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Dive Review of Bonaire Dive & Adventure/Den Laman Condominiums in
Bonaire

Bonaire Dive & Adventure/Den Laman Condominiums, Aug, 2007,

by Helen Brown, MN, USA (Reviewer Reviewer 4 reports). Report 4398.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Cayman Islands, Hawaii, Fiji, Florida Keys, Honduras, Belize, Australia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Thailand
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy, rainy Seas calm
Water Temp 84 to 84 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 50 to 70 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Briefing and checkout dive required, one hour limit on boat dives. On your own for shore dives.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins Schools Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 3 stars Large Fish N/A
Large Pelagics N/A

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 2 stars
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities 4 stars
UW Photo Comments No rinse tank on boats, but a separate one at the entry/exit for diving the house reef (Bari Reef).

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 4 stars Food 3 stars
Service and Attitude 3 stars Environmental Sensitivity 5 stars
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving 5 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments Flights on American/American Eagle from Minneapolis were painless. No luggage issues. However, we understand that AA has changed their scheduling and it may be more difficult now.
Truck rental folks met us at airport and were kind enough to escort us to Den Laman condos, as it was late (9:00P). Desk personnel met us and escorted us to our room, with check in the next morning. Dive briefing was thorough and although they said a self-guided on the house reef was mandatory, there was no follow-through to see if you actually did it.
Our package included 6 days unlimited shore diving, 6 1-tank boat dives, and free nitrox. It was not well explained in advance that the clock starts running on your first dive day. You have to use all six boat dives and your allocation of shore dives within 6 consecutive days once you start diving. Not a problem for those who are there only for one week, but we were there for 10 nights and would like to have a day or two off in the middle of our stay. We were there during Fish ID week and signed up for a course with naturalist Jerry Ligon. Two hours lecture followed by a dive, where he used a slate to name the many species found on the house reef. Excellent!!
The boat dive is pretty much bare bones. No tank racks where you sit, but water was calm enough to set up your tank on the floor, after which you lift your tank to the bench and strap in. Entry by backroll. Good ladder made exit easy. No extra help from crew unless you ask. With a couple of exceptions, divemasters were along mostly to shepherd the flock rather than point out creatures. We made 6 of our 18 dives on the house reef, which was a delight. Lot's of species of fish and totally convenient in every respect.
Checking out tanks could not have been easier. Nitrox tanks must be checked out by 4:30P and either put in a locker, or in your truck. Air tanks available until 9:00ish PM. It's pretty much an honor system. You do your own tests on the nitrox tanks and record the info on a logout sheet.
The four-door pickup truck was perfect for the shore dives and trips to town. Den Laman accommodations were great. Good air conditioning, full kitchen, TV/DVD, quiet, and only steps to the dock.
The dock was under repair during our stay, but it was only a two minute shuttle to the marina where we met the boat.
Plenty to do on shore. We ate in mostly, but enjoyed dinner at Sunset Grill (on site) and at Richards in town. A tour through Washington-Slagbaai National Park was interesting, with varying terrain and many birds, donkeys, goats, flamingos, and other points of interest. Other activities available include kayaking, mountain biking, landsailing, and kiteboarding.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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