Vacation rental, or short-term rental, is not allowed everywhere on Bonaire. The Ruimtelijk Ontwikkelingsplan Bonaire (Spatial Development Plan) states that this is only allowed in areas with the following zoning:
# Toeristisch
# Recreatie-Verblijfsrecreatie
# Gemengd-I
# Gemengd-IV
# Gemengd-VI
# Gemengd-Uit te werken I
# Centrum
Short stays (rentals up to 90 days) are not allowed in other zoning areas. To rent out a house for 3 months or longer is allowed basically anywhere on the island.

Where can I find this?

You can look this up in the Ruimtelijk Ontwikkelingsplan Bonaire (Spatial Development Plan), click here for the link. The zoning for each plot is indicated.

How does the map work?

On a phone or tablet, the map works easiest. By making a (reverse) pinch, you zoom in and out. With 1 finger you can move the map

With a PC, you can zoom in by using the scroll wheel on your mouse. As soon as you turn the wheel, it zooms in on the position where the cursor is.

Another option is to hold down the control key and then press + or -. When + the map zooms in, when – it zooms out. You can then use the arrow keys to move toward the plot you are looking for more information about.

Ruimtelijk Ontwikkelingsplan Bonaire (Spatial Development Plan)

How can I tell if vacation rental is allowed?

The map shows the different areas with different colors. When an area or plot is clicked, the destination of that area is shown.

To find out which parcel of land has which zoning, you need to click (or point to on phone/tablet) on that lot. A pop-up with information will appear, sometimes consisting of multiple tabs (click left/right). This says exactly what the zoning is for that area.

So for example, if it says “Woongebied-II,” then vacation rental is not allowed because this zoning is not in the list where short stay is allowed. However, if it says “Gemengd-I,” then vacation rental is allowed.

More interesting information appears in the pop-up, including:
# maximum building percentage
# maximum building height
# maximum gutter height
# a link to all the rules

Please note that the deed of delivery of a plot may still contain provisions that differ from the provisions of the OLB.

Why is vacation rental not allowed everywhere?

Because Bonaire has many tourists, the local government OLB (Openbaar Lichaam Bonaire) wants to regulate tourism somewhat. That is, they do not allow short-term rentals in residential areas. A post on the website explains it clearly: click here.

How is Harbourtown Real Estate handling this?

When selling homes, we always post on our website of the particular home for sale a pin with the zoning of the home we are selling. We have also described under basic information whether or not vacation rental is allowed.

Don’t have the zoning plan link handy? Through the website of Harbourtown Real Estate, you can also use the link to the map to look up other information.

Vacation Rental Summary

Rental properties are allowed almost anywhere on Bonaire starting at 3 months. Vacation rental or short term rental is only allowed in certain areas designated in the Ruimtelijk Ontwikkelingsplan Bonaire (Spatial Development Plan) map. Renting for longer than 90 days is never a problem, but short-term rental is subject to rules.


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Our real estate agent on Bonaire is happy to help you find your dream home or perhaps the right piece of land on which you can build your own villa. But we are also happy to assist you with the sale or rental of your home. Since 1989, Harbourtown Real Estate has been the place to be to help you realize your housing needs.

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Kaya L.D. Gerharts 20, Kralendijk
Bonaire - Dutch Caribbean

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Phone (Netherlands): +31 (0) 85 888 0508

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