SABA (THE BOTTOM) - The stunning Dutch Caribbean island of Saba, a leader of conservation in the Caribbean, and a champion of environmental awareness, will hold its 19th annual month-long “Sea & Learn” event throughout October 2022. Saba is located just 12 minutes away from St. Maarten. Each year the event is organized with the sole purpose of helping others to understand the fragility of the environment and the importance of its protection. Here are a few highlights of this year’s event which features an impressive line-up of hands-on field excursions, activities, lectures, and discussions. For the full schedule, visit www.seaandlearn.org
DEEP DIVE – Deep Sea exploration is a strong emphasis for 2022 as it is the focus of two of the 14 participating scientists, Vince Capone, and Chancey MacDonald. Capone led a team that searched for shipwrecks using robotic and sonar equipment to map the entire offshore area surrounding Saba to a depth of 200 meters. Both will give presentations as well as lead field projects. Visitors can literally take a deep dive with MacDonald to discover how depth affects the presence and abundance of fish (October 4), while those who choose to dive with Capone can see how he uses sonar to map the seafloor (October 12).
CORAL HEALTH - Dr. Erinn Muller, a Senior Scientist at Florida’s Mote Marine Laboratory managing both the Coral Health & Disease and Coral Restoration Programs, develops therapies to treat several different types of coral diseases. Miller will lead two field dives (October 16 & 20) to first identify and then treat coral disease found in the waters around the island, (October 19), visitors can immerse themselves in an intensive lesson in coral health and restoration.
AFTER DARK – The island is known for its incredible hiking, and the land-based offerings this year include two-night hikes where visitors can discover the island’s flora and fauna activities after dark.
- Scientist Lydia Mäthger has studied various aspects of animal sensory ecology. Her focus is on animal vision, from the shape and size to the complexity of color vision. During her night hike, she will use the natural world to talk about how animal eyes influence technology (October 26).
- Lauren Esposito, an arachnologist who currently holds the Schlinger Chair of Arachnology at the California Academy of Sciences, she will lead one of her very popular night hikes in search of scorpions, spiders, and more. (October 20).
During “Sea & Learn,” guests are invited to enjoy fascinating large-screen presentations led by the visiting experts, offered every other night throughout the month during "Happy Hour" at one of Saba's quaint local bars and restaurants. All activities and night-time presentations are free and open to the public.
Visiting experts also teach the local children the value of Saba's natural beauty and resources and their importance to the region. For more information and specifics on the lectures, programs, and the latest updates on the month-long celebration, visit www.seaandlearn.org. Are you interested in attending, Saba has accommodations to suit every style and budget for more information visit: www.sabatourism.com.
The entire program is made possible with support from the Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds whose mission is to support cultural and nature preservation projects in The Netherlands and Dutch Caribbean.
Entry Rules & Protocols
The island is open no pre- or post-travel test is required to enter. Transit travelers connecting through St. Maarten require to fill out an entry form visit and follow their entry requirements: stmaartenehas.com.
About Saba - Often referred to as “The Unspoiled Queen,” Saba is the smallest of the Dutch Caribbean islands. This five-square mile island has five ecosystems from a dry desert climate to a cloud forest. With a population of just over 1,800, Saba is comprised of four main villages - The Bottom (Saba's capital), Windwardside, St. John's, and Zion's Hill (a.k.a. "Hell's Gate"). From the wide expanse of sea, jewel-like foliage and flowers that climb the mountainsides, and the charming Saban cottages and buildings. Saba is a welcoming and friendly paradise for those who desire peace, tranquility or eco-activities. In addition, Saba is world renowned for scuba diving and hiking trails, as well as deep sea fishing and snorkeling. Saba can be reached by air with WINAIR and sea with Edge Ferry or Makana Ferry from the neighboring island of St. Maarten. Visit: www.sabatourism.com.