Aruba

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Aruba
Flag Coat of arms
Anthem: Aruba Dushi Tera
Aruba, Dear Country
Location of  Aruba  (circled in red)in the Caribbean  (light yellow)
Location of  Aruba  (circled in red)

in the Caribbean  (light yellow)

Capital
and largest city
Oranjestad
12°31′N 70°2′W / 12.517°N 70.033°W / 12.517; -70.033
Official languages
Religion 81% Roman Catholic
Demonym Aruban
Government Constitutional monarchy
 -  Monarch Willem-Alexander
 -  Governor Fredis Refunjol[2]
 -  Prime Minister Mike Eman[3]
Legislature Estates of Aruba
Autonomy from the Netherlands Antilles
 -  Date 1 January 1986 
Area
 -  Total 178.91 km2
69 sq mi
 -  Water (%) negligible
Population
 -  2010 census 102,484
 -  Density 567/km2
1,470/sq mi
GDP (PPP) 2007 estimate
 -  Total $2.400 billion (182nd)
 -  Per capita $23,831 (32nd)
Currency Aruban florin (AWG)
Time zone AST (UTC−4)
Drives on the right
Calling code +297
Internet TLD .aw

Aruba is an island in the Caribbean Sea, just a short distance north of the Venezuelan Paraguaná Peninsula, and it forms a part of 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.[4]

The island came into the news after U.S. high school student Natalee Holloway disappeared on a graduation trip on May 30, 2005.

Geography[change | change source]

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.

References[change | change source]