History: Discovered and claimed for Spain in 1499, Aruba was acquired by the Dutch in 1636. The island’s economy has been dominated by three main industries. A 19th century gold rush was followed by prosperity brought on by the opening in 1924 of an oil refinery. The last decades of the 20th century saw a boom in the tourism industry.

Aruba seceded from the Netherlands Antilles in 1986 and became a separate, autonomous member of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Movement toward full independence was halted at Aruba’s request in 1990.

Location: Caribbean, island in the Caribbean Sea, north of Venezuela.

Population: 112,162 (July 2015 est.)

Capital: Oranjestad

Climate: Tropical marine; little seasonal temperature variation.

Language: Papiamento (official) (a creole language that is a mixture of Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch, English, and, to a lesser extent, French, as well as elements of African languages and the language of the Arawak) 69.4%, Spanish 13.7%, English (widely spoken) 7.1%, Dutch (official) 6.1%, Chinese 1.5%, other 1.7%, unspecified 0.4% (2010 est.)

Religion: Roman Catholic 75.3%, Protestant 4.9% (includes Methodist .9%, Adventist .9%, Anglican .4%, other Protestant 2.7%), Jehovah’s Witness 1.7%, other 12%, none 5.5%, unspecified 0.5% (2010 est.)

Time Zone: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

*Source: CIA The World Factbook

 

From the Archives of Caribbean

Saint Martin, Caribbean

Saint Martin, Caribbean

It is rare to find such a diverse mix of cultures on an island as tiny as Saint Martin. Politically and strategically divided between the French Republic and the Kingdom of the Netherlands, the country is considered a unique Caribbean gem with its rich cultural heritage on one side, and the amazing oceanic landscapes on the other. The island is pretty popular with tourists, particularly between March and July,..

British Virgin Islands, Caribbean

British Virgin Islands, Caribbean

Countries
By |
November 26, 2018

Many will say that the true magic of the Caribbean spreads over 50 tiny wonderful islands east of Puerto Rico. Only 15 of them are inhabited while others we only ever mention in the context of mysterious, deserted islands, as the perfect settings for adventure books and movies. Then there is Tortola, the largest and the most developed island in the archipelago and the core of the British Virgin Islands country...

Saint Kitts and Nevis, Caribbean

Saint Kitts and Nevis, Caribbean

Countries
By |
November 26, 2018

The islands of Kitts and Nevis share the official name of the Federation of Saint Christopher and Nevis, and are part of the British Commonwealth in the Caribbean. The island of Saint Kitts is also famously named “The Mother Colony in the West Indies”, since it was the first island to be settled by British and French expats. Together, these two islands form the smallest sovereign state in all of the western hemisphere.

How Canadians Can Live Rent Free in the Caribbean

How Canadians Can Live Rent Free in the Caribbean

PR
By |
April 23, 2018

This Vancouver couple discovered a way to travel affordably in retirement, while at the same time exploring all that the Caribbean has to offer.  Their unique take on an increasingly popular travel trend allows them to soak up the sun in some of the Caribbean’s best retirement hotspots…and they’re doing it all rent free. Johanne Read more...: How Canadians Can Live Rent Free in the Caribbean

Do You Have the Right to a Second Passport?

Do You Have the Right to a Second Passport?

Daily Postcard
By |
March 23, 2017

You may not have considered it, but you may have a right to become a citizen of more than one country—and doing so could change your life for the better. Under U.S. law, upheld by several U.S. Supreme Court decisions, “dual citizenship” (holding a second citizenship) does not jeopardize U.S. citizenship.