The ABC Caribbean Islands

Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao are Caribbean islands with a difference. Dismissed in the 16th century as 'Las Islas Inutiles' (The Useless Islands) by the Spanish, they are still largely ignored by many British tourists who dislike the arid climate, reports the Telegraph. Yet these islands have much to offer.

Aruba is a small island, just 20 miles long and 3 miles wide, but it packs in a number of attractions for tourists to enjoy. The capital, Oranjestad, is a busy cruise port with many hotels, casinos and shopping malls. Outside the capiltal you will find some magnificent beaches and the Arikok National Park, is a fabulous area to explore.

Only 30 minutes away from Aruba, lies Bonaire, an island which is ideal for divers who can explore its reefs, marine life and occasional shipwreck. Ashore, visit Peekelmeer where you can see the old living quarters of the slaves brought here to mine salt, or the picturesque village of Rincon.

Curaçao, like Aruba, is a popular port of call for a number of cruise ships, with many natural features that make it well worth a visit. The Christoffel National Park is home to a number of exotic animals and the stalactites and stalagmites in the Hato caves cannot fail to impress. The Slavery Museum in Willemstad, the island’s capital, makes for a thought-provoking visit.

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