Wondering what to do in Aruba? Veteran comic (and part-time Aruba resident) Ray Ellin has you covered. When he’s not on “The Happy Island” Ray is in New York, where he’s Executive Producer of Comedy Central’s new hit show, ‘This Week at the Comedy Cellar.’
Ray Ellin’s Top 7 Must-Do Things in Aruba
Get a jeep and ride to the Natural Pool.
There is a sticker on the dashboard of every rental jeep on the island that says, “Not allowed to use to access Natural Pool.” Ignore it! It will possibly be the bumpiest car ride of your life, but it is completely worth it. The Natural Pool is the most beautiful thing on the island—and there are a lot of beautiful things on the island. Swimming in it is gorgeous and healing. I’m glad the roads aren’t paved; otherwise it would be a zoo every day.
Ride down to Baby Beach.
My favorite beach in Aruba—and this is huge praise considering that Eagle Beach is one of the top five beaches in the world. The drive to Baby Beach also allows you to see a lot of the residential neighborhoods on the island.
Snorkeling at Mangel Halto.
You can walk out really far, and then the water gets really deep, and the coral and fish are truly amazing. I always think of the end of the movie Splash, when Tom Hanks and Daryl Hannah are swimming and see the underwater city. One of the comedians I brought there said, totally seriously, “Wow, seeing those colors underwater makes you believe there is a God.”
A meal at Zeerover.
I actually shouldn’t be telling people about this place, because I don’t want this local spot to get too crowded. You eat on the dock, and you choose from just five things on the menu; fish that JUST came off the boat (if you go out back, you can watch them clean it) shrimp, plantains, pan bati (Aruba cornbread) and the best French fries you’ve ever tasted. While you’re eating on the dock you can listen to a jukebox filled with Latin music and 80’s and 90’s American music.
Visit the Alto Vista Chapel.
It doesn’t matter what religion you are, or whether or not you’re religious. This tiny church has most of the pews on the outside, and the backdrop of cactus and water is beautiful. There is a Peace Labyrinth you can walk through behind the church, and you can walk down to the water. It’s a bit of a walk, but totally worth it.
Do the inflatable couch bumpy ride.
You know the thing you sit on and get pulled by a boat? If four grown men can sit on this thing and giggle like schoolgirls, then you know this is the best twenty bucks and Instagram video ever. EVER.
Go to Aruba Ray’s Comedy Club.
Yes the venue is seasonal, and yes this is a shameless plug. BUT TripAdvisor is not wrong—this is the Number One thing to do at night in Aruba. The comedy show is as good or better than any comedy show in NYC, and the venue is intimate.