The most bizarre part about Bonaire is how deserted so much of it is; a narrow paved road that rings the perimeter seems to lead to nowhere across the flat, barren landscape. And the South Shore of Bonaire is perhaps the most diverse part of all.
Vast regions on both the north and south side of the isle lay wide open spaces, uninhabited.
Uninhabited, I should say, save the errant surfers dotting the coastline.
The nice thing about such a chill island with space to spare is that every surfer, diver and the like can find his own unclaimed stretch of sand and ocean.
Tourists visiting the island tend to focus their energy on Kralendijk; they’re not to be found way out here on the South Shore of Bonaire. Though distance and time-wise, “out here” isn’t even that far out really. The island is barely more than 100 square miles, after all. Though it still feels a million miles away from civilization at times.
Salt mounds form the further-most boundary and turn the bay water a deep murky salmon hue.
I ran out in front of the snow-white pyramids and attempted a jumping shot (naturally), but alas, I sunk right into the mud before I could even rise an inch above the ground; it proved a futile attempt. Instead, I took pictures of my friend Tak taking pictures of the pinkish water flanking the South Shore.
There wasn’t a whole lot to stop and explore on our leisurely drive around the South Shore, which made it all that much more appealing to me. Though we did stumble upon small, dilapidated (former) slave huts in two clusters a mile or so apart—huts that would barely house a Hobbit, let alone a full-grown human it should be noted.
A lighthouse served as the South Shore’s sole sign of life. Something about lighthouses is just so enchanting, wouldn’t you agree? It’s why I find New England so darn attractive—lighthouses, lighthouses, all around!
I found my happy place on Bonaire. Strike that: Give me sun, a balmy ocean breeze and pure isolation, and I can find my happy place anywhere.
What’s your happy place—geographically or metaphorically speaking?
For more Bonaire travel tips, start here:
- Taking the Plunge: Becoming an Advanced Diver in Bonaire
- Island Living: 16 Reasons Bonaire Rocks
- Going on an Island Tour of Bonaire by Twizy
- #Bonaire247: Shore Diving, Yoga & Food Trucks
- Getting Schooled at Bonaire’s Salt Pier
- Going Underground: Caving in Bonaire
- A Dive on the Wild Side: Bonaire’s East Coast
It looks like maybe the bay should be called “The Red Sea”!
oh my gosh, what an incredibly beautiful place. alas on the jumping shot!!! i look forward to those, 🙂
Great photos. Crazy, so much underwater wildlife on Bonaire, but topside it’s a big desert. Have a great weekend! Cheers!
What a lovely shot of you!!! My happy place is anywhere where there is a beach and mojitos. 🙂
The red in the ocean is most likely caused by millions of sea-monkeys (aka, brine shrimp.)
I love all the shades of blues. Too bad about the jump, I always like those shots. You are one heck of a jumper girl.
My special place is sunshine, mountains, trees, water, and the desert.
Totally not what I imagined Bonaire to look like in my head. Anywhere it’s warm is my happy place. If it’s cold, I’m generally not happy (unless I’m engaged in some sort of activity that absolutely requires cold weather).
More great photos. Totally not what Bonaire looks like in my head 🙂 As far as my happy place, years ago, I told my travel agent that I wanted to go where the water was the same color as the sky and she sent me to the British Virgin Islands. I took a Moorings cruise (moorings.com) and it was fantastic. I am not sure if it was the location or the pampered care I got on the sailboat, but the combination of the two made the experience completely amazing…
I love how the sun just seems to be pouring on your face. I think that’s how I’d describe my happy place!
What a fascinating landscape.
We used to have more salt flats around here (The Morton Salt company had a big mountain of salt and red flats (the salt content is what makes the water red) right on the Newark side of the San Mateo Bridge. There are a few left on the Newark end of the Dumbarton Bridge. Totally ugly though – nothing like the vacation spot you’ve shown here that’s for sure.
Happy Place – anywhere I’m not rushed and able to enjoy my surroundings. Could be in the middle of a city, in the woods, or at the beach. But not the desert – I get anxious in desert surroundings for some odd reason.
So beautiful. Any New England lighthouse visiting in your near future?
Interesting photos, I quite enjoy a bit of isolation either on a beach or in the mountains. One of my happiest places is hiking in Glacier National Park in Montana.
Those sand mounds are gorgeous! Honestly, they look man-made. And that little hut is hilarious. I would have loved a picture of you squatting in the doorway!
My happy place definitely involves warmth. Whether it’s a warm sandy beach, floating on a noodle in my in-law’s lake with a beer, or in bed with my husband under a thick pile of blankets, warmth makes this frigid little monster happy!
My happy place: a spring Sunday in Parque del Buen Retiro in Madrid, listening to Brett Dennen, on a bench where all the cherry blossom trees are. Specific, but guaranteed!
I fell in love with the coastline of Oman…
So… I am ready willing and scared to death to take this financial leap of faith.
Kristen, or anyone, can you tell me if you could or would recommend the Divi Flamingo Beach resort or Plaza Resort Bonaire. Patron reviews are all over the board. :O(