Arikok. This beautiful national park in Aruba comprises almost 20 % of the island. Enjoy gorgeous vistas of Aruba’s rugged terrain, desert-like hills filled with tall cacti, a breathtaking coastline and protected local flora and fauna.
The national park Arikok takes you on a memorable journey of the islands past offering unique geological, cultural and historical sites. These can all be enjoyed and explored either on your own or during guided tours. A wide variety of educational and informative programs and fun activities is available.
You are warmly invited to Arikok National Park and enjoy Aruba’s natural beauty at its best. Explore the parks Highlights.
The protected area of National Park Arikok was officially established in 2000. Arikok National Park is a 34 square kilometers (7907 acres) of natural area, located at the north-eastern part of Aruba which contains examples of most of the island’s flora and fauna against a backdrop of great geological complexity. We are proud to state that approximately 18% of the total land area of Aruba is assigned as a National Park, to protect and preserve the flora, fauna, geology and historical remains present within Arikok National Park.
There is a great geological variety within the park. The main aspects are the rough hills of the volcanic Aruba lava formation, the mysterious rocks of the batholithic quartz-diorite/tonalite, and the limestone rocks from fossilized coral. The two tallest hills on the island are situated within the park. Jamanota hill 188 meters (617 ft) and Arikok hill 176 meters (577 ft), from which the name of the park is derived.
The line of the permanently wind-and-wave beaten North Coast is broken by several bays (boca’s). Most of them are small yet impressive inlets at the mouth of dry riverbeds. Some of these bays (boca’s) are spectacular sights, adorned with white, sandy beaches and sand dunes, as is the case at Boca Prins and Dos Playa.
Arikok is also home to Conchi, Aruba’s most important natural attraction, also know as The Natural Pool. The journey to the Pool is and adventure by itself and only possible by foot, horse, ATV or 4×4 vehicle.
CULTURAL AND HISTORICAL COMPONENTS
There are a number of sites within the park that attest to the history of Aruba. The Caquetío Indians left rock paintings in Cunucu Arikok and Fontein Cave. The bird drawing in the park logo is a copy of one of these historical artistic expressions.
Old plantation (Cunucus) sites tell the story of an active yet challenging agricultural past.
These Cunucus were also residential areas for the few families that worked the land. These families found ways to survive in the difficult conditions, and were able to erect their homes with materials found in the area. Two of these adobe houses have been restored. Park rangers are learning many of the old building techniques in order to preserve this unique Aruban mud-house. At Cunucu Arikok and near Plantation Prins you can find these adobe houses.