The tiny Dutch Caribbean island of Saba has been awarded the Silver QualityCoast Award, and thereby became the first Caribbean island to be recognized for its sustainability efforts, policy and quality.
On the 1st of September, Dutch State Secretary of Economic Affairs, Sharon Dijksma, presented the QualityCoast flag and certificate to Island Governor Jonathan Johnson, Kingdom Representative Gilbert Isabella, and the Director of the tourist office, Glenn Holm. “Saba may be proud with this recognition because it is the evidence of hard work that is carried out by several organizations and individuals on the field of nature protection, tourism and culture,” said Dijksma.
Saba has no beaches and hence escaped the typical ‘sun-sea-sand’ tourism development as seen elsewhere in the Caribbean. Its rugged slopes are covered with lush fauna which can be explored through a network of guided hiking trails. Under the water-line an outstanding and intact ecosystem provides many opportunities for quality scuba diving and snorkeling.
The QualityCoast jury praised the island’s nature protection above and below the surface; its distinct cultural heritage and architecture; the relatively even spread of tourism over the year; and initiatives to involve enterprises, visitors and the public to contribute to community and biodiversity conservation initiatives. For more information, see Saba’s destination page.
The assessment and recognition of Saba was part of the so-called Green Deal for Sustainable Tourism – a public-private partnership of stakeholders in the Dutch tourism industry. This Green Deal aims to support destinations worldwide in becoming more sustainable and inform consumers about the quality and sustainability of their holiday destinations.