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Aruba Kayaking

By Justin Burch

Though scuba diving may get all the attention, Aruba has plenty of other water sports opportunities. One of the best activities in Aruba for every type of tourist is kayaking. On the leeward side of the island, kayakers can paddle through calm waters and visit some popular sites along the way. If you want to explore this beautiful island in a unique way, a kayaking expedition along the southern coast offers incredible opportunities.

One of the most popular kayaking activities in Aruba is the four-hour guided tour offered by Aruba Kayak Adventure. Departing each morning at 9:30 am, these casual tours pass by some of the most celebrated pirate hideouts – including the popular Spanish Lagoon area. The guides are knowledgeable of everything from pirate mythology to the unique species found in the warm Caribbean waters. The price of the tour includes not only the guide and kayaking instruction, but also lunch and the use of snorkeling equipment. Most of the kayaking tours launch from the small fishing village of Savaneta and return to land at Barcadera, one of Aruba’s primary ports. With a kayaking tour, you won’t have to worry about any of the details – you even receive transportation to and from your resort.

In addition to the Spanish Lagoon, there are plenty of sites along Aruba’s southern coast. East of the secluded lagoon is the Mangel Halto Reef – thought by many to be the healthiest reef in Aruba. With a small, secluded beach that allows snorkelers to walk right into the reef, Mangel Halto is a great dive spot for all skill levels. After checking out the reef and impressive underwater life, you can lay in the sun on the quiet adjoining beach. As you paddle along in your kayak, you can also admire miles of lush mangrove forests and numerous hidden coves tucked along the coast.

If you want to experience the Caribbean and Aruba’s coastline on your own, all the best resorts offer kayak rentals. When you make your reservations with your resort, simply inquire about the availability of such equipment. You can include kayaking and snorkeling as part of a moneysaving activity package, helping you and your family experience all the best sites without breaking the bank. If you are unsure of where to visit while kayaking or want to find the best snorkeling sites, your concierge will be able to build an itinerary for your adventure.

One of the favorite destinations for kayakers – both on tours and paddling solo – is DePalm Island. Just a short paddle from the Spanish Lagoon, DePalm Island is a great place to snorkel and relax in the sun. Most of the kayaking tours visit this small island and offer tourists lunch at the charming restaurant. DePalm Island is also one of the best sites you will ever find for underwater photography. With shallow reefs and crystal clear water, you certainly don’t want to forget your camera.

After you return to shore, there are plenty of other activities on the southern shore worth exploring. With calm winds and gentle surf, southern Aruba is also a favorite destination of windsurfers and kitesurfers. You can find several rental shops and tour guides in the area, with many services catering to novices and families. These calm waters are also a big draw for fishermen. Half-day and full-day tours can be arranged through fishing shops throughout Aruba or directly through your resort. After you catch some wahoo or yellowfin tuna, you can even take your catch to a number of local restaurants to be grilled and served.

As the most popular beaches and sites in Aruba are located on the western shore, a visit to the southern coast can provide a pleasant getaway. As word spreads about kayaking in southern Aruba, the sport will certainly continue gaining popularity. When in Aruba, ask your resort about kayaking and experience the unspoiled Caribbean beauty that everyone is talking about.

About the Author

Justin Burch writes articles about travel in Aruba [] for the Marriott Resorts.

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To learn more about Aruba, visit our other Aruba pages

An Introduction to Aruba
Recreation Activities on Aruba
Aruba Places of Interest
Windsurfing - Aruba's signature sport
Aruba Beaches
Other Aruba Attractions

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Last modified: May 07, 2009