General Info, Travel Info, & FAQs are provided to assist with your vacation.
FAQs What is the population? The population of Bonaire is approximately 12,000.
How big is the country/island? Bonaire is 24 miles long and seven miles at its widest point, for a total of about 112 sq miles. The island of Klein Bonaire is 1,500 acres.
Can I drink the tap water? You can drink the tap water, which is desalinated salt water. Bottled water is also readily available.
What are the best things to buy here? Watches, jewellery, gemstones, wood and leather items, Dutch cheese, Cuban cigars, ceramics, liquors and fine china are all reasonably priced, usually 25-50% less than in North America.
Local souvenirs include paintings, prints, jewellery, painted fish, ceramic tiles and island dolls.
Are there nude beaches? Sorobon Beach Resort (tel 599/717-8080) is the only place where you can sunbathe nude or topless.
What are the main industries? Bonaire's main industries are tourism, salt harvesting, clothes manufacturing, construction and petroleum transshipment.
What is the drinking/gambling age? The legal drinking age is 18 and the legal gambling age is 21.
What native dishes should I try? Local dishes include iguana soup (sopi di yuana), fish soup (sopi piska), goat stew (stoba di kabritu), seafood stew (zarzuela), goat brains and liver (kabes ku higra), kingfish (mula), sea bass (mero) and king dolphin (dradu). Many dishes are served with rice, potatoes and polenta/corn meal (funchi). Other side dishes include fried plantains (banana hasa) and rice and beans (morro). For dessert try baked custard with caramel sauce (quesilla).
Can I use my calling card from here? AT&T: Service is available at select hotels and ports of entry using AT&T Calling Cards, AT&T Corporate Cards, American Express, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard and Visa. Dial 001-800-872-2881 + area code + local number and follow the voice prompts.
BT: no service available
Canada Direct: no service available
MinutePass Plus: Service is available at hotels, pay phones and ports of entry. Dial 001-800-888-8000.
Sprint: Dial 001-800-745-1111 from Bonaire or Curaçao only. Dial 1-800-877-8000 from all destinations in the Netherland Antilles. Service may not be available from some phones/pay phones, although service is available in that area. Some phones may require coins or a phone card. Calls can only be made to Canada and the US (including Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, US Virgin Islands, Guam, and Saipan/Mariana Islands).
For more information see the section in General Info: Telecommunications.
How should I dress to go out? Dress is casual. Still, you shouldn't wear bathing suits downtown. In the evening, casual and dressy casual is suitable.
Can I use my hair dryer and electric shaver? Electricity is 127 AC, 50 Hz, which is different from North American and European standards, although North American appliances will work, just hotter. Many buildings have European-standard and North American-standard outlets, but it's not always clear what voltage they are so it's best to ask first, or you risk burning out your appliance. Most hotels rent adaptors. Power surges and brownouts are common, so use a surge protector with sensitive electronics.
How much should I tip? Tip about 15%. Some hotels and restaurants automatically add a 10-15% surcharge to the bill so check first as it is not necessary to leave more. Tip taxi drivers and dive shop service providers 10% and bellhops $1 per bag.
Information is provided as a service to visitors and is updated regularly. All information should be verified prior to travel.