Before the growing green trend shines the spotlight on Bonaire, be one of the few to discover this well-kept eco-friendly island in the Caribbean. Though it's probably the least know of the ABC islands -- Aruba and Curacao being the other two -- Bonaire is certainly not lacking in things to do.
Before You Go: Need-to-know info Entry requirements:
Passport and return ticket Language:
Papiamentu (Bonaire's language), Dutch, English and Spanish Flight time:
7 hours from NYC, 11 hours from LA Getting around:
When To Go: Bonaire at its best Best weather:
Just 12 degrees north of the equator, Bonaire averages 81 degrees year-round with humidity hovering around 76%. The constant tradewinds keep the island on the cooler side during evenings. This destination is also a safe bet during hurricane season (late summer/early fall). Best prices:
Mid-April to mid-December
Why To Go: Eco-friendly island:
Conversation is the main goal on this 24-mile-long destination. The island is surrounded by a natural reef that is protected to 200 feet deep underwater, while above ground the Washington Slagbaai National Park covers 13,500 acres. Here you can hike, cycle, or trek and observe the island's lazy iguanas, various species of birds, and goats in their natural habitat of cacti, caves, and patches of volcanic rock and fossilized coral. Water sports:
Back to the natural reef -- protected since 1979, Bonaire's waters have become a prime destination for those who love to dive and snorkel. Below the surface you'll find the island's native frogfish, along with other amphibians, crustaceans, and sea life. The island's steady tradewinds also makes windsurfing enjoyable year-round. Birdwatching:
While there is about 200 species of birds on the island, the flamingo steals the sunlight as the island's signature avian. At a given time, there can be thousands of flamingos peppering the landscape, most of which are protected with in Bonaire's Flamingo Sanctuary. Also keep your eye out for sea birds, heron, egrets, and parakeets.