CLEAR KAYAKING ON THE COAST OF ARUBA
This post is in partnership with the Aruba Tourism Authority.
If we could choose one activity to define our 2020 it would definitely be kayaking! We spent the majority of the summer kayaking around Vermont, so when we go the chance to join Clear Kayak Aruba for an excursion in Aruba we were so excited. We haven’t gotten too many opportunities to kayak in the sea so when we set off on our tour bright and early we were anxious for what would await us. Nico from Clear Kayak Aruba picked us up at our hotel, Casa Del Mar, and brought us straight to our guide, Luis Enrique, who was waiting and ready to go with our kayaks for the day. Ryan and I had a private tour in a double kayak, while Luis Enrique guided us to all of his favorite spots.
We began the tour at the shoreline near Clear Kayak Headquarters at Santo Largo Beach in Savaneta (a secluded, magical beach!) and paddled north. For our first stop, Luis Enrique showed us where many of the locals often camp with their families - a very small island called Sea Glass Isle with a few pre-build huts. He shared memories of his family camping there, spreading out their sleeping bags, sleeping under the stars and eating the fish they caught themselves. I could picture it in my head and can imagine us coming back to the island and doing it ourselves one day!
Next, he took us over to Zeerovers, which is one of the most famous restaurants in Aruba. Each day the fishermen will bring in their fresh catches and that will decide the menu! While we were there we got to meet one of the swimmers who swam from Aruba to Venezuela for charity during the “Crossing for Hope” event - the distance is over 28.5 kilometers! It was so cool to chat with her and learn about how charity swims like hers really help the children on the island. We even got the backstory of the event, which began with Roly Bisslik’s swim in 1988. He swam the long distance in a little over 10 hours and even built a pool with the charity earnings aptly named “Pisina Olimpico Roly Bisslik.”
We continued along the coastline looking at all of the beautiful homes and gliding over coral reefs and colorful fish before we arrived at the Mangroves, which was the main part of our tour. We parked our boats at Isla de Oro, or "Island of Gold" - which has nothing to do with Gold except the colorful and beautiful Mangrove forest and the sea life there - and walked through the mesmerizing natural archway canals created by the mangrove trees. While we were there, Luis Enrique told us stories of when he was younger and showed us all of the spots that he and his friends used to hang out, including an abandoned ship which was once a disco!
Our last stop of the tour was Mangel Halto Beach - one of the most beautiful beaches that I have been to on the island. They say that the water is “50 shades of blue” here and it really was! We enjoyed kayaking over more of Aruba’s coral reefs and saw so many fish and other wildlife! As the tour came to an end, we picnicked with some fresh fruit and delicious iced tea and swam in the crystal clear water. Nico returned to pick us up and let us know that before we could leave he had to take us to one of his favorite roadside restaurants for Aruba’s famous pastechi (similar to an empanada) of ham and cheese. It was SOOOOOO good!
We had such an amazing time with Clear Kayak Aruba and I am so glad we got to explore with Luis Enrique. We learned so much history about Aruba, heard fun stories from the life of a local, and got to see such beautiful sights. I definitely recommend joining them for a tour. And if you are feeling extra adventurous, they even offer a night tour! Thank you so much to Aruba Tourism for helping us find such a wonderful way to explore Aruba!
If you are hoping to travel to Aruba here are the latest Coronavirus (COVID-19) Requirements: https://www.aruba.com/us/traveler-health-requirements
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