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The Ultimate Foodie Getaway Guide To Aruba


Modified: December 28, 2023

by Marcile Upton



Aruba, a Caribbean paradise known for its pristine beaches and warm turquoise waters, is also a haven for food lovers. With its diverse culinary scene, this enchanting island offers a unique mix of flavors influenced by its multicultural heritage. Whether you’re a dedicated foodie or simply enjoy exploring new tastes, Aruba provides an unforgettable gastronomic experience.


From fine dining restaurants specializing in international cuisine to charming local eateries serving authentic Caribbean dishes, Aruba has something for every palate. The fusion of flavors from around the world creates a vibrant culinary landscape that will delight even the most discerning food enthusiasts.


In this comprehensive Foodie Getaway Guide, we’ll take you on a journey through Aruba’s best restaurants, must-try dishes, famous food festivals, and hidden gems. We’ll also share recommendations for foodie-friendly accommodations and offer some tips to ensure your food adventure in Aruba is truly unforgettable.


So, get ready to embark on a gastronomic voyage as we explore the flavors and delights that Aruba has to offer. From aromatic spices to fresh seafood and tropical fruits, these culinary experiences will leave you craving for more.


Best Restaurants in Aruba

Aruba boasts an impressive array of dining options, ranging from elegant fine dining establishments to cozy beachside cafes. Here are some of the top restaurants that you must visit during your foodie getaway:

  1. Barefoot Restaurant: Located on the picturesque beach of Palm Beach, Barefoot Restaurant offers a unique dining experience with its toes-in-the-sand atmosphere. Enjoy mouthwatering seafood dishes and grilled meats while taking in the stunning sunset views.
  2. Elements Restaurant: Nestled within the Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort, Elements Restaurant showcases a creative menu that focuses on fresh, organic ingredients. The elegant setting and attentive service complement the delicious fusion of flavors prepared by the talented chefs.
  3. Madame Janette: This charming restaurant is famous for its cozy courtyard dining and its extensive menu inspired by European and Caribbean cuisines. Indulge in signature dishes like the “Stuffed Quail” or the “Surf & Turf” while enjoying the cozy ambiance.
  4. Yemanja Woodfired Grill: A hidden gem in the heart of Oranjestad, Yemanja Woodfired Grill is known for its unique blend of flavors and its emphasis on locally sourced ingredients. The wood-fired grill adds a smoky and aromatic touch to the dishes, creating a memorable dining experience.
  5. Passions on the Beach: For a truly romantic dining experience, head to Passions on the Beach. This open-air restaurant is located directly on the soft sands of Eagle Beach and offers candlelit dinners with a breathtaking ocean view. The menu features a variety of dishes with a focus on fresh seafood.

These are just a few examples of the amazing dining options in Aruba. Whether you’re in the mood for international cuisine, seafood delicacies, or local flavors, Aruba’s dining scene has it all. Don’t forget to make reservations in advance, as these popular restaurants tend to fill up quickly.


Local Cuisine and Must-Try Dishes

Aruba’s local cuisine is a delightful blend of flavors from various cultural influences, including African, Dutch, Spanish, and Indigenous Caribbean. Exploring the local culinary scene is a must for any foodie visiting the island. Here are some must-try dishes that will give you a taste of Aruba’s unique flavors:

  1. Keshi Yena: This traditional Aruban dish is a true comfort food. It consists of a large hollowed-out Edam cheese filled with a savory mixture of chicken, vegetables, and spices. The cheese is then baked to perfection, resulting in a rich and gooey delight.
  2. Aruban Seafood Soup: Made with an array of fresh seafood such as fish, shrimp, and mussels, this hearty soup is bursting with flavors. The broth is infused with spices and served with chunks of tender seafood, creating a dish that embodies the essence of Aruba’s coastal cuisine.
  3. Chicharron: A beloved snack in Aruba, chicharron is made by deep-frying pork belly until it becomes crispy and golden. This indulgent treat is often enjoyed with a side of hot sauce for an added kick of flavor. It’s perfect for satisfying your cravings for something savory and crunchy.
  4. Pastechi: Similar to empanadas, pastechi is a popular street food in Aruba. It consists of a pastry filled with various fillings, such as cheese, meat, or seafood. These delicious handheld snacks are perfect for a quick bite while exploring the island.
  5. Arawak Opo: This locally-grown vegetable is a staple in Aruban cuisine. It is often used in soups, stews, and stir-fries, providing a unique and earthy flavor to these dishes. Look out for dishes featuring Arawak opo during your culinary adventures.

These dishes are just a glimpse into the flavorful world of Aruban cuisine. Don’t hesitate to try other local specialties as well, such as pan bati (a fluffy cornmeal pancake), funchi (a polenta-like side dish), and pica di papaya (a tangy papaya hot sauce). Whether you’re a seafood lover or a fan of hearty comfort food, Aruba’s culinary offerings are sure to tantalize your taste buds.


Famous Food Festivals in Aruba

Aruba is not only known for its delicious cuisine but also for its vibrant food festivals that celebrate the island’s culinary heritage. These festivals offer a unique opportunity to indulge in local flavors, mingle with the locals, and fully immerse yourself in Aruba’s food culture. Here are some of the most popular food festivals in Aruba:

  1. Aruba Wine and Dine Festival: This renowned festival showcases the best of Aruba’s dining scene. Over the course of several days, visitors can enjoy wine tastings, food demonstrations by renowned chefs, and special culinary events. This festival is a must-visit for wine enthusiasts and food lovers alike.
  2. Carnival Food Fair: Held during the annual Carnival festivities, the Carnival Food Fair is a gastronomic paradise. Food stalls line the streets, offering a wide variety of local delicacies and international cuisine. From savory eats to sweet treats, this fair has something for everyone.
  3. Carubbian Festival: Every Thursday evening, the Carubbian Festival takes place in San Nicolas, showcasing Aruba’s rich cultural heritage. Alongside live music and vibrant performances, visitors can feast on local dishes prepared by talented chefs and vendors. It’s a perfect opportunity to taste the flavors of the island while experiencing its lively atmosphere.
  4. Restaurant Week: Participating restaurants across the island offer special prix fixe menus during Restaurant Week, making it an excellent time to explore Aruba’s dining scene. This event allows visitors to sample a wide range of culinary delights at discounted prices, making it an affordable way to indulge in Aruba’s delicious cuisine.
  5. International Food and Art Festival: This event brings together food, art, and music in one vibrant celebration. Held in the heart of downtown Oranjestad, the festival features a diverse selection of international cuisines, along with live performances and art exhibitions. It’s a lively event that showcases Aruba’s multicultural influences through its food and art.

Attending these food festivals is not only a fantastic way to indulge in mouthwatering dishes but also an opportunity to connect with the local community and experience the vibrant energy of Aruba. The festivals offer a diverse range of flavors and experiences that showcase the island’s culinary and cultural traditions.


Top Foodie Experiences in Aruba

Aruba offers a plethora of foodie experiences that will delight your taste buds and leave you craving for more. From unique dining settings to immersive culinary adventures, here are some of the top foodie experiences to enjoy during your visit to the island:

  1. Sunset Dinner on the Beach: Indulge in a romantic dinner with your toes in the sand as you savor delicious cuisine and watch the stunning sunset. Several restaurants in Aruba offer beachfront dining experiences where you can enjoy fresh seafood and local specialties while soaking in the breathtaking views.
  2. Sea-to-Table Dining: Join a fishing trip and experience the thrill of catching your own fresh seafood. After a successful fishing excursion, head to a local restaurant where the chefs will expertly prepare your catch of the day. This immersive dining experience allows you to truly savor the flavors of the sea.
  3. Cooking Classes: Immerse yourself in Aruba’s culinary culture by participating in a cooking class. Learn how to prepare traditional Aruban dishes like keshi yena or seafood soup from skilled local chefs. Not only will you learn new recipes and cooking techniques, but you’ll also gain insight into the island’s cultural traditions.
  4. Farm-to-Table Experiences: Discover the island’s agricultural heritage by visiting local farms and participating in farm-to-table experiences. Harvest fresh ingredients, explore farm animals, and learn about sustainable farming practices. You can then enjoy a delicious meal prepared with the farm-fresh produce.
  5. Food Walking Tours: Embark on a guided walking tour that takes you through the bustling streets of Oranjestad or other charming towns, stopping at various foodie destinations along the way. Sample local delicacies, street food, and signature dishes while learning about the island’s culinary history from knowledgeable guides.

These foodie experiences allow you to not only taste the exquisite flavors of Aruba but also to engage with the local culture and traditions. Whether you’re enjoying a romantic beachside dinner or putting on an apron to learn a new recipe, these experiences will create lasting memories of your food adventure in Aruba.


Best Bars and Cocktails in Aruba

Aruba isn’t just a paradise for food lovers, but also for cocktail enthusiasts. The island offers a vibrant nightlife scene with a wide array of bars and clubs where you can sip on expertly crafted cocktails. Here are some of the best bars and must-try cocktails in Aruba:

  1. The Old Man and the Sea: Located on the water’s edge, this iconic bar offers stunning sunset views along with an impressive cocktail menu. Sip on their signature cocktail, “The Old Man’s Mojito,” which combines perfectly muddled mint leaves, lime juice, rum, and a splash of soda.
  2. Bugaloe Beach Bar & Grill: Situated on Palm Beach, Bugaloe is an inviting open-air bar that serves up tropical vibes and refreshing drinks. Try their famous “Aruba Ariba” cocktail, made with local rum, vodka, banana liqueur, and a splash of pineapple and cranberry juice.
  3. Matthew’s Beachside Restaurant: Known for its creative cocktails and beachside ambiance, Matthew’s is a must-visit for cocktail enthusiasts. Don’t miss their “Aruban Sunset,” a delightful blend of rum, orange juice, and grenadine, served in a tall glass with a beautiful gradient of colors.
  4. Moomba Beach Bar & Restaurant: Located on Palm Beach, Moomba is a lively beachfront bar that offers a wide selection of drinks to suit every taste. Try their “Frozen Mango Tango,” a refreshing blend of mango, rum, and tropical flavors that perfectly complements the island vibes.
  5. Charlie’s Bar: A legendary establishment in San Nicolas, Charlie’s Bar is an offbeat and funky watering hole. Their “Aruba Warstaaier” cocktail, made with a local beer, vodka, lime juice, and hot sauce, offers a unique and spicy twist that will surprise and delight your taste buds.

These bars not only offer delicious cocktails but also provide a lively and vibrant atmosphere to enjoy your drinks. From beachfront bars to hidden gems in quaint towns, Aruba’s bar scene has something for everyone.


As always, please drink responsibly and savor these delightful cocktails as you unwind and enjoy the vibrant nightlife of Aruba.


Hidden Gems: Local Food Spots

While Aruba offers a diverse range of dining options, sometimes the best culinary experiences can be found in the hidden gems off the beaten path. These local food spots provide an opportunity to taste authentic flavors and mingle with the locals. Here are some hidden gems in Aruba that should not be missed:

  1. Zeerover: Located in the fishing village of Savaneta, Zeerover is a local favorite for fresh seafood. This no-frills eatery allows you to handpick your seafood straight from the boats, which is then fried to perfection. Enjoy your meal with a cold local beer while taking in the charming harbor views.
  2. Local Food Stands at the Beach: Explore the various beaches in Aruba, and you’ll likely encounter local food stands serving up tasty treats. From empanadas and pan bati to grilled kebabs and fresh fruit smoothies, these beachside food stands offer a delicious and convenient way to savor the local flavors.
  3. Kamini’s Kitchen: Tucked away in Oranjestad, Kamini’s Kitchen is a hidden gem for authentic Aruban cuisine. This family-run restaurant offers a menu filled with traditional dishes like stoba (a hearty meat stew), funchi (a cornmeal porridge), and much more. The welcoming atmosphere and homestyle cooking create a truly delightful dining experience.
  4. Warung Bu Taco: Located in San Nicolas, this humble food stand serves up mouthwatering Indonesian-style tacos. The fusion of flavors from Indonesian and Caribbean cuisines creates a unique and delicious experience. Try their flavorful rendang or spicy sambal for an unforgettable taste adventure.
  5. Chalo Burger: If you’re craving a juicy burger with an Aruban twist, head to Chalo Burger. This local joint offers a variety of mouthwatering burgers made with locally sourced beef and topped with unique ingredients like gouda cheese and Caribbean hot sauces. Indulge in their flavorful creations while enjoying the vibrant atmosphere.

Exploring these hidden gems will not only introduce you to the authentic flavors of Aruba but also give you a glimpse into the local way of life. Immerse yourself in the charm and warmth of these local food spots and enjoy a truly authentic culinary experience.


Foodie-Friendly Accommodations in Aruba

When planning a food-focused trip to Aruba, it’s important to choose accommodations that not only provide a comfortable stay but also cater to your culinary desires. Fortunately, there are several foodie-friendly accommodations in Aruba that offer exceptional dining experiences and convenient access to the island’s culinary hotspots. Here are some options to consider:

  1. Bucuti & Tara Beach Resort: This adults-only beachfront resort not only offers breathtaking views but also excels in culinary excellence. The resort features multiple dining options, including the acclaimed Elements Restaurant, where you can indulge in farm-to-table delights made with locally sourced ingredients.
  2. Boardwalk Boutique Hotel: Nestled amidst lush gardens, Boardwalk Boutique Hotel offers a unique and intimate setting. While the hotel itself doesn’t have a restaurant, it provides fully equipped kitchens in each of its charming casitas, allowing you to prepare your own meals using fresh ingredients from local markets.
  3. Manchebo Beach Resort & Spa: Known for its serene ambiance and stunning beachfront location, Manchebo Beach Resort & Spa offers a delectable culinary experience. The resort boasts several restaurants, including the French Steakhouse and the Pega-Pega Beach Bar & Grill, where you can savor delicious dishes.
  4. Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino: With its luxurious accommodations and diverse culinary offerings, the Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino is a haven for food enthusiasts. From fine dining at Atardi, which offers barefoot dining on the beach, to casual poolside snacks at the H2Oasis Swim-up Bar, there’s something to satisfy every craving.
  5. Divi Aruba All Inclusive: For an all-inclusive experience that caters to food lovers, Divi Aruba is an excellent choice. With a range of dining options, including buffet-style and à la carte restaurants, you can indulge in a diverse range of flavors throughout your stay.

These foodie-friendly accommodations provide not only comfortable stays but also convenient access to the culinary delights of Aruba. Whether you prefer farm-to-table cuisine, beachfront dining, or the flexibility of cooking your own meals, there is an accommodation option that will cater to your culinary preferences.


Remember to inquire about any food-related amenities or special dining experiences offered by the accommodations to further enhance your foodie getaway in Aruba.


Tips for Foodies Traveling to Aruba

Traveling to Aruba as a foodie is an exciting adventure filled with diverse culinary experiences. To make the most of your foodie getaway, here are some tips to keep in mind:

  1. Try Local Cuisine: Don’t miss out on the opportunity to sample Aruba’s local dishes and flavors. From traditional Aruban stews to fresh seafood, exploring the local cuisine will give you a true taste of the island’s culture and culinary heritage.
  2. Visit Local Markets: Immerse yourself in the local food scene by visiting the vibrant markets in Aruba. The markets offer a wide variety of fresh produce, spices, and local delicacies. Engage with the local vendors and discover unique ingredients that you can incorporate into your own culinary creations or enjoy as snacks.
  3. Make Reservations: Aruba’s most popular restaurants can fill up quickly, especially during peak tourism seasons. To ensure you secure a table at your desired dining spots, it’s advisable to make reservations in advance. This will save you from disappointment and allow you to plan your dining experiences seamlessly.
  4. Ask for Recommendations: Don’t hesitate to ask locals and fellow travelers for their recommendations on the best dining spots in Aruba. Locals often have insider knowledge of hidden gems and lesser-known establishments that offer exceptional culinary experiences.
  5. Experience Food Festivals: Check the schedule for food festivals and events happening during your visit to Aruba. These festivals provide a unique opportunity to sample a wide range of flavors in one place, often featuring local specialties and international cuisines. It’s a fantastic way to immerse yourself in the vibrant food culture of the island.
  6. Stay Hydrated: Aruba’s tropical climate can be quite warm, so staying hydrated is essential. Drink plenty of water throughout the day, especially if you’re indulging in flavorful dishes and alcoholic beverages. Staying hydrated will help you fully enjoy your culinary experiences and keep you feeling refreshed.
  7. Be Adventurous: When it comes to trying new dishes and flavors, embrace the spirit of adventure. Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and try something new. You might discover unexpected flavor combinations and culinary delights that you fall in love with.

By following these tips, you’ll be well-prepared to embark on a delicious foodie journey in Aruba. Enjoy the diverse flavors, vibrant culinary scene, and warm hospitality of this Caribbean island as you create unforgettable memories through your culinary adventures.



Congratulations! You are now equipped with the ultimate Foodie Getaway Guide to Aruba. From exploring the best restaurants to indulging in local cuisine, attending food festivals, and discovering hidden culinary gems, your foodie adventure in Aruba is sure to be a feast for the senses.


Aruba offers a unique blend of flavors influenced by various cultures, creating a vibrant culinary landscape that caters to every palate. Whether you’re a seafood lover, a fan of international cuisine, or simply looking to try local delicacies, Aruba has something to satisfy your cravings. The island’s food scene is complemented by the breathtaking beauty of its beaches and warm Caribbean hospitality, making it the perfect destination for any food enthusiast.


As you embark on your foodie journey, remember to embrace the opportunity to try new dishes, engage with the locals, and savor every bite. From romantic beachside dinners to street food encounters and immersive cooking experiences, Aruba offers a diverse range of culinary adventures that will create lasting memories.


So pack your appetite and wanderlust as you immerse yourself in the flavors, aromas, and traditions of Aruba’s culinary world. Whether you’re indulging in the best restaurants, exploring local food spots, or attending food festivals, your foodie getaway to Aruba is bound to be an unforgettable experience.


Bon appetite and enjoy your foodie adventure in Aruba!