Want to completely unwind and immerse yourself in the beautiful nature of Bonaire? Then a day at the Washington Slagbaai National Park is just what you need. In this beautiful national park you can hike, snorkel, dive or enjoy the beach. For example, choose from one of the three hiking trails or enjoy the beautiful underwater world.
Upon entering the park you will be kindly greeted by one of the park's rangers. The ranger explains in detail about the park and its attractions. You will be given a map showing the two car routes, one short and one long, to choose from. If you want to hike, please indicate that to the ranger, there is also a separate map with hiking trails available. At the entrance to the park there is also a small museum, which is worth checking out.
Tip: choose a slightly higher car to enter the park with, all roads are unpaved and the terrain can be rough.
The short or long car route
Once in the park you choose from the short or long route. If you want to climb the park's highest mountain, the Brandaris, you choose the short route. The long route passes by the park's northern beaches and the Malmok lighthouse. Near Playa Funchi, both routes meet.
Enjoy Bonaire's beautiful scenery along the way. You drive through hilly terrain surrounded by tall cacti and plains overlooking the Caribbean Sea. Along the way you will frequently encounter parrots and parakeets. The greatest chance of seeing flamingos is at Saliña Slagbaai, near the beautiful sandy beach of Boka Slagbaai. This beach is a wonderful place to enjoy an extensive lunch and a nice swim. Picnic areas and restrooms are available here.
If you want to snorkel, the best place to do so is Wayaka II on the long route. Via stairs you reach a small beach from where you can step right into the water. While snorkeling here you can enjoy beautiful corals and colorful fish, a must!
Tip: take enough food and drinks with you for the whole day, because there is no restaurant in the park.
Park opening hours
Washington Slagbaai National Park is open from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. every day except Monday. Be on time, as no new visitors are allowed into the park after 2:30 p.m. To get back to the entrance on time you will find times listed on the park map. If you leave before this time at the corresponding point, you will be back at the exit on time.
The entrance fee for the Washington Slagbaai National Park is 40 usd for adults. Children up to age 12 are free. Residents of Bonaire who have a sedula can visit the park for free. This also applies to residents of Curaçao, Aruba, St. Maarten, Saba and St. Eustatius.