When a good friend told me she was having a destination wedding in Aruba, I was excited.
Then I learned that there is a beach in Aruba where you can lounge and swim with flamingos and I was overjoyed.
Flamingo beach is on Renaissance Island, a private beach belonging to the Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino. Renaissance Island is 40 pristine acres and home to the only private beach in Aruba.
The island alone would be the perfect spot to spend a relaxing day in Aruba but add flamingos roaming the beach and you have pure magic.
The Low Down on Renaissance Island
Access to Renaissance Island is limited to hotel guest. To get to the island, guests can catch a complimentary ride in a water taxi leaving from the hotel lobby. Boats come every 15 minutes and run from 7am to 7pm. Each guest needs a room key to board the boat.
When you arrive on the island, you are greeted by the island concierge who is there to answer any questions you might have. Be sure to look down when you walk as iguanas roam freely around the island.
From the main dock, Renaissance Island is divided into two sections, Flamingo Beach to the right and Iguana Beach to the left. Iguana Beach is kid and family friendly while Flamingo Beach is adult only.
We grabbed towels at the towel stand and headed straight to Flamingo Beach. You can't help but smile when you emerge on a beach to see flamingos and iguanas scattered around the beach.
I couldn't help but marvel at how cool these birds are. I mean their knees bend backwards! If you're feeling up to it, you can get a handful of food to feed the flamingos. The flamingos are friendly and seem like they are used to human contact. As always, proceed with caution since they are wild animals.
We picked lounge chairs close to the shore so we could get a good view of the flamingos splashing around in the water. I was worried that lounge chairs would be scarce since we didn't make it to the beach until noon but there were plenty of open spots. The island never felt crowded.
After we splashed around with a couple of flamingos in the water, we headed to Mangrove Beach Bar for a cold cocktail. And of course there was a flamingo hanging by the bar!
If you want to up your level of relaxation, there are four private cabanas available to rent on Flamingo Beach. The cabanas can accommodate up to 6 adults and comes with butler service.
It was hard to pull myself away from Flamingo Beach but there is much more to do on Renaissance Island.
When you work up an appetite, head over to the Iguana Beach side of the island and grab food at Papagayo Bar & Grill. Not into just lounging on the beach? The island has a Red Sail Sports stand where you can rent snorkels, kayaks and sign up for other water activities.
Renaissance Island also has a fitness room, beach tennis and spa services.
If you're feeling extra adventurous, there is a nature trail that leads to a secluded rocky beach. Bug spray is a must if you want to take the walk as the trail passes through mangroves; a natural breeding ground for mosquitoes. Bug spray is located at the bars and free to use.
Want to lounge with flamingos? Contact us to plan your trip to Aruba
Tip: The hotel does offer a very limited number of day passes. Passes cost $99 a person and are only sold if the hotel is not at capacity. The hotel never wants the island to feel crowded and they want to make sure that each guest has a lounge chair. Passes cannot be pre-booked. The hotel suggests calling first thing in the morning to check availability. If you have your heart set on lounging with the Flamingos, your best bet is to book a room. When we were there, the hotel was not offering any passes.
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