Cruising in Bonaire


Peregrine at her mooring off Kralendijk
Bonaire--A Small Post for Cruisers
I know I have neglected the sailor part of The Twitching Sailor in favor of the twitching part (birds), so I am going to make a concerted effort to post more for sailors, especially cruisers, from now on.
When we left Grenada, we planned to have two rest stops before arriving in Panamanian waters; the Dutch Antilles islands of Bonaire and Curacao.
When we picked up the mooring off Kralendijk, the main city on the Dutch Antilles island of Bonaire, we figured we’d be off in three days. We are now going on week three.
When Gene went ashore to check in on arrival he ran into a fellow American who told him that the island was an aquarium surrounded by great restaurants. She was wrong. It’s the other way around, great restaurants surrounded by an aquarium. We haven’t eaten at nearly enough places yet, but so far, our favorite is a place off the main drag called The Paris Bistro. Wonderful! The island is basically a big dive resort. Divers, snorkelers, wind surfers and wind kiters come to soak in the sun and play in the pristine waters. Check in was easy and free.
The island is not focused on cruisers and nothing was convenient until we found Hank, owner of the tiny Bonaire Nautico Marina. Anchoring is not allowed anywhere and the mooring we got is not close to trash disposal, water, fuel, laundry or even landing the dink. For $30.00 a week, Hank offers wi-fi to the boat (works sporadically-not Hanks fault—the whole island goes down for days at a time), a place to take trash and a place to tie up the dink. He also sells water at $5.00 per 50 gallons. Hanks fee is well worth the cost, especially when the wifi works. The moorings are $10.50 a day. The laundry was a bit of a pain. Gene had to haul the Santa bag for about three quarters of a mile to the coin op laundry.
I’m sure life would be easier at the Harbor Village marina, about one mile from town. We didn’t stay there because it is too far from town for schlepping groceries, et al.; although showers and electricity would be grand. The marina has diesel, gasoline, propane pickup/delivery and laundry pickup/delivery. The showers are cold water only. The cost of the marina is $33.00 per night. Electricity and water is extra. Water is expensive because the water is basically all RO water.
The beach just north of town.We are having trouble making enough energy to run refrigeration and the computer. If I get on the net, I can be on for hours with bird stuff and news and emails. I pretty much use what is being generated and we often have to turn off the refrigerator at night. We need aother solar panel or something! I wants my computer and ice!!
The grocery store is good. It has a great deli section, but the veggies are hit and miss.
The restaurants are fabulous and reasonably priced. There is a marine hardware (Budget Marine) but it is sparsely stocked.
Coco's is the place for Happy Hour on Thursdays.The people are great and because the island makes most of its money off diving tourists, it is service oriented and helpful.
The weather. This morning at 8:30 the air temperature was 82.3 degrees and the water temp was 82.5.
Rainfall is 22 inches a year.
And the Skies are not Cloudy all Day.
Weather permitting we plan to sail to Curacao next Monday. We’ve heard great stuff about the Spanish Waters anchorage. We’ll write then and let you know what we find.
Fair Winds,
The Peregrinators

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