I can finally say I’ve made it to one of the most sought after destinations in the world. This majestic private island hosts its own flock of vibrant flamingos and is home to possibly the clearest, untouched water in the Caribbean.
This slice of heaven belongs to the island that stole my heart years ago — Aruba. While I’ve been to the island five times, I found out this 20 mile country has a not so little secret; the Private Island at the Renaissance.
Getting to the Island
A 10 min boat ride will get you to the island from the Renaissance Hotel. If you’re staying at the hotel you will have free and guaranteed access. If you are staying elsewhere, you can purchase day passes for $100 each, and included in that is one meal and two drinks per ticket.
You will need to call the morning you’re considering going, because if the resort is at full capacity, they will not be able to accommodate outside guests.
When you arrive at the beach, you’ll see how quiet and peaceful the island is compared to the busier, downtown areas in Aruba.
We enjoyed a bite to eat (included in the day pass) and drinks before we headed to see the baby flamingos. The food was just alright, but I honestly didn’t mind because the view was so astonishing.
Bonding with the babies
After lunch we headed down to see the baby flamingos on the other side of the island. They are located on the opposite side of the island from the adult ones.
As little babies they were pretty shy, even though you could tell they were used to seeing people. We kept our distance, but we were still able to get close enough to see them. I was surprised there wasn’t any security or employees standing by them.
Our new flamingo friends
Once we visited the babies we headed back towards the main attraction — the full-grown flamingos! Walking around the island is simply breathtaking. You can see the bright turquoise water sparkle and feel the serenity of the beach.
Large iguanas roam around in the sand and boats appear only in the distance. I found myself thinking that I wouldn’t mind being stranded on an island if it was this beautiful. The island is even larger than I expected, and has spacious cabanas for rent. These private cabanas line the ocean in two beachfront areas; the far side of flamingo beach and the beach that lays right in front of the restaurant.
As we entered the main flamingo beach area, we could see people feeding the flamingos. The area is much busier on this side of the island, since everyone wants a spot to watch the flamingos. They were fairly friendly, but I was a little terrified they may bite or get annoyed, so I tried to be careful when I was up close to them. It was the first I had ever seen a flamingo this close up! Scotty was afraid to even get right in front of them, which was pretty hilarious (but he had his duties to take pictures for me).
Overall, they were pretty calm creatures, but every now and then they would ruffle their feathers and move to the other side of the beach. They seemed to be used to the tourists, yet would occasionally make noises, which I had no idea how to interpret so I would back up to be cautious. While we were able to get chairs on the beach, everyone seemed to be crowding the flamingos to get a picture with them. That was the only part of the experience I didn’t like. Some people were continuously trying to get a selfie for long lengths of time, while others seemed too close in proximity and aggravating them.
The only time we could go to the beach was on the weekend, because we had a short trip. We talked to other travelers and they said the beach wasn’t busy at all when they went on the previous Thursday. I would advise to set up this experience during a week day if you can. We were also there in October, which is considered their off-season.