Smackdown: Aruba vs Bonaire vs Curaçao
According to Melinda Crow in her article published on the Yahoo Travel website, Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao are three island jewels situated barely off the coast of Venezuela and are as distinctly different from one another as diamonds, rubies, and sapphires. They share a common history of war, slavery, and occupation, and Dutch influence is unmistakable on all three.
Melinda then proceeds to compare these three islands to each other.
The case for Aruba
By far the best-known island of the three, Aruba buzzes with activity. Picture long stretches of white sand beaches dotted with high-rise resorts and hotels. There are swaying palm trees, but you will also see cactus and scrubby, windswept trees. The ABC islands lie outside the Caribbean hurricane belt, but wind is a daily occurrence.
Well over a million tourists visited Aruba last year for an overnight stay, with another half million arriving by cruise ship. It can feel crowded.
The case for Bonaire
The least populated and least visited island in the chain is Bonaire. First-time visitors either fall crazy in love or leave grumbling about the lack of facilities. You don’t go to Bonaire looking for endless stretches of beach, high-rise hotels, or rowdy nights out on the town. This is the quiet island. The pace is slow and leisurely. Small to mid-sized cruise ships dock several days per week, almost overwhelming the port city of Kralendijk. Locals are thankful for the tourism revenue, but wave a happy goodbye when the ships sail into the sunset.
The case for Curaçao
Consider Curaçao the working-class island of the chain. The terrain is more rugged and mountainous than either of the other two islands, creating striking scenery. The familiar Dutch architecture greets visitors in the port city of Willemstad. The island presents an interesting mix of tourist facilities and urban island living. In places, resorts seem to have sprung up right in the middle of single-family neighborhoods.
Click here to read the full article. It’s a great article.