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Bonaire

Main attractions

Group of fish near Klein Bonaire Island
Group of fish near Klein Bonaire Island / Marcel van der Hoek, / CC BY-SA 2.0

Bonaire is a special municipality of Netherlands, located in Caribbean region.

This 53.5 km² large island has dry climate. Most tourists come here for the numerous spectacular dive sites, while above the sea here is not that much to see. The dry land here has some interesting natural landmarks - mainly the impressive flamingo habitats in salt lakes and some petroglyph sites in caves and cliff shelters.

Natural landmarks

Landscape in Washington Slagbaai National Park, Bonaire
Landscape in Washington Slagbaai National Park, Bonaire / Patrick Briggs, / CC BY 2.0
  • Goto Meer - salt lake with large population of flamingos. In January - July in the lake are breeding several hundreds of these birds.
  • Lac Bay mangrove forest - one of the best preserved mangrove forests in the Caribbean. Four species of mangroves grow here.
  • Pekelmeer - salt flat with colourful lakes - habitat of flamingos and numerous other birds.
  • Suplado Blowhole - spectacular blowhole at the northern coast.

Archaeological heritage

  • Cueba di Roshikiri - cave with petroglyphs at the entrance.
  • Grita Caabai petroglyph site - a group of some 15 prehistoric paintings - red handprints - in a rockshelter.
  • Onima cave - a former shelter to Caiquetio people around 1500 AD. Adorned with red petroglyphs. Petroglyphs are protected with iron bars.
  • Spelonk petroglyph site - a cave with prehistoric petroglyphs on the ceiling.
  • Pos Calbas petroglyph site - a group of prehistoric drawings in a low cave. Some 15 drawings - geometric designs in red have been preserved.
  • Petroglyph site north west from Playa Druifi - a rock shelter with some 10 prehistoric drawings - geometric designs in red and brown colors.

Architectural heritage

Cabaje - stone huts for the slaves in Bonaire
Cabaje - stone huts for the slaves / Made Underground, / CC BY 2.0
  • Cabaje - a group of waist-high stone huts with no doors and windows - some of the oldest buildings on the island. Built around 1820 for slaves which were working in salt flats. In each hut lived two people.
  • Fort Oranje - built in 1639 and modified at the end of this same century.
  • Government Building (Governor's House) - one of the oldest buildings in the island, built in 1837, renovated in 1973.
  • Karpata aloe oven - an old structure, where aloe was boiled to extract its juice for export.
  • Museo Boneriano - museum in historical building. Contains collections of shells, prehistoric artefacts, mythological stories and other interesting items.

List of described attractions

ArrowGoto Meer (Goto Lake)Ecosystems

Map of Bonaire

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