Steve Jermanok’s Active Travels: Snorkeling Aruba’s Boca Catalina
Just returned from a weeklong vacation with 12 members of my family in Aruba. Blue skies every day, temperatures in the upper 80s, and that consistent tradewinds cooling things down on the fine white sandy beach. While there, we had the option to go on a snorkeling cruise for $60 per person. Then we realized we could rent a 12-seat van for $125 a day and snorkeling equipment for $15 per person, reducing the price in half and giving us the freedom to see the other sites around the island. Most of those snorkeling cruises head to Boca Catalina Beach, easily accessible by car on the northwestern tip of Aruba. Take the turn-off to the California Lighthouse and you’ll see a small parking lot on your left. Grab your snorkeling gear and plunge into the Caribbean Sea. Swim around the rocks and you’ll soon be surrounded by the neon-colored fish and a healthy dose of brain coral. Remember that the sun is hot in Aruba, so I always snorkel with a light T-shirt on, and bring a second shirt to stay dry on land. I learned my lesson snorkeling for an hour at Fiji’s Natadola Beach, only to return to shore looking as red as a lobster.
Steve Jermanok As a columnist for National Geographic Adventure, adventure travel expert at Budget Travel, and regular contributor on outdoor recreation for Outside, Men’s Journal, Health, and Sierra, Steve Jermanok has written more than 1,000 articles on the outdoors.He’s also authored or co-authored 11 books, including Outside Magazine’s Adventure Guide to New England and Men’s Journal’s The Great Life. His latest book is Go Now! Put Your Life on Pause and See the World. He’s currently an adventure travel expert at Away.com and blogs daily at Active Travels.