Experience the ultimate Caribbean escape on Bonaire, where crystal-clear waters, colorful marine life, and laid-back island vibes await.
Bonaire is a hidden gem in the Caribbean that offers a unique blend of stunning natural beauty, rich cultural heritage and a relaxed island lifestyle. Renowned for its pristine coral reefs and crystal-clear waters, Bonaire is a paradise for snorkelers and divers of all levels. With abundant marine life, over 80 official dive sites and breathtaking views, you’ll never want to leave. Whether you are seeking adventure, relaxation or a mix of both, Bonaire has something for everyone.
Bonaire is an island municipality of the Netherlands and lies off the coast of Venezuela in the southern Caribbean. It is part of the ABC Islands, Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao, and one of the three westernmost islands of the Leeward Antilles.
The southern part of the island is mostly flat while the northern side is hilly with its peak reaching 787 feet high. Around 70% of the island’s surface is coral limestone. The capital, Kralendijk, which translates to “coral reef” is a small town that boasts well-preserved Caribbean architecture.
Where to dive
Known as the shore diving capital of the world, Bonaire offers calm waters, minimal currents and the freedom to explore the ocean floor. Impressive coral reefs are found beneath the clear, turquoise waters, along with an abundance of marine life. Bonaire’s unique location situated just outside the hurricane belt, means that the island’s dive sites remain accessible year-round, making it a popular destination for divers looking for a winter escape.
Each dive site in Bonaire is marked with a large yellow rock with the site name painted on it. This makes it easy for you to hop in the car and drive to your next site easily. You’re on island time now and the sea is yours. From vibrant coral gardens and colorful fish to larger creatures like turtles and rays, Bonaire’s waters offer something for divers of all experience levels. Bonaire’s underwater world is a must-see for any diving enthusiast.
While diving in Bonaire, be on the lookout for:
- Moray eels
- Sea turtles
- Nurse sharks
Who to dive with
If shore diving isn’t your thing or if you want to experience both shore diving and boat diving, head to Buddy Dive or Divi Dive Bonaire. Both dive shops offer unforgettable boat diving experiences where you can explore Bonaire’s beautiful waters even more!
Buddy Dive’s custom dive boats invite you to explore beautiful marine life during a guided dive. With as many as 60 officially listed dive sites on Bonaire and another 20 dive sites on Klein Bonaire, the dive operation at Van der Valk’s Buddy Dive Resort Bonaire is geared up for you to make the most out of your dive vacation.
Their boat’s benches are custom designed to make it easier to set up and take off diving gear, and wide-open decks provide ample room to walk around. Each ride is limited to 18 passengers, so you never have to worry about crowding.
Where to stay
Ocean-front and laid-back is the way to go when staying in Bonaire. Both Buddy Dive and Divi Flamingo Beach Resort and Casino have their own dive operators, making diving a breeze!
Buddy Dive Resort is located on the waterfront north of town, just a few steps from the ocean. No, really, they have a stairway that leads right to the water! They offer personable staff, spacious accommodations and a dive operation that takes the stress out of your holiday.
Divi Flamingo Beach Resort and Casino is conveniently located just minutes from the airport and a 5-minute walk to town. Colorful and laid-back, this water-lovers paradise offers two sparkling pools, a day spa and fitness center, weekly activities, delicious dining, an intimate casino, and an award-winning five-star dive operation with a fleet of six dive boats, private dive lockers, a dive shop with equipment rental, and a famed house reef you can explore 24/7.
Bonaire’s strict conservation efforts have helped to maintain the health and diversity of its underwater ecosystems, making it a haven for marine life enthusiasts. There are multiple programs on the island where divers can learn first-hand what it takes to care for these nurseries.
In 2012, the Bonaire Island Council permitted the Reef Renewal Foundation Bonaire to start developing coral nurseries and restoration projects. Reef Renewal Foundation Bonaire is dedicated to restoring Bonaire’s coral reef through innovative coral nurseries and restoration techniques. They offer a variety of programs where divers can participate in coral restoration, from a discover reef renewal dive to participating in the volunteer program, there are numerous ways to get involved.
One partner of Reef Renewal Foundation Bonaire is SECORE. SECORE’s mission is to create and share the tools and technologies to sustainably restore coral reefs worldwide. Diventures is a proud partner of SECORE because of our value “We are positive advocates for the health of our oceans and waterways”
Bonaire National Marine Park
The Bonaire National Marine Park encompasses all the waters surrounding the island and the uninhabited islet Klein Bonaire. The 6,700-acre preservation area is teeming with untouched coral and mangrove forests.
It’s a no-brainer to take advantage of the shore diving Bonaire has to offer. As the “Shore Diving Capital of the World,” divers can hop in their rented vehicle and explore the island looking for the best dive spots. Each site is marked with a big yellow rock and there are over 80 sites to choose from.
Donkey Sanctuary Bonaire
It’s not every day you get to visit a donkey sanctuary! This sanctuary is committed to providing a protected life for all donkeys in Bonaire, and they currently house over 700 donkeys. You can visit by car or walk on foot to pet and feed the donkeys.
Ready to travel?
Diventures is a frequent visitor to Bonaire. Whether you’re looking for easy access shore diving, or hands-on coral reef restoration, Bonaire is a must-see destination. Travel with us so we can make your next trip to Bonaire the experience of a lifetime!