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Boat vs Shore diving

Reston, Virginia
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7 posts
18 reviews
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Boat vs Shore diving

I know Bonaire is known for shore diving. We're about to book a package that includes 6 1-tank boat dives and 6 days unlimited shore dives. We have the option of adding 6 more 1 tank dives for an additional $105.

Is it worth it? I know the price is good, but is there any benefit to adding the additional boat dives? Are sites accessible by boat any better/worse/different than by shore?

Thanks-

WU

New England
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1,680 posts
246 reviews
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1. Re: Boat vs Shore diving

WU, there are indeed sites that are not accessible from shore. All the sites on Klein Bonaire require a boat and there are some great spots in the far north that are accessed by boat. Some people prefer the ease of boat diving to navigating the shoreline while others (like me) will rarely go on a boat dive and then only if I know the boat is going to Klein or the far north.

Have you asked the dive shop if you can add the additional 6 dives after you arrive and have had a chance to try both shore diving and boat diving?

Gilford, New...
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2. Re: Boat vs Shore diving

The short answer (generally speaking) is yes. Personally I prefer the dive sites at Klein over most of the shore diving. However make no mistake about it there are some great shore dives to be had on Bonaire. If I had the same choice, I think I'd pay the extra $105 for the 6 additional boat dives. The down side of the boat diving is that you are on their schedule instead of your own. If you're OK with this, I suspect boat diving would be preferable..

Dover, Delaware
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107 posts
8 reviews
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3. Re: Boat vs Shore diving

I would side with Diva on this one, especially having done both a 12-boat dive week and five all-shore weeks. Since you already have a daily boat dive, go to Klein Bonaire or sites (Rappel) that you can't do from shore. Then do two more dives a day on your own. However, if you are a bit unsure about entries, you may like the boat dive option. There is always the house reef. Enjoy.

New England
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1,680 posts
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4. Re: Boat vs Shore diving

Another thing to keep in mind is that the boats don't go only to sites that are not accessible from shore. They also go to some of the sites that have very easy entries such as Windsock or Cliff. I would not be a happy customer if I paid for a boat dive that went somewhere easily accessible from shore!

Texas
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19 posts
83 reviews
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5. Re: Boat vs Shore diving

I think it would partially depend on how many dives you'd like to do a day. We've been three times and have done maybe 4 boat dives total. We really like the freedom of shore diving. You can stay as long as you like in one area and don't have to go with group. Of course, the other side to that is that the dive masters already know where some of the cool creatures hide/live. I'd say it depends if you like the group diving or not.

Edinburgh, United...
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174 posts
48 reviews
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6. Re: Boat vs Shore diving

We were given so many free boat dives when we booked last year and have to say we didn't use them, only because we loved the freedom of being able to go where we wanted when we wanted. If it was me I would stick to the 6 boat dives and the unlimited shore diving you've been offered, and you can always book extra boat dives when your there.

We bought an excellent dive book when we were there called Dive Guide Bonaire, it has over 103 dive sites listed, telling you the best entry and exit points what to look for and where to find them, it also has Klein Bonaire listed to.

DeputyDan
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72 posts
150 reviews
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7. Re: Boat vs Shore diving

Also depends on your health. Bad knees - bad back - you might find shore diving more difficult than expected.

Vigo, Spain
4 posts
2 reviews
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8. Re: Boat vs Shore diving

You need the boat dives if you want to dive in Klein Bonaire and also many of the mainland divesites.

Its a matter of taste really. Boat dives are undoubtely easier and takes less time in logistics. But there are over 90 divesites, some people are just fine with shore dives. In all honestly i would do a few boat dives at least to see some of the most beautiful places that you can not reach by shore.

While using a dive guide, i suggest you go to www.bonairedivers.org , this is by far the best online dive guide and tells you where to see the fish too.

Vigo, Spain
4 posts
2 reviews
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9. Re: Boat vs Shore diving

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Edited: 27 March 2015, 00:42
Edmonton, Canada
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140 posts
2 reviews
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10. Re: Boat vs Shore diving

If you're renting a vehicle to explore the island I'd definitely do some shore diving rather than spending a lot of time boat diving, but it's really just what you prefer. If you want to dive with a group, stick with boats. If you prefer your own time schedule go shore diving.