Palm Beach - Aruba

(Map)

Palm Beach, on the west coast, is the most popular seaside resort of Aruba. Unlike Eagle Beach, Palm Beach has mostly high-rise hotels and is therefore called the High Rise area. In and around Palm Beach is much to see and do. Nature lovers can go to the Bubali Bird Sanctuary and The Butterfly Farm, or can explore Aruba on a horseback. The west coast of Aruba has many beaches where it's excellent to go snorkeling. Further off the coast are a number of beautiful dive sites. Palm Beach also has a lot of bars, restaurants and off course shopping malls of which Palm Beach Plaza and Paseo Herencia Mall are the largest.

  • Front view of the Palm Beach Plaza shopping centre
  • Signs with distances to cities at Gilligans Beach bar in Palm Beach
  • A boat of a snorkel tour just outside the coast of Boca Catalina
  • Palm Beach with several palm trees and parasols
f.l.t.r.: Palm Beach Plaza | Gilligans Beach Bar | Snorkel excursie - Boca Catalina | Palm Beach .

Tourist attractions

A brown-throated parakeet on a branch at the Bubabli Bird Santuary

Bubali Bird Sanctuary

Location: 100yd from Palm Beach | Category: Nature

Between Palm Beach and Eagle Beach lies the Bubali Bird Sanctuary. The entrance of this bird sanctuary is located near Palm Beach, at the Old Mill. The whole area is a large lake fed by a canal from the sea. In the Bubali Bird Sanctuary you can see birds such as grebes, kingfishers, cormorants, moorhens and various herons.

The Dutch Mill in the background, in the foreground a sign with text

The Dutch Mill

Location: 100yd from Palm Beach | Category: Culture

The Dutch mill was built in Groningen in 1804 and served as a consort. In 1878 the windmill was used as a barley maler until it broke down during a storm in 1929. In 1960 the old mill was bought by a businessman who broke down the mill and rebuilt it in Palm Beach. Now the Dutch Mill serves as a tourist attraction, especially popular with Americans. From the bar on the 1st floor you can look out over the Bubali Bird Sanctuary.

A butterfly on a slice of Orange in the the butterfly farm

The Butterfly Farm

Location: Beach boulevard Palm Beach (J.E. Irausquin Boulevard) |Prijs: $15 | Categorie: Nature

The Butterfly Farm was first opened in St. Maarten in 1994. In 1999 the second butterfly farm ws opened at the Palm Beach located next to the Bubali Bird Sanctuary. The Butterfly Farm has hundreds of butterflies, every 15 minutes a tour is given. The butterfly farm is open from 8.30am to 4.30pm, the entrance fee is $15 per person. During your holiday one ticket can be use unlimited times to visit The Butterfly Farm.

Horses kept on a leash in Rancho Notorious

Location: 1.5mi from Palm Beach (Boroncana) | Price: $55 | Category: Horse Riding

At Rancho Notorious you can explore Aruba on horseback. The ranch has been in existence for 20 years is named after the eponymous film Rancho Notorious (1954). The Paso Fino horses are also named after notorious names like Al Capone and Billy the Kid. You can book group tours or private trips at Rancho Notorious starting at $55. It's also possible to book quad or bike tours here. The pick-up from the hotel area in Palm Beach is at no charge.

Several surfers at sea off the coast of Hadicurari beach

Fisherman’s Huts (Hadicurari Beach)

Location: 1.6mi from Palm Beach | Category: Beach

At the end of the hotel area of Palm Beach lies Fisherman's Huts. The water here is very shallow, together with the winds it's an ideal windsurfing location. Hi-Winds Pro Am windsurf competition is held at the Fisherman's Huts every year.

A ship just off the coast of Malmok Beach

Malmok Beach

Location: 3mi from Palm Beach | Category: Beach

Malmok Beach is a small beach near the town of Malmok. The sea is shallow and there's a lot of fish in the waters, which makes it ideal for snorkeling. Malmok Beach has no facilities nor shelter from the sun. The beach is almost at the end of Route 1.

The beach and the sea of Boca Catalina, with palm trees and sailboats

Boca Catalina

Location: 3mi from Palm Beach | Category: Beach

160ft north of Malmok Beach lies Boca Catalina. Also here the sea is shallow and ideal for snorkelling. Many snorkeling excursions from Palm Beach stop here. Boca Catalina has no facilities, but there are thatched umbrellas that provide shelter from the sun. The beach is at the end of Route 1.

The beach of Arashi Beach with thatched beach umbrellas

Arashi Beach

Location: 3.3mi from Palm Beach | Category: Beach

Arashi Beach lies just north of Boca Catalina on the road to the California Lighthouse. The beach is just like Boca Catalina and Malmok Beach an ideal snorkel location. On Arashi Beach thatched umbrellas offer shelter from the sun.

At the right the California Lighthouse and at the left the restaurant, seen from the sea

California Lighthouse

Location: 4.5mi from Palm Beach | Category: History

The California Lighthouse was originally built as a lighthouse to warn ships off the coast. Today it is a tourist attraction. Unfortunately you no longer can enter the lighthouse, however you still have a nice view at the base of the California Lighthouse. An Italian restaurant is also situated here.

Hole 14 of Tierra del Sol with sea view

Tierra del Sol

Location: 3mi from Palm Beach | Price: $ 99 Category: Golf

3 miles from Palm Beach lies Tierra del Sol, the only 18-hole golf course of Aruba. At this golf course lies the Tierra del Sol resort. Prices of the golf course vary by season and day part, but start at $99 per person.

A puffer fish swimming by the antilla wreck

Antilla wreck

Locatie: 0.5mi off the coast of Malmok Beach – 15 minutes by boat | Category: Diving

The freighter Antilla was built in Hamburg, Nazi Germany in 1939. The ship was anchored off the coast of Malmok when Germany invaded the Netherlands. The ship was boarded by soldiers and then sank. The Antilla wreck is one of the largest wrecks in the Caribbean and lies intact at a depth of 46-60ft. The dive is suitable for both novice and experienced divers, the best diving period is December to May.

Schools of fish at the Debbi II wreck

Blue reef & Debbie II

Location: 700yd off the coast of Fisherman’s Huts – 10 minutes by boat | Category: Diving

The Debbie II wreck is a deliberately sunk ship (in 1992) to create an artificial reef. The Blue reef is the reef surrounding the Debbie II wreck. The reef, at a depth of 50 to 90ft, is sandy and mostly filled with leaf sponges and brain corals. You can also see moray eels, lobsters and other schools of fish. The best dive period is December to May.

Coral on the Pedernales wreck outside Palm Beach

Pedernales Wreck

Location: 1mi off the coast of Palm Beach – 20 minutes by boat | Category: Diving

The Pedernales was an oil tanker that was torpedoed by a German submarine during World War II. The wreck was sawed in three pieces by the US Army. The centerpiece was sunk and now forms the Pedernales Wreck. The wreck lies at a depth of 26 to 30 feet where you can see groupers and angel fish. The best diving period is from December to May.

Activities

Diving
From Palm Beach diving excursions are offered to various dive sites. Off the coast of Palm Beach are three special wrecks: the Antilla wreck, Debbie II wreck and the Pedernales wreck. At Arashi Beach (36-46ft depth) and Malmok beach (75ft depth) are two reefs ideal for diving.

Snorkeling
At Palm Beach you can snorkel very well. Especially in the quieter beaches of Arashi, Malmok and Boca Catalina you are able to see many fish. The sea is shallow for a long distance and there is a good visibility.

Nightlife
Palm Beach is totally focussed at tourists. There are many (beach) bars and clubs. In addition, restaurants and hotels offer special shows that are sure to be worth a visit.

Aruba Sinatra Dinner Show
Location: The Old Cunucu House, downtown Palm Beach | Price $55
Every Thursday from 7:30pm to 10pm the Aruba Sinatra Dinner Show is presented at The Old Cunucu House in the Palm Beach. During dinner several Sinatra songs are sung and a complete show is offered. The Aruba Sinatra Dinner Show brings the Las Vegas atmosphere to Aruba.

Biba Aruba Festival
Location: Radisson Aruba Resort, High Rise Area
Every Tuesday from 5pm to 9pm the Biba Aruba Festival is held at the swimming pool of the Radisson Aruba Resort. This festival will give you a fire show, limbo dancing show and carnival show. Also you can enjoy the Aruban cuisine and art. The festival is open to everyone and the entrance is free.

Magic Live!
Location: Westin Resort & Casino, High Rise area | Price: $40
Every week a mgic show is presented in the theater of the Westin Resort & Casino. This show is full of illusions and comedy. Magic Live! will start at 9pm, ticket sales start at 8pm. The price for children under 15 years is $20, for adults $40.

Shopping
Just as Oranjestad Palm Beach as several major shopping malls.

Palm Beach Plaza

Palm Beach Plaza is a large shopping center located at the intersection of the JE Irasquin Boulevard and Route 1 (in the high rise area). The shopping mall has plenty of fashion stores and jewelers. Brands like Benetton, Brickenstock and Swarovski have their own store at Palm Beach Plaza. In addition, Palm Beach Plaza has restaurants, bars, bowling alley, cinema and a stage for live music. The mall is open every day from 10am to 10pm and on Sundays from 5pm to 10pm.

Paseo Herencia Mall

Paseo Herencia Mall is a shopping center built like a small village, like some known outlet centers. The shopping center lies across from Palm Beach Plaza and the Holiday Inn Resort at the JE Irasquin Boulevard. The mall has a movie theater and a number of bars and restaurants including Haagen - Dazs, McDonalds desserts and Starbucks, but mostly Paseo Herencia Mall has a lot of fashion and jewelery shops. Known brands such as Tommy Hilfiger, Lacoste, Crocs and Hunkermoller have a store here. Paseo Herencia Mall is open every day from 10am to 10pm and on Sundays from 5pm to 10pm.

South Beach Centre

The South Beach Centre is a shopping center in Palm Beach, it is located on Route 3 at about halve a mile from the high rise area. The mall has a number of shops and bars. The best known bars are the Hardrock cafe and cafe 'de Pijp'.

The Village Mall

The Village Mall is a small shopping center across from the Radisson Aruba Resort at the JE Irasquin Boulevard in the high rise area of Palm Beach. The mall has a number of shops but mostly many restaurants and bars. Some are open until 2am.

Stay

Palm Beach has a variety of luxury resorts, also known chains like Marriott, Hyatt and RIU havee a hotel resort here. The hotel area of Palm Beach is also called high rise area because of the especially high-rises. In downtown Palm Beach you will find a number of smaller and cheaper hotels.

Accessibility

Car
Palm Beach is easily accessible by car from Oranjestad by two main roads, Route 1B and Route 3 (via Noord). Route 1B continues out of Palm Beach as a single-lane (Route 1) to Malmok.

Bus
Every fifteen minutes a bus goes to Palm Beach. Bus routes 10, 10A and 10B go straight through the low rise area at Eagle Beach and the high rise area at Palm Beach along all the hotels. Line 7 and 7A only go to the high rise area via Noord.