Friday, December 29, 2017

Bonaire by land

Most of our joy in Bonaire has been water based, swimming, snorkeling, diving, but there have been some land based activities that we have really enjoyed. We always like to rent a car when on a new island to explore the regions that are not accessible by boat. Shortly after we arrived in Bonaire we shared a car with our boat buddies John and Ziggy from Windancer IV and toured toured the southern 2/3rds of Bonaire,  leaving the northern national park for another day.

The first spot we encountered was the salt ponds and their mighty mounds of salt, next to the very pink ponds. The salt piles are about 100 feet high and extend for approximately half a mile. Need some salt?


The ponds are pink from the brine shrimp, and the brine shrimp are what the flamingoes eat, also giving the flamingos their pink color.



The colors of Bonaire's waters are amazing. Standing by the salt ponds if you look inland you see the pink of the ponds and the white of the salt.

And if you turn around and face the ocean you get the beautiful blues and turquoises.


These two panoramas were taken standing in the same spot.


The southern and eastern coasts of Bonaire are much rougher and less conducive to water activities because they are exposed to the prevailing winds.



Bonaire has a very sophisticated weather monitoring system. 



The animals on Bonaire are interesting. Besides the flamingos you also have the wild donkeys.  Here is John from Windancer IV trying to feed a carrot to a donkey, and Ziggy documenting it. There is a donkey sanctuary where the donkeys  are actually quite eager to be fed, but outside the sanctuary they will not let you get close. 





There are iguanas and lizards of varying sizes and wariness. This iguana lives with several others by the garbage area of the marina. 



Ziggy invited this little guy to join us at lunch.


And this one was found by the beach.


All over Bonaire we see these cactus fences. 





Bonaire is relatively flat. This was a hike up to one of the high points at 180 feet.




Because of the flatness, when the cruise ships are in town you can see them from most points on the island. Here you can see them on the horizon (barely).


In Bonaire they grow their own flip flops. 


All along the shore are yellow painted rocks denoting the dive sites. Drive your car or pickup to the parking area and walk into the water and start diving. Some of the most accessible diving in the world. Most of our diving is done from our dinghy, but we have done a few shore dives.

Windancer IV gave us our very own personalized marker.



And as much as we enjoyed our tour of the land, our true joy in Bonaire has come from the sea.  



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