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Vicky Lane

The A of the ABC islands, the western-most islands of the Leeward Antilles (the ‘B’ and ‘C’ being Bonaire and Curaçao), is “One Happy Place” according to its motto—and it's hard to disagree. The tiny Dutch colony (only 19 miles long) has all the traits of Caribbean paradise: spine-tinglingly pristine beaches, warm, turquoise waters and glitzy resorts. It’s also one of the region’s sunniest and safest spots due to its location below the hurricane belt, just 18 miles from the coast of Venezuela. It also packs some unexpected features, such as the rugged, desert-like Arikok National Park and the Dutch colonial architecture that dazzles its capital, Oranjestad. From luxe beachgoers to adrenaline-seeking adventurers, wellness warriors and underwater explorers, Aruba attracts all kinds of travellers.