Kralendijk/ Playa

At Playa or Kralendijk, most ships calling at Bonaire anchored. After the conquest of Bonaire, the Dutch built the stone Fort Oranje on the bay of Kralendijk to station 40 men. On a map from 1812 by H. Abbing, the fort is indicated with some houses. During the English occupation of Bonaire (1799-1816) the rule that white tradesmen were not allowed to settle on Bonaire was departed from. From 1816 Fort Oranje was also the residence for the lieutenant governor, Kralendijk became the center of government and commerce. With a beautiful bay, Playa became a village where many fishermen, sailors and also several boat and ship builders settled. Many boat and plantation owners lived in Playa.