A haven of white-sand beaches, turquoise water, and warm sunshine, Aruba is also a fantastic destination for shopping. The capital, Oranjestad, offers buzzing local markets, designer boutiques, and glitzy shopping plazas.
Visitors can shop for locally-made crafts, ceramics, jewelry, and island rum. There are plenty of aloe vera products, too, made with produce from the island’s thriving green plantations.
Here are some of the best places to go shopping in Aruba and what to buy.
Aruba Aloe Factory Museum and Store
Aruba is known for its excellent aloe, and a visit to the Aruba Aloe Factory Museum presents the perfect opportunity for travelers to learn about the island’s natural aloe vera products.
Aruba Aloe is part of the island’s heritage; even Aruba’s coat of arms is emblazoned with the medicinal green plant. Founded in 1890, the company cultivates and harvests 150 acres of the succulent to produce its own range of soothing products for the body and hair.
You can pick up Aruba Aloe products in shops around the island, though the best place to purchase from is the Factory Museum, set on the working aloe plantation. Take a guided tour of the farm to understand the field-to-bottle process.
Admire the photogenic aloe vera fields and soak up the fascinating exhibition, which reveals aloe vera’s healing benefits, before picking out products from the factory store.
Pick out the richly-hydrating Aruba Aloe Special Care Lotion, the delightful Sugar Cube Scrub range, and cooling After Sun. There are also sun protection, skincare, bath and shower gels, shampoo, lip, hand, and foot lotions among the vast range.
Royal Plaza Mall
Facing downtown Oranjestad’s bustling port on Lloyd G. Smith Boulevard, the colorful Royal Plaza Mall is as popular for shopping in Aruba as it is for admiring the city’s compelling architecture.
This iconic mall—decorated in saltwater-taffy shades of blue, pink, yellow, and white—raises a smile from travelers thanks to its joyous appearance, resembling a decadent tiered cake.
The Royal Plaza Mall lures shoppers inside for its luxury brands and souvenir shops, from M.A.C. Cosmetics and Hugo Boss to Cariloha and 98 Coast Av. for breezy summer staples. It’s open daily, apart from Sunday.
Browse Bula Surf Shop for cool swimwear and tees. There’s a Cigar Emporium outlet, watch and jewelry stores, coffee shops, and a Cuban restaurant and Mojito bar.
After, enjoy a stroll around the marina with your new purchases and soak up the delicious Aruban sunshine.
The Village Mall
Near beautiful Palm Beach, where the sand is as soft as flour and the water clearer than gin, The Village Mall is an all-under-one-roof spot for shopping, dining, and entertainment.
Shop for Aruba souvenirs and island-made aloe vera products before enjoying The Village’s many coffee shops, restaurants, and bars. Artisan coffee, craft cocktails, gelato, Mexican, Japanese, French, and Italian are among the types of cuisine and dining options offered.
If you’re traveling with family, one of the best things to do in Aruba with kids is to visit Palm Beach. Leave enough time after exploring The Village to paddle, swim, and nap under the shade of a thatched umbrella here.
Alternatively, visit the beach first and, afterwards, stop by The Village Mall’s daily flea market. Held every evening from 6:30 p.m., this features food vendors, street performers, and souvenir stalls.
Renaissance Mall is one of the best places for shopping in Aruba. Located between Aruba’s government buildings and the Royal Plaza, Renaissance Mall is the place to shop for designer labels, with 60 stores inside.
For Aruba shopping that will remind you of your vacation long after you return home, Cocosol sells gifts such as candies, ceramics, and Dutch treats. The Gallery offers artwork and jewelry made by Dutch artist Hendrik Schouten alongside ceramics, jewelry, woodwork, and illustrations crafted on the island by artists including Kim Violenes and Helena Hoes.
Kate Spade, Gucci, Carolina Herrera, Prada, Louis Vuitton, and Michael Kors are among the top-drawer luxury brands at the Renaissance Mall.
There’s more; Ralph Lauren for sophisticated, classic day and evening wear, Dolce & Gabbana for a touch of jaunty Italian glamor, and Cartier for fine watches.
Spend time at Agua Bendita, a wonderful boutique specializing in swimwear, with pieces handcrafted by women from Medellín in nearby Colombia. Agua Bendita’s floral tunic cover-ups are gorgeous. There are also pieces for men and kids, too, including swimwear and other beach attire.
Castañer is a must-visit for summer footwear, including pretty espadrilles. Affaire de Femmes is the go-to for chic smart-casual summer dresses, blouses, pants, and accessories.
Make a reservation at L.G. Smith’s Steak & Chop House to enjoy an indulgent late lunch after a successful shopping spree. For a more casual post-shopping dining venue, choose Lucy’s for local beers, frozen cocktails, taco ceviche, coconut shrimp, and Caribbean chicken and rice.
Paseo Herencia Mall
If you’re exploring the Noord region of northwest Aruba, including popular Palm Beach, Paseo Herencia Mall is a palm tree-lined shopping haven.
There are stores for fashion, beachwear, jewelry, and footwear at Carmen Steffens, Pandora, Tommy Hilfiger, and PearlGems for jewelry adorned with Caribbean pearls.
One of the more intriguing shops at Paseo Herencia Mall is The Mask, a specialist in carved figurines, murals, bowls, and vases created using the buds of the mopa-mopa tree.
Mopa-mopa buds are also used to make characterful masks—after which the store takes its name—adorned with flowers, stripes, and other fanciful patterns in vibrant colors.
This 2,000-year-old handicraft can be traced back to Putumayo and Nariño in southern Colombia and is currently on UNESCO’s List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding.
Paseo Herencia Mall is just a stone’s throw from the heavenly Palm Beach. After a hearty shopping trip, sink your soles into the beach’s soft sand.
There are watersports vendors, beach bars, and restaurants, including the famous Pelican Nest, a venue that juts out into the water on a thatched-roof pier.
While most Aruba shopping centers around designer fashion or locally handcrafted products, the items at Rococo Plaza are a little different. Visitors to Rococo Plaza, reached via taxi just a few miles outside of Oranjestad, are met with an exquisite collection of European antiques and curiosities.
The venue features over 20 showrooms across two chalk-white buildings, each one topped with a 17th-century copper dome.
From larger pieces, such as beautiful armoire (a style of ornate French closet), coffee tables, and lavish chairs to glass and crystal-wear, jewelry, copper pieces, clocks, mirrors, woodcraft, and China, Rococo Plaza is an antique lover’s dream.
While it’s hard to predict what shoppers might find, since items are often one-of-a-kind pieces, Rococo Plaza offers a truly enjoyable shopping experience.
Aruba Flea Market
Rummaging through the goods on offer at local markets presents one of the more thrilling Aruba shopping experiences.
Visit Aruba Flea Market, conveniently located by the wharf in Oranjestad, across from Renaissance Mall. Here, rows of kiosks sell goods such as Aruban crafts and beachwear.
Despite its name, items on offer are not typical of a flea market, such as pre-loved vintage pieces and antiques. Instead, colorful scarves, wood carvings, clothes, accessories, and beachwear are sold.
Try some of the local produce, too. Juices, smoothies, and papaya-flavored hot sauce to slather on salads and chicken and rice dishes are typically available. It’s wise to carry cash (US dollars are fine) when shopping at this wharfside spot.
Studio Murano Art
Giuliano Pinzan is the artist and co-founder of Studio Murano Art, a third-generation glassmaker whose studio is in Ayo, near Aruba’s famous Ayo Rock Formations, made of diorite boulders. The open studio provides jaw-dropping demonstrations and exhibitions of Guiliano’s work.
The glassblowing process follows Murano’s traditional techniques. Glass is heated to almost 2,000°F before being blown through a tube to create unique shapes.
Visitors can pick out a fun cactus-shaped glass creation or a multicolored vase, and after enjoy a meal at Studio Murano Art’s onsite restaurant and bar.
It’s worth tagging on a visit to the dramatic Ayo Rock Formations, one of the best things to do in Aruba, after shopping for hand-crafted glasswork.
Given that the island’s landscape is largely flat, these huge monolithic boulders, dotted with green cacti, are all the more unusual. Wear suitable footwear to explore Ayo Rock Formations’ walking trails.
Bodegas Papiamento Distillery
There is one place to go for a velvety rum purchase when shopping in Aruba, and that’s Oranjestad’s Bodegas Papiamento Distillery, named after the local language of Aruba, Bonaire, and Curaçao.
Set up in 2017, Papiamento is relatively new on the rum scene compared with its Caribbean counterparts further north.
Papiamento Aruba Reserve uses a blend of Caribbean rums that have been aged for up to 15 years in a combination of New World white oak Bourbon or Tennessee barrels. Papiamento’s older rums are then finished in Old World French oak Jerez barrels to create a smooth, sweeter flavor.
Sign up for a rum and chocolate-tasting session at the bodega before picking up a bottle of the deep amber-hued drink from the store.
If you’ve more of a penchant for vodka, try the five-times distilled Bodegas Papiamento Aruba Vodka. Its subtly-sweet flavor is delicious in cocktails with tropical fruit juice or on the rocks with a wedge of lime.
The Local Market
This bustling Aruba shopping spot on a corner of Lloyd G. Smith Boulevard, Oranjestad, is the place for vacation souvenirs, colorful sundresses, beaded jewelry, purses, and straw sun hats.
You could also pick up some Aruban spicy sauce, Pica di Papaya, to add a kick of heat to dishes when you return home. Be smart and purchase extra bottles for friends and family members who enjoy punchy-hot condiments.
The Local Market also typically sells wood-carved pieces such as sculptures, jewelry boxes, and masks, as well as crocheted wall hangings and eye-catching artwork.
You’ll need to carry cash when shopping at The Local Market. There’s a cash dispenser at the nearest Aruba Bank, next to the market.
Super Food Plaza
If you have a soft spot for Dutch snacks, make a stop at Aruba’s Super Food Plaza.
A highlight is the store’s range of stroopwafel, a thin, round maple-flavored waffle-cookie hybrid that’s one of the Netherlands’ most famous baked goods. Choose from a plain caramel-flavored stroopwafel, one with sprinkles, or a desiccated coconut version.
Sliced Dutch cheeses such as Gouda, Boerenkaas, and Edam, are a must-buy, too.
Another good reason to visit Super Food Plaza is its location, right next to the dreamy Eagle Beach, one of the best beaches in Aruba. Take a photo of the beach’s famous fofoti trees as you enjoy downtime on the powdery-soft sand.
Main Street Aruba
Hop on Oranjestad’s open-air tram for a ride to Main Street, also called Caya G. F. Betico Croes. This immaculate strip features cheery buildings that merge Caribbean and Dutch architectural styles, painted in bright colors, and lined with palm trees.
Main Street is the place to go for high-street retailers. There’s a branch of Bath & Body Works and Victoria’s Secret, plus a Penha Duty Free and Holland Roots for Dutch-themed gifts, including pretty ceramics.
Stop for lunch at Baby Back Grill, just off Main Street, for fabulous local barbecued flavors. House specialties include hot and sweet chicken wings, fried chicken, and baby back ribs. There’s also sushi, salads, pasta, and fries.
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