The Pros and Cons to Staying at an All-Inclusive Resort

We are back from Aruba!

It was incredibly beautiful there.  We went during the off-season and it felt like we had the entire beach to ourselves.  I have only ever vacationed in the Caribbean during the off-season and I highly suggest it!  I’ve heard that during the busy season people fight for beach chairs and there is no room on the beach.  I would hate that!

This was my first time staying at an all-inclusive resort and I don’t think it will be the last!  I really enjoyed having everything included in the original price.  It was really convenient.

We stayed at the Tamarijn Aruba All-Inclusive the entire time.  It was so beautiful!  Every room there is ocean view and the view is heavenly!  We were 20 feet from the beach.  I loved it there!

Here's a recap of our vacation in Aruba! We enjoyed our stay at an all-inclusive resort. Here is our all-inclusive review with pros and cons.
The beach at the resort.

Our room was in the last building on the grounds so it was a little bit of a hike to get to the restaurants and concierge desk and the shops on the resort, but honestly, we really didn’t mind.  We were on island time.  There is no hurry.  We enjoyed the little stroll that we had to take.

If you are planning a trip to Aruba, but don’t have a hotel booked yet, check out the Tamarijn Aruba All Inclusive!  We would go back there in a heartbeat.  If you aren’t sure about staying in an All-Inclusive, let me help you decide.

They are not paying me to say that.  This is not a sponsored post, and I don’t have a single affiliate link in this post.  All recommendations are my own.

Pros to staying at an All-Inclusive Resort

You could spend your whole vacation at the resort if that’s what you wanted to do.

If you are looking for a relaxing vacation and don’t want to do anything except sit on the beach and read a book or watch the waves roll in and daydream, then book an All-Inclusive.

Here's a recap of our vacation in Aruba! We enjoyed our stay at an all-inclusive resort. Here is our all-inclusive review with pros and cons.
More beaches!

This was how we spent most of our vacation and it was glorious. Continue reading “The Pros and Cons to Staying at an All-Inclusive Resort”

How We Planned Our Trip to Aruba

One Happy Island

Aruba-“One Happy Island” is the island’s motto.  Sun, sand, surf.  What more could you ask for in a Caribbean vacation.  This will be my first time visiting the island and I’m so ready for it!

We plan on snorkeling, hiking, sunbathing, eating delicious food, drinking yummy drinks and just relaxing.  It’s going to be glorious!

It took us about a week to decide on an all-inclusive resort to call our home for four nights.  We used Travelocity to aid us in our decision-making.  We wanted to stay at an all-inclusive resort that had the right amenities we were looking for.  Free snorkeling equipment, free kayaking, close to hiking paths, on the beach, and great reviews were mandatory. And of course, we didn’t want the trip to cost an arm and a leg.

Thanks Travelocity!

Travelocity makes it pretty easy to find the destination you’re looking for, even if you don’t have a hotel in mind.  Once you’ve selected the dates you want to travel, and your destination, there are many filters that you can choose to narrow down your search even more.

If you’re looking for a five-star resort in a certain neighborhood, or there’s an amenity you’re looking for, like child care, you can filter your search that way.  Travelocity makes it pretty easy to find what you’re looking for.  There’s usually a plethora of options! Continue reading “How We Planned Our Trip to Aruba”

Essential Camping Gear for That Amazing Camping Trip

Do you feel it?  It’s in the air.  That time of year.  Days of hiking, biking trails, swimming in a lake.  Also bug bites, ticks, sunburns and sleepless nights in a strange environment.  I love it and crave it every year.  IT’S CAMPING TIME!!!

I’ve been camping every year since my early twenties and it’s one of my favorite things ever.  There’s seriously nothing more relaxing.  Last year on our camping trip we got to witness hundreds of lightning bugs doing their thing while we just sat mesmerized at all the lights twinkling around us.  It. Was. Awesome!

If you’ve never been camping and aren’t sure if it’s something you want to do, I wrote a post detailing what I think are some great benefits of camping.  It is the best frugal vacation!

We normally go camping towards the end of summer or beginning of fall.  It’s less crowded, there are less bugs, and it’s a lot cooler while we’re out hiking.  However, I’ve been camping during the middle of the summer and it’s just as fun!

Mr. Frugal Turtle was a Boy Scout when he was younger.  His ideal camping trip is to head out with extremely limited camping gear and “rough it.”  Me, not so much.  I prefer having showers and toilets nearby.

I’ve compiled a list of all the camping gear we take with us on camping trips.


We’ve had this tent for several years now and it works great!  It’s a four person tent, but it’s perfect for two people.  Plus, it’s reasonably priced!  Camping gear can be expensive!
Continue reading “Essential Camping Gear for That Amazing Camping Trip”

Three Great Benefits of Camping

I love camping! Check out this post on what I think are a few great benefits of camping for your health and wallet. Includes some meal ideas while camping.The Good

I love camping!  I feel calm and relaxed in the woods.  All the day-to-day problems just sort of melt away as soon as I get to the campsite.    I stop thinking about work.  I stop worrying about the items that I should have packed for the trip (since it’s pointless at that point).  Most importantly, that little bit of anxiety that I always seem to have for no reason goes away.  I am at peace.

The Bad

Sure there are things that can go wrong when you’re camping.  It has rained on almost every camping trip I’ve been on.  I’ve taken the wrong trail while hiking and ended up hiking several miles more than I was planning on (in the rain).  I’ve had countless huge mosquito bites, spider bites, wood tick and deer tick bites.  Even with everything that goes wrong, at the end of every camping trip I’m left feeling sad and lost.  I feel at home in the woods.

The …Great?

When I’m camping there’s usually no cell service.  On the drive back home after our recent camping trip we had missed calls and texts from Mr. Frugal Turtle’s family.  There was mixed communication and they got really worried when they couldn’t get a hold of us!  Oops.  On the plus side, we had no idea what was going on in the real world.  That’s not always a bad thing.  I recently went a week without the internet and I think it changed me for the better!

If you’re new to camping and need some ideas about what gear to bring, I wrote up a detailed post with many of the items we use when we go camping.  You can find it here!

#1 Benefit of Camping


When I go camping I get a great workout every day.  Whoever I go camping with, we usually spend our days hiking or biking around the park.  On one camping trip with my sister we hiked for over twenty miles.  We got up really early and had a big, filling breakfast.  After breakfast we filled our backpack with water and snacks and left our campsite.  11 hours later we finally got back to our campsite.  It didn’t even feel like a workout!  We took enough breaks and just took in the beautiful scenery on our hike.  Although I usually stick to hiking I have done some biking while on the camping trips as well.  In fact the day after the epic 11 hour hike we went biking to give our legs a little break.  It was so much fun. Continue reading “Three Great Benefits of Camping”