As you know, myself and Adam went on a magical vacation to Aruba a couple weeks back. It really was our first “official” vacation together and it was even better than I had hoped! Between the gorgeous weathers, spending hours relaxing at the beach, enjoying frozen cocktails by the water, touring the amazing (but small) island – it was just what we needed to relax and unwind from our typical life in the city. It was an easy flight to get to Aruba – about three hours from DC to Miami, and then another 3 hours from Miami to Aruba. A far cry from my 12+ hour trip to Argentina I had done the week prior, this one was a breeze to get to! I have never really been to the Caribbean before (besides quick stops on a couple cruises when I was younger) so it was nice to really get to spend time in one place, meet the locals, and really explore the culture. Not to mention you meet so many other tourists from all over the world, too! I can’t recommend Aruba enough, and The Amsterdam Manor Beach Resort, who hosted us for this trip enough. The slogan for Aruba is “One Happy Island” and I honestly couldn’t agree more. So if you love the beach, warm weather and a nice relaxing vacation – this is the place for you! View the slideshow below to get a more in depth look at our five days in paradise….enjoy!
A FEW FAVORITE THINGS TO PACK FOR YOUR BEACH VACATION
A Beachside Resort
One of the best parts of the Amsterdam Manor Resort was that it was right on the water. Seriously, about 20 steps outside our hotel room door and we were in the sand. We spend a majority of our 5 day vacation under these palapas umbrellas right on the water, sipping coconut drinks. Seriously, it was heaven!
Little Pink Bikini
I didn’t want to go overboard purchasing new pieces for our beach vacation, but who can resist a great bold bikini and printed cover up when they’re this cute!? I’m all about the bandeau top (I hate tan lines and I have small boobs…so they work for me!) and this one was really comfortable. [The Knockout Bandeau Top | The Classic Hipster | Kimono Printed Cover Up]
Steps From The Sand
I told you before, we were really close to the ocean. The Amsterdam Manor Resort is that yellow building there and I took this picture while sitting at the beach bar in the sand. Seriously, so amazing!
I’m typically a wine drinker, but when you’re on the beach, I think you’re contractually required by law to order a cocktail with rum and coconut in it, right? Well, I did my due diligence (over and over again!) with my drink of choice for vacation – The Snow White! I don’t even want to think about how many of these I drank…woof!
Gorgeous Architecture & Colors
The island of Aruba is pretty small – about 20 miles long and 6 miles across. So no matter where you are, it doesn’t take long to get to any other part. We took a quick ride from the resort to downtown in search for some dinner and did little shopping. I love how the entire island is full of unique architecture with amazing detailing and, of course, lots of bold colors!
Adam and myself didn’t do anything too fancy while we were in Aruba, but one night we did “dress up” and head out to a nice dinner and gambling at one of the hundreds of casinos on the island. He taught me how to play Blackjack and we came home with an additional $300! We ended up losing that the following night at the casino because well…turns out I’m not really that good of a Blackjack player. Whoops. [Ann Taylor Floral Print Midi Dress | J.Crew Hat | Gigi New York Bag]
Back At The Resort
While the beach was typically our go-to spot for the trip, we did spend a little time at the resort pool as well. The best part of Amsterdam Manor is that it’s not one of those big high-rise buildings with millions of people and kids running around everywhere. We could enjoy a nice relaxing time by the pool having lunch at one of their two restaurants.
The No Makeup Life
I really took this vacation seriously, and wanted to make sure I embraced the relaxing vibe the whole island gives off. I loved going days without makeup, braiding my sea salted hair from the ocean and catching up on a few books I had been wanting to finish. [Ray-Ban Mirror Aviators | Striped Bandeau Bikini Top | Black Bikini Bottoms]
A Tour Of The Island
One of the most fun things we did in Aruba was the De Palms Tour Off Road Tours. They put you in a open air Land Rover and you’re bouncing all over as you go throughout the rough terrain of the island outback. You make a few stops along the way to view historical landmarks, and at each one there was always a local with a bright little stand selling all things coconut!
The entire tour lasts around 4 hours, and you get to take in these breathtakingly beautiful views that only off-roading could show you. They’re such remotely secluded spots that only the locals would know about and well, it was amazing!
So we learned that the Americans that visit Aruba are the ones that started the wishing rocks trend. At first, the government in Aruba hated them and banned them, then they realized that you don’t piss off the tourists and decided it to let it slide. There were hundreds of thousands of these wishing rock mini-monuments all over the beaches on our tour – it was a crazy site to see! Of course, we made our own and made a wish!
Our Final Day
For our last day in Aruba, Adam and myself really took it easy. One last walk on the beach, one last Snow White cocktail, and one last stop to the High-Rise area for dinner. The High-Rise area was about 1-2 miles from our resort and it’s where all the big hotels are and loads of restaurants – basically it’s a tourist hot spot! [St. James for J.Crew T-shirt | American Eagle Outfitters Shorts | Baublebar Necklace]