Washington Slagbaai National Park encompasses the rugged and hilly northern section of the island of Bonaire. A model in conservation, this 13,500-acre park was once home to a pair of plantations that produced divi divi trees, charcoal, and aloe for export to Europe and nearby Curacao. The plantations also raised goats, and visitors can still expect to see goats roaming around. Donkeys also walk about freely and are spotted with regularity. More than 200 different bird species fly in and out of Washington Slagbaai Bonaire Park. Reptiles exist in good number as well, and visitors are likely to spot at least one iguana while hiking the trails. The park's numerous cacti are where the iguanas tend to hang out, as they like to feed on the fruit that the cacti bear.
Washington Slagbaai National Park
Hiking is one of the top things to do in Washington Slagbaai Park, and since the terrain of the park is desertous, hikers will want to remember to bring plenty of water. Sunblock, a good pair of sunglasses, and a hat are also recommended, and you won't want to be without some binoculars and a camera. The terrain at Washington Slagbaai Bonaire is also hilly, with Mount Brandaris being the highest hill at 774 feet. Bonaire might not be home to the tallest peaks in the Caribbean, but the topography is varied nonetheless, and there are stunning views to be had around every bend. From the tops of the taller hills at Washington Slagbaai National Park, it's possible to look out over the entire island. You can even spot the small island of Klein Bonaire off Bonaire's west coast.
In addition to hiking, the list of things to do in Washington Slagbaai Park includes touring by car and mountain biking. Most Washington Slagbaai Bonaire visitors prefer touring the park in a vehicle as opposed to using their own two feet, and there are 21 miles of dirt roads to drive. Since there are rocky parts to deal with when it comes to the park's roads, having a four-wheel-drive vehicle is recommended for touring. As for mountain biking at Washington Slagbaai National Park, riders can cruise along flat stretches of road and take in the coastal views, or they can stick to the hills and test their level of fitness. Anyone who is interested in mountain biking at Washington Slagbaai Park should note that all biking activities are required to begin before noon. Most riders like to start their rides as early as possible to avoid the midday heat. The park opens at 8 a.m. and closes at 5 p.m.
The list of things do in Washington Slagbaai Park is longer than you might think, and since the park is home to beaches, swimming, and sunbathing can enter the picture. The beaches along the park's coastline are relatively rugged and rocky, though some have small, sandy areas that are usually deserted. Couples seeking a good spot for a romantic picnic are encouraged to pack a basket and make a break for one of the Washington Slagbaai National Park beaches. Boca Slagbaai is arguably the best beach in the park, especially for picnics and snorkeling. If snorkeling doesn't satisfy your need for underwater exploration on a Washington Slagbaai Bonaire visit, you can also go scuba diving. Shore diving is the diving style of choice at the park, and you can enjoy as much of it as you please once you get your Bonaire diving pass and fulfill your diving orientation.
The Bonaire diving fee that all divers must pay allows for a year of unlimited diving, and it also includes entrance to Washington Slagbaai National Park. If you are only planning on swimming or snorkeling at the park's beaches, then the fee is reduced. Visitors who plan to stick to land during a Bonaire vacation will have to pay an admission fee to enter Washington Slagbaai National Park. The Bonaire water use fees and the Washington Slagbaai fees go towards conservation efforts, so the money is well spent.