This safe and stable island has Dutch roots and a government founded on democratic principles. Aruba has had a turbulent history, from Amerindian inhabitation to Spanish and Dutch rule. In 1986, Aruba achieved is separate status as an autonomous entity within the Dutch Kingdom. Its commercial development has included gold, aloe, oil and its primary industry of tourism. With a Dutch foundation and international influences, Aruba has become a modern nation with advanced infrastructure, meeting the needs of its people in such areas as education, social welfare and medicine.
Aruba’s 120,000 people are a diverse mix of about 80 nationalities, well-educated with a pleasant nature and a zest for hospitality. Their warm smiles and friendly demeanor are known throughout the world and a key factor in achieving the highest repeat visitor rate in the region.
Aruba’s multi-cultural heritage is also apparent in everyday communication; Papiamento and Dutch are the official languages, while English and Spanish are widely spoken. While most of the inhabitants are of the Roman Catholic religion, there are houses of worship of many other denominations.
The island’s cultural richness is also evident in its contemporary art, theatre, and music; holidays and celebrations such as Carnival and Dera Gai; and products proudly made in Aruba, including edibles and collectables, spirits, cigars, aloe and handicrafts.