How to Visit Flamingos in Aruba: Renaissance Private Island

Flamingos have been living in Aruba for a while now. Approximately 15 years ago, a flamboyance of flamingos (it’s really called that!) made their home on the Renaissance Private Island and mingling with visitors.

It wasn’t until 4 years ago when this crazy flamingo beach in Aruba became super popular and its pink inhabitants began making appearances all over Instagram. Heading to Aruba and ready to experience it for yourself? Here’s how to visit Aruba’s famous flamingo beach!

How To Visit Flamingo Beach Aruba On Renaissance Island


Let’s make something very clear to avoid disappointments. If you’re coming to Aruba for the flamingos remember that it’s not like you step your foot on the island and you can see flamingos everywhere. The flamingos you keep seeing on Instagram aren’t actually an attraction open to the public and if you want to see them, you need to plan ahead.

How to Get to the Flamingos in Aruba

The only way to get to Renaissance Island is by boat. The boat leaves from the lobby of the hotel every 15 minutes, so it’s impossible not to spot it.

How Much Does Visiting Flamingo Beach Cost?

Flamingo Beach in Aruba isn’t free to visit and unless you plan it all in advance it’s not guaranteed. There are two options of visiting it and no option is really better than another. It depends on the number of people in your family and availability. 

Option 1: Day Pass for the Renaissance Island

The place you want to see the famous flamingos is the Renaissance Island, a privately owned island by Renaissance Aruba Resort in Oranjestad. Guests of the Renaissance Aruba Resort have free access to the island, but you can buy a day pass for $125 and visit the island as a non-guest.

In the past, you should have come to the reception of the hotel in the morning and book your day passes, which was time-consuming and probably annoying for everyone. These days things have changed and you can pre-book your passes on a special website for day passes. You can do it only for the next day and registration starts at 7 AM. Passes are gone within a few minutes. 

If you choose to buy a day pass, the price is $125 per person and includes lunch and a drink. Even cruise passengers often prefer to book a room because day passes are NEVER guaranteed. If the occupancy of the hotel is higher than 80%, no day passes are available at all.

Option 2: Day Pass for the Renaissance Island

This is why if you care to see the flamingo beach, spend at least one night of your stay at the Renaissance Resort & Casino, to avoid disappointment. If you choose to stay at the Renaissance Hotel, you can visit the beach as much as you want for free (but you need to pay for the room obviously). The boat leaves from a hotel lobby.


Check Current Prices for Renaissance Aruba Resort:

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Flamingos in Aruba
flamingo beach aruba

Are Kids Allowed on the Island?

While kids are allowed to come to the island, unfortunately, they aren’t allowed at Flamingo Beach at all times. What makes the beach a perfect spot for couples and those who enjoy quiet spaces.

The hotel wanted to minimize the disturbance of the flamingo population, so children are only allowed there for an hour from 9 am to 10 am. The good news is that children under age 12 are free, so you’ll only have to get passes for adults.

Don’t worry though – there are many gorgeous kids friendly beaches in Aruba. You can read more about the best beaches in Aruba here.

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renaissance island aruba

What to Do at Flamingo Beach?

Apart from watching the playful flamingos, you can enjoy the beach for an entire day. Flamingo Beach is a full-service beach (with chairs, towels, bar, restaurant, bathrooms etc). There are even beach bungalows with overwater hammocks available for rent, but the prices range about $200-350/day.

You can pay for everything in both Dollars and local currency – Florin.

Opening Hours of the Renaissance Private Island

The island is open from 7 am to 6 pm, but once a week you can also have a romantic dinner starting at 7 pm. You can pre-book the dinner at the reception. And trust me, it’s worth it. Even if you’re not a couple you’re going to have a great time.

Flamingo Beach in Aruba
Getting to know Mr. Pink at the flamingo beach in Aruba!

My Best Tips for Visiting Flamingo Beach in Aruba:

1 – Arrive Early

There is a small vending machine that sells food for the flamingos. The machine takes only US quarters. It’s much easier to tempt the flamingos with food on your hand, but if you arrive too late, they might simply ignore you because they’ve already eaten.

2 – Sit Still and Wait

In the end, flamingos are still wild animals that do their own thing as they please. Sit still, grab some bird food and wait for them to come around. If you start chasing them around for a photo they’ll run away. Don’t be disappointed if your pink friends walk away instead of posing for you 🙂

Disclaimer: Recently every news site has featured my photo with the flamingos, misquoting me and basing entire articles on assumptions that the flamingos are kept captive on the island and die of malnutrition. I wanted to set the record straight. Flamingos living on the Renaissance Private Island came there on their own 15 years ago, but…

They were forced to stay and their wings are clipped. One flamingo actually left the island and one died because of his age. The current inhabitants aren’t in captivity. They also live in their natural environment – the mangroves. Sometimes there are more flamingos on the island because wild ones come to visit.


Arikok National Park

Arikok National Park – Global Day of Discovery at Renaissance Hotels

Every year in May, each Renaissance property arranges a special activity for all their guests to experience ‘business unusual’ trips. This past year Renaissance Aruba took me to Arikok National Park for a morning hike, followed by a delicious local breakfast.

A typical hike there lasts for around 2 hours, but I’d say it’s easy enough for everyone. At the end of the hike, you can also see a replica of a traditional Aruban house, as the original has been destroyed by a hurricane.

cactus aruba
global day of discovery

For more activities and organized tours in Aruba check Viator here.

Flamingo Beach in Aruba
How to Visit Flamingos in Aruba: Renaissance Private Island

Arrange Your Travel Insurance

Don’t forget to arrange health insurance before heading to Aruba. The easiest and the most reliable travel insurance is World Nomads Travel Insurance. Get it before your trip to avoid unnecessary troubles that might ruin your holidays!


READ MORE ABOUT ARUBA:

Best Beaches in Aruba

What to Do in Aruba

Have you been to Aruba? Do you have any questions? Let me know!

76 thoughts on “How to Visit Flamingos in Aruba: Renaissance Private Island”

  1. Hey Anna, can you give me the source of this information in a disclaimer? I was doing a research on the internet regarding flamingos, but actually all I could find was info rather proving that it *IS* an animal cruelty as flamingos have their wings clipped…

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    • An actual press release about it is coming out soon. Yes, there were a lot of articles recently saying that the flamingos are maltreated, and as I said some even misquoted me about it and the rest just reprinted it (because no journalist will actually check facts with sources these days). These articles were based on assumptions and they even said it themselves unfortunately.

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      • More fake news. I’m sorry. It causes so much frustration and unneeded angst. “Journalists” who report it should be fired.

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    • Yup. Animal cruelty. Their are reports of locals saying that the hotel just bought them and that they’re also trying to buy more. Let’s give the benefit of the doubt and say it’s not true, why are their wings clipped? Don’t contribute to animal cruelty and/or a company profiting from the abuse of animals.

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        • No babies allowed either. It’s for the safety of flamingos. You can enjoy the other beach on the island with babies and kids and walk over to see the flamingos while someone watches your child.

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      • Hi Anna! You mentioned this. It made sense that children are allowed from 9 to 10am. Or did I got wrong? Can you please explain? ????
        “While kids are allowed to come to the island, unfortunately, they aren’t allowed at Flamingo Beach at all times. What makes the beach a perfect spot for couples and those who enjoy quiet spaces.
        The hotel wanted to minimize the disturbance of the flamingo population, so children are only allowed there for an hour from 9 am to 10 am. The good news is that children under age 12 are free,”

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    • You could do both. Check-in is at 4pm, so you have time until 7pm to go to the island. The first boat to the island leaves at 7:30am, and check out is at 12pm.

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  2. If you’re lucky enough to get a day pass for $100, is it all-inclusive, or do you also have to pay for any food/beverages throughout the day as well?

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      • Depending on how many of you are going, consider booking a room for the night. You can check in any time and the front desk will hold your luggage if the room isn’t ready. The beach is accessible 7am to 7pm. If you stay in the hotel, you can go back to the beach on your checkout date. Stay as long as you want since the front desk will hold your luggage as long as you checkout. Even if you don’t spend the night at the hotel, if there are more than 2 of you, it may be cheaper and you don’t run the risk of tickets selling out. We were there last week and that’s what we did.

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  3. If we are at another resort I stead of taking a taxi to find out there are no day passes that day can we call to find out so it’s not a wasted trip

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    • It’s first come first serve, but you can call once you arrive and ask if they’re even planning on selling some day passes upcoming days. When I was there I remember there were no day passes for a week because the hotel was sold out.

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    • Once you leave a cruise ship you can go to the lobby at 9 am and inquire about a day pass. There’s no such thing as flamingo excursion for cruise ship passengers as the island would be way too crowded.

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    • I would check out the room rates and book a room for the night you’re in port. You would then check in when you disembark and take the shuttle to Flamingo Beach. When we were there, the room rate was cheaper than getting two day passes and we were guaranteed admission. Of course, you don’t end up spending the night at the hotel.

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      • Great advice, Annick! We plan to do just that and book one night in January 2018. We plan to head to the resort after our cruise disembarks. Will they let you check in before 4pm if you are not interested in the room and just want to take the shuttle to Flamingo Beach ?

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        • Yes. We arrived around 11am. We were told that our room might not be available but that we could go ahead to the beach (and they gave us the key). Same thing when we checked out, they asked us if we wanted to keep the key to go back to Flamingo Beach even though we had already vacated the room. Enjoy it!

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    • We plan on arriving in Aruba early morning, I have a excursion booked through the cruise already that I will most likely cancel and get my refund. If we end up buying a night’s stay are we able to check in early and get the key, go the beach and then check out as soon as we are done at the beach? I am weary that the hotel might be aware of this loophole and charge us some kind of fee for checking out right away. Plus we will not have our luggage in hand it will on the ship. Any recommendations on what we could do to not cancel our excursion and be disappointed with no day passes or receive a penalty charge at the hotel?

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      • I don’t see why they’d charge you some extra fee. Tons of frequent travelers book a room for hotels for a few hours (paying for the night) because they just want to shower and rest before the next flight.

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  4. Hi, two of my friends and I want to visit the flamingos. If were were to book a room for the night, would the free access be for one guest or for all of us? (It would save us a ton since 3 day passes are $300) Thanks in advance!

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      • We would be traveling as a family of 4 with a 17 & 16 year old. Would a double room overnight stay gain all 4 of us access or would we have to pay additional for our children? Are 12+ year olds considered adults?

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        • They’re not considered adults, but which room exactly have you booked? The maximum number of cots and children allowed in existing beds depends on the room you choose. Please check the maximum capacity for the room you selected. If the room has a max of 2 people then additional charges per room per night are required: USD 80 per child.

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  5. Never knew such a beautiful place existed where one can interact with such amazing creatures. Thanks for sharing a well detailed article. This is definitely a place to visit and it goes right onto my bucket list. Also nice pictures Anna, keep sharing.

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  6. I just tried to do a mock booking for the cruise date that we will be in Aruba in Sept 2018 and I was not allowed to book for less than 5 days!!!!!

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  7. Some body can tell me whats the time to pass in the flamingo beach??? Beacuse i like to visit this beach but i go in a cruise and we like to do other tours or place to go!!!!

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  8. Hi,if I the hotel check in start at 4 pm and we are in the front at 9am from the cruise ship,do we’l have early access to the beach?
    Thank you

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  9. hello!
    Me, my husband and two friends were interested in going to the flamingo beach. We have a cruise scheduled to port in Aruba on April 30th, arrival time is 1pm – 11pm. First, Will that be too late to order ticket? Second, Where do you order tickets at? I was reading everyone comments and noticed you pay just 100$ for access to the island. From there, is there any additional cost to see the flamingos?- besides food. Then, is the flamingo close to the Hotel. I first read you have to ride a shuttle bus to get to the beach; and then I read, its on the other side of the hotel? Just have a lot of questions! Sorry! Thank you for a response!

    Reply
    • No additional cost to see the flamingos. For $100 per person, you have a day pass to the island. You take a boat for 5 minutes to get to the island from the hotel lobby – watch my embed video to see more 🙂

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  10. It’s $125 as of 25 June 2018. And the birds though not mistreated, are obviously in captivity. The younger ones are tagged with rings and pretty much everyone of them have their wings clipped. They are not wild

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  11. Interesting article. I am thinking of visiting Aruba for February of next year, I am sure that for my children it will be an unforgettable experience to walk around flamingo beach. I will stay at Harbor House (www.harbourhousearuba.com), it has great and beautiful places nearby. Have you ever stayed there? I would love to have a post from you telling that experience

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    • Remember that children are only allowed there for an hour from 9am to 10am, but the island has another kids-friendly beach. The good news is that children under age 12 are free, so you’ll only have to get passes for adults. I haven’t stayed at Harbor House myself I’m afraid.

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  12. Arriving via cruise ship March 7th. Could someone give me directions to Renaissance Hotel so I can check that morning if they have day passes available? TIA

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    • What kind of directions are we talking about? The address is: L.G. Smith Blvd 82, Oranjestad, Aruba. It’s right of the main street in Oranjestad, hard to miss.

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  13. el hotel es este: enaissance Aruba Resort & Casino, A Marriott Luxury & Lifestyle Hotel ? cuando habalas de niños es hasta que edad la restriccion??

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  14. A friend lives in Azure Beach Residences (www.azure-aruba.com), he tells me that the residence is beautiful and has everything, but sometimes he wants to try something different because there is a lot of variety on the island. I stayed at Renaissance Resort and it seems to me that for the money it costs to stay a few days there, it’s worth it. Flamingo beach is one of my favorite beaches in all of Aruba, I usually spend hours in the sand. Thanks for such an interesting post!

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  15. Children under 12 are not free – they are half the price (for the day pass), I believe children under 2 are completely free. This is what we paid in December 2018

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  16. Thanks Anna for the blog post. I saw the flamingos! I had a wonderful birthday… we spent almost the entire day at the private island, did have to wake up super early because we stayed elsewhere and the resort has limited day passes for non-guest. The pass is now $125 with lunch and a drink included. Thanks again. Be well and great travels.

    Reply
    • Yes, there’s an option to stay in those cabanas. It works like a romantic couple package when you have an intimate dinner and the whole island to yourself for the night.

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  17. Hi Anna,

    Do you know if the Renaissance provides access to Flamingo island all 12 months of the year? I understand that getting day passes are based on the occupancy, but do you know was wondering if the island is available during the month of December?

    Reply
  18. Hello,
    When is the best months to go see the Flamingos?
    Is the kids friendly beach just very close by the adults only Flamingo beach? in case we go there at 9am then spend the rest of the day at the kids friendly beach? and
    Are there restaurants or coffee shops on those beaches?

    Reply
  19. Hi Anna,

    I will be traveling to Aruba in October with my girlfriend and her son. We been to flamingo island before in 2016 as a couple but this time we going with her son. Just wanted clarification with the price for kids as I read it is free. I saw how you can book online but if we booking for the 2 adults how can the child be included as well without having to pay for him. Hope you can assist me with this.

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  20. If we get into port 12/3/19 @ 8am, would we book the room for 12/3/19? We could go over as soon as we can get off the ship and check in, then go right to the island, even if we are not really staying/sleeping at the hotel? Should I ask the hotel this or best not to bring that out in the open to them? W/the 1 day pass you get lunch/1 drink – how about if you book a room for 1 night? I know you get to go to the island, but is lunch and 1 drink still included or only if you buy the 1 day pass? We really want to go here so bad, but if we can’t get a 1 day pass/all sold out, do you have another beach in Aruba you suggest? Is there a good beach for us to maybe just go to at the hotel?

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  21. Do you happen to know if the cabanas on Iguana Beach are over the water as well? I’m trying to find images of the ones on that beach. Thanks

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    • Even on the flamingo beach, they’re not like your typical overwater bungalows you can see in the Maldives – they’re based on the beach with the hammock extending over the water. One cabana with the water slide is close to the water, but from what I remember they’re on the beach. Unless anything changed.

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  22. If we are a couple and booked a king bed room for 1 night just to get to go to the isaland, will we get 2 passes? Do we need to try to update to 2 dbl beds ?

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  23. We are a family of 4, 3 adults and a 17 year old who will be 18 in a few months. Is the 17 year old considered an adult or can she get an adult pass.
    We are ok with tops optional and our 17 year old daughter has no issue if people are topless. We would like to spend more time on the adult side. What do you suggest.

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  24. Just wondering if any cruise guests have booked this hotel for use while in the port? If so, did you book the room for the day you arrived or a day prior to use the facilities? I called the hotel, but they wanted me to book for 2 nights to ensure use of the facilities (our ship is in port from 8am-9pm). I have read many responses stating you can check in early on the day you are booked, but the hotel stated you cannot get use of facilities until check in at 3:00pm. Anyone have any experience with this or have had success checking in early?

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  25. Hi Anna! I’m writing from Aruba after a day spent at Flamingo Beach. I can’t thank you enough for this information and advice. My wife is a health care worker who desperately needed a vacation after months of coping with the current health crisis. It’s been a long time since I have seen her enjoy something as much as mingling with the flamingoes. We’re looking at your other posts on Aruba to round out our week. Thanks again.

    Reply

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