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Thursday, January 29, 2015

China Nobo Offers Late-Night Dining Options for Those Arriving on Evening Flights

Many of the larger jets serving Bonaire from major gateways in either Holland or the United States arrive late in the evening, which can make it difficult for arriving visitors to get a good meal after waiting for luggage, clearing customs and immigration, getting car rentals, and then driving to your lodging.  By the time this is all accomplished, many of Bonaire’s eateries are closed.  China Nobo, however, caters to just these visitors, as they can accept orders for take-out as late as 10:30 PM, with pickup by 10:45 PM.

China Nobo is one of Bonaire’s oldest restaurants that’s been in continuous operation since 1985, when Bonaire’s fledgling tourist industry was just beginning.  The Chan family re-located to Bonaire in 1975 from China, so they can provide the real thing--excellent Chinese food! Serving mostly Cantonese, some Schwezwan meals are on the menu, but anything can be spiced to your exact specifications.  Or, for those on the go at lunchtime, pick up the China Nobo Lunch to Go, for only USD $5.00. Choose from a variety of lunches served with fries, fried rice, or chow mien.  It’s the perfect and economical fuel for your body to get it ready for an afternoon of diving or windsurfing.

So the next time you are arriving on Bonaire late, choose your dinner in advance and call it in upon arrival to 717-8981 and a freshly prepared meal will await you!  For additional information on China Nobo and the Chinese cuisine it offers, visit their web site by clicking here(Source:  China Nobo Bonaire)

Posted by Susan Davis on January 29, 2015 at 3:42pm AST
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Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Sonrisa Boutique Hotel Offers Low Season Explore Bonaire, Windsurf, Yoga, and Dive Specials

Those who make their Bonaire plans far in advance can reap the benefits now, because Sonrisa Boutique Hotel is offering low season packages for windsurfing, yoga, or diving for the months of May, September, October, and November, 2015.  Or choose their Explore Bonaire package, including a free vehicle or scooter rental.

When booking one of the property’s suites for a minimum of seven nights during the months of May, September, October, or November, 2015, visitors are eligible for the Explore Bonaire package with their choice of a car or scooter rental free for five days, including third-party insurance for their stay.  Additionally, discount vouchers are available which provide up to a 15% discount on:

-- Windsurf equipment rental at Bonaire Windsurf Place
-- Dining at Sebastian’s Restaurant
-- Selected items and services at our partner dive shops.

Do note that this special is only available when booking directly with Sonrisa Boutique Hotel.  Explore Bonaire packages start at $125.00 per night, including daily breakfast, but excluding a 12% facility charge or USD $5.45 government room tax.  The rental agreement for car or scooter includes third-party insurance, but the renter may purchase additional insurance coverage if desired.  Other restrictions may apply.

The property has just announced other special packages for these same months, including vacations for windsurfing, windsurfing and yoga, or diving.  For more information, visit their web site by clicking here(Source:  Sonrisa Boutique Hotel)

Posted by Susan Davis on January 27, 2015 at 3:41pm AST
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Friday, January 23, 2015

Lessons From the Last Interglacial--Bonaire Plays an Integral Part In New Coral Study

In a study just published by Nature Communications, an international team of scientists investigated temperature seasonality at the end of the last interglacial, 118,000 years ago. The researchers analyzed fossil corals and were able to reconstruct tropical Atlantic sea-surface temperature variations at a monthly resolution. At the present day these variations play a major role in triggering seasonal climate extremes such as hurricanes, flash floods, and droughts.


MARUM scientists drilling fossil corals which were growing during the last interglacial off Bonaire in the southern Caribbean.
Photo: MARUM University of Bremen

All over the world scientists are making an effort to improve computer-based models in order to more precisely describe future climate scenarios and to better estimate the possible consequences and risks of global climate change. In this context, climate data from the past play an important role as they improve our understanding of climate dynamics in general. Now, an international team of scientists has investigated fossil corals that were drilled on the Caribbean island of Bonaire.

“The waters off Bonaire are part of the Caribbean Current, which transports water from the tropical Atlantic to the Gulf of Mexico. Therefore our climate data represent past temperature conditions in the northern tropical Atlantic Ocean,”

says lead author Thomas Felis, who works at MARUM, the Center for Marine Environmental Sciences, at the University of Bremen in Germany.


Just drilled: two segments of a brain coral core with a diameter of six centimeters each.
Photo: MARUM, University of Bremen

The researchers drilled their samples from the surface layer of a fossil reef terrace, which today is about two meters above sea level.

“During the final stage of the last interglacial, sea level was higher than today,”

says co-author Sander Scheffers from the Marine Ecology Research Centre at Southern Cross University in Lismore, New South Wales.

“Therefore we could easily retrieve our samples from land.”

One of the corals dates back to 118,000 years ago. It grew during the final stage of the last interglacial. The 20-centimeter-long coral core covers a period of 20 years--a climate archive from the past containing sea-surface temperature information at a monthly resolution.

According to the new study, seasonal sea-surface temperatures varied by about 2.6 degrees Celsius back then, only 0.2 degrees less than today. The researchers subsequently performed simulations using a coupled atmosphere-ocean model:

“Our model indicates an orbital control on the amount of insolation (the total amount of solar radiation energy received on a given surface area during a given time) and thus on temperature seasonality in the tropical Atlantic, both at the end of the last interglacial and today,”

says co-author Gerrit Lohmann, a climate modeller at the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research in Bremerhaven, Germany:

”That means that the tilt and the rotation of the Earth’s axis and the shape of the orbit around the sun play a crucial role here.”


Detail of the fossil brain coral Diploria strigos on the coast of Bonaire.
Photo: MARUM University of Bremen

The fact that temperature seasonality in the distant past is not significantly different from the present is rather astonishing. Unlike today, climate conditions back then were characterized by severe turbulence. During the course of the interglacial, polar ice sheets had become unstable and probably collapsed in part. Sea level rapidly rose by several meters. This freshwater inflow probably changed Atlantic Ocean currents; the European climate became extremely dry and distinctly cooler. 

“However, our data show that changes in the Greenland ice sheet or freshwater flowing into the North Atlantic only played a minor role for processes in the tropical Atlantic,”

says Gerrit Lohmann.

“Considering the generally rather turbulent climate back then, temperature seasonality in the northern tropical Atlantic was rather stable,”

sums up Thomas Felis. And, reflecting on future climate changes, he states:

“Studies show that sea-surface temperatures in the tropical Atlantic play a major role in triggering seasonal climate extremes such as hurricanes, flash floods, and droughts. So we should keep a close eye on them.”

For more information on this study, read the full report by clicking here(Source:  Nature Communications and MARUM, The Center for Marine Environmental Sciences)

Posted by Susan Davis on January 23, 2015 at 11:23am AST
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Thursday, January 22, 2015

Enjoy a Sunrise Hike Up the Brandaris in Washington Park on Sunday, January 25th, 2015

STINAPA invites everyone to another great sunrise hike up the Brandaris, Bonaire’s highest point, on Sunday morning, January 25th, 2015. 

There is only space for 20 participants, so secure your spot and register by calling 786-5229 or send an email to washingtonpark@stinapa.org. Registration is required for participation. Children 10 years and up may participate if accompanied by an adult. Put on hiking shoes and bring your own water bottle and a snack. Admittance fee for this walk is $10 per person.  Participants should be at the entrance of the park no later than 5.15 AM on Sunday morning.  Enjoy an authentic Bonaire sunrise!  (Source:  STINAPA)

Posted by Susan Davis on January 22, 2015 at 4:18pm AST
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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

The Annual Bonaire International and Local Fishing Tournament Starts Tomorrow, January 22nd, 2015

There’s always a great time to be had when January rolls around and the annual Bonaire International and Local Fishing Tournament takes place.  This year, the festivities will begin tomorrow, January 22nd, and continue through Saturday, January 24th, 2015.

There’s a lot of fishing, of course, but also food and fun.  Parties are held on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. 

The International portion of the tournament is a Catch and Release Bill Fish tournament. There are great cash prizes for the overall winners, and there are many additional chances to win, such as the first-catch-of-the-day and various challenges throughout the day.  There are valuable prizes for the categories of the largest each of tuna, wahoo, and dorado.

The local fishing tournament is open to boats of all sizes and anyone on Bonaire.  The goal of this event is to recognize the skills of the local fisherman allowing them to compete without taking away their catch. The local fishermen are aiming for fish for consumption rather than bill fish.  This year the boats will be split into two categories: those under 17 feet and those 17 feet and longer.  The local groups will be fishing on Saturday, and they will share cash prizes of $2,000. 

Beginning on the opening night, everyone will be wined and dined throughout the tournament!  At the festival grounds, in the parking area next to It Rains Fishes (which is across the street from the Bonaire Club Nautico pier), there will be a full bar serving cold drinks each evening and into the night.  Spectacular Creole and/or Barbecue Buffets will be prepared and served by the staff of It Rains Fishes.  This is included for the fisherman, but is also available to the public for a small fee.  Don’t miss it!  On stage, there will be a variety of entertainment including some of the most popular DJs and bands on Bonaire.  Each evening there will be slide shows of the days events and results will be posted.

On Saturday, be there to watch the fisherman come in and weigh their catch.  Once the fisherman are back, they will join the fun!  (Source:  Bonaire Fishing Tournaments)

Posted by Susan Davis on January 21, 2015 at 1:25pm AST
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Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Bonaire Welcomes Carnival Cruise Lines With Its Own Type of Karnival

Yesterday was a historic day in cruise tourism for Bonaire, when Carnival Cruise Lines arrived in the Port of Kalendijk for the first time.  The Carnival Liberty arrived mid-day and stayed late in the evening, and all the visitors could enjoy some home-grown Bonaire hospitality enjoying touring and activities throughout the day, and a mini-Karnival at night in Wilhelmina Park.

In the later afternoon, a small Bonaire contingent, made up of dignitaries from the island government and tourism office, went on board.  First everyone was treated to a stroll around the Promenade Deck, while the captain pointed out the various facets of the ship.  One point of interest is that all the ceiling’s glass globes were Murano glass, from Italy, and they shimmered even during the daylight.

The event was commemorated with a ceremony on board the Liberty, when Captain, Leonardo Contarino and Bonaire’s Lt. Governor Edison Rijna exchanged plaques highlighting Carnival’s first port of call.

Then, Lt. Governor Rijna, as a representative of the Crown, made the captain a Friend of Bonaire, by officially “pinning” him.  A Bonaire flag was displayed, and then a short reception was held.


But then it was time to show these first-time visitors to Bonaire exactly how the island can party!  A special event was held last evening in Wilhelmina Park with music and arts & crafts stalls, a brass band, and a taste of a Bonairean Karnival.

It was a magical evening in Kralendijk, and everyone--cruise ship visitors, stay-over visitors, and locals--enjoyed the ambiance!  (Source:  Bonaire Insider Reporter)

Posted by Susan Davis on January 20, 2015 at 12:48pm AST
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Monday, January 19, 2015

Buddy Dive Resort Receives The Highest PADI Classification

Buddy Dive Resort Bonaire is proud to announce that they received the highest PADI Classification given out to dive shops: the PADI Career Development Center Classification. This is the highest classification a dive shop can receive from PADI and is the end result of many years of hard work and devotion from the entire dive crew. Currently there are 101 Career Development Center’s worldwide with nine in the Caribbean, and Buddy Dive Resort Bonaire is the only one in the area.

The award was handed out by Erica Wedepohl (Director of Field Services at PADI) and Nick Buskirk (Regional Sales Manager at PADI) and received by Pepe Mastropaolo (Course Director at Buddy Dive), Augusto Montbrun (Dive Operations Manager at Buddy Dive) and Paul Coolen (General Manager at Buddy Dive).

“Buddy Dive Resort has worked hard to achieve PADI’s CDC level of excellence. The dedication to continuing education and professional level courses shows through in the wonderful instructors that have trained through their program. Training in the resort allows candidates to gain valuable resort operations experiences that make them ready to start their careers in diving anywhere that Buddy Dive helps place them,”

commented Erica Wedepohl, Director of Field Services at PADI.

The PADI Career Development Center (CDC) Classification is awarded to PADI Five Star Instructor Development Centers and Five Star Instructor Development Dive Resorts that dedicate their businesses to professional development for dive instructors. Buddy Dive Resort meets the highest requirements for training PADI Professionals and offers career-oriented programs to prepare scuba diving professionals for employment in the dive industry, as well as job placement assistance for program graduates. (Source:  Buddy Dive Resort)

Posted by Susan Davis on January 19, 2015 at 2:47pm AST
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Thursday, January 15, 2015

Come and Join in Dive Friends Bonaire’s Next Underwater Cleanup, Saturday, January 17th, 2015

Dive Friends Bonaire will once again host their quarterly underwater cleanup this Saturday, January 17th, 2015.  Everyone--divers, snorkelers, or shore support volunteers--is welcome to join in to keep Bonaire beautiful.

Those interested should meet no later than 10:00 AM at Dive Friends @ Yellow Submarine for the briefing.  After check-in and the briefing, everyone will move to Karel’s Pier to do a cleanup in that location. 

As always, a potluck BBQ will be hosted at Dive Friends @ Hamlet at 6:00 PM for all participants.  Bring a side dish or dessert to the BBQ, as Dive Friends and other sponsors will be providing the main course and one drink.  (Source:  Dive Friends Bonaire)

Posted by Susan Davis on January 15, 2015 at 10:43am AST
Community ServiceEventsScuba DivingSnorkelingWater SportsPermalink
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Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Bonaire Does It Again, With Seven Honors in Scuba Diving Magazine’s Readers’ Choice Awards

Bonaire continues to stand out as a premier dive destination as the island secured seven different awards in the Scuba Diving Magazine’s Readers’ Choice Awards, including four #1 rankings. For the 22nd consecutive year, Bonaire has maintained its first place position with the #1 Shore Diving Destination. 

In the Caribbean/Atlantic region, the #1 rankings received by Bonaire include Best Macro Diving, Best Beginner Diving, Best Advanced Diving and Best Shore Diving. The #2 rankings include Best Underwater Photography and Best Overall Diving. Bonaire also ranked #4 for Best Overall Destination. 

“Bonaire is extremely proud to receive these top honors as they reconfirm the island’s long held reputation as a diver’s paradise,” commented Malinda Hassell, Marketing Manager of Tourism Corporation Bonaire. “The categories of the awards in which Bonaire won demonstrate that our dive operators and tourism partners are attracting divers of all skill levels and can offer them an exciting array of dive options 24/7.”

In addition to the Readers’ Choice Awards, Scuba Diving magazine also released their annual Top 100 Gold List and Bonaire received 6 rankings; #12 Dive Sites/ Something Special, #30 Shore Dives/Bari Reef, #75 Best Dive Operator/Buddy Dive Resort, #82 Best Dive Resort/Buddy Dive Resort, #91 Best Dive Bar/Karel’s Beach Bar. Rankings are based on the total number of responses, regardless of category and those listed are determined on a “popularity contest” basis.

For the Readers’ Choice Awards, thousands of Scuba Diving subscribers and web users rated their dive experiences on a scale of one to five. Results of the 2015 Awards are featured in the January/February 2015 issue of Scuba Diving magazine.  (Source:  TCB-NA)

Posted by Susan Davis on January 14, 2015 at 1:02pm AST
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Thursday, January 08, 2015

First CIEE Public Lecture of 2015 to be Held on January 13th, 2015

CIEE will begin their new year with a free public lecture on January 13th, 2015 about the effect of anchoring on the reefs of the British Virgin Islands, an area with lots of sailing vessels.  Although anchoring is not permitted on Bonaire, except for fishing boats of less than four meters and with the use of a stone anchor, the presentation by Dr. Graham Forrester will prove just how important such regulations are for the health of Caribbean reefs.

Dr. Forrester is a professor at the University of Rhode Island, USA.  The presentation will take place at the CIEE headquarters at Kaya Gobernador N. Debrot #26, in Kralendijk, from 7:00 to 8:00 PM.  All are welcome, and entrance is free.  (Souce:  CIEE Bonaire)

Posted by Susan Davis on January 08, 2015 at 1:21pm AST
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