining to poolside lounging, Aruba is the honeymoon destination of a lifetime for outdoor lovers. But, the perks of vacationing on this special island aren’t just limited to the week-long stay. “Visitors of Aruba not only experience happiness while on-island, but it stays with them upon their return home,” Feliciano explains. “It’s what we call the ‘Aruba Effect,’ a distinct feeling of harmony with yourself and with others that comes from stepping foot on Aruba. It stays with you long after you leave, spreading happiness from ‘One Happy Island’ to all corners of the world.”