Bonaire's pristine reefs and diverse marine life are unique
to the Caribbean. The waters are exceptionally clear of
silt, calm, and diveable year round. Water temperatures
average a warm 78-84°F (25.6-28.9°C), with visibility
averaging over 100 feet (30m), and frequently reaching up to
150 feet (50m).
One of the Bonaire Marine Park Regulations is for all
visitors to do a check-out dive as part of the briefing
process before taking off on their own to shore dive or
going on a dive boat. Also, every diver on Bonaire must
purchase a Marine Park Tag valid for one calendar year.
Orientation procedures vary from dive center to dive center,
so it's a good idea to check in early. The cost of the tag
is US$25, and proceeds help support park management and
The Bonaire Marine Park:
The fringing reef which surrounds Bonaire is a National
Marine Park from the high water mark down to a depth of 200
feet/ 60m .
Bonaire's sea water is distilled and purified to become one
of the purest drinking waters in the world. Imported bottled
water is also available.
127 volt, 50 cycle. 220 volt is also available at some
resorts. Most U.S. appliances will work. Dive shops and
resorts have stations for guest use for charging camera
batteries, etc. It is recommended that you use them to avoid
damage to delicate equipment.
Papiamentu (local language), Dutch, English and Spanish.
Located about 12 degrees north of the equator, approximately
50 miles (80 km) north of Venezuela. The island, one of the
lesser Antilles islands, is about 24 miles (39 km) long and
about 3-7 miles (5-11 km) wide with an area of 112 square
miles (290 km2) and a population of some 12.500.
San Francisco Hospital has 60 beds and is fully equipped to
respond to any emergency. Bonaire has its own recompression
chamber, with trained medical personnel, on call 24 hours a
day. There are 7 medical doctors on the island.
In case of a diving accident or emergency, Bonaire has one
of the Caribbean's best staffed recompression chamber
located near the San Francisco Hospital Emergency
Located downtown Kralendijk and only a 10 minutes drive from
the Airport, and 5 minutes from Blue Divers.
U.S. and Canadian citizens need proof of citizenship, a
passport, birth certificate or voters registration card.
U.S. residents need their green card. All other require a
valid passport. A return or continuing ticket is also
required along with sufficient means to support yourself
during your stay. Maximum stay: 14 days with the possibility
of extending the visit to 90 days.
If you're calling Bonaire from the U.S. or Canada, you would
dial 011-599-7XX-XXXX, where 011 is the International access
code, 599 is the country code for the Netherlands Antilles,
7 is the city code for Bonaire, and XX-XXXX is the local
Bonairean number you want to reach. If you are calling
Bonaire from Europe or most of the rest of the world, you
would dial 00-599-7XX-XXXX using 00 for the international
Average year round air temperature is 81.5 degrees
Fahrenheit, with a +/- 2.5 degree seasonal variation, and an
average daily variation of 10 degrees Fahrenheit. The surrounding
ocean's temperature fluctuates from a chilly 78 degrees in
February to a balmy 86 degrees in October, for a year round
average of 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
Atlantic Standard Time. Same time as the United States East
Coast during Daylight Savings Time (mid-Spring to mid-Fall).
Tipping is much the same as in the States. Some restaurants
add a 10-15% service charge automatically. In Taxis
generally a 10% tip is greatly apppreciated.
Which side of the road:
We drive on the right, the same as in the States and most of
The wind direction is easterly more than 95% of the time,
averaging 12 knots. This is 15% lower than on Curacao, and
40% lower than on Aruba. The winds blow strongest in
February, March, and June. Lightest winds are in November.
The wind rarely exceeds 39 knots.