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Kitesurfing, Windsurfing and Sailing: Wind Sports in Lac Bay
Bonaire Talk: Kitesurfing, Windsurfing and Sailing: Wind Sports in Lac Bay
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mad Hatter (New BonaireTalk Poster - Post #1) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 11:44 am:     Edit PostPrint Post

I recently visited Bonaire for the first time, with the intention of improving my windsurfing. I am a beginner windsurfer, and wanted somewhere safe to learn, in shallow water.
I have to say I was really pleasantly surprised by Lac Bay. We used Jibe City, and they were a great outfit - brand new JP and Neil Pryde equipment - and the bar / restaurant was a great place to refuel. We stayed at Kon Tiki - also fantastic.

I have read some of the posts on this board, and without being inflammatory, would like to make a couple of observations....

1) Lac Bay is a large area, however because of the seagrass and coral layout, the area that is shallow and available for windsurfing (if you want to be able to stand, and also have some respect for local wildlife) is not that large. There is a map (as well as other useful information on the ecosystem in Lac Bay) at this link:
Don't get me wrong - its plenty big enough for the windsurfers that are there now....but its not as large as it seems at first sight.

2) The Cruise Ship waders! These people I am sure bring a lot of income to the island, so I think they should definitely be accomodated....however, their current "wading path" is an accident waiting to happen. Has anyone considered creating a beach for them on the other side of Sorobon Beach Resort so that as they wade out to snorkel the reef, they are more out of harms way?

3) I understand the issue with the kiters - my husband is a kiter and a windsurfer, and because of the light winds when we were there he would have loved to kite...but offshore winds at Atlantis, and relying on a boat pick up seemed too risky. As a beginner windsurfer / snorkeller / diver and Nature Lover I also understand why Kiters are not allowed in Lac Bay, and not welcomed elsewhere by divers & snorkellers. Has anyone ever considered kiting the salt ponds? They seem pretty large, and had almost waist deep water when we were there. Any chance something could be worked out with Cargill?

Finally - I would like to quickly give credit to:
* the ABK Windsurf Camp at Jibe City - a great camp and tremendous value for money
* Ana Mercedes! Ana is a masseuse - she is fantastic. She is based at the Windsurf Place in the grass massage hut, but she also will visit your hotel. I had a couple of deep tissue massages from her for a sore back, and her expertise kept me out sailing for 7 straight days.

Thanks to all of you in Bonaire who make it such a great place to visit - we will definitely come back - possibly for another ABK clinic in the near future.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Grunt (Extraordinary BonaireTalker - Post #1196) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 1:04 pm:     Edit PostPrint Post

Welcome to Bonaire Talk, and thank you for a most welcome positive post regarding kiting and windsurfing.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By ctang (New BonaireTalk Poster - Post #5) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 1:18 pm:     Edit PostPrint Post

I am glad you like windsurfing in Bonaire. I have been going there with my family almost every winter for the past 15 years. I agree with you about the very limited area for windsurfers because of the shallowness of the bay forces one to go in restricted lanes. I have catapulted many times at high speeds when the fin hits a sandbar. If there is anywhere kitesurfing should be allowed, it would have to be in the blue water area. There is a huge area chest deep that one can stand up on towards the mangroves with very few people. But the problem is the enviromental/birds issue.

Steven on a previous thread had suggested that the area upwind from the windsurfers be used by kitesurfers. THat would not be possible because that area leeward to the reef is one of the best snorkling site on Bonaire with many many snorklers and those swimming back to shore (and now the cruiser ship waders that have appeared in recent years). One reason I don't windsurf there is for fear of hitting a snorkler.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Stephen Tise (Experienced BonaireTalker - Post #114) on Friday, February 11, 2011 - 1:08 pm:     Edit PostPrint Post

Mad Hatter - There is plenty of room for everyone, Lac is huge. When I was there I sailed up to the reef and beyond into the deep areas, I didn’t see anybody snorkeling at Lac the entire time I was there. Bonaire has so many awesome spots to snorkel and dive. The situation is 100% political on Bonaire. Such a shame that the NIMBYs on Bonaire have squandered such an awesome resource by prohibiting kiting at Lac. Wouldn’t it be great if you could windsurf while your husband kited? Somebody please tell me why kiting would be worse for the environment than any other activity. The situation is a sad reality and I'm too tired to fight the battles anymore. If you’re looking to kite in Caribbean go to Aruba. Don’t waste your time at Fisherman Huts where the wind is off-shore; go to Boca Grande on the windward side. Its a sweet spot that you can Kite and snorkel without the drama... On Aruba kiters and windsurfers can play together. I know, Aruba is not Bonaire but... take your next vacation where you can enjoy all the things you want to do. Maybe Bonaire will someday recognize the opportunity that kiteboarding could bring. Soon kiteboarding will be an Olympic sport, maybe then the reasonable people on Bonaire will do the right thing by the "Children of the Wind"...


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Eduardo Di Piero (New BonaireTalk Poster - Post #1) on Sunday, March 20, 2011 - 11:56 pm:     Edit PostPrint Post

I thought I was the only human being that came to Bonaire not to dive, but to windsurf. I am here now for the third time. The wind wasn't that good the last 3 days, but I hope it improves tomorrow, because I am returning after tomorrow. I invite you who wants to visit a place similar to Bonaire for windsurfing, to come to Praia Seca - Rio de Janeiro - Brazil. Our facilities are much better than Bonaire and the wind blows the whole year. Check on .


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Trevor Hibdige, Lac Bay Villa (Experienced BonaireTalker - Post #234) on Monday, March 21, 2011 - 12:37 am:     Edit PostPrint Post

Eduardo, thanks for the link. It is always nice to see other places in the world. I too only windsurf. I cannot swim too well and cannot dive and my fear of death is by drowning so I am strictly an "on the surface" man !!! I have been windsurfing 32 years now from Day 1 of the sport and it is still challenging. Lac Bay is still special.... Hope the wind improves for you. The weather patterns around the world are abnormal.....


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