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Bespoke Journeys Tips for the Ultimate Bonaire Shore Diving Experience

by | May 30, 2024 | Scuba Diving, Travel Agency

Bespoke Journeys tips for the ultimate Bonaire shore diving experience.

Bespoke Journeys insider tips for shore diving.

Bonaire is renowned for its exceptional shore diving experiences and attracts divers from all over the globe. This tiny Dutch Caribbean island has crystal clear waters, minimal currents and an abundance of marine life. With 86 public dive sites and over 60 of them accessible from the shore, it’s no wonder Bonaire is often referred to as the “Shore Diving Capital of the World.” There are dive sites to suit all levels of experience, from beginner to advanced, and best of all, you can dive year-round as the island is located outside the hurricane belt.

Shore diving is an easy way for divers to explore Bonaire’s marine environment without the need for a boat. This keeps diving costs down and gives you the flexibility to dive when you want to, as often as you like. With great year-round diving, you know that a trip is most likely not going to be interrupted by bad weather, and the diving will be fantastic.

Bespoke Journeys, Bonaire’s only on-island dive travel specialists, offers these travel and shore diving tips to help you make the most of your dive vacation.

Bonaire dive travel booking tips

When booking your Bonaire dive adventure, make sure you get advice on the best dive package options for your travel group. There are dive packages available that provide everything you need for a Bonaire shore diving adventure. They can include accommodation, unlimited shore diving, boat dives, dive courses and truck rental.

If you know when you want to come to Bonaire, a top tip is to book early. Availability during peak times is limited. Booking early gives you more accommodation choices.

Shore diving tips

Make the most of your Bonaire dive vacation and ensure a successful shore diving experience with these tips.

1) Pay the STINAPA Nature Fee

All users of Bonaire National Marine Park are required to pay a Nature Fee of $40 per person. This includes entrance into Washington-Slagbaai National Park. The Nature Fee is used by Stichting Nationale Parken Bonaire (STINAPA) to manage the nature parks. You can pay the Nature Fee on the STINAPA website.

2) Know STINAPA’s diving rules and guidelines for Bonaire National Marine Park

Upon arrival, you’re required to do a mandatory orientation dive. When diving, gloves or knee pads are not permitted, as are disposable chemical light sticks and pointers. There is a strict no-touching, moving, or grasping marine life rule.

You can read the full list of rules and regulations on the STINAPA website.

3) Know your dive skills and choose the right dive site

There are over 60 marked dive sites along Bonaire’s West Coast. InfoBonaire has a dive site map with information about each dive site. This information includes what to expect at each site and the dive experience required. All diving along the East Coast is for advanced divers only, and STINAPA recommends using an experienced guide.

1000 Steps is one of the many dive sites from shore on Bonaire.
Be aware of STINAPA’s rules about what dive sites are available for diving. There are some dive sites temporarily closed due to Stony Coral Tissue Loss Disease (SCTLD).

4) Use appropriate gear for shore diving

You will want to wear thick-soled dive boots to protect your feet from bits of coral and rocks at entry points.

5) Local knowledge and experience

We recommend that divers who have not done shore diving before schedule a couple of tank dives with a local dive instructor. They can assist with entry and exit best practices. You’ll then be able to dive confidently on your own or continue using the dive instructor if you want to take advantage of their local knowledge and Bonaire dive experience.

Shore diving on Bonaire allows you the freedom of a schedule free vacation.

6) Get involved in Bonaire’s reef renewal efforts

While on Bonaire, you have the chance to get involved in reef restoration with Reef Renewal Foundation Bonaire. There are a number of ways you can help out, including a half-day coral restoration dive experience where you can learn about Bonaire reefs and key coral restoration techniques.

Contact Bespoke Journeys to plan your ultimate vacation.

Get started on your Bonaire dive trip with Bespoke Journeys. They are happy to help answer your dive travel questions and organize all your travel requirements, including flights, accommodation, diving and truck rental. Get your Bonaire adventure underway today.


(Source: Bespoke Journeys)

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Tanya Deen has been living in Bonaire since December 2016. She is a PADI Master Scuba Diver Instructor and enjoys underwater and bird photography. Tanya is the Editor-in-Chief of the Bonaire Insider tourism news blog.
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