Spot

1000 Steps


1000 Steps is probably just as famous for the fantastic view from the top of its limestone steps as it is for its marine life. Go down the steps (don’t be worried, it's not 1000 steps, just 70), wear your mask, jump in the water and enjoy the show! In and around the reef, parrotfish, grunts, chub and sea turtles glide their way through healthy patches of staghorn coral, gorgonian and sea fans.
How to get there?

1000 Steps is located on the northern part of Bonaire, approximately 6km North of Kralendijk. The spot is marked with two yellow stones on the left side of the road. Park your car, enjoy the view from the top of the limestone steps, and go down to the beach.

Water entrance

1000 Steps shore is mostly rocky, but you will find several sandy splits between the beach and the reef to enter the water. Two of these splits are located on the left side of the beach, in front of the best snorkeling area (see map above).

Aerial view

Exploration

The area to explore covers the approximately 80 meters-wide area between the beach and the reef drop-off. Starting from the beach, you will first cross a dozen meters of mostly sandy seabed (↕2-5ft/0,5-1.50m), where queen and stoplight parrotfish feed on the few rocks. After several meters, the seabed starts to be covered with coral (↕5-10ft/1.5-3m) and the reef becomes denser and livelier until the drop-off (↕10-20ft/3-6m).

On the eastern area of the spot (on your left when you are facing the sea), you will find two large patches of staghorn coral (acropora cervicornis, ↕5-10ft/1.5-3m), one of the most beautiful –but also endangered- coral of the Caribbean region. The grey chromis surround the coral with their schools, creating a beautiful, spectacular sight. The branches of this coral are particularly vulnerable to errant fin kicks, so be careful when snorkeling around.

snorkeling-1000-steps-bonaire-coral
Underwater landscape at 1000 Steps

This spot is also rich in other hard coral species and gorgonians, although they are particularly damaged in some shallow areas. The fish are concentrated around the coral formations, including trumpetfish, butterflyfish, wrasse, surgeonfish and tarpons. Keep an eye out for sea turtles, which are frequently spotted on the drop-off.

Restaurants and accommodation

1000 Steps is in a natural setting, with no restaurant or accommodation nearby. The closest commodities are in Rincon or Kralendijk. Bring at least water with you.

Snorkeling Report gives the most precise tips possible about the snorkeling spots and potential dangers, but each one of us is responsible for our own safety in the water. For more information, take a look at the snorkeling safety page. If you want to add extra information or make any corrections to the spot descriptions, please contact us.

Spot’s weather forecasts (°C)

Spot tips

  • Type of spot
  • Level of difficulty
    Intermediate
  • Maximum depth
    12ft/4m on the reef flat, 20ft/6m on the reef drop-off
  • Water entrance
    Easy, from a sandy beach
  • Lifeguard
    No
  • Visitor numbers
    Medium to high
  • Access costs
    Free
  • Restaurants nearby
    No
  • Public toilets & showers
    No

Spot map

Spot photos

Underwater spot photos

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