Bonaire – October 2013

A group of 5 divers and 3 non divers left London, Heathrow on 15/10/13 for the long flight to Bonaire, a small Dutch island located in the southern section of the Caribbean. After a very long flight which included stops in Amsterdam and Aruba, we finally arrived at Flamingo Airport late in the evening but still on 15/10/13. (the wonders of time zones!).

Our home for the next ten days was the famous Captain Don`s Habitat, founded in 1976 by the renowned underwater environmentalist Captain Don Stewart. The Habitat has been a leader in the field of developing environmentally sound environments and was a remarkable place to stay. The resort is surrounded by lush vegetation and colourful flowers with the accommodation being in two bedroomed bungalows, with a large lounge/kitchen area and a veranda running all around the bungalow. Visitors  as we relaxed outside included iguanas, lizards, parrots and mocking birds, creating a perfect balance between man and nature.

The first day began with a dive briefing and orientation dive on the house reef. The unique style of diving on Bonaire means that each dive group organises, plans and dives its own choice of site without the assistance of any local guide. Following accepted safe dive practices, you just grab a tank and go……….wherever you want! To facilitate access to over 80 dive sites on the island we took delivery of a five seat pick- up truck, somewhat battered, but ideal for the job.

All dive sites are marked by stones painted with the name of the site, some of the most evocative being White Slave Huts, The Invisibles, Thousand Steps and Oil Slick! The daily routine was to select our site, pile all the equipment into the truck and head off around the coast road. Two dives in the morning and one in the afternoon was the usual programme, with night diving available for anyone who needed a bit more exercise! Also included in the trip was the opportunity for a boat dive to Klein (Little) Bonaire. This was an interesting dive through crystal clear waters with the added bonus that the 3 non divers relaxing on board saw a number of flying fish , much to their delight.

As well as this being an exciting dive venue, Bonaire provides plenty for the non- diver. The National Park was a fascinating visit , providing a safe habitat for iguanas ,parrots and parakeets and an important nesting ground for sea turtles .Kralendijk, the capital was very quaint with excellent waterfront restaurants and of course there was bird watching, most especially the exotic flocks of flamingos which was certainly one of the highlights on this truly remarkable trip.

Some of Alan’s photos.

Social media & sharing icons powered by UltimatelySocial