BEAUTIFUL BONAIRE … DIVE IN!

PopularPlacesbyJanW-11

Bonaire is a wonderful place to visit for great holidays or even for long stays such as an internship or for work related opportunities. Visitors feel immediately at home in the Caribbean tropical climate with the gentle people and the outstanding marine and terrestrial wildlife and nature. If you are interested in visiting Bonaire, we present some highlights of this tropical island. Of course Bonaire is famous for scuba diving. Here you will nd the most amazing underwater world on earth.

DIVING, SCUBA DIVING AND SNORKELING

PopularPlacesbyJanW-02

For 21 consecutive years in Scuba Diving magazine’s annual Readers’ Choice Awards, Bonaire has been selected as the number one Shore Diving destination in the Caribbean/Atlantic. In 2014 Bonaire received 10 awards. Bonaire was ranked number one in the Caribbean in the 2013 Global Sustainable Tourist Review and scored a maximum ‘green’ rating for the condition and maintenance of its marine life, nature, landscape and coastline. Bonaire’s Marine Park was also named one of the Caribbean’s Best Places for Snorkeling by Frommer’s. Currently, Bonaire is ranked number ve on the list of Trip Advisor’s Travelers’ Choice Awards Top 10 Caribbean Islands. This year, CNN Travel named turtle diving in Bonaire one of the Top 10 Caribbean Secrets

(source www.tourismbonaire.com).

WASHINGTON SLAGBAAI

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When you only have one day on Bonaire, try to visit Washington Slagbaai. It is a relatively big National Park for Bonaire, it covers almost a quarter of the island. Normally you need afour wheel drive or pick-up to enter the National Park. You can choose to make a ‘short tour’ or a ‘long tour’, with different interesting sightseeing points, like the Blow-Hole, Playa Kokolishi, Brandaris or Slagbaai itself. If you are lucky to have more time on the island, it is a wonderful idea to stay one or more nights in the accommodation of Washington Slagbaai. It is a very basic accommodation, and for that reason also very romantic. After 04.00 P.M. all the ‘day tourists’ are gone, and you have the Slagbaai for yourselves. At night you can choose to sleep in the building in the part with a roof or in the part with a ‘sunscreen’, so you can fall a sleep with a view of uncountable stars above your head. It is a great experience.

NORTH COAST AND BLOW HOLE

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The north coast of Bonaire is well-known because of the rough sea and ‘rocky’surroundings with lots of massive coral rocks. It is a beautiful combination of stone and the azure blue colour of the ocean.

PLAYA KOKOLISHI

Playa Kokolishi(Shell Beach)an inlet beach in Washington National Park Slagbaai. You can nd it when you take the ‘Long route’ in the Park. It is quiet, idyllic and very romantic. Just bring some food and drinks in a cooler and enjoy the overwhelming nature. Playa Kokolishi is the one beach at the North Coast of Bonaire where you can swim. Because the inlet is protected by massive coral rocks.

SOROBON

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Located on the eastern side near Lac Bay,Sorobon is one of Bonaire’s treasures. An offshore reef protects the bay on which this beautiful beach sits and it keeps the shallow waters calm. Sorobon Beach is enjoyed by sunbathers and water enthusiasts of all ages. It is perfect for a quick dip to cool off. The sandy entry, warm shallow waters and Bonaire’s steady trade winds and sunshine, present a stellar combination for some of the world’s best windsur ng. These heavenly conditions afford the hosting of both local and international competitions throughout the year. The documentary ‘Children of the wind’ is about these world champions (www.tourismbonaire.com).

THOUSAND STEPS

Aroundthe North West coast of Bonaire you can and hotspot for diving and snorkelling. It is an idyllic route and a special spot although far less than thousand steps. It is called thousand steps, because of the many steps down to reach the beach. If you are lucky, you can see turtles while swimming and snorkelling. It is a great experience, to feel like a part of nature in the wonderful surroundings of this part of nature on Bonaire.

SLAVE HUTS

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The history of Bonaire is one of Colonialism and slavery. The island was in hands of the Spanish, the Dutch and the English several times throughout history. The Netherlands is one of the countries that had a big impact onBonaire both historically and up to the present day. The slaves had very tiny huts where they could rest from the hard work in the Salt Works. At the weekends they could go to Rincon, where most of their families lived. The past was not that easy and you can still feel in uences of this past in the community of Bonaire. Since 10-10-2010 Bonaire is a municipality of the Netherlands.

SOLAR SALT WORKS

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Bonaire is famous for its Salt Works. The little ‘mountains of salt’ give a surrealistic view with the blue background of the sky.

KITESURFING

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Kitesur ng is one of the popular water sports of Bonaire. Nearby Atlantis, a couple of miles further than the Salt Mountains, you will nd the Kitesur ng beaches. It is an awesome view to see the Kite surfers jump.

KRALENDIJK

Kralendijk is the main town of Bonaire. It is very small and quiet, but you can nd (almost) everything you need, like beautiful ‘homemade’ handicrafts, products of the sea with the healing seasalt, clothes, furniture, toys, etc. Just take a slow walk, eat delicious ice cream at ‘Gio’s’ and walk in the ‘Kaya Grandi’ while you visit the nice shops and tiny malls. It is worth spending a morning or an afternoon in Kralendijk.

LAC CAI

On your way to Sorobon, you can choose to take a left turn and visit Lac Cai. Lac cai is known for the Conch Shells ‘mountains’. Although the shells are beautiful, they are now on the brink of extinction, due to the extensive shing. The place is a real ‘Blue Lagoon place’, because of the sea and the beach, which is near to the special mangroves.

GOTOMEER OR LAKE GOTO

In the north of Bonaire, near Rincon there is a great viewpoint over Gotomeer. It is special lake, known as a amingo feeding ground. It is a terrific stop on your way to Washington Slagbaai and Rincon.

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KLEIN BONAIRE

Klein Bonaire is an island just off the West coast of Bonaire, where you can go with a ‘watertaxi’. It is re- ally an experience to go to a place where you can nd ‘nothingness’, but just nature. The trip by boat is very relaxing on its own. It is an ideal place to snorkel, to rest and get some (or a lot of …) sun. There is hardly any shade on this tiny island.

SUNSETS OF BONAIRE

Almost every evening you can be treated on a beau- tiful sunset in Bonaire. Just settle down on one of the beaches of the West Coast and enjoy an amazing view. It is a romantic end to a tropical day.

Read magazine n° 2