When you're going on vacation to Bonaire, it's useful to rent a car. It's not a big island, of course, but it's still too large to cover everything on foot or by bicycle. Especially if you're going diving a car is truly essential to take you to the most beautiful dive spots. If you want to visit Washington Slagbaai National Park it's advisable to rent a four-wheel-drive car.
A rental car is extremely useful if you want to explore the entire island.
On Bonaire there is driving on the right side of the road and the international traffic rules apply. The maximum speed in built-up areas is 40 km / hour. The maximum speed outside the built-up area is 60 km / hour, unless stated otherwise. The road signage is alternating in English, Dutch and Papiamento.
There are two tourist routes on Bonaire, one over the southern part and one over the northern part of the island. Because there are no traffic lights on Bonaire you never have to wait for the red traffic light! There are also few roundabouts on Bonaire. In only a few places on the Bonairian road network you will encounter them.
Sometimes it can rain heavily on Bonaire. Fortunately Bonaire has a nice climate. It never rains for a long time and the sun often breaks quickly after a rain shower. The non-asphalt (dirt) roads are often difficult to ride after a rain shower. Traffic on Bonaire has increased sharply in recent years. Especially in Kralendijk there is a chance of traffic jams during rush hour. In order to make and keep driving on Bonaire manageable in the coming years, new initiatives are regularly launched by the government.
Taking a moment to stop and enjoy the breathtaking landscape.
On Bonaire the density of cars has been increasing significantly in recent years. Especially in Kralendijk, during rush hours, traffic congestion is a common occurrence. To make driving on Bonaire manageable in the coming years, the government regularly launches new initiatives.
For example, the police have initiated the campaign: 'No parking on the sidewalk'. Especially in Kralendijk many vehicles are parked on the sidewalks, causing a lot of inconvenience on the public roads. There are ample opportunities for motorists to park their cars in parking areas at the stadium parking lot and behind the post office.
Tip! Beware of crossing donkeys!
Be vigilant for crossing donkeys, goats, pigs, and dogs when exploring Bonaire by car. They certainly don't pay attention to you and might cross the road unexpectedly. It often leads to some enjoyable photo opportunities.
We encountered this donkey during a drive around Bonaire.
Taxi stands are located at the airport and near the major hotels on Bonaire. Taxis on Bonaire do not have meters; their fares are fixed. Taxi drivers are required to have a list of fares displayed inside the taxi. The rates can also be found on a sign at the airport.
Taxis have the letters "TX" on their license plates. It is not common on Bonaire to hail a taxi on the street. On Sundays and public holidays, taxi drivers charge higher fares. Additionally, during the evening (plus 20 percent) and night (plus 40 percent), the fares are higher. If you have a lot of luggage taxi drivers might apply an extra charge.
If you hire a taxi for a few hours the driver can take you to the most beautiful spots on the island. This is a highly recommended way to get better acquainted with Bonaire. Farid Ayubi from Taxi 7 is an example of a driver who makes the taxi ride around the island a fun experience. He cracks jokes, plays music, and sings catchy songs throughout the tour. Besides regular taxis there are also bus taxis available on Bonaire.
In Kralendijk, you'll find three gas stations (Kaya Korona, Kaya Tribon, and Kaya Industria). In Rincon there's only one. The gas stations are clearly marked on the Bonaire Island Map. Payment is made before refueling. The pump automatically stops when the amount of paid fuel has been pumped. At most gas stations on Bonaire, there are employees who can assist you with refueling.
Gas station in Rincon
Tip! How to Refuel on Bonaire?
When you want to refuel on Bonaire, you need to pay first at the cashier using U.S. dollars. Usually, an employee of the gas station will assist you in refueling. If you want to fill the tank completely, give them 50 dollars, and you'll receive the change back after refueling.
On sunny Bonaire it is of course great to transport yourself with a scooter, moped or motorcycle. There are plenty of opportunities on Bonaire to rent them. Even Harley Davidson enthusiasts can get their money's worth on Bonaire, these machines are also for sale or rent on the island.
The transport on Bonaire also has an Eastern touch, on the island also driving tuktuks. The tuktuk is a motorized two-wheeled 'cart' and can reach a speed of 57 km / h. The tuktuk, called 'Bon Tuk' on Bonaire, is of course an ideal means of transport in the tropical climate of Bonaire.
At Bon Tuk, you can also book an Eco Tour. Allowing you to silently cruise through the breathtaking landscape using a tuktuk powered by an electric motor. During the tour, an expert guide reveals all the island's secrets. For bird enthusiasts the tuktuk is the perfect mode of transportation as the winged inhabitants are unlikely to take flight at the approach of the tuktuk.
The only form of public transportation on Bonaire is the bus. However, there are no fixed bus schedules. If you need a bus, you have to call for it. So it's like a bus on demand, quite convenient!
Chill Out Bus on Bonaire.
Hitchhiking is no problem on Bonaire, as soon as you walk along the road you are often spontaneously offered a lift.
In 2012 several charging stations for electric vehicles were installed on Bonaire. In 2023 the Dutch tour operator TUI has announced plans to install ten additional charging stations on the sunny island. These charging stations will be placed at popular beaches and dive spots such as Sorobon Beach and 1000 Steps Beach.
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From personal experience we can heartily recommend this hotel. This hotel has a great all inclusive. Delicious cocktails at the bar, a barbecue on the beach or another themed dinner, we really enjoyed it. The rooms are spacious, very comfortable and the staff is super friendly. The house reef is a few steps from your room. It's great, while snorkeling we even saw a turtle there! We will definitely be back. More info & Book now!
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