9 day Saba + St. Martin itinerary USVI

9 Day Activity-Packed St. Martin + Saba Itinerary

Last updated Dec 30, 2022 | Caribbean Itinerary, Saba, St. Martin

Each Caribbean island has its own unique offerings. Saba is a small island with less than 2,000 residents and is an outdoor paradise for hikers and divers. St. Martin has a European flare, amazing food, and is home to some incredible beaches. You must fly into St. Martin to get to Saba, so why not combine the two for the best of both worlds? Here’s our 9-day St. Martin + Saba itinerary to help you start planning.

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Flying into Saba during sunset

DAY 1: TRAVEL DAY TO SABA

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We landed at SXM (Sint Maarten) at 2 pm. The 12-minute flight to Saba with Winair was at 5 pm. Got to watch the sunset as we flew in. Wow. BTW, Saba has the shortest commercial runway in the world!

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Forget the car rental. The roads are incredibly windy. Hire a taxi. We pre-arranged a taxi with our hotel.

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Dinner: After a quick check-in at the hotel, we enjoyed some delicious tacos (served only on Thursdays) at Chez Bubba Bistro. Ask Duco, the bartender, to make you one of his famous gin and tonics.

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Overnight: Queen’s Hotel. Read our full review.

Turtle checking me out at Tent Reef in Saba

DAY 2: SNORKEL WITH SEA SABA

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12:45 pm: After a lazy morning of sleeping in and eating breakfast, we got picked up by Sea Saba and were driven to the harbor. The boat took us out, and we snorkeled for about an hour and saw so many turtles! Back to the harbor around 3:15 pm.

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Breakfast: At the hotel

6 pm Dinner: Hideaway. Order the tuna tataki and have some local Saba Spice as a nightcap. Delicious!

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Overnight: Queen’s Hotel. 

Hiking through the beautiful vegetation on Sandy Cruz Trail in Saba

DAY 3: HIKE THE SANDY CRUZ TRAIL

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9:30 am: Take advantage of one of the many hiking trails coursing through Saba. Our favorite was the Sandy Cruz Trail. If you time it right, you can even see the little planes land on the short runway.

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5:30 pm: Enjoy happy hour gin and tonics at the rooftop bar at the hotel. Oh, that view! 

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Breakfast/Dinner: At the hotel

6:30 pm: Book the Bird’s Nest for a truly special dinner at the hotel. You will be dining suspended in old mango trees. A very unique experience and is one of the top things to do in Saba.

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Overnight: Queen’s Hotel

Dining alfresco at Karibuni Boutique Hotel in St Martin

DAY 4: TRANSFER DAY TO ST. MARTIN 

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11:30 am: 12-minute flight with Winair back to Sint Maarten (SXM). There’s a French and a Dutch side to this island. Don’t miss my comparison article if you are still deciding between the two.

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12:30 pm: Picked up our car rental through Kenny’s right at the airport. No waiting time. We’ve used Kenny’s twice and is the only car rental company we’ll use. The owner Lesley is awesome!

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2 pm: Checked in at the hotel and enjoyed time in our own private plunge pool.

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Breakfast: At Queen’s Hotel

5 pm Dinner: Grabbed a baguette, truffle cheese, charcuterie, and some Champagne at the grocery store, Le Petit Casino, and enjoyed a relaxed dinner al fresco on our room’s deck.

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Overnight: Karibuni Boutique Hotel. Read our full review.

Kayaking to Petite Clef in St. Martin

DAY 5: PETITE CLEF + BAIE ROUGE

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11 am: We took the hotel’s complimentary kayaks and headed out to Petite Clef to snorkel around the island. Fantastic morning! 

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2:30 pm: On our way to Baie Rouge Beach, we stopped at Chez Fernand for a French pastry. Lots of great choices!  When the waters are calm, snorkeling from Baie Rouge Beach can be great along the rocks on the right as you face the ocean from the beach. Unfortunately, the waters were rough when we went.

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5 pm: Picked up some great bottles of French wine and cheese from the wine shop, Grapewine. Love this store.

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Breakfast: At the hotel

7:30 pm Dinner: Takeout pizza from Papadan. Best pizza on the island!

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Overnight: Karibuni Boutique Hotel

Slowly poached confit thigh with hedgehog mushroom and Ivoire sauce at La Villa Hibiscus in St Martin

DAY 6: PINEL ISLAND + LA VILLA HIBISCUS

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9:15 am – 4 pm: Karibuni offers a private boat ride out to Pinel Island. Do not miss this! We enjoyed a wonderful day of snorkeling the island, drinking Ti’ punches, and eating at the Karibuni restaurant. The same family owns the hotel and the restaurant. 

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Breakfast: At the villa

7 pm Dinner: Enjoy dinner at one of the most acclaimed restaurants on the island, La Villa Hibiscus. This is the Caribbean’s ultimate gourmet dining experience.

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Overnight: Karibuni Boutique Hotel 

Plane flying over Maho Beach at Sint Maarten

DAY 7: LITTLE DIVI BAY + PHILIPSBURG + MAHO BEACH

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12 – 1 pm: We enjoyed some wonderful snorkeling at Little Divi Bay Beach Resort. You can snorkel over a sunken airplane, helicopter, and submarine. A pretty unique experience. 

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1:30 pm: Next stop was the colorful Dutch town of Philipsburg. We checked out the shop Gulmohar’s and picked up some hard-to-find rum bottles. Definitely worth a stop.

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2:30 pm: Maho Beach for some plane-watching. This is one of the top things to do especially for first-timers. The planes literally buzz right over your head as you stand on the beach!

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Breakfast: At the hotel

8 pm Dinner: Takeout from Hercule for some great local Caribbean food. Order the curry chicken.

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Overnight: Karibuni Boutique Hotel

Sentier des Froussards hike in St Martin

DAY 8: LE SENTIER DES FROUSSARDS HIKE 

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10 am – 1:30 pm: We hiked a fantastic coastal trail called Le Sentier des Froussards. Work off those rum punches! 

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Breakfast: At the hotel

6:30 Dinner: Takeout from Chez Karim for some delicious shawarmas. 

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Overnight: Karibuni Boutique Hotel

Incredible French breakfast at Karibuni Hotel on St. Martin_ croissants, meats, cheeses

DAY 9: FLY BACK HOME

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12:30 pm: Dropped the rental car right off at the airport.

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3:30 pm: Flight back home

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Breakfast: One last fantastic breakfast at the hotel

Lunch/Dinner: At airport lounges and plane ride

Who Will Like This St. Martin + Saba Itinerary

  • Beach lovers
  • Snorkeling & hiking enthusiasts
  • Foodies 

Best Time to Go to St. Martin and Saba

Avoid June – November, which is hurricane season. Those months have more rain.

February and March have the least amount of rainfall. 

Mid-December – April: The weather is great but airline/hotel prices are high. 

Hotels Booked for This St. Martin + Saba Itinerary

  • 3 nights: Queen’s Hotel in Saba
  • 5 nights: Karibuni Boutique Hotel in St. Martin

Airlines & Lounges Used for This St. Martin + Saba Itinerary

American Airlines

  • We had a layover flying into SXM at CLT and then a layover in MIA flying back. Total flight times ranged around 7 hours from the United States.

Winair

  • We booked a direct 12-minute flight from SXM to Saba and back.

Airline Lounges

  • MIA and CLT both have Amex Centurion Lounges, but they are quite PACKED.

Car Rental & How to Get Around Saba and St. Martin

  • Hire a taxi to get around Saba. The roads are very windy.
  • If you want to explore St. Martin, I strongly recommend renting a car. We only use Kenny’s Car Rental. I highly recommend them.

Tour Operators We Used 

  • Snorkeling tour with Sea Saba

Lunch/Dinner Reservations Booked in Advance 

  • La Villa Hibiscus. They have won multiple culinary awards. You will need to book in advance.

What I Would Have Changed in My St. Martin + Saba Itinerary

  • I would have added one more day to Saba to enjoy either more snorkeling or another hiking trail. 
  • St. Martin has so much more to offer. We only scratched the surface, so more days would allow for more activities. We actually went back to St. Martin for a second time (which we rarely do), and I’ll include that itinerary soon. Stay tuned.
Sunset over Grand Case Beach in St Martin

Sunset over Grand Case in St. Martin

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