Aruba, a small Caribbean island off the coast of Venezuela, is an autonomous dependency of the Netherlands. Flat and without rivers, it is renowned for its white sandy beaches and tropical but moderate climate. It lies outside the Caribbean hurricane belt and persistent light winds give a distinctive shape to the watapana, or “divi-divi”, trees projecting from the generally sparse vegetation. Tourism is the island’s main source of income. Aruba has its very own species of burrowing owl, called the shoco.