So we had our honeymoon in three different places, and the first stop was Aruba..
"WELCOME TO MY ONE HAPPY ISLAND!!"
Palm trees constantly blown by the hot summer breeze.
We arrived at our hotel, called Tropicana Resort & Casino.
It was in the middle of being reformed, so we got one of the normal apartments, but if you go in a couple of years, you'll see below what it'll look like.
The reason why I picked this place was because mainly really, its waterfall pool. I also saw that there was a waterslide and an in-pool bar, so I was pretty much sold. I showed Nathan and he was happy enough.
However, it is in Eagle Beach, which is slightly further away from where all the fun happens.
If we had done it again, perhaps we would've stayed on Palm Beach. More on that below.
Also, amazing customer service from Tropicana, as they heard we were on our honeymoon and gave us a bottle of free champagne. So awesome!
We had such an adventure in Aruba, with quite possibly THE MOST DELICIOUS MEAL I'VE HAD IN MY LIFE, an off-road jeep tour to a natural pool, and De Palm Island. You're going to want to scroll all the way to the end.
So first, let's start with the hotel.
The waterfall didn't start to flow until about 10am, but boy was it so beautiful!
The in-pool bar was so awesome!
But this was definitely our favourite... such a fun waterslide!!
And I found a green "wall" full of these leaves, so I was pretty happy.
So our apartment came with a living room, kitchen, a bathroom, and a bedroom with two queen (double) beds.
We decided we wanted to cook and buy snacks from the supermarket half the time to save a bit.
However, Aruba is mega expensive. Everything is imported because it's pretty much a desert there where they can't grow their own crops (literally guaranteed sunshine).
Also, we didn't stay in an area that had loads of restaurants open, so we were very limited in where we could go to eat unless we took a bus or a taxi (we decided not to hire a car).
Ah, the flowing waterfall.
Palm trees swaying in the breeze everywhere.
Beautiful palapas everywhere you went. It truly is a paradise.
So this is the new version of Tropicana, what they're remodeling it into. Super awesome bathroom, kitchen, living room, and bedroom. If you're hiring a car and want to be out of the way of the hustle and bustle, Eagle Beach is a great place to be.
So our first couple of days were spent there. Poor Nathan got a bad sunburn (always wear sunscreen people!!) so we didn't want to go too crazy in our first few days, just chilling mostly.
But then we went to De Palm Island, thank you to our kind and wonderful friends Tony and Fernanda for getting us this experience.
At De Palm Island, you have an all-inclusive day. We had free food and drinks all day, and there were activities there at your leisure such as banana boating, zip line, salsa lessons, snorkelling (our favourite), laying down by the beach, volleyball, waterslide park, etc.
It was a pretty awesome all-inclusive day, and we had lots of fun. A lot of it is on my video of our trip on Youtube. You can find it by going here: Honeymoon: Aruba, Bonaire, and Curacao 2016
We had so much fun snorkelling!! What a beautiful paradise with so many fish and amazing things to see.
Beautiful crystal clear waters. Loved it.
One of our other days, we went on an off-road jeep tour with De Palm Island Tours to a natural pool. Ah, such a gorgeous natural pool! Nathan nearly stepped on an eel, it was crazy. So many fish around, and such a beautiful place to snorkel.
Such a beautiful beautiful place. They also took us to the Natural Bridge and around the island.
One night, we went down to the beach to just chill and have a walk down it because it's totally the SOFTEST SAND EVER. It literally feels like I was stepping on a sand version of Tempurpedic memory foam.
That night, I saw a sunset like one I'd never seen before. It was literally God's glory and beauty pouring over the skies.
It just started out like your normal old sunset, and then the colours painted the sky.
These two first pictures literally have NO filter on it. That is literally how incredible it was, and for one of the few times in my life, I literally thought a picture would not capture its true beauty like actually being there to see it. You are completely immersed in the sunset yourself, just watching it pass right over you and right over the horizon. I have never seen one like that before, and I just literally thought like whoa.
You can literally see the sunset glaring off our faces.
And that one was of me taking a picture on my phone of Nathan taking a picture of the first picture you guys saw.
We went back another night to drink our champagne because it's just a great beach.
Now, we had been strolling along the beach and very near to us we found a restaurant called Passions on The Beach.
(We also totally found the famous Aruba Divi Tree and right near it, an AWESOME tree swing, and also such cute palm trees each on their own, a few metres away from the next. I'm a big lover of Palm trees, therefore I needed to basically hug one.)
Aren't they the coolest!!
Anyways, back to Passions on the Beach.
We found this little gem right near our hotel. We dreamed a little about having dinner there and thought, maybe we'll come back.
And so, we thought we should at least treat ourselves to a really nice dinner. And wow, it was totally the BEST dinner ever. I wish I had enough space to have dessert because I'm sure it would've been amazing.
However, I can't stomach that much, so I had to leave dessert.
We waited nearby, and then we went and got a table.
So first, we started off with a delicious starter. It was bell peppers stuffed with smoked trout mousse, served on top of smooth pebble rocks. OH MY WORD THEY WERE DELICIOUS.
MMM. I want the recipe and I want to make it exactly how they made it.
They also have super fun starters like a watermelon feta salad served on top of a slice of a watermelon.. but it's not sliced the way you think it is. It's sliced like you would slice a banana, and looks like a bed. Look it up on TripAdvisor and you'll find pictures everywhere.
Anyways, so then Nathan and I ordered dinner.
By the way, we totally had the best seats. We were looking out right onto the water, sunset beginning.
The palapas were coated in fairy lights, which looked absolutely adorable.
So, I decided to be super fruity and try something wild. I had what they called a "Baked Delicacy""
It was baked chicken breast with a smooth banana - cream cheese filling topped with a rich tropical guava sauce.
See, most people might find that strange, but that combination set fireworks off in my mouth.
So delicious. It was so tropical and wonderful.
Nathan on the other hand had the ballontine of chicken. Bacon wrapped chicken leg stuffed with Italian spiced ground beef accompanied with garlic mashed potato and mushroom gravy.
Mmmm. Our plates also came under a stainless steel bell dome, making it look super fancy. And they so were.
What a spectacular meal. I desperately want to recreate it so if anyone has the exact way of doing it feel free to let me know!
Nathan, being the twice the size of me of course could potentially handle more food, so he looked at the dessert menu. It lights up. Passions, you impressed me in every way possible.
So we finally paid the bill, and in awe of the most awesome dining experience we had, we headed back to our suite.
Ahhh, Passions, feel free to come over to England (I know it's mostly rainy but you guys can totally make something work)
So finally, I thought I'd finish off with my favourite beach - Palm Beach - and the town centre of Aruba.
Aruba pays very little tax, so the town centre mall is filled with high end shops such as Cartier, Michael Kors, etc.
It's so pink, and I loved it. We also had a little stroll down the flea market to see what we could find. Such cute stuff! It reminded me so much of Brazil.
They had those owls in Brazil. On a side note, I can't wait to go back to Brazil and blog all about it. Last time I went I didn't have a blog so I never thought of this. Ah!
Colourful everywhere. Worth a little trip down, and you can also find pretty cool restaurants nearby and the Renaissance.
So finally, I will tell you all about Palm Beach.
We got the little mini bus (by the way, they look like vans, but they say "bus" on them, so don't be afraid to get on them, they're legit) to the beach.
We started walking and immediately the whole beach is filled with palapas and palm trees, definitely earning its name. However, most palapas are owned by the hotels, so you can't just take one, unless you're staying in one of the hotels. However, there are lots of Watersports Huts that also rent out umbrellas and chairs.
Cactus walls lined some of the hotels. Such a great fencing structure.
We continued on ahead and found Eduardo's Beach Shack. It was such a hot day (Aruba's all-round year temperature falls betweens 28-33C. Hot hot hot!), so I really wanted an ice cream or something.
Better yet, Eduardo's Beach Shack offers delicious smoothies and smoothie bowls!!
I had a dragon fruit smoothie bowl and it was delicious, healthy, and so cold. Exactly what I needed.
We continued to walk on ahead to find some beach chairs and to just see what was around. We found an awesome little pier - the whole of the water in Palm Beach was so blue.
We chilled and got in the water and sunbathed. It finally got around to lunch time, and we decided to go to this one place I'd seen on TripAdvisor called "Pelican Pier". They are under Pelican's Nest which offer Champagne Brunch cruises, Sunset Sail cruises, watersports, and more. Look for them online. I totally loved Pelican pier because you are sitting right next to the water. You can literally jump in right from your seat if you want.
Ah, Aruba, you totally have a piece of my heart.
So, that's it for now, but that's not all of our honeymoon.
Stay tuned for Bonaire & Curacao coming soon!
Love you all,
1 John 1:5
"This is the message we heard from Jesus and now declare to you: God is light, and there is no darkness in him at all."