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Where in Bonaire?
RedRedus85 - 10/06/2009 11:25 PM
Category: Travel
Replies: 16

My father, cousin and I are planning a trip to Bonaire in January but haven’t decided on where to stay. Also looking for the best locations around the island to dive. Anybody out there with some first hand advice?
Greg - 10/07/2009 8:31 AM
Try Golden Reef Inn. Contact Liz on
ncdiveinstructor - 10/07/2009 10:57 AM

Our shop goes to Bonire once a year. We have used several places but have had our best times staying with Buddy Dive. Their drive through air fill is the bomb!

Hope this helps

mad-diver - 10/07/2009 8:52 PM
We just got back from Bonaire on 9-26-09 and booked every thing seperatly and saved a little money that way. Stayed at Lighthouse Beach Resort Condo , 2bd , 2 1/2 bath, full kitchen , pool , diving about 100 yards away. Caribe Car Rental for 4 door pick up. Dive Friends of Bonaire for tanks and weights , they have several locations and one is right across the street from the airport. The add I’ve seen for Golden Reef looks very nice and I will also check with them on the next trip. Favorite dive sites were Karpata , Oil Slick , Hilma Hooker , Salt Pier , although there were no bad ones.
SnowboardDave - 10/07/2009 9:29 PM
I’ve stayed at the Sand Dollar. The place we had was nice! Full kitchen, balcony and cable. The dive operation was good and they had the best house reef. Free Nitrox.
Waterskier1 - 10/08/2009 1:59 PM
I’ve been to Bonaire 6 times in the last 2+ years. I recommend checking with Liz at Golden Reef Inn first. I stayed there last Jan and will be staying there in a couple weeks. It’s a great place, and very, very reasonable.

The other place that I have stayed is Eden Beach. I like it a lot, it’s right on the beach, and uses the same Dive-Op, Wannadive. They have their compressor at Eden Beach, but also deliver tanks to Golden Reef Inn. Eden beach is a little more expensive, but I’ve stayed there with a group I go with, mostly because Liz can’t handle a group of 40-60 divers.

If you have any specific questions, please let me know.
JobyBett - 10/09/2009 12:19 AM

I stayed in Buddy Dive in March, its excellent, staff, facilities, the house reef is also excellent, especially for a night dive.
NitroxNick - 10/09/2009 12:43 PM
Took my family to Capt. Dons Habitat this past Aug, and had a great time.
sk290 - 10/09/2009 2:42 PM
We stayed at Happy Holiday Homes the last time. It’s a nice, clean and modest place to stay. It’s owned by a couple of Swedish sisters (I think), hi-fi is available and they have a back patio area for you to rinse and hang your dive gear. They charge by the unit and not by the person. We had about 11 people sharing 3 condos, truck and free nitrox for about $250/pp for a week and a half.

There is an awesome bbq place in the island that only opens from wed through sun well worth going to. Make sure you look them up. Also, foodstuff is rather scarce and very expensive because everything has to be flown in. If you can, you should bring some staple food with you.

There is no bad dive spot anywhere in the island. The hilma hooker is way cool. Try a dawn dive for something different (4:00 - 4:30 am).

Have fun and report back so we too can enjoy your vacation. :)

EByland - 10/20/2009 11:14 PM
I’ve stayed at the Plaza Resort- spacious double with a full kitchen. Toucan Diving is the on site dive shop. Staff was great and the diving was even better. A member of our party had a problem with things coming up missing from his room- never verified though.
Venture out past the first reef off the shore past the sand to the "second" reef, the diving was pristine and much more colorful further out (Eighteen Palms-Angel City). Also boat dives on the northern part of the island and off of Klein Bonaire were great as well. I can’t wait to go back- have fun!!!
Mikie55 - 11/03/2009 12:37 AM
Best advice for Bonair is ignore the "shore diving" nonsense and take a boat. It’s great diving but the shore diving is an open invitation to have your stuff stolen and it’s a LOT of work. Save your energy for blowing bubbles.
pk - 11/03/2009 5:26 AM
Diva Flamingo was great.
BoxsterMan - 11/05/2009 7:44 AM
I’m in Bonaire Jan - Mar. Just about any reef is a great place to dive. THere are a couple of bad spots near the airport. Town Pier was closed to divers in October due to construction. Not sure when that may reopen.

Jan is part of high season, and things book up fast. Most places are good. Sand Dollar has large condos and caters to Americans. Great Internet access there. Buddy Dive is a good place with nice boats. Plaza seems nice, but never stayed there. Check out Black Durgeon Inn towards the north end of Hato.

Get your truck and go dive where you see the yellow rocks. Don’t take anything of value. We had shorts stolen from our truck at Angel City. Never lock your truck and always use the safe in your room. Don’t leave valuables laying out when you are away. Common sense stuff.

Great diving, Easy Diving...Have fun and be safe.
scubabev - 11/15/2009 7:53 AM
Hi, I’m going to Bonaire on Dec 12th so I will take careful dive notes and report back! I’m staying at Tropicana apts. In the past I have stayed at Buddy Dive - which was very convenient and I had a good experience there. Buddy Dive is good if the group doesn’t always dive at the same time - if someone wants to skip a dive. They have boats going out often and shore diving. Bev
Jaxdiver - 11/15/2009 2:26 PM
Bonaire is AWESOME! It is part of the ABC islands (Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao) 50 miles of the coast of Venezula.I go once a year. I have stayed at Capt’n Don’s , Sun Rentals Apartments(downtown, dive shop on the property that is associated with Buddy Dive) and my latest trip I stated at Buddy Dive Resort, had one bedroom apt, probably the best deal. The shore diving is so easy. You can take a boat over to Klein Bonaire, but spend all your time riding a boat. I usually make 2 dives in the morning, lunch, then 2 dives in the afternoon and possibly either a night dive or dawn dive(awesome experience). I am heading back in April.
Siev2000 - 11/17/2009 12:47 PM
I am trying to get a trip together going to Captain dons in th $1500 range cant find enough divers!!!!!!!!!! Only need 2 for total of 4 to make it happen!
purplelibrarian - 11/22/2009 11:55 AM
We always return to Sand Dollar. The package with vehicle and hot buffet breakfast every day can’t be beat. There is also a naturalist on site, who leads dives and provides inventory training for the REEF project.

Also consider splurging on a dive with Dee Scarr (google Touch the Sea). On our last dive with her, she took us to an unmarked spot at the edge of town. The dive was awesome, and ended with a flotillla of eagle rays feeding in the sand at 10 ft.