Aruba is a blue water destination that should be on every kiteboarder’s travel list! This Happy Island should better be known as the Windy Island with wind blowing year-round and is known for it’s wide appeal to kitesurfers.
Airport: Fly directly into Queen Beatrix Int’l Airport (AUA) in Oranjestad, Aruba from at least 10 different airports.
Rental Cars: The rental car department is located just outside the airport. I’ve rented for around $40/day from Budget and have had quality cars with no issues. If you’re going to Boca Grande you drive on sandy gravel, a car is adequate, but a SUV gives a little more comfort. Smaller sedans sometimes don’t have foldable rear seats. so make sure you mention this upon checkout.
Accommodations: Aruba is a great place to Airbnb, as stays in nearby Saventa are around $70/nt. Hotels are much more expensive and generally on the northern side, so preference il be given to which spot you prefer. Saventa is a quiet residential area with nearby restaurants and grocery stores. The location is convenient, as it’s a quick 10 minutes to the airport and 20 minutes to Boca Grande.
Boca Grande: Located on the Southeastern corner of the island, it is the on-shore/side on-shore kite spot. Boca can be reached in about 20-30 minutes from the Airport area. The beach set up allows for self launching and landing through strategically placed concrete blocks with a hook insert.
There are about 5 or 6 of those blocks in a row for self launching. The bay has a beach break along with swell and a larger reef break with 6ft swell. The wind forecasts tend to be a bit overstated and one needs a bit more to get through the current. You ideally want to look for 25mph forecast. The island is windy all year-round but our visit in July afforded us with killer winds around 30mph.
Fisherman’s Huts: Located on the northwest end of the island, the wind blows offshore here and usually has butter flat water. The wind can be gusty here due to blowing over the island catching buildings and huts. Most of the kite schools are located here, but appear more of a tourist attraction. Given the wind blows off shore rescue boats will pick you for a fee if you you are not able to make it back in. So, if you are not an experienced kiter and not hundred percent conformable to go upwind, then you might want to let them know to keep an eye on you.
No-wind Activity: When it’s windy everyday, just add in more things to do before kiting. Nearby in Mangel Halto is one of the premier reefs to snorkel, it’s a little bit of a swim, but well worth it! The current was not very strong and I felt comfortable with fins and a mask. Drive up to the north point and explore the Aruban desert countryside.
Coffee: What is a review without the local coffee scene? The best coffee was found in San Nicolas at Kulture Coffee, it is an open air shop that takes pride in the local history. I also tried Smit & Dorla’s and was not impressed by the coffee or atmosphere.
Check it out and Contact us for assistance in planning your next kite adventure.