? Have you ever had a chance to travel to Bonaire? Have you ever heard about Bonaire? Yes? Don't be shy, you can say NO. I have not heard about it until I decided to write this blog. I think everyone should know about this beautiful island. It is a tiny miracle of the Caribbean. I suppose you have lots of questions on your mind. Where is Bonaire in the Caribbean? How to get to Bonaire? What are the best places in Bonaire? Are Bonaire beaches the best beaches in the World? Let's start with some geography! Bоnаire is аn island in the Caribbean Sea, which is part of the Dutch ABC islands and Aruba and Curacao. The official language is Dutch, but even though 19,000 people live here, Dutch is not the only language they speak. Many people speak Papiamento, Spanish, Portuguese, and English. If you are looking for warm, sunny weather in winter, Bonaire is a great option for you. The island is sunny all-around the year. Many scuba divers choose Bonaire for diving in its magnificent waters. Bonaire beaches are very popular in the Caribbean. Even if you are not a fan of scuba diving, you may want to get a tan, enjoy the sun, swim in the blue waters, take many photos to post on Instagram, or see interesting places. Let's take a quick look at the best places in Bonaire!
When you look for places to visit in Bonaire, Kralendijk is one of the most popular options. Kralendijk is the main port and the capital of Bonaire. It is a beautiful place to get to know their culture and history. If you would like to learn about the history of Bonaire, the Terramar museum is the right place for you. The museum is in the city center once you get inside, it will take you 7000 years back. Breedestraat is one of the main shopping streets in Kralendijk. You can find everything here: shell arts, fish, clothes, souvenirs, fabrics, etc. Fishers sell very fresh sea products in Wilhelmina Square daily. Feel like dancing? Karel's Beach Bar is in the city center, and every week you can join a free dance workshop and learn Salsa, Bachata, and regional dances.
Bonaire National Marine Park
Bonaire National Marine Park is among the Caribbean's best places to visit in Bonaire for diving. The park surrounds all of Bonaire, as well as Klein Bonaire islet. The islet is famous for its water clarity, calm seas, and diversity of fish life. You can also do different activities such as sailing, kitesurfing, and windsurfing in the Bonaire National Marine Park.
Klein Bonaire is an islet in the Caribbean Sea and a part of Bonaire National Marine Park. Klein Bonaire is one of the best places to visit in Bonaire. Seahorses and turtles live in these translucent waters. Many people see dolphins while swimming between Bonaire and Klein Bonaire. You can also go to No Name Beach by water taxis and dive boats. Bring your food and enjoy all the long at the beach!
For sure, you alwаys see a phоto of a turquoise sea, white sand, and mаybe pink, beаutiful flamingos around, and you think: "Oh! this plаce looks like heаven!" There are two places like this in Bonaire; Pink beach and Goto Lake, and Pekelmeer Flamingo Sanctuary. Have you ever wondered why The pink beach is pink? Microscopic bright pink sea creatures called foraminifera to get crushed, and these crushed shells create pink color. It is a perfect spot for having a picnic while enjoying the spectacular view. Goto Lake is in the northern part of the island, and it is known as a meeting point for flamingos. If you want to observe pink flamingos, the best time to travel to Bonaire is from January until June. Pekelmeer Flamingo Sanctuary is in the southern part of the island, and it is one of the world's flamingo breeding grounds. Tourists are not allowed to the inside of the reserves. You may need binoculars to watch pink, beautiful flamingos. However, tourists can visit the sanctuary with a guided bus tour or rental cars.
Lac Bay is in the eastern part of the island and a marvelous place for windsurfing. Even if you are a beginner in windsurfing, there is a great atmosphere to learn it. Because the water is so smooth and the wind is warm and steady. Besides, paddle boarding and kayaking are popular here. The Lac Bay Mangrove Forest is one of the best forest reserves in the Caribbean. You may see queen conchs and lobsters in the seagrass beds.
Mangrove Information Center
You may get to know Bonaire's unique Mangrove ecosystem. You can do several things here, such as kayak outings, snorkel excursions, and solar-powered boat tours. Visitors always enjoy seeing nature, fish, birds, and other animals. Kayaks are single or double sit-on-top type, which is easy to handle, especially for beginners. The solar boat has an electrical outboard, so there is neither noise nor pollution! Remember, they work from Monday to Saturday. Sunday is not a working day.
Washington-Slagbaai National Park
Beaches, dunes, mangroves, saltpans, a hillside covered by cactus… All of them are in the Washington-Slagbaai National Park. There are two plantations here in which salt, aloe extract, and charcoal are exported to Europe. All flora and fauna of the island are in this place. Many animals such as sea turtles, goats, iguanas, and donkeys, birds such as flamingos, and parakeets live here. Because of the warm climate, many tree species grow here: Brazilwood trees, cacti, etc. To see the surroundings here, you can visit the island's highest point and enjoy the magnificent view from Subi Brandaris.
Even if you do not like donkeys, you may like this place, which has only positive vibes. You can enjoy the beauty of the Bonaire natural park and observe donkeys in their natural environment. Some of them are sick animals, and they have a recovery period in the sanctuary. What a heartwarming view!
A lot, huh? Do not worry. There are 67 steps, but only if you go down when you are coming up, you may feel a thousand steps are there. "The Thousand Steps" is a diving spot. When you take those steps, you carry a piece of diving equipment, which is why it is called The Thousand Steps.
The Salt PyramidsThe Salt Pyramids
are one of the most beautiful places on the island. Turquoise blue waters meet the blue sky, and The Salt Pyramids look like mountains covered with snow. Those white hills are one of the main exports of Bonaire.
How to get to Bonaire?
As we already know where Bonaire is, do you know how to get to Bonaire? Well, flights to Bonaire are possible during the whole year. You can travel to Bonaire by flights to Bonaire International Airport (BON): Flamingo International Airport. If you are coming from Europe, there are daily flights to Bonaire through Amsterdam. From the United States, non-stop flights from Newark and weekly flights from Atlanta are available. You also may travel to Bonaire by airplane through Aruba and Curacao and take a local carrier to Bonaire. Besides, cruise trips are an option to visit Bonaire Island.
The best time to visit BonaireThe best time to visit Bonaire
starts in May and continues till October. If you want to travel in winter, remember that from November until April is a peak season, which means prices are higher and hotels are full of visitors. Keep in mind that if you visit between January and July, you should visit Pekelmeer Flamingo Sanctuary.
Basics about Bonaire
The average air temperature is 28'C, and the average water temperature is 27'C. The local currency is the U.S. dollar. In some places, for example, Mangrove Information Center, paying with a card is not available. You had better have some cash on you! More than 22 beaches are in Bonaire. Habitants of Bonaire are kind, friendly, and gentle people. If you need help, don't hesitate to ask them!
Cuisine of Bonaire
Bonaire is truly an international experience in the case of cuisine. Visitors can try Dutch, Colombian, Chinese, Italian, Surinam, Indonesian, French, German, and more food types. Are you interested in traditions? Well, Bonaire is an island with many traditions! You should try Pastechis, Guiambo, Sopi Piska, Sopi Kadushi, and Pika Siboyo, famous for Bonaire's meals.
What to do in Bonaire?
Now, you do not wonder, "where is Bonaire in the Caribbean" but do you know what to do in Bonaire? Maybe if I summarize what you can do in Bonaire, you can decide easily. Start your journey by visiting the best places in Bonaire. Swimming, scuba diving, windsurfing, sailing, kitesurfing are adventurous activities for those who like adventure and having fun! You can go to Bonaire National Marine Park and Washington-Slagbaai National park for those and more activities. Remember, even if you do not know how to dive, you can learn it in Bonaire. Also, you can go hiking in the forest. Since Bonaire beaches are one of the best beaches in the World, you can always spend your day there. Do not miss the sunset in Bonaire. Enjoy the magnificent colorful view at the beach. Go to try local cuisine on the island. At night when you want to enjoy music and dance, you can always go to Karel's Beach Bar. In the morning, go to the pink beach, and have a picnic while enjoying the view with pink flamingos and turquoise waters. Keep in mind to buy fascinating souvenirs made of shell from Breedestraat. I suppose you have ideas about what to do in Bonaire now. Have a wonderful time there!