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Dive Review of Buddy Dive Resort/SunRental Ocean Front Apartments in
Bonaire

Buddy Dive Resort/SunRental Ocean Front Apartments, Jan, 2014,

by Henry O Ziller, CO, US (Top Contributor Top Contributor 31 reports with 14 Helpful votes). Report 7522.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity 4 stars
Dive Operation N/A Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 3 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 3 stars
Comments Bonaire is quite nice, a rather small island, easy to get around and not any more expensive than most other Caribbean islands. We did all shore diving and found it takes a little more effort than expected. There is surge, rolling rocks underfoot, and slippery surfaces. Most of our group of four fell at least once, and two in our group have been here several times.

United Airlines has one stop flights from Denver, CO that makes getting here easy at a reasonable cost, arriving at 7:52 PM Atlantic time.

SunRentals Ocean Front Apartments are close to downtown Kralendijk and many restaurants. The apartments are all privately owned and can be rented from nightly to monthly. Our cost for for 7 nights in a one bedroom one bath unit with kitchen and living room was %1132.00. USD. The kitchen had most everything you would need except an oven. Ceiling fans were in the living room and bedroom, with A/C in the bedroom only. There is a strong breeze continuously going through the unit id you leave the front and back doors open. But of course you need to close the front door at night since there are no bars on it. The back door and bedrom has bars so you could leave those open to keep the breeze going but make sure everything of value is away from them out of reach. This island has a lot of theft.

There are no screens on the windows or doors so mosquitoes were a significant problem during out stay. We used 30% and 100% deet to keep them at bay. One nice restaurant actually handed us a spray can of Off during dinner because of the mosquitoes. When we were at the airport leaving we noticed many arms and legs were bitten pretty bad. In all our travels this was the worst mosquito problem encountered and this is a desert island!

Buddy’s Dive has a satellite shop on site of the 12 unit apartment complex. They provide tanks, weights, some items for sale and provide rental equipment and training/lessons. It has a small rinse tank and hangers for wet suits and BCs plus an outdoor shower where you can really rinse your gear without fear of contamination from other gear. You can receive the marine park tag from them too although we had to go to Buddy’s main shop to get ours because a new supply tags had not arrived. We thought we were arranging for a night dive at the town pier, but when it came time to go we were told they can’t do that and they were taking us to the salt pier. Evidently the town pier is closed to diving. If it were not for the tarpon following us throughout the dive and the two octopi the dive would have been a bust.

The diving is mostly along the west coast from the northern tip to the southern tip and most are marked. There are also many sites around the entire island of Kleine Bonaire located a mile or so west of Bonaire’s west coast. There is a water taxi to take you to Kleine, or dive shops will take you there for boat dives off that island. We did not go there. Most of the dive sites are very similar with gently sloping terrain to steeper slopes. We saw mostly typical Caribbean reef fish along with some turtles (7), barracuda, squid, octopus, scorpion fish, swimming eels (green , spotted, and sharp tail), and tarpon. At 1,000 steps (actually 66) we saw massive numbers of jellyfish. I was surprised to see only a few lionfish given their numbers in other parts of the Caribbean.

Our friends who were staying for two more weeks rented the truck, a brand new four door Toyota that had a permanent sign on the dash board that said to leave the truck unlocked and windows open while diving, but lock the vehicle while parking in town. We never had anything stolen but never left anything of value in the truck while diving.

Some noteworthy items: There is a donkey preserve - we didn't go but the donkeys do roam freely and we were able to see our share. Flamingoes were abundant and worth stopping for a few photos. Scattered around the island on the coasts are areas with small buildings that once housed slaves on their way to destinations around the world.

For a full day self- tour: There is the Cadushy Distillery making several liqueurs that is worth a visit. You can taste all they make; they also make rum, vodka, and scotch. Friendly staff, the owners are on site and openly engage in conversation. wwwDOTcadushyDOTcom. This stop can be done with a tour of the national park in Rincon north portion of the island. You can also dive in the park. There is a restaurant in the park but was not open during our trip. It might be best to ask when entering so you’ll know to make another plan. We enjoyed a very good lunch at Rose Restaurant a typical local restaurant in Rincon.

Overall, we had an enjoyable week but Bonaire is not at the top of our list of places to return. We believe that the security issues are a concern and the government needs to do something about it if they want Bonaire to be a dive destination.
Websites Buddy Dive Resort   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Mexico, Belize, Florida, Honduras, Caymans, Curacao, Dominica, Pohnpei, Palau, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Tanzania, St Kitts, Tobago, Bahamas, Hawaii
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy, rainy, dry Seas calm, choppy, surge, no currents
Water Temp 77-78°F / 25-26°C Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 50-60 Ft/ 15-18 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Shore diving, no restrictions
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 4 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 N/A Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities 4 stars
UW Photo Comments [None]
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Subscriber's Comments

By john parsonsin KS, US at Mar 04, 2014 20:38 EST  
In the ten years since we were last there I have only read that little or no effort is made to curtail the crime. It''so all up to the visitor to secure any property you wish to retain. Too bad as it's great diving but there are other places fo us!
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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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