Donkeys, flamingos and beach

There are a lot of private initiatives on Bonaire that are run as non-profit organisations.
This morning we’re going to visit one of them, the donkey sanctuary. There are donkeys in many places in the Caribbean islands, as they were brought in by the early settlers to perform hard labour and for transportation. With modern ages, they became superfluous and the donkeys were just left by themselves in the wild.
The islands like Bonaire are not a good habitat for them, as it is very dry and there isn’t a lot of plants that they would naturally eat. In addition, there is now a high risk of accidents with cars when then wandering around areas having heavy or fast traffic.
The donkey sanctuary is rescuing the ones that are injured, sick, starving or badly dehydrated. They now have more than 600 donkeys on their site that are cared of. When you enter the huge enclosure, you’re immediately met by a crowd of donkeys that are really eager to find out if you have some delicacies. We bought a couple of bags of carrots at the entrance, but we quickly realise that driving though them with the windows opened is a challenge! Most of the donkeys aren’t shy and they pass they heads well into the car to get their due.

Donkeys, flamingos and beach
Donkeys are given horse food, hay and water
Donkeys, flamingos and beach
A two months old foal was rescued a couple of days before our visit. Still to weak to stand.

We continue exploring Bonaire’s east coast. It’s much less built than the west side and there is basically only one road. We leave the tarmac lane and go on a dirt path that goes around a mangrove. There are smaller salt pans and wild animals here; some flamingos find plenty of food on the shallow swamps.

Donkeys, flamingos and beach
Flamingos in the wild

At the end of the path, we got a beach. And yes, that is what we were looking for. There is a little bar that even serves food, a sandy beach with easy entry in the water. Some places are deep enough to swim, and the water is really warm. There aren’t any sunshade or sunbeds, but we brought a couple of inflatable ones, so all good. A cold beer lying on the beach, what else?

Donkeys, flamingos and beach
Sandy beach and warm water.

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