Dive Bonaire

Dive Adventures in Bonaire

In an earlier post we posted a list of several exciting dive spots we explored and since then we have had the pleasure of visiting a few more that are worthy of sharing:

  • Small Wall” is a site we had been to a few times, but Jane on Cheetah II had spotted a sea horse that we wanted to meet.  Jane expertly navigated us to the soft coral and even after pointing several times, I still had a hard time finding the little guy.  But, Matt was able to point him out, get a few great shots and even a video of him moving from one branch to another.  The photo below is him in motion moving from the lower branch to the upper branch where he is easier to spot. This is a male sea horse and he is pregnant.  We watched and admired him for close to 15 minutes before tearing ourselves away.  This is absolutely the coolest thing I have seen in my entire life – such a beautiful, delicate, creature and yet so majestic!
Sea horse, male, pregnant

Sea horse floating at Small Wall

  • Salt Pieris a spectacular dive that you can only access when there are no boats on the large pier (cruise ships, cargo, fuel or otherwise).  This is such a special dive site that we will dedicate an entire post on it in a few weeks.
Salt Pier

Salt Pier dive site. Cruising around and exploring.

    • We visited a dive site with no name by car which was recommended by a local diving instructor – which meant a shore dive.  It was located on the north point of the island.  I’m not a fan of shore dives and this one had a dead coral beach, challenging entry around reefs, and a current.  But once you got past the entry, the dive was really pretty with a lot of unusual and large coral formations.
    • Barcaderawas a random pick with our friends on Ad Astra.  We did not know what to expect and it turned out to be surprisingly amazing.  The topography was varied with a splendid array of soft and hard coral forming these majestic mushroom cap hills across the sea floor.  We spotted several lion fish, a couple of huge lobsters and many other beautiful fish.
Beautiful variety of soft coral.

Beautiful variety of soft coral.

  • Sampleris so appropriately named as it has a sample of a large variety of hard and soft coral.  It was a beautiful display of colors and shapes across the seascape.  We discovered a Spiny Box Puffer (also known as a Web Burrfish) which we had never seen before.  He is so amazing cute that I wanted to touch him – but alas we just admired from afar.
Dive discovery of spiny box puffer

Photo courtesy of RockNCritters.com

Spiny Box Fish

Spiny Box Fish blends in with the coral

Spiny Box Puffer

Spiny Box Puffer (Web Burrfish) trying to get away from our camera.

  • Wayaka IIis in the National Park and Matt and I had the pleasure of snorkeling it during Wayne’s visit in June.  We had such an amazing time that we decided to dive it with Ad Astra.  We arrived by car, had a fairly easy shore entry, but a fairly long swim to the mooring.  As we were trying to descend, I realized I forgot my weights so Matt and I had to swim back to get them, against the current.  It was incredibly hard and tiring so by the time we returned to the mooring I was very fatigued.  Unfortunately, the dive site was not all that we had hoped.  The prettiest fish and corals are close to shore at snorkeling level and the dive area is littered with dead coral covered in red algae.
  • Alice in Wonderlandis a double reef dive site which was a bit murky when we arrived, but still exquisite. A beautiful variety of friendly fish willing to swim and play with you.
  • Red Slave”  This dive site is on the southern most tip of Bonaire. It is more of an advanced dive due to its proximity to the point and strong currents.  We had a fairly large group with us (same group from Vista Blue) but we were jumping in late morning so it was pretty clear.  The current was really strong which we noticed the minute we jumped in water.  We swam against the current to start out which was challenging and even though it was a pretty dive site with some big lobsters, it was hard to enjoy while you are fighting the current.  We overshot the boat, but were able to swim back (most of us at least).  We did have to “rescue” three people who tired fighting the current.
  • Vista Blue we did this dive a few weeks ago as a shore dive which was very challenging for me, but this time we came back on the big boat with Ad Astra.  We were with a pretty large group and did not hop in the water in until late in the afternoon so it was not as clear as it was the last time, but it was still amazingly beautiful with a huge variety of soft and hard corals.  This site is absolutely one of my favorite dive spots!

Favorite Things

  • Flowing fauna
  • Fish
  • Diving with Matt

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