International food at the major hotels varies on different nights of the week with barbecues or Indonesian nights, etc. Two good places to watch the fish are the Green Parrot at the Sand Dollar Beach Club and the Chibi Chibi at the Divi Flamingo (but do not feed them).
Main courses in the upper-priced restaurants are about US$12-20, but several restaurants do bar snacks if you want to economize. All food is imported, so even fruit and vegetables in the market are not cheap. Conch is recommended, either fried or in a stew, as is goat stew. You may not want to try iguana soup, which may also be on the menu. If you want to eat lobster, check where the restaurant gets its supplies, some lobster fishermen are reported to be unauthorized and disapproved of by divers and conservationists.
The hotels mostly offer good restaurants with fine views over the sea. Rum Runners at the Reef at Captain Don’s Habitat serves breakfast, lunch and dinner with theme nights, eg Bonairean food, Mexican or barbecue, with live music some nights; Oceanfront at Lion’s Dive Hotel, run by an American and a Jamaican with a Chinese chef, food from all three countries with Jamaican reggae party on Friday night; Green Parrot (see above) at Sand Dollar has an international menu with burgers, steak and fish; Captain Wook’s Marina Bar & Grill, one of the restaurants at the Harbour Village marina has Tex-Mex specialities and you can use the cascade pool and outdoor pool table.
In Kralendijk, Rendez-Vous, Kaya L D Gerharts 3, T8454, is recommended, lunch and dinner, seafood specials, vegetarian choice, good vegetables, small and friendly, The Grillroom is an extension, with charcoal grill and salad bar, dinner only, both closed Sunday.
Mona Lisa, on Kaya Grandi, T8718, closed Sunday, bar and restaurant, interesting, imaginative food, Dutch chef enjoys discussing the menu, expect to pay NAf 25-35 for main course, friendly service, popular.
Mi Peron, Kaya Caracas 1, a block from Roman Catholic Church, T5199, many antiques, welcoming patio, daily specials, authentic krijollo restaurant, open 1200-1400, 1800-2200.
Leeward Inn Café, Kaya Grandi 60, T5516, homemade pizzas, eat in or takeaway, full bar service, closed Tuesday.
Croccantino, Kaya Grandi 48, T5025, Italian, in historic town house, a/c dining room or garden dining, open daily.
Capriccio, Kaya Isla Riba I, T7230, closed Tuesday, Italian, homemade pasta, pizza, lunch and dinner.
Otello Italian Restaurant and Bar, Kaya Prinses Marie 4, T4449, traditional Italian dishes from US$5-20.
Beefeater, Kaya Grandi 12, T7776, open from 1600 daily, steak and seafood, local specialities, pricey, small.
Raffles, at the harbourside, T8617, open 1830-2230, tiny, smokey dining room, nice terrace, reasonable prices at lunch, closed Monday, Indonesian and international.
Zeezicht, Kaya JNE Craane, T8434, on the waterfront, does breakfast, lunch and dinner, sandwiches and omelettes as well as fish, steak, pasta and some Indonesian, open daily.
A cheap place to eat is Ankertje, but view nothing special, overlooks the small industrial harbour.
Restaurant Lisboa, in Hotel Rochaline, outdoor dining on waterfront, T8286, grills and seafood, lobster, also some more modestly priced dishes.
In La Terraza shopping mall upstairs is Jardin Tropical Restaurant, open 1800-2200, closed Monday, T5718, 5716, view over Kralendijk, downstairs there is a pizza bar, Cozzoli’s Pizza, for fast food; south of town, just past Carib Inn is Richard’s, J A Abraham Boulevard 60, T5263, American owner, waterfront dining, happy hour 1700-1900, dinner 1830-2230, closed Monday, seafood and steak specialities.
Blue Moon, Kaya CEB Hellmund 5, T8617, h...@bonairenet.com, on waterfront, set menu or à la carte, open for food 1800-2200, happy hour 1700-1830, closed Wednesday.
Den Laman Seafood Restaurant, between the Sunset Beach Hotel and the Sand Dollar Beach Club, lots of fresh fish and lobster, 1800-2300, T8955.
Old Inn, on airport road opposite Plaza Resort, T6666, Indonesian Rijsttafel a speciality, also steak, fish and children’s menu, dinner only, closed Wednesday.
Twins Chicken Salad Bar, in restored 19th century building on Kaya L D Gerharts, takeaway service available, lots of chicken dishes, lots of salads, open daily 1100-2400, T4433.
Maiky Snack Kaminda, New Amsterdam 30, an out-in-the-country spot to get home-made local food, soup, main dish and drink US$8.50, lunch from 1200 until the food runs out, get there early.
Sandwich Factory in Kralendijk, T7369, American-style deli.
There are a few good Chinese restaurants in town, the best of which is probably the China Garden in an old restored mansion on Kaya Grandi, which is open for lunch and dinner, T8480, closed Tuesday. Mentor’s, about one and a half miles from Sunset Beach, is recommended, cheap, large portions of Chinese food. Bon Appetit, Kaya BF Croes and Blvd Julio A Abraham, Chinese, good nasi goreng. Borobudur, Antriol village, Indonesian, eat in or takeaway. Super Bon vegetarian restaurant, open 0700-1800, closed Saturday, good for snacks and juices, at Kaya Fraternan di Tilburg 2, T8337. There are several snack bars in Kralendijk. Josanana Snack, Kaya Amsterdam 5, T7869, takeaway food from 1900-2230 or later.
On the windward side of the island, Beachclub Kontiki next to the Lac Bay Resort, T5369, kont...@bonairelive.net, serving seafood, steaks, salads and wide variety of international cuisine, friendly, casual, beautiful view, Caribbean décor, open 1200-1500, 1830-2200, closed Monday. The beach bar, Hang Out, at Jibe City is recommended for rest and regaining energy for windsurfing, good food, drink, shade.
Water comes from a desalinization plant and is safe to drink. Take water with you on excursions. Do not, however, wash in or drink water from outside taps. This is sushi (dirty) water, treated sufficiently for watering plants but nothing more.