Bonaire, Bonaire - Caribbean & Central America
is an island in the Leeward Antilles in the Caribbean Sea. Its capital is the port of Kralendijk, on the west (leeward) coast of the island. Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao form the ABC islands, 80 km off the coast of Venezuela. Unlike much of the Caribbean region, the ABC islands lie outside Hurricane Alley. The islands have an arid climate that attracts visitors seeking warm, sunny weather all year round.
What to do in Bonaire?
Bonaire is a popular snorkelling and scuba diving destination because of its multiple shore diving sites and easy access to the island's fringing reefs.
· The diverse variety of Marine life with 350 fish species
· The Blue seawater holding coral reefs you will never get a chance to see elsewhere.
· The below water experience makes you feel likeexploring some other world
The importance of diving and water sports on this island can be understood from the fact that most of the tourism revenue revolves around scuba diving and other water-based activities.
For that purpose, you don't have to wait for the best time to travel to Bonaire, as it is an all-time of the year activity. However, this is not all that you can do on the island to have fun. You can also avail the opportunities of windsurfing, snorkelling, water skiing and boating once you hit the Bonaire beaches.
If you prefer nature, you must visit the trails of Washington Slagbaai National Park to get a chance to interact with the marine life. The other most adventuring and worth exploring places to visit in Bonaire include:
· Mangrove glass-bottom Kayak and snorkel tour
· Tour to Cave
· Donkey Sanctuary Tour
Tourism in Bonaire
Bonaire’s economy is mainly based on tourism. The island caters mainly to scuba divers and snorkelers, as there are few sandy beaches, while the surrounding reefs are easily accessible from the shore.
Bonaire is world renowned for its excellent scuba diving and is consistently rated among the best diving locations in the world. Bonaire’s license plates carry the logo Divers Paradise (in English). Bonaire is also consistently recognized as one of the best destinations for snorkelling. Wind surfers also make a strong group of island tourists, as the east side of the island (facing the Caribbean Sea) has the large waves and wind gusts needed for windsurfing. Lac Bay, in the southeast, is shallow, yet windy, and hence is considered an excellent place for intermediate sailors to improve their skills. Tourism infrastructure is contemporary and based on time-share resorts. There are a few small bed and breakfasts. Most resorts have an on-site dive shop. The rest are affiliated with a dive operation.
The Districts and Neighbourhoods of Bonaire
with a population of less than 20,000, Bonaire has two residential areas Kralendijk in Rincon and a number of neighbourhoods. In the newer district, many vacation homes can be found.
Kralendijk is the capital of Bonaire. The largest portion of the population lives in Kralendijk here you also find most shops, restaurants, businesses, and public buildings. Kralendijk has different districts: Antirol, North Salina, Nikiboko, Playa, Belnem and Tera Cora, Sabadeco, Republiek, Santa Barbara These districts are also divided into different neighbourhoods.
Antriol is of all areas situated the most inland. And has the most inhabitants. It is founded by the Spaniards and Portuguese, and they called it: 'the interior" = Al Interior. Later, this then again become Antriol.
North Salina Is located to the North of the salt pans, many inhabitants are still in one way, or another related to the Caiquetio Indians who first settled here in the past.
Nikiboko Is the second largest area of Kralendijk. More than half of the inhabitants of Kralendijk lives in Nikiboko and Antriol Playa. with Playa (Beach) the Bonairians mean the center of Kralendijk.
Belnem this district lies beyond the airport towards the salt pans. Belnem is a more luxurious neighborhood where there currently much building activity. Belnem owes its name to Harry Belafonte.
Tera Cora means 'Red Soil' once the slaves housed here. Today it is a pleasant neighbourhood with predominantly Bonairian inhabitants.
Sabadeco, a luxurious neighbourhood, a lot of oceanfront villa are located in this area.
Republiek/Santa Barbara, an upscale area with nice houses/apartments.
The flag of Bonaire shows a compass rose with a six-pointed star. These six points represent Bonaire’s original settlements:
The first five have now virtually grown together through expansion and together form the island’s main town, Kralendijk.
Dining on Bonaire is a food lover's dream as you can find everything from Caribbean to South American and Asian cuisines. Many restaurants serve only dinner—only a few establishments not affiliated with hotels are open for breakfast, so check ahead.
At Sea is an award-winning seaside restaurant featuring some of the most creative cuisine on island. Chef Rick and his wife, Kim, have created a dining oasis with customer service in mind. Choose from an extensive à la carte menu or opt for one of the chef's multicourse offerings. This lively restaurant turns out artistic and flavourful steak, seafood, and vegetarian meals featuring locally caught fish, and they import the finest ingredients from around the globe. Diners who appreciate a slow and relaxed experience will most appreciate At Sea.
This splendid, family-run Italian eatery has plenty to boast about. The pastas and breads are house made. The wine cellar includes hundreds of labels and thousands of bottles. Ask for a pairing with your meal to fit your taste and your budget. You can opt for casual à la carte dining on the terrace or a romantic meal in the tonier, air-conditioned dining room. If your appetite is hearty, go for the five-course prix-fixe menu. Otherwise, choose from 50 regular offerings. La Boutique has an abundance of lovely Italian specialty items including seasonal panettone.
Hang Out Bar
If your vision of a Caribbean vacation includes seaside dining with balmy trade winds blowing and views of a gorgeous Caribbean Bay, then Hang Out Bar is your spot. It overlooks Lac Bay, the training ground for the famous Bonaire Windsurf Team. Pros from around the globe come to train while tourists come to hone their skills and experience windsurf bliss. Hang Out Bar offers libations and tasty delights including fresh house-made smoothies and healthy and delicious salads and sandwiches, and there's always a daily special, usually fresh-caught fish. They also serve Dutch snack treats including meatballs and hot dog. There's a lively bar scene, with a great happy hour. Free beach loungers and plenty of tables and chairs in the shade, as well as free Wi-Fi are available. Select evenings feature local and international music acts. Order a pitcher of their famous house-made sangria and you're all set.
It Rains Fishes
Those seeking upscale urban chic flock to this waterfront establishment where beautiful people serve beautiful food. Housed in a 100-year-old traditional home, the seafront setting is magical. Culinary delights feature grilled local fish. The menu is creative and diverse. Despite its popularity and large size, by Bonaire standards, service is impeccable and efficient. The restaurant now features a fish market selling local and Dutch delights. Lunch is a special outing with a superb menu and stunning views.
Hidden in an unassuming strip mall you'll find a wonderful Colombian eatery—Bonaire’s best hole in the wall. The owners specialize in Colombian fare and offer fresh locally caught fish along with other regional items. Try the house-made avocado sauce on your fish or chicken. The beef is a house favourite, as is the whole red snapper in creole sauce. Choose the fried yuca as a side. House-made desserts include a sublime tres leches cake.
Schools in Bonaire
· Kolegio Rayo di Solo is a public school, address: Hanchi Amboina 2, Antriol Pariba
· Kolegio Strea Briante is a public school, address: Hanchi Amboina 2-c, Antriol Pariba
· De Pelikaan is a Public special needs, address: Kaya Amsterdam 3
· Kolegio San Luis Bertran is a RC, address: Kaya Bototé 5 (Rincón)
· Kolegio San Bernardo is a RC, address: Kaya Maria C. Hellmund z/n
· Kristu Bon Wardador is a RC, address: Kaya Avelino J. Cecilia 56 (Nikiboko)
· Skol Amplio Papa Cornes is a RC, address: Kaya Leiden 30
· Scholen Gemeenschap Bonaire (SGB) is a public school, address: Kaya Frater Odulfinus z/n
A vehicle is needed to explore Bonaire. If you choose to rend a vehicle or scooter, it will be necessary to produce a valid driver’s license, be at least 21 – 25 years of age depending on the rental agency.
A copy of the traffic signs should be given to you for you to familiarize yourself.
Public transportation and taxis
There is little public transportation, however, taxis are reasonable and will be happy to give tours at an hourly rate. Bonaire’s various sightseeing tour companies can also accommodate both large and small groups.
Annual Events and Festivals on Bonaire
· International & Local Fishing Tournament. February/March.
· Traditional Simadan–The Harvest Festivals. April.
· Rincon Day (Dia di Rincon) June.
· Fire-Jumping on Feast Days of Saints John and Peter. September.
For more events go to https://infobonaire.com/bonaire-event-calendar/
What are the costs of buying a House on Bonaire?
· Notary fees, which are approximately 2 to 3% of the purchase price Transfer tax, which is approximately 5% of the purchase price
· Registration of the property at the land registry: This begins with $265. The additional costs will vary depending on the type of deed that needs to be closed.
· Ground lease (if applicable)
· Annual land tax: 0.345% of the value of the House for a 1st House/Residence and 0.805% for a 2nd House (the 'value' is set for a period of 5 years)