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We had an ABC cruise scheduled for November 12, 2021 on the Explorer of the Seas.  Mid October, Royal moved people to a "similar" cruise on Radiance of the Seas (Labadee, San Juan, St. Maartin, St. Kitts, St. Croix and Dominican Republic).  We specifically booked our cruise for the ABC islands.  I went to look into rebooking another ABC cruise and it appears that none of the itineraries include Bonaire for any future cruises.  They include Aruba and Curacao but not Bonaire.  Does anyone know why that is?  We are super bummed because Bonaire is our favorite!

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4 minutes ago, Ashland said:

My itinerary RCI Explorer (was Freedom) for March 20, 2022 includes Bonaire still.

But it leaves out of San Juan, right?  Not sure that will work for us.  Dang!  I got my hopes up!  

 

If you need an excursion for Bonaire, I highly suggest you rent a golf cart and drive it around the island for the day.  It was THE BEST excursion and highly worth the $90 it cost the two of us.  If you need more info, let me know!  

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2 hours ago, Smartipantz said:

We are super bummed because Bonaire is our favorite

What was it you liked about Bonaire?  We were there once. Rented a golf cart and rode it around the salt farms and around the back side. It was unique but nothing really special to us. 
 

Thanks

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Bonaire is one of the few islands you can drink the water anywhere ( all is desalinated from seawater) 

 

great Ice cream

 

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurants-g147267-zfd9899-Bonaire-Ice_Cream.html

 

water is clear and warm you can snorkel from any beach

 

pink beach I could spend hours sitting in the water watching pelicans diving on fish while underwater it is amazing to watch.

 

Fresh fish, there was a kid fishing from the pier we  saw him walk away with 2 5 gallon buckets of fish that he had caught.

 

That night we were at a restaurant and we noticed he was there in the kitchen turns out he was the owners son and we were eating the fish he had caught that morning.  Friendly people reasonable prices for anything that was not imported, crackers were about 3X usual price but fresh baked rolls were cheap.

 

We rented a car for our 10 day visit and had a great time.

 

Would pick it for a destination over most any other island as long as you were looking for water sports.

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1 hour ago, Smartipantz said:

But it leaves out of San Juan, right?  Not sure that will work for us.  Dang!  I got my hopes up!  

 

If you need an excursion for Bonaire, I highly suggest you rent a golf cart and drive it around the island for the day.  It was THE BEST excursion and highly worth the $90 it cost the two of us.  If you need more info, let me know!  

Yes...it does leave from San Juan....this is the first leg of our B2B...

I've read about the golf cart rental (which company did you use if there is more than one)...it's definitely what we are planning to do. This will be our first visit to Bonaire.

Really looking forward to it.

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37 minutes ago, Ashland said:

Yes...it does leave from San Juan....this is the first leg of our B2B...

I've read about the golf cart rental (which company did you use if there is more than one)...it's definitely what we are planning to do. This will be our first visit to Bonaire.

Really looking forward to it.

We used Bonaire Cruisers.  You just email them and let them know the details of your cruise (ship, day, how many people) and they will send you more information.  You pay them when you get there.  For us, it was $95 for the entire day... SO WORTH EVERY PENNY.  There are two different routes you can take.  Make sure you take the route that goes by the salt mines.  So much to see on that route.  There is a nice beach bar where you can get drinks and some food about 1/2 way through.  You'll see all kinds of fun stuff.  St. Maarten used to be my favorite... it is now my second best place after Bonaire.

 

Here is the email:  info@bonairecruisers.com

 

I would send it now... see if they will lock you in.  

 

Enjoy your cruise!!! ❤️

 

 

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1 hour ago, Milwaukee Eight said:

What was it you liked about Bonaire?  We were there once. Rented a golf cart and rode it around the salt farms and around the back side. It was unique but nothing really special to us. 
 

Thanks

I have an absolute fascination with the caribbean sea.  Having the whole day to ourselves, doing things at our pace, driving around the island and seeing the salt mines. slave shacks, lighthouses, flamingos, donkeys, etc.... and not on a time schedules (we were there for many hours).  The cost was $95 for the two of us (plus drinks and lunch).  We could drink and snack along the way.  I just loved the beauty of it.  

 

Also if you are a diver, I hear the diving is really great.

Edited by Smartipantz
Added the diving comment.
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I am amazed that the #1 excursion for years and years mentioned on this forum by an overwhelming majority has not yet been mentioned:

https://www.woodwindbonaire.com/

 

In my view (may I speak for others?) this is one of the top 5 excursions in the entire Caribbean.

 

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2310655-adventureabcs-aug-20-272016-review-wlots-of-photos/page/6/?tab=comments#comment-49701646

 

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20 minutes ago, Hoopster95 said:

I am amazed that the #1 excursion for years and years mentioned on this forum by an overwhelming majority has not yet been mentioned:

https://www.woodwindbonaire.com/

 

In my view (may I speak for others?) this is one of the top 5 excursions in the entire Caribbean.

 

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2310655-adventureabcs-aug-20-272016-review-wlots-of-photos/page/6/?tab=comments#comment-49701646

 

 

We have snorkeled with Woodwind several times since our first visit to Bonaire in 2014. It's a great excursion for snorkelers of all abilities. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who wishes to snorkel in Bonaire. They purchased a new catamaran since your review. It provides much more space. 

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Our favorite thing is renting a car and seeing more of island.  You cant do donkey sanctuary in a golf cart. Very easy and much cheaper to take ferry to klein bonaire and do your own snorkeling.  We also went to the beach near the salt flats where we saw dozens of turtles.  Bonaire is an island where you just need your snorkeling gear and a car so you can get places quicker and get more in on your day. No excursions are needed.  

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We have a march celebrity equinox cruise that includes Bonaire.  We love the island.  Least touristy of the ABC's.  Excellent snorkeling.   Has a great little town near where the ships dock with a local straw market when you leave the ship.  Real local jewelry and art- local not made in china.  

 

Hope you have the opportunity someday to visit.

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8 hours ago, Smartipantz said:

I have an absolute fascination with the caribbean sea.  Having the whole day to ourselves, doing things at our pace, driving around the island and seeing the salt mines. slave shacks, lighthouses, flamingos, donkeys, etc.... and not on a time schedules (we were there for many hours).  The cost was $95 for the two of us (plus drinks and lunch).  We could drink and snack along the way.  I just loved the beauty of it.  

 

Also if you are a diver, I hear the diving is really great.

Yes. We rented the golf cart and saw all those things. Saw the Salt Mines, Donkeys, Slave Shacks, and Flamingos. The brine shrimp is what gives them their pink color. 
 

I just thought maybe there was something more than what we saw. 
 

I used to dive but I gave it up when I turned 60. I hear there are beautiful dives in that area. 
 

Thanks
 

M8

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We booked the 9 night specifically for the ABCs

As mentioned above you can still go to Bonaire - from San Juan

I do believe that Bonaire has some size restrictions to dock at its pier. I think Oasis class and larger would be unable, possibly Freedom class. (I stand to be corrected)

We kept our booking with the non-similar itinerary because we have such a great price locked in.

Our next booking will again have Bonaire on the itinerary - but looks like that will be a different cruise line.

 

Again, as mentioned above, Woodwind is an excursion that cannot be highly praised enough. 

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9 hours ago, Ashland said:

Yes...it does leave from San Juan....this is the first leg of our B2B...

I've read about the golf cart rental (which company did you use if there is more than one)...it's definitely what we are planning to do. This will be our first visit to Bonaire.

Really looking forward to it.

Hopefully, you won't be limited to ship sponsored exclusions only when you get there.

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11 hours ago, mets07 said:

Yes, my recollection is we went on a snorkeling excursion in the morning and in the afternoon took a water taxi to Klein Bonaire, a small, pretty, uninhabited island off Bonaire.  

Ditto only we were there for a week long diving trip.  BOnaire water is exceptional.  Klein was awesome...nobody there but us and there were shoals of yellow jack swimming with us in shallow water but we swam with Tarpon everyday off the dock where we stayed.  One Tarpon was called Charlie and he loves divers.  Observed lots of cuttlefish and squid which were fascinating just at the pier....simply magnifico.

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13 hours ago, Hoopster95 said:

In my view (may I speak for others?) this is one of the top 5 excursions in the entire Caribbean.

 

You definitely speak for me.  My Woodwind review from May 2019:

I know that Dee (the wife in the husband and wife pair that own the business) was battling cancer (I think) and they were temporarily closed.  I hope she's doing well.  

 

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We did our ABC on Carnival several years back.  We've done Aruba and Curacao on Royal, but not Bonaire.   There's always the option of looking at other lines if you want to cruise out of a particular port.

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1 hour ago, bobmacliberty said:

I know that Dee (the wife in the husband and wife pair that own the business) was battling cancer (I think) and they were temporarily closed.  I hope she's doing well.  

 

Oh!... I hadn't heard 😟

She's young too. I hope they, and the business, is ok and everyone will get back on track.

They are one business that should be supported when things get back to normal... they treat people so very well

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