Hiking in Bonaire

Walks on the Wild Side

This isn't your typical Caribbean walking tour. There are no rainforests, tropical gardens or waterfalls to discover on the island of Bonaire. Instead, cactus, century plants and tamarind trees dominate a rugged landscape that sees scant rainfall but thrives none the less. Iguanas sun on rock outcroppings, while bird songs fill the air. Precious flows of fresh water trickle from hidden sources, creating oases of green. Tradewinds gust around hilltops and swirl into valleys, bringing cooling hints of salt air. Those who know where to look will discover medicinal plants valued by native healers and uncover lost reminders of the island's plantation past.

Highlights

  • Best for: Everyone with a love of water and nature
  • Best season to visit: Year-round, as it's below the hurricane belt
  • Weather: 70s, sunny and dry in the winter, 80s in the summer, with occasional afternoon or evening showers

Bonaire Information

Hiking in Bonaire Overview

Most hiking routes in Bonaire are found in the central and northern part of the island, which has a greater variety of flora and fauna that the flat, arid south. The Gotomeer region and Washington Slagbaai National Park offer hills and wooded valleys that hide the island's only freshwater springs. Routes may follow dirt roads or winding single tracks.

Hiking in Bonaire Tips

Hiking with a local guide adds an extra dimension to a walk, as they will share insights on the island's cultural and natural history, and provide tales of island life. Guides also know the best routes and can lead you to hidden places usually visited only by the locals.

Best Places for Hiking in Bonaire

More than 200 species of birds take shelter in the thickets and forests of Bonaire's central and northern interior. The island's iconic pink flamingos can be seen at the salt ponds of Gotomeer, while parrots are found in the wooded valleys near Los Pos, and in groves of candelabra cactus. A stop at Seru Largu provides a panoramic view of the island, and a stop at the Aletta Goat Farm yields fresh-made cheeses and yogurts.

What to Pack for Hiking in Bonaire

Bring a brimmed hat for sun protection and sturdy shoes for the off-road terrain. Lightweight, long-sleeve shirts will provide both cooling and sun protection. Use a compact backpack for cameras and snacks. Bring plenty of water, because the sun and sea breezes can dehydrate quickly.

Packages

Hiking

Bonaire

Buddy Dive Resort

BUDDY DIVE ACTIVITY PACKAGE includes 7 nights in your choice of Studio, 1, 2 or 3-bedroom accommodations, breakfast daily, snorkel equipment rental for 7 days, mountain bike rental for 1 day, 1 guided boat snorkel trip, 1 guided cave exploration tour, 1 guided mangrove kayak tour, 7 days vehicle rental including taxes, roundtrip airport transfers, hotel tax, and service charges. Welcome drink.
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From $1,073 per person double occupancy

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Hiking

Bonaire

Captain Dons Habitat

BECOME A DIVER includes 7 nights deluxe oceanview accommodations, four days of Open Water Certification including books, gear, tanks and instruction, free WiFi, airport transfers, hotel tax and service charges.
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From $1,087 per person double occupancy

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Hiking

Bonaire

Harbour Village Beach Club

ROMANCE PACKAGE includes 7 nights in choice of a Luxurious Club Room, 1 Bedroom or 2 Bedroom Suite, daily full American breakfast, 1 aromatherapy massage per person, 1 scuba dive experience for beginners or 1 boat dive for certified divers, 1 torch light dinner on the beach (no beverages included), 1 hammock on the beach with Champagne (per couple), service charges and government tax.
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From $1,668 per person double occupancy

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Resorts

Hiking

Bonaire

Belmar Oceanfront Apartments

Intimate, tranquil dive resort in the southern part of Bonaire. Spacious, fully-equipped apartments, most overlooking the water with air-conditioned bedrooms. Professional PADI 5-Star dive center and rental shop. Two expansive sunbathing/dive docks. Only 10 minutes to downtown attractions.

Optional add-ons for Watersports Activities and Topside Activities available in the shopping cart after room category is selected.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for additional information.
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Bonaire

Sand Dollar Condominiums

Spacious and comfortable studio, one, two and three bedroom accommodations on island. All units have kitchens, dining and living areas. The roomy porches or balconies offer views of the ocean and Bari Reef that beckon irresistibly to divers and snorkelers.

Optional add-ons for Watersports Activities and Topside Activities available in the shopping cart after room category is selected.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for additional information.
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Hiking

Bonaire

Plaza Beach & Dive Resort Bonaire

Tranquil oceanfront resort on one of Bonaire’s finest beaches, with the adjacent house reef 18th Palms that is perfect for shore diving. On-site Toucan Diving offers tank fills and dive gear storage room plus top-side adventure activities. Accommodations include spacious suites. Enjoy the casual restaurant, beachside bar, outdoor pool and day spa.

Optional add-ons for Watersports Activities and Topside Activities available in the shopping cart after room category is selected.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for additional information.
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Hiking

Bonaire

Buddy Dive Resort

Full-service resort with studios, 1, 2 & 3-bedroom apartments, 2 swimming pools and 2 restaurants. Professional PADI 5-Star CDC Center & Dive Academy. Onsite two-lane air/Nitrox drive-thru & digital photo center. Fully equipped dive & retail shop with a fleet of 6 dive boats, plus extensive technical diving facility on grounds.

Optional add-ons for Watersports Activities and Topside Activities available in the shopping cart after room category is selected.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for additional information.
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Bonaire

Caribbean Club Bonaire

Friendly full service resort features one and two-bedroom studios and ocean view villas, PADI 5-star dive shop and activity center, two swimming pools, a restaurant, bar, and meeting room. Explore eco-adventures like bird-watching, hiking, mountain biking and caving.

Optional add-ons for Watersports Activities and Topside Activities available in the shopping cart after room category is selected.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for additional information.
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Bonaire

Divi Flamingo Beach Resort & Casino

Located Oceanside with spacious oceanfront & garden hotel rooms, poolside studios with kitchenettes and balconies or patios. Five custom dive boats, 24-hour shore diving, PADI 5-Star dive center, dive certifications, rentals, dive shop & storage lockers. Two pools, beach, BBQ grills, gym, day spa, casino, daily activities. Three beachfront restaurants & 2 bars, all-inclusive plan available free WI-FI.

Ask about Monthly Dive Specials (free nights, free meals, room upgrades may apply during some seasons).

Optional add-ons for Watersports Activities and Topside Activities available in the shopping cart after room category is selected.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for additional information.
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Hiking

Bonaire

Captain Dons Habitat

Since 1976, the original “home of diving freedom”. Varied accommodation types to fit all needs from standard rooms to three-bedroom oceanfront villas. Scheduled boat dives daily. Excellent house reef just a few fin kicks away from a dedicated shore diving pier.

Optional add-ons for Watersports Activities and Topside Activities available in the shopping cart after room category is selected.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for additional information.
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Hiking

Bonaire

Harbour Village Beach Club

One of Bonaire's most exclusive resorts, this property is situated on a beautiful private beach alongside a private marina amid lush landscaping. Amenities include a pool and sundeck, a spa, fitness center and tennis courts. La Balandra Beach Bar & Grill—built in the style of a Spanish galleon—offers excellent cuisine in a breathtaking oceanfront location.

Optional add-ons for Watersports Activities and Topside Activities available in the shopping cart after room category is selected.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for additional information.
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Passport and/or Visa Requirements

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Entry Requirments: US and Canadian citizens must have a valid Passport, valid for your lenght of stay. No visa is required for stays shorter than 90 days.

Exit Requirments: The departure tax is USD $36.05 per person, which should be included in your international airline ticket taxes, so there should be nothing to pay at the airport. Domestic departure tax is $9.27 to Curacao, St. Maarten, Saba, St. Eustatius or Aruba and should also be included in your airline ticket taxes.

Immunizations

No vaccinations or preventative medications are required for travel to Bonaire. Check with the Centers for Disease Control on recommended vaccinations for travel at cdc.gov

Culture and Customs

Bonaire provides a low-key take on island life. Bonairean culture blends the traditions of Spain, Africa and the Netherlands. Locals who may initially display the discrete reserves of the Dutch quickly prove warm and accommodating of visitors. And despite decades of tourism, the service industry mentality does not dominate the cultural psyche. Cruise ships now call at the Kralendijk waterfront, but divers remain the main source of business for on-island resorts. Nightlife is more likely to mean a sunset dinner at the harbor followed by a stroll to an ice cream shop, or tall tales of underwater adventures shared at a waterfront tiki bar, with a reasonable bedtime in anticipation of tomorrow's adventures. And there are ample adventures to be found. Washington Slagbaai National Park covers the entire northern end of the island, creating an outdoor playground for hiking, mountain biking, birding and day trips to small surf-washed coves hidden within iron shore bluffs. The trade winds that cool the island also power kite boarders, and the sheltered waters of Lac Bay are home to Jibe City, one of the Caribbean's epicenters of windsurfing action. Blue water fishermen don't have to travel far to hook up with trophy catches, kayakers can find shelter in mangrove channels, and sailing charters provide a relaxing way to skim the coastline without venturing into open ocean. An experience unique to Bonaire are the cave snorkel trips that take swimmers into clear pools of fresh water hidden below the island's limestone substrate.

Electricity, Phone and Internet Access

Electricity is 127 volt, 50 cycle. Many dive shops offer stations for charging lights, strobes or delicate equipment.

Most hotels offer WiFi and some local restaurants and bars offer WiFi. Surf-it hotspots are available with a Surf-it prepaid card from Telbo. Calling Bonaire requires dialing 011-599-7 and 6 digit number. Be sure to check with your cell phone carrier to see if they offer an international plan or you will be subject to roaming charges.

Water Quality

Bonaire offers desalinated sea water which is purified and safe to drink. Bottled water is also available for purchase.

Language & Currency

There are 4 main languages spoken in Bonaire, Dutch is the official one used in government and legal transactions, while Papiamentu is used in daily exchanges and spoken by the locals. English and Spanish are also widely spoken.

As of January 1, 2011, the U.S. Dollar became the official currency of Bonaire. Credit cards are normally accepted in most restaurants, bars and stores. It is recommended you contact your credit card company before travel to make sure they know you will be using the card out of the country. ATMs are available which Cirrus, NYCE and other networks.

Time

Bonaire is in the Atlantic Time Zone (AST) and does not observe Daylight Savings Time. Bonaire is 4 hours behind Greenwich Mean Time (-4 GMT).

Location, Size and Population

Bonaire is 24 miles long by 3-7 miles wide, approximately 111 square miles. The small island offshore, Klein Bonaire, which is uninhabited is 2.3 square miles. Bonaire is located just 30 miles from Curacao, 50 miles North of Venezuela and 80 miles East of Aruba. Bonaire is located in the Leeward Antilles in the Caribbean Sea and outside of the Hurricane Belt. The population of Bonaire is 18,900 (2016).