Exploring the fascinating myths and legends of Bonaire

28 February 2023 by Sunwise Bonaire - Reading time: 3 minutes

Explore the mysteries of Bonaire’s myths and legends, from haunted mansions to rumors of drug lords and celebrity island ownership. Sunwise Bonaire offers rental properties near these mythical locations, allowing you to immerse yourself in the island’s history and natural beauty.

Are you curious about the mysteries of Bonaire? Join us as we explore some of the most popular myths and stories of the island. We are leaving it up to you to decide whether they’re true or not. From ghostly visitations to rumors of drug lords and celebrity ownership, Bonaire’s history is full of fascinating tales.

Did Pablo Escobar own the unfinished hotel at Playa Esmeralda?

One persistent myth about Bonaire is about the infamous drug lord Pablo Escobar. People say that he ordered the construction of a hotel, just south of Belnem. Rumor has it this is about the unfinished hotel at Playa Esmeralda. While there is no concrete evidence to support this claim, the story has taken on a life of its own and remains a popular tale on the island. It is known Escobar did own property on several Caribbean islands. But there is no public evidence that he ever owned property on Bonaire. The official reading is that the original owner of the hotel at Playa Esmeralda ran into financial difficulties. The hotel has remained unfinished since then.

Was the abandoned hotel at Playa Esmeralda Bonaire owned by Pablo Escobar?

Is it true that the last residents of the plantation mansion Washikemba fled from ghosts?

Another popular myth on the island is about the haunted former aloë plantation Washikemba. A private individual bought the neglected plantation and mansion, and renovated them. Despite the renovations, today the estate still has no official purpose or assignment, and rumors persist about ghostly visitations. Some locals claim to have seen apparitions wandering the halls of the estate. Others have reported strange noises and inexplicable movements. Rumor has it that the last residents of the Washikemba plantation mansion fled the property due to ghostly activity. There is no concrete evidence to support these claims. Read all about it in the book Jannet Butter wrote about various stories of the island. The Washikemba estate’s eerie atmosphere and storied history make it a popular destination for those interested in the supernatural.

The Ghost of Washikemba

Did the famous Harry Belafonte own Klein Bonaire?

Klein Bonaire has an unclear ownership history involving Harry Belafonte and Maurice Neme, and whether “Island In The Sun” is about the island. What’s certain is the Bonaire Island Government purchased Klein Bonaire, a protected nature reserve since 2001. Belafonte helped establish the Belnem neighborhood, with him and Neme serving as the first directors of the Bel-Nem Caribbean Development Corporation. Jopie Abraham, a famous island politician, once debunked Belafonte rumors based on his knowledge of history and encounter with the singer-songwriter.

Klein Bonaire, was it ever owned by the famous Harry Belafonte?
Island in the sun

What Sunwise Bonaire-managed properties are located near mythical locations on Bonaire?

Most mythical locations on Bonaire are easily accessible with a rental car due to the island’s small size. Some of the most popular locations include:

At Sunwise Bonaire, we manage and rent out properties for private individuals on the island, including several properties located near these mythical locations. Whether you want to explore the island’s history or simply soak up its natural beauty, we can help you find the perfect rental property for your stay.

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