Aruba is a Caribbean island just off the coast of Venezuela, with an attractive and sometimes wild landscape that draws visitors back again and again. It is mainly Dutch speaking, along with the rest of the Netherlands Antilles, giving it a different feel from much of the Caribbean.
Unfortunately for paragliders, conditions on the island are not conducive to flying, and in Aruba paragliding is frowned upon by the authorities. Skydiving and kitesurfing are the closest you’ll get on the island itself. But all is not lost: it is just a short hop on a cheap flight or boat over to the many sites in northern Venezuela, or over to the half-Dutch, half-French island of Sint Maarten.
Sint Maarten shares much in the way of culture with Aruba, but it has better winds that Aruba, being further out towards the open ocean. The most popular site is Pic Paradis, a mountain peak overlooking the sea on the island’s eastern side. There are several areas where rocky coastal ridges make take-off points.
In Venezuela, you can fly from the mountains around the capital city, Caracas. The city lies in a valley, with the ocean before it and the mountains around it. They reach almost to the sea, making for great paragliding territory. There are sites just outside the city limits, so you can enjoy great views over the city sprawl, the mountain valleys and the sea.
If you want to enjoy an Aruba paragliding holiday, you’ll need to be willing to travel a little. But that’s no bad thing. Enjoy the unique culture and relax on Aruba itself, and then take some time out to hit the skies and explore elsewhere.