Travelogue Vacation Bonaire 2023 (2/4)

Day 3: Cycling on Bonaire

We had previously experienced how enjoyable it is to cycle on Bonaire. In Kralendijk there is a bit more traffic, making it busier. But as soon as you leave the capital, it quickly becomes more quiet. We rented bikes at the resort as they offer bike rentals. And after proper preparation – taking enough water and snacks for the trip, applying sunscreen, and with our cameras – our journey began. Our plan was to cycle from Kralendijk to Sorobon Beach, one of my favorite routes on Bonaire.

Cycling at BonaireCycling from Kralendijk to Sorobon Beach we passed by the Willemstoren (Willem Tower) along the way.

Tip! Cycling on Bonaire is fantastic! You experience the island in a much more intense way and see so much more. Cycling is not very common on the island and it can be busy in and around Kralendijk, so you need to be careful. However, outside of Kralendijk it's peaceful and you can fully enjoy the impressive surroundings on your bike. If you start feeling hot while cycling take a dip in the sea to cool off. Make sure to bring plenty of drinks. If you want to secure a bike consider renting a bike online at Viator.

Pelicans steal the show

We quickly left Kralendijk behind us. At Playa Palu di Mangel (Donkey Beach) we made our first stop. It was quiet with only a few snorkelers around. The white sand almost hurt our eyes when we took off your sunglasses and it contrasted beautifully with the crystal-clear blue water. Six pelicans floated on the water, taking turns diving headfirst to devour a delicious fish. It was a stunning sight. From the water they were taking off, gaining altitude, and then dive straight down into the water for their meal. After a successful dive you could see the unlucky fish being swallowed through their pouch. It was an unlucky day for the fish but highly entertaining for us to watch.

Pelikanen op BonaireWe spotted these pelicans at Donkey Beach.

So beautiful... salt pans

Since our destination was Sorobon Beach and we still had some distance to cover we continued our bike ride. Cycling along the coast, in my opinion, is experiencing the best of Bonaire. Soon we reached the salt pans, which for me, is also one of the most stunning locations on the island. In moments like these I can't contain my happiness. When you look to the right you see the various shades of blue water from the ocean. And when you look to the left you see the pink-colored water in the salt pans, an unbelievably beautiful contrast. Cycling there, wow, I couldn't ask for more; it's just so breathtaking!

Zeeschildpad Bonaire

South Island Tour and Snorkel Combo

If you prefer not to cycle on Bonaire but still want to explore the beautiful south side of the island then this South Island Tour is ideal for you. You will get to see all the highlights that we experienced such as the salt pans and the slave huts. During the tour you will also have the opportunity to cool off while snorkeling, as snorkeling equipment will be provided. And who knows, you might even spot beautiful flamingos and a sea turtle on this day!
More info & book!

Salt pans at BonaireThe purple colors and the white salt mountains create a beautiful contrast.

Are we going to see flamingos?

During our previous visits to Bonaire we had always seen flamingos along this route. And of course, we hoped to see these graceful birds again this time. However they are wild animals and do not exhibit themselves on request, so it remained exciting for us whether they would be there this time as well. But even if this were not the case this bike ride would still be successful for us. The unique landscape of Bonaire is perhaps at its most beautiful here and although it was hot, there was a pleasant breeze, and we enjoyed every minute of it.

And there it was. After a while we spotted a flamingo. Even one with her young, so adorable! Naturally I grabbed my camera to capture the mother and chick, what a beautiful pair! Even if we didn't see any more flamingos we already had the first photos and we were happy. But we were in luck. As we continued our way we soon saw two more flamingos. Once again we got off our bikes; this is not something we see every day and it always remains extraordinary to see these pink-colored creatures.

We passed by the various obelisks and slave huts and after that the lighthouse. By now the temperature had risen considerably and we started running out of our water bottles. While the surroundings we were cycling through were at their finest, our energy levels were gradually diminishing. We began looking forward to our end goal: an ice-cold drink at the beach bar near Sorobon.

Flamingos at BonaireWe had never seen so many flamingos gathered together before on Bonaire.

As we were panting through the last kilometers of our bike ride, the highlight of our day awaited us. A large group of flamingos stood in the shallow water, foraging and preening themselves. The pink hue beautifully contrasted with the light blue water; I had never seen so many of them gathered together before. Occasionally they looked up and stretched, as if they also wanted to get a good look at us. When they cleaned themselves they spread their wings and we could see their black feathers too. They truly are stunningly beautiful creatures and our day couldn't have been any better.

Finally, a drink!

Cycling the last kilometers to Sorobon Beach, we were still savoring the memories of what we had seen. We gladly accepted the lukewarm drink served at the beach bar, knowing that we had already experienced the highlight of our day and felt truly blessed. The drink didn't change that. Besides, our view of the sea and windsurfers was also fantastic. We were tired. But oh boy, we felt so fulfilled. On the way back we cycled across the island and the last stretch took us through Kralendijk until we reached Chogogo Beach Resort again.

Windsurfing at Sorobon Beach at BonairePerhaps Sorobon Beach is the most beautiful location in the world for windsurfing.

Day 4: Snorkeling

The very first time we visited Bonaire I was so impressed by the underwater world here that I often dreamed about it back home in the Netherlands. So you can imagine how much I was looking forward to snorkeling again. Since we had an active day yesterday, we decided to take it easy today and snorkel at the house reef of Chogogo Beach Resort. Of course we had our snorkeling gear with us and we only had to walk a few meters before entering the sea. While at some locations on Bonaire it can be a bit challenging to walk into the sea due to rocks or coral, here at the resort it was quite easy.

Zeeschildpad Bonaire

Snorkeling Excursion

Are you going on vacation to Bonaire? You'll regret it if you don't go snorkeling at least once, it's so beautiful! For instance during this tour. You'll sail to two stunning snorkeling spots. Snorkeling gear is included in the price, as well as unlimited soft drinks and juices. Snacks are also provided on board, it's all-inclusive. The group size is limited to a maximum of ten people and if you prefer you can be picked up at your accommodation. A guide will accompany you and Captain Daniel will sail you across the magnificent ocean to the snorkeling locations. The tour lasts approximately 3.5 hours.
More info & book

Tip! When you go into the water for snorkeling or swimming, be careful of sea urchins. These sea urchins are located on the seabed, and stepping on them can be very painful. It's best to wear water shoes when entering the sea.

These tropical fish are beautiful...

The water wasn't cold and we saw the colorful fish swimming again. The stunning blue parrotfish, the elongated trumpetfish, fish with blue and yellow stripes; it was delightful to see the underwater world of Bonaire again. We swam a few tens of meters to the right where some concrete protruded from the water. From the surface, it didn't seem very remarkable. but underwater there was a lot of coral attached to the concrete; it had apparently been there for a long time. The coral was attractive to many fish. It was teeming with them, each one more beautiful than the other, as if they had all specially dressed in their finest clothes. The bright sunlight had a fairytale effect on the coral and its inhabitants, making the colors even more vibrant. And at times it seemed like the fish were emitting light. Snorkeling was absolutely fantastic and fortunately we had a few more days to explore other snorkeling spots too.

Huisrif Chogogo Beach ResortAt the reef of Chogogo Beach Resort we saw, among other things, stunning coral.

Day 5: 1000 Steps, Gotomeer, and Rincon

Starting today we had a rental car. We rented it from AB CarRental, an organization that has been established on the island for over 35 years. They picked us up from our hotel for free so we didn't have to walk to their office. With a cheerful "Good morning, dushi!" (a term of endearment), the staff member of AB CarRental warmly greeted us. She chatted away and asked if it was our first time on Bonaire. When we replied that it was our fifth time she jokingly said, "Oh, then you're already half Bonairian!" The rental company was not far and we were assisted friendly and promptly. We had opted for a package that had no deductible and the price pleasantly surprised us. It didn't take long before we set off, heading back to the hotel to pick up our belongings.

1000 Steps is still a paradise.

There were three locations on the itinerary: 1000 Steps, Gotomeer, and Rincon. Since we were going out to take photos we left our snorkeling gear at the hotel. We parked the car at 1000 Steps and took all our belongings out of the car. It felt strange not to lock the car when leaving it, but here it's actually the norm. Potential thieves don't need to cause any damage to break in, and once they see there's nothing inside the car, they simply leave without a trace. That saves on repair costs.

1000 Steps BonaireAs far as we're concerned, 1000 Steps is the most beautiful snorkeling spot on the island, and it's also great for diving.

At the sight of 1000 Steps we immediately regretted not bringing our swim gear. It was too beautiful not to take a dip in the water. In previous years, whenever we were here, we had always spotted sea turtles while snorkeling. And with that thought in our minds we felt a bit disappointed sitting on the side. People were snorkeling and a few divers were going in and out of the water – this place is truly one of my favorite snorkeling spots. But we were here for the photos and it's not an option to leave valuable things behind when you go snorkeling. We would definitely come back here, and then without cameras.

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Tip AB Car Rental

Are you going to Bonaire and are you looking for a reliable car rental company? Then AB Car Rental is an excellent partner. Of course with $ 0.00 deductible! Check the rates!

Tip Plaza Resort Bonaire

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!

Are you looking for a hotel or resort at Bonaire? Check out great deals at!

Tip Snorkling Tour Bonaire

Do you want to go snorkelling on Bonaire with a guide? You will see the most beautiful colorful fish and maybe even a sea turtle. Snacks, drinks and snorkeling equipment are included! Book this tour with Viator. Rated with 5.0 / 5.0 stars. More info and reservation

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Do you like to explore Bonaire? Book your favorite tour at Get Your Guide!