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-   -   Can't afford Saba, so...? (https://www.fodors.com/community/caribbean-islands/can-t-afford-saba-so-332459/)

mp413 Jun 30th, 2003 10:11 AM

Can't afford Saba, so...?
 
I've never been to the Carib. before and want to go for my end-of-summer retreat. Saba sounds ideal to me (small, un-tourist-y, natural), but the airfare is quite high ($700)! Anyone have suggestions for a similar environment in the Carib. that's easier/cheaper to get to? I'm certainly open to other islands, but don't want the typical beach-bum/party crowd (no offense--just not what I want to do on this trip!).

ejcrowe Jun 30th, 2003 10:37 AM

Unfortunately, it often follows that the less touristed an island is, the more expensive it is to get to. Saba's airstrip is so tiny that very few aircraft can land on it. If your heart is set on Saba, you might try looking into flying to St. Maarten and then taking a boat over to Saba. Other relatively untouristed islands are Statia and Dominica, but I have the feeling that they're in the same airfare price range as Saba. A good rule of thumb is that if large cruise ships do not stop at an island, it is relatively untouristy

Another option would be to choose a larger island and head away from the crowds. Jamaica and Puerto Rico are both easy and relatively inexpensive to get to, and because tourists tend to concentrate only in a few areas on these islands, there are still large portions that are in a more natural state. Have fun, whichever island you choose!

mp413 Jun 30th, 2003 10:47 AM

Thanks for the advice! If you have any specific spots in mind (such as in Jamaica or Puerto Rico) that aren't touristy, I would appreciate the help.

ejcrowe Jun 30th, 2003 11:08 AM

I've actually never stayed in either PR or Jamaica except in transit. I myself am interested in staying at a place called Jake's, which I believe is on the southern coast of Jamaica in or near the Treasure Beach area. It's one of the hotels owned by the Island Records magnate, and I think you can find info at www.islandoutpost.com.

In Puerto Rico, try looking into any area away from San Juan, Culebra and Vieques, which seem to be the most visited spots. Southern coast and interior might be your best bets. Other folks will be able to point you in a more specific direction.

joan Jun 30th, 2003 11:33 AM

Check out the Bahamas Out Islands - Eleuthera especially. Although it's not small, it's natural and untouristy, and cheaper to get to from the US (about $300 from Tampa, where I live).

Boyo Oct 21st, 2003 05:08 PM

Only $700? If you do visit Saba, you'll definitely be glad you did, if quiet, beauty, good food, great hiking and awesome snorkling/diving are what you desire.

RobertoB Oct 21st, 2003 06:38 PM

Agree with Joan on the Bahama Out Islands. I'll throw the Abacos and Cat Island into the mix. Fly to the Abacos from Lauderdale and Cat from Nassau.

BlueSwimmer Jan 5th, 2004 11:05 AM

I agree with the recommendation for Eleuthra. The main island is so untouristy, with great beaches and snorkelling. I've seen lots of nice homes for rent there, too. I also enjoyed the little island off the north coast of Eleuthra; I think it was called Governor's Harbour or Harbor island. It had charming homes and restaurants, but was much more populated with Americans than Eleuthra.

I've been keeping Saba on my wish list too, but it never seems to go on sale. What about getting an airling credit card and saving up miles to get there?


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