Bonaire is renowned for being a true diver’s paradise with a wide variety of dive sites to choose from. Whether you are a novice diver wanting to check out some entry level dive sites or an experienced diver wanting to explore the deeper reefs, Bonaire has it all! The island has over 60 dive sites accessible by shore with more than 57 species of soft and stony corals. On our gorgeous reefs, you will find more than 350 recorded fish species. Keep reading and find out more about some of our favorite dive sites.
Bachelor’s Beach is a wonderful dive site for snorkelling and all diving levels, it is also a good location for night diving due to the easy entry, sloping bottom and shallow lying reef. You can enter the site by descending a staircase and a few rocks until you reach a sandy beach and can enter the water. The dive site is marked with a yellow mooring buoy that sits +/-70m from shore and is tied down at 6mwhere the reef starts. You can reach the buoy after a short swim out over a sandy/rubble bottom. Once you have reached the mooring buoy you can choose to swim either north (right) or south (left). The sloping bottom boasts a wide variety of hard and soft coral. South from the mooring buoy you will find the Beyond The Corals’ coral nursery that sits at 5m-8m. This nursery has 5 trees with staghorn and elkhorn fragments attached to them. Please take caution when diving around the trees and note only Reef Renewal divers are allowed to handle the trees with permission.
This site is a top choice for divers and underwater photographers due to its easy shore entry and accessibility. The pier’s pillars serve as the highlight of the dive site with colourful sponges and corals. The volume of fish seeking refuge in the shadows by the pier creates a breathtaking view. Don’t forget to check out the nearby reef, where you may catch a glimpse of an eel, juvenile drumfish, seahorse, or frogfish. Keep an eye out for turtles as they feed in the shallows, especially as you make your way back to shore. This diving site is perfect for both day and night dives, but note that diving is prohibited when boats are present.
Angel City is a wonderful site for divers and snorkelers alike. It is an appealing site for those that are new to diving on the island due to its shallow reef lying close to shore, and relatively easy to navigate. Once you have entered the water, the yellow mooring buoy lies directly in front of you approx. 25m from shore, you can make your way to the mooring and start your descent there. Angel City has a double reef system, the first of which lies quite close to shore, starts at 4.5m and has a gradual decline down to approx. 15m. This double reef is suitable for Open Water divers, as the second reef can be enjoyed within 18m. The sandy patch that divides the two reef systems has a few coral bridges that span the two reefs and can be great navigational references. This reef boasts a wide variety of hard and soft coral, particularly large areas of gorgonian and star corals. There is an abundance of fish here such as angels, parrots, triggers, filefish and schools of grey snappers.
Invisibles is a popular dive site just south of Salt Pier and is the southern-most site of the ‘doublereef’ dives. It is a wonderful site for all divers due to its easy entry, clearly marked mooring buoy and sloping reef. It is approx. 50m swim out to the mooring buoy over a large sandy area, keep an eye out here for palometas, spotted eagle rays, filefish, peacock flounders, jawfish and juvenile reef fish in the shallows. You can find a colony of garden eels around the mooring at 6m just before the first reefstarts, the mooring is also aligned with a sand channel that runs down to the second reef and is a helpful navigational reference. You can navigate north or south at this site, the first reef is a solid reef structure which ends at 20m while the second reef, which starts at 18m and tapers off after 35m, is broken up into several coral islands.
La Dania’s Leap
La Dania’s Leap is a drift dive site suitable for experienced divers due to its tricky entry and exit. It is highly recommended having a trained guide for this dive. Divers enter the water at La Dania’s and, due to there being no exit at this site, drift/swim to the next dive site-Karpata, where they will make their exit. This is a popular way to explore two awe-inspiring dive sites in one dive! La Dania’s Leap is marked by a pile of stacked rocks at the pathway you will follow down to the water. This can be an easy site to miss so make sure to drive slowly and keep an eye out as the road at this point is a one-way and you will not be able to turn around. Once you have found the path you can drop off your dive gear, park your car at Karpata and walk back to La Dania’s (approx. 5 min walk).
Alice in Wonderland
Alice in Wonderland is a popular site for divers and snorkelers alike. The parking area is marked with yellow stones, just before the worn Cargill sign. Once you are in your gear, you can follow a marked path over rocks and rubble down to a small sandy beach where the entry point is. This site is marked with a yellow mooring buoy which lies to the right of the entry, approx. 40m from shore. You can start your descent at the mooring, or in the sandy patch where you can inspect the coral that decorate the area. Alice in Wonderland has a double reef system, the first of which starts at 7m and has a gradual decline down to approx. 22m. The sandy patch, which sits at 24-30m and divides the two reef systems. This reef boasts a wide variety of sponges as well as hard and soft coral. There is a healthy abundance of fish here such as horse-eye jacks, triggerfish, barracuda, and the chance of spotting an eagle ray if you’re lucky! Note that the second reef is much deeper and is only accessible for Advanced open water divers.
The Hilma Hooker is an old freighting ship that was intentionally sunk in September 1984 after a rather infamous history involving sailing without official papers and smuggling illegal substances. The Hilma is an easy site to locate due to having 3 mooring buoys indicating her location-one tied to the bow of the ship, one to the stern and a shallower on found in the reef. She is in good condition despite her nearly 40 years beneath the surface and lies on her starboard side on a sandy channel at the bottom of a sloping reef. This site is recommended for advanced divers as it is a deep dive that reaches 30m on the sandy patch to the south of the wreck. A wide variety of fish call this wreck and the surrounding reef home, most notable are the green moray eels, large number of tarpon that are frequently found surrounding the wreck and little sergeant majors carefully guarding their round blue/purple nests on the wreck itself.