ABC-Islands – Bonaire

The pilot to the ABC Islands we used was one of the Gotto Go Cruising Guides; “The ABC Islands” written by D. Waterson & D. van der Reyden (ours was an old edition). Another possibility is using “A guide to the ABC islands” from Frank Virgintino; this is a free download on

Vlag BonaireIn Bonaire anchoring is forbidden at all times. You have to use the little red & white mooring buoys provided by the National Marine Park (NMP). Harbour Village Marina (HVM) collects the fees of $10,=/d (2017+2018) for the NMP. No reservation of a mooring bouy, rule is first come first serve. If non available, you are allowed to use one of the orange diving buoys, but as soon as possible you have to move to an official mooring buoy, go to the marina or sail on to another destination.

When you arrive during the dark hours, it is very difficult to spot the mooring buoys or to manouver to pick-up one. You are allowed to go into the HVM and tie alongside the starboard quay side. (we moored in-between two hugh motoryachts just for the night). Report to the HVM office as soon as its open.
Normal procedure on arrivel is:
• Pick up a mooring buoy (if available)
• Check in at customs & Immigration
• Go to the HVM to pay (in advance) for your moorng buoy for the time you like to stay.01_Zeezwaluw_aan_de_mooring
The water is cristal clear and heaven for divers and snorcklers!

We were in 2017 on mooring buoy 39 depth 4.4m, (see the picture of the mooring field) and 2018 on 22. Both moorings have 2 or 3 concrete blocks (some have sand screws) from each block/screw runs a line to a red-white buoy. Attach your own lines through the eye of each buoy and attach both ends of each line to your ship.Bonaire 2a

The mooring field runs from east of the Harbour Village Marina to Karl’s Beach Bar. In some places is a double line of moorings of which the inner ones are in more shallow waters. In the picture you will find the depth in meters of each buoy. (the stars in a few places mean, reserved for sailboats joining the October Regatta).

We were not able to use/recieve an open WiFi signal but used instead Digicel. A prepaid Sim card and an internet package is very cheap (15Gb/month for US $32) and works fine. Digicel shop is in the main street behind the waterfront behind Karls Beach Bar.
Garbage disposel is opposite Karl’s Beach bar in the green dumpsters or at HVM.

There is NO official dinghy dock but you are allowed to tie up at Karl’s Beach Bar at 5 US dollars as of 2018  (do not tie at flower pots) or in HVM. There has been a duscussion lately (oct 2017) where to tie up in the marina. May 2018 we found out there is now a D-zone for dinghies just opposite  the marina office in the corner near the gate.

To all other information about Bonaire we refer to the Facebook Page Bonaire Cruisers. Once you have joined them, you find in the files section or follow this link to the PDF file with lots of usefull info about Bonaire, like a free shopping bus to the supermarket and so on.

The above info in PDF file