Getting Around Bonaire
The best way to get around Bonaire is by car. Because Bonaire is so small, it's easy to drive the island's entire coastline in just a day. Renting your own set of wheels is also the easiest way to reach most diving spots. If you'd rather leave the island navigation up to drivers more familiar with the road, plan on using Bonaire's fixed-rate taxis. Taxis can easily take you from Bonaire International Airport (BON)—a five-minute drive to Kralendijk—to anywhere on the island. You can also rent a mountain bike if you're planning to spend most of your time within a few miles of your hotel.
There is no ferry service between Bonaire, Curaçao, and Aruba, so any island-hopping must be done by plane. If you're stopping at Bonaire as part of a cruise, note the island's port is located in downtown Kralendijk, meaning top shops and eateries are all within walking distance.
Although the island only measures 112 square miles, it's most easily explored by car. Bonaire's roads are paved and road signs are written in both English and Dutch, but there are no traffic lights anywhere on the island. You will also have to share the road with passing donkeys and goats, so be cautious of wandering animals. During the rainier months (November through January), muddy conditions can make driving difficult, so consider renting a vehicle with all-wheel drive. Rental rates range from $29 to $70, depending on the company and size of the vehicle. You'll find the island's rental companies at the Bonaire International Airport. You can also let someone else do the driving and hire a tour company. Bonaire Tours & Vacations offers trips to Washington Slagbaai National Park in buses and customized trucks. The company also offers fishing charters, kayaking trips and more.
Bonaire lacks public transportation, so taxis offer the quickest means of short-distance travel. Taxis have fixed rates, but be aware that fares increase by as much as 25 percent between 7 p.m. and midnight, and by up to 50 percent between midnight and 6 a.m. Taxis also offer half-day island tours, which cost about $25 per person for up to two passengers.
Though a car allows for more long-distance travel, renting a bike lets you experience Bonaire's coastal vistas in a more intimate way. You can rent a bike on your own at Cycle Bonaire (one of the island's rental shops), or you can take a guided mountain-bike tour and ride along the paths of Washington Slagbaai National Park. Bonaire Tours & Vacations offers three-hour bike excursions; prices vary depending on your chosen route.
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