Aruba is known as "One Happy Island" for a reason. The Caribbean nation is widely celebrated for its white-sand beaches, sparkling blue waters, and trade winds that make for consistently warm and breezy weather. But packing the wrong items or forgetting to bring something essential can easily make any visitor feel less than happy. Avoid all of that and check out our Aruba packing list, so you can feel as sunny as the island. See you in Aruba!
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It’s completely safe — and even encouraged — to drink the tap water in Aruba. The island’s H2O comes from a saltwater desalination plant and meets the World Health Organization’s highest standards for drinking water. That being said, pack a high-quality water bottle and fill it up as needed. S’well water bottles are a solid choice, since they feature triple-walled construction that’s designed to keep beverages cold for 24 hours and hot for 12 hours. They’re made from BPA-free stainless steel and have a one-year money-back guarantee. Plus, you can choose from over 20 colors and patterns to personalize your bottle.
Aruba is only 70 square miles, and almost every square inch is gorgeous. Whether you’re sailing on the bright blue water, walking on the white-sand beaches, or exploring the rockier northern shores, the backdrop is going to inspire plenty of vacation photos. Be prepared for all those breathtaking photo ops with a bold new swimsuit (or two). We especially love this vibrant off-the-shoulder one-piece from Summersalt. It can be paired with shorts for breakfast or worn on its own in or by the water. Get your selfie angles ready!
Aruba consistently receives the least amount of rainfall in the southern Caribbean. And it’s located outside of the hurricane belt, so rainy days are few and far between. That said, the sun can be relentless and a hat is a definite requirement. Eric Javits makes a packable knit fedora that’s equal parts practical and fashionable. Plus, since its made of soft and resilient fabric, you can toss this accessory in a suitcase without crushing it.
As mentioned, the sun is intense in Aruba. SPF 15 just won’t cut it. Instead, go for Supergoop’s Unseen Sunscreen. In addition to having an SPF of 40, its formula is completely invisible, scentless, and weightless. Users rave that the jelly-like consistency is easy to apply and instantly absorbs into skin. You might actually want to reapply sunscreen.
If you plan on embarking on any underwater adventures, consider packing your own snorkel gear. This OMORC set features a leakproof and anti-fog mask that’s far more dependable than the leaky and uncomfortable versions usually provided at resorts and on dive boats. Plus, not having to put a communal snorkel in your mouth is a huge upgrade.
The eco-friendly Evolve towel is made from approximately 20 recycled plastic water bottles. The anti-microbial material is completely sand-repellent and odor-free, even when damp, so you can pack it back in your suitcase without bringing the beach (and a musty smell) home with you. We love the four tropical prints, and that the towel folds up small for easy portability to and from the sand.
Aruba’s weather stays pleasant year-round, with temperatures mostly in the 80s. And although there are some very nice restaurants and bars on the island, you won’t need to wear anything formal. Enter: the maxi dress. It’s fashionable and lightweight, while providing a bit of comfy coverage after a full day in a bathing suit. This one comes in a super fun color and pattern. You can even pair it with a cardigan or denim jacket to wear on the airplane.
Sure, you could put your smartphone in a waterproof bag to take photos, but for peace of mind and better quality pictures and videos, consider buying an underwater camera. This waterproof camera is pocket-sized, lightweight, and has dual screens for underwater selfies (good thing you packed a new swimsuit, right?). Plus, the camera floats.
Located in Oranjestad’s bustling cruise port, the upscale Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino is packed with features not many Aruba hotels can match. Stand-out features include two casinos, eight bars and restaurants, two pools, and a luxury mall. The hotel is actually a massive resort complex with two distinct properties inside: the adult-only Renaissance Marina and the family-friendly Ocean Suites.
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