Bonaire Travel Guide
Bonaire, a quiet, sun-drenched island in the south Caribbean and one of the ABC Islands, is a huge draw for eco-tourists, divers and snorkelers, for it has dollops of offerings for all three. It is not the smallest nor the largest of the ABC Islands, but certainly the least developed and most sparsely populated, noted for its astonishing underwater world and its natural, albeit arid, beauty. There are myriad assorted fauna and bird life on the island, including pink flamingoes and some 190 other species of birds nesting and breeding here, while virtually all of the northwest end of the island – some 13,500 acres – is national park, and the entire Bonaire coastline, together with the surrounding waters for 12 miles out to sea, is a protected marine reserve, giving marine life enthusiasts, naturalists and eco-tourists a great deal to cheer about.
Bonaire is located 50 miles (80 km) from the coast of Venezuela, to the west of both Aruba and Curacao, with Klein Bonaire, a tiny spit of land, just a half-mile off its western coast. The island comprises a land mass of about 112 square miles – 24 miles long and 7 miles at its widest point.
Bonaire's principal draws are Kralendijk, the capital and only sizeable town on the island, peppered with colorful little shops, outdoor restaurants, a market or two, and an historic fort, Oranje; Lac Bay, which is a popular windsurfing spot; Washington-Siagbaai National Park, which has abundant hiking possibilities; the entire marine preserve with its wealth of marine life; and the coral-strewn beaches of the island.
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