So is Bonaire great? Or not??

Old Aug 26th, 2016, 05:43 PM
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So is Bonaire great? Or not??

I have had Bonaire at the top of my list for years thinking that it offers the best in shore snorkeling. Recently thinking the time may be right to actually go, I've been reading trip reports and have found several negative posts.
I really really don't want to invest the time and money to get there and be disappointed. Our vacation dollars are precious and it's a long trip with horrible flights. Is it worth it??
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Old Aug 27th, 2016, 03:49 AM
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I went on a cruise stop a few weeks ago so cannot speak to hotels, etc. I can say that in 20 years of going around the Caribbean, the snorkeling around Klein Bonaire was the best I've seen in terms of water clarity, health of the coral, and fish/turtles. We went with Woodwind excursions, and they were fantastic and relatively cheap.
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Old Aug 27th, 2016, 04:29 AM
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I have not been but if snorkeling is at the top of your to do list and is a top priority do constantly then I would choose Bonaire but it is primarily for scuba diving. I think it would be a bit too sleepy for me not a lot to do there is what I have heard. There are way too many other island to choose from that seem more interesting. Have you considered Turks and Caicos? Or grand Cayman? I think they are good for snorkeling.
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Old Aug 27th, 2016, 07:51 AM
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Great shore snorkeling is the top priority.
We have been to Grand Cayman and St John and and enjoyed the snorkeling at both as well as Vieques and Bahamas which were great destinations but not great snorkeling. Looking now for the next "best" snorkeling island.
From what I understand Turks has only one great shore snorkeling area right in front of the hotel row? I always consider Cozumel but never end up choosing it, and always consider Belize which is recommended for great snorkeling, but not from shore. Does Belize beat Bonaire? Is the boat worth it? Maybe I should consider that? I'll post that question.
Appreciate ideas. Thanks.
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Old Aug 27th, 2016, 08:07 AM
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I'm wondering what sort of negative posts there have been about snorkelling in Bonaire. We went a few years ago and thoroughly enjoyed the island, I would not call it sleepy. There is quite a choice of restaurants for a small island, we saw a wild boar in the Washington-Slagbaai National Park and really enjoyed driving thru this scenic area (4x4 required), the slave huts and salt pier are interesting to see, the donkey sanctuary and the ones roaming around wild.
The scuba diving was really good, snorkelling from the shore was easy in many places. There are no beaches however you can swim in places where it is easy to access from rocks, the water was beautiful. I'm not looking for the *best* though, it is difficult to get anything better than Grand Cayman. Cozumel was another island where snorkelling and scuba were great, we considered T&C and decided that would not have enough to keep us occupied for a week, we will visit one day nonetheless and next year we are scuba diving on Saba which we are very much looking forward to.
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Old Aug 27th, 2016, 08:12 AM
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re: tdelano Turks and Caicos has a lot of great options. WIth the ocean dropping 5k feet within a few miles of shore, the water is about as clear as it gets. There are a couple good places to shore snorkel, however hoping on a group boat for a few extra dollars to explore the great areas of the surrounding reefs is something I highly recommend!
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Old Aug 27th, 2016, 11:53 PM
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Virgin Gorda has phenomenal shore snorkeling! Curacao does as well if Bonaire is too slow for your tastes.

Peace, Greenie
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Old Aug 29th, 2016, 09:23 AM
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If you are after great shore snorkeling, you might want to take a look at Roatan. I have been chasing the best shore snorkeling spots as well....been to Grand Cayman, St John, Belize, Riviera Maya (Akumal), and many others. I have heard Bonaire is excellent, but the beaches are lacking which I love as well. I have had my sights set on Roatan as my next trip....check it out if you want killer reefs.
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