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Trying to find the best island for us between these 3

Virginia Beach...
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Trying to find the best island for us between these 3

Hello. My husband and I who are in our 30s are planning a vacation we rarely get due to having little ones (we are going alone). Therefore, I want to make sure we get it as right as possible. I'm not looking for any place sleepy. We will be traveling in the winter. I'd like water comparable to some that I've seen in the Bahamas....clear, beautiful shades of blue (not like St Lucia). We enjoy water sports, so the more the merrier (snorkeling, jet skiing, kayaks, water trikes etc.). We also prefer an active night life (dancing). A huge pool at a nice resort would also be super(if they had slides for adults, we'd be on them). Think big kids that have slowed down just a bit since our 20s. I don't care about food (good and eatable are fine) shopping or casinos and I'm not likely to lay out for more than maybe an hour if that helps. Activity and beautiful calm, clear or mostly clear water (don't necessarily need to see my toes) are our priorities.

Posted this on Gen Carib, but have since narrowed it down to: Aruba (Palm Beach), Jamaica (Negril), or St Thomas

Cumming, Georgia
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for Aruba, Palm - Eagle Beach
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1. Re: Trying to find the best island for us between these 3

Aruba will fit the bill for your need for beautiful water and watersports, but I am not sure on the dancing/nightlife. Water in Aruba will for the most part not be crystal clear like the Bahamas. One of the consequences of all of the watersports ;)

Also as to pools, the Surf Club has a lazy river as well as slide, but the resort as a whole, including the beach will be very crowded in comparison to some of the other resorts on Palm Beach.

Sudbury, Canada
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for Aruba
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2. Re: Trying to find the best island for us between these 3

Are you looking at going all-inclusive or not?

New Jersey
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for Aruba
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3. Re: Trying to find the best island for us between these 3

Yes Aruba fits your bill, Here is your dancing and some other nightlife.

The nightlife department this past year. It has a lot to do with the explosion of EDM in the last 2 years. Since so many of the best DJs are Dutch you can expect solid sets from the local DJs in Aruba.

Nutzbeatz, Really good DJ from Aruba, Friend his page, he post whats up weekly. If he is promoting a show you know if will be a good night. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uJOBCJ2-LfM https://www.facebook.com/Nutzbeatz

GUSTO! GREAT BAR AND STAFF, Perfect mix of local and tourist. http://www.facebook.com/gustoaruba?fref=ts EDM, TRANCE, HOUSE, Any night but with most places it's Starts to heat up on Wednesday through Saturday. Still, earlier in the week is still fun just not as crowded and the night might end at 1pm. This one is small but my favorite, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n-H--J6j36E Across the street from The Radisson on Palm Beach. Hands down the best staff on the Island!

If you are right in town then ''Local Store'' is a great open air bar on the strip, second floor. Bands/DJs or both, https://www.facebook.com/LocalStoreAruba http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FM2HYg8SY4Q

Confessions night club, www.facebook.com/ConfessionNightClubAruba , EDM/HOUSE/LATIN HOUSE/HIP HOP, on Palm Beach across from The Radisson close to Gusto. . http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ScRPQ6wsukE

Sand Beach, Across from The Hard rock on Palm Beach at Brickel Bay hotel. This is an open air bar with a stage and dance floor that has bands/DJs or both. https://www.facebook.com/sandbar.aruba…

Nikky Beach Club, facebook.com/pages/…327053684034748 Only go to Nikky if they are brining in Dutch DJs on the weekend that you are there. Check before you go or ask the bartenders at Gusto if there is anything cool happening. It's also a great place for beach/pool/drinks/food/music during the day.

Also go hang at Moomba beach bar on Sunday Starting around 7PM, could be a band earlier and a DJ later or both, This placee rocks till late on Sundays .http://moombabeach.com/component/index.php?option=com_frontpage&Itemid=1

There is always Senior Frogs http://www.facebook.com/senorfrogsaruba to break up the night. It's 20 feet from Gusto so you can always check out both throughout the night. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DWltLh0yplo

Do a little research and you will know what nights are promoting what your looking for, always ask the bartenders whats going on.

AFTER HOURS SPOT , http://www.millresort.com/en their outdoor bar heats up from 1pm until sunrise most nights but weekends go harder! . It's mostly the local staff from all the bars and restaurants plus Dutch students. Some tourist in if the local staffs feel like telling then! :) House/EDM

Hardrock is now booking bands for the outside bar, Its all tourist and the bands are hit or miss but they are getting better at booking.

Cafe Chaos http://www.facebook.com/chaosaruba?fref=ts Mostly live music and a good spot if you are staying in town, bands don't come on until 11 or so.

Here is the Facebook pages of a few bands, find out where and when they are playing by friending them.

Excellent Reggae band http://www.facebook.com/M.C.arubaregga

My favorite, www.facebook.com/Acoustic.soul.aua?fref=ts

Another great Reggae band https://www.facebook.com/honeypotaruba…

Any other questions feel free.

Minnesota
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4. Re: Trying to find the best island for us between these 3

Have been to all 3. I would choose Aruba. In Jamaica you really need to stay at the resort and go all inclusive. In St Thomas you really can't walk to places and have to drive everywhere. Aruba has both where you can drive and/or walk places, especially if you stay in Palm Beach. Aruba is really our favorite Caribbean Island that we have visited. Going back in February. Many on this board prefer Eagle Beach but we like a little more action to people watch, etc. so we prefer Palm Beach. We stay at the Marriott and rent a condo from a private party.

Virginia Beach...
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5. Re: Trying to find the best island for us between these 3

Arubalisa...gotcha on the watersports and hurting the water clarity...but what would you say the visibility is if I were standing in the water off Palm Beach? Also, are there plenty of water "toys" motorized and non along PB?

Curly, it doesn't matter, but if we were to pick Aruba, we'd likely do non-AI...kind of interested in the Radisson

Everyday: Wow...thanks for all the thoroughness on nightlife...that should be of great help if we go there. Does that party bus take you to any of those places?

Gutzyone: I don't mind doing some driving as I like to explore, but I doubt I would want to drive more than one day, so that is good to know.

General questions:

Someone told me that the water is not calm in Aruba and one can't swim in it...something about the Atlantic, but I thought all was good on the side PB was on. Is it choppy?

Also, I know it is windy, but how windy? Someone told me that sand blows all over and in one's face. Is this true, as I'm not looking for that type of exfoliation.

Thank you!!

Minneapolis...
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for Aruba, Palm - Eagle Beach
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6. Re: Trying to find the best island for us between these 3

No, the party bus does not stop at any of those places mentioned above.

Whoever told you that you could not swim in Aruba was definitely pulling your leg (or didn't have their facts straight.) LOL!! The water at Palm Beach is very calm - like swimming in a lake.

Yes, it's very windy in Aruba but you will appreciate the tradewinds because otherwise it would be very HOT. In all of my trips to Aruba (going on trip #29 in Nov.) I have only had a few instances of "sand blasting". Even with the constant tradewinds, you should not have to worry about the sand.

New York
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7. Re: Trying to find the best island for us between these 3

Aruba would be your best choice with traveling in the winter. Most people on this forum recommend the Radisson for the Palm beach area, but definately check out Eagle beach while in Aruba. I think you will definately have enough to do. They have a fun Pirate ship with a rope swing on Jolly-Pirates. They have jeep tours to the Natural Pool that you will find adventerous. I stay on Eagle beach and can actually say that I don't swim in a pool while there. The water is that nice!

Vancouver BC
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8. Re: Trying to find the best island for us between these 3

I don't think anyone mentioned that Windsurfing and Kite Surfing water sports are also available on Palm Beach. You can also go diving if you are interested in that.

velawindsurf.com/html/…aruba.php

Nassau, New...
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9. Re: Trying to find the best island for us between these 3

The Bahamas. RIU Palace. Then you don't need to compare the waters.

Oh, too bad, you narrowed it down to 3 other places.... have fun!

New York
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10. Re: Trying to find the best island for us between these 3

If beautiful calm, clear or mostly clear water are your priorities, go to the Curacao site.