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Flag of Aruba
Location of  Aruba  (circled in red)in the Caribbean  (light yellow)
Location of  Aruba  (circled in red)

in the Caribbean  (light yellow)

and largest city

Template-specific style sheet:

12°31′07″N 70°02′09″W / 12.51861°N 70.03583°W / 12.51861; -70.03583
Official languages
81% Roman Catholic
GovernmentConstitutional monarchy
• Monarch
• Governor
Alfonso Boekhoudt
Evelyn Wever-Croes
LegislatureEstates of Aruba
Autonomy from the Netherlands Antilles
• Date
1 January 1986
• Total
178.91 km2 (69.08 sq mi) (214th)
• Water (%)
• 2010 census
• Density
567/km2 (1,468.5/sq mi)
GDP (PPP)2007 estimate
• Total
$2.400 billion (182nd)
• Per capita
$23,831 (32nd)
CurrencyAruban florin (AWG)
Time zoneUTC−4 (AST)
Driving sideright
Calling code+297
ISO 3166 codeAW

Aruba is an island in the Caribbean Sea, just north of the Venezuelan Paraguaná Peninsula. It is in the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Unlike much of the Caribbean region, it has a dry climate and an arid, cactus-strewn landscape. This climate has helped tourism, because visitors to the island can reliably expect warm, sunny weather.

The island broke off from the Netherlands Antilles in 1986, hoping to gain its independence by 1996. In 1990, that effort stopped at the request of the island people.

Aruba is one of the four countries that form the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The other nations are the Netherlands, Curaçao and Sint Maarten. The citizens of these countries all share a single nationality: Dutch.

About three quarters of the Aruban gross national product is earned through tourism or related activities.[2]

The island came into the news after U.S. high school student Natalee Holloway disappeared on a graduation trip on May 30, 2005. Today, some refer to Aruba as "One Happy Island".[3]


Aruba is a generally flat, riverless island. It is in the southern part of the Caribbean Sea. The western and southern beaches have white sandy beaches. They are generally protected from the ocean currents. This is one of the reasons Aruba is a popular tourist location.

Together with Bonaire and Curaçao, Aruba forms a group referred to as the ABC islands. Collectively, Aruba and the other Dutch islands in the Caribbean are often called the Dutch Caribbean.

Aruba has no administrative subdivisions. For census purposes, it is divided into eight regions. Its capital is Oranjestad.


The Aruba population is about 75% mixed, 15% black, and 10% white.