Saba is an island in the Caribbean that belongs to the Netherlands. It is located to the south of Sint Maarten and to the northwest of Sint Eustatius. The island has a population of less than 2,000 people (2012 estimate). Both Dutch and English are official languages here, and the US dollar is the official currency since 1 January, 2011, replacing the Netherlands Antillian Guilder. The capital is known as The Bottom.
Saba is in the UTC-4 time zone. Covering 13 sq km (5 sq mi), it is the smallest special municipality of the Netherlands. However, it has an active volcano, Mount Scenery (877 m) which is the highest mountain in all of the Netherlands. Much of the area of Saba is within the grounds of the volcano.
The name Saba was previously thought to be of Arawak Indian origin, meaning "rock". However scholars today believe that it is Arabic, meaning "from Sheba", in reference to the Biblical queen. The first European to saw the island was Christopher Columbus in 1493. He did not come to shore. Then in 1632 a group of English sailors were shipwrecked there.
Saba was claimed by the French in 1635. However the Dutch took possession of it in 1640. Then the British in 1664 under Thomas Morgan evicted the Dutch settlers, sending them off to Sint Maarten. Since then control over Saba has swung between the British, the French and the Dutch until 1816, after which it has remained under the possession of the Netherlands.
Planning your visit to Saba, Country
There are regular ferry services between Sint Maarten and Saba. For details, visit www.sabactransport.com.