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Guide to Bermuda
(courtesy of www.gotoBermuda.com)
Bermuda is 21-square
miles of natural beauty and colorful island culture. To get a lay of
the land, explore the island's three regions – West End, Central Bermuda
and East End – and get an overview of the world-renowned beaches
dotting its shores.
Royal Naval Dockyard
& the West End: One of Bermuda’s most popular
destinations, the historic Royal Naval Dockyard anchors the West End. The
Dockyard is home to a major cruise ship port and serves as a hub for
sightseeing, shopping, dining, entertainment and an array of island
experiences. Nearby, you’ll find many of the renowned South Shore beaches,
including Horseshoe Bay and Warwick Long Bay. Climb up Gibbs Hill
Lighthouse for panoramic views of the South Shore, and explore the village
of Somerset, home to calm bays, candy-colored churches and the most
photogenic little drawbridge you’ll ever see.
Central Bermuda: Central Bermuda is home to the
capital City of Hamilton, a harbor town known for its blend of global
sophistication, vibrant nightlife and local flavor. Enjoy dining, shopping,
dance clubs and the island’s most cosmopolitan culture along Front Street
downtown, and find great beaches, botanical gardens, lush parks and
oceanfront golf nearby. There is cachet attached to living "close to
town," and adjoining Paget Parish is home to some of the classiest
real estate in the world.
St. George’s &
the East End: Step back in time as you stroll the
centuries-old brick streets of the Town of St. George, Bermuda's
former capital and a UNESCO World Heritage site. The
well-preserved historic town and nearby fortress make St. George's
and the East End a haven for British colonial architecture,
history and culture. Nearby, discover many unique natural attractions,
including the limestone formations of Tobacco Bay Beach, Tom Moore’s
Jungle and the Crystal Caves of Bermuda. Cooper’s Island Nature
Reserve and Ferry Reach National Park are both flush with flora and
birdlife, including several rare species.
Before diving into everything that’s
great about Bermuda, let’s cover some basics:
Getting there: Bermuda is easily reached by plane in under 2
hours for most cities on the East Coast, or 3 hours from Miami or Atlanta. Several cruise lines travel to Bermuda from
April – November. The online Visitor
Arrival Card gets travelers through Arrivals and out the door without the
GETTING AROUND: Buses and ferries cover the island all year long and, since
this is how most locals get around, they’re a great way to get a taste of
Bermuda's warm, welcoming culture. Rent a scooter (moped) or electric mini
car to zip around to hidden gems or hop on a ferry to see the island from
the water as you get where you’re going. Taxis are readily available, but rentals
cars are not permitted.
What to Wear: When packing your Bermuda wardrobe, think smart-casual. The
atmosphere of the island is still imbued with British reserve and decorous
informality. Proper island style is the prevailing rule, whether you are
swimming at the beach or walking through town. It’s this classic sense of
light-hearted decorum that makes Bermuda different from many tropical
TIME ZONE: Bermuda is the in Atlantic
Standard Time Zone (GMT-4). Bermuda is 1
hour ahead of the east coast. Bermuda
observes Daylight Savings Time starting second Sunday of March and returns to
Standard Time on first Sunday of November
Location: Bermuda is located in
the North Atlantic Ocean, approximately 655 miles east-southeast of Cape
Hatteras, North Carolina. Bermuda consists of 181 Islands with the largest
known as Main Island.
Entry Requirements: All travelers must carry with them proof
of citizenship and identification, specifically a machine-readable passport,
for return to their own country or for re-entry through another foreign country
as required by Bermuda Immigration authorities. This applies to adults as well
as children/infants travelling alone or with their parents. Bermuda entry visas and visa waivers are not
required for tourist and business visitors and work permit holders.
Climate: Bermuda’s location in the Gulf Stream provides comfortable
temperatures year round, from mid 60s in the winter to mid-80s in the
summer. Bermuda has no rainy season.
Heavy downpours are more likely to occur at night in the summer and
don’t usually last longer than a couple of hours. Hurricanes are very rare – average of one per
Banking and Currency: Legal tender on the island is the
Bermuda Dollar, which trades at the same rate as the U.S. dollar and carries
the same symbol ($). Bermuda and the U.S. Dollar are accepted
interchangeably. When dispensing change, most retailers and businesses will try
to provide change in U.S. dollars to visitors.
ATMs are widely available. Most ATMs dispense only Bermuda
While you’re travelling through Bermuda, you may hear locals use
original phrases and terms. Be in-the-know with this quick guide to
Bermy (short for Bermuda) slang.
COMMUNICATIONS: Though Bermuda may be small in
size, its international telecommunication system ranks among the best in the
world. Bermuda's country
code is 441. Direct dialing is possible to and from the island. Worldwide and international prepaid calling cards can be
purchased locally at shops and hotels. Long-distance phone calls can be made with a calling card. Most mobile phones will work on the island;
ask your carrier ahead of time to make sure. To avoid excessive roaming
charges, many visitors rent mobile phones.
ELECTRICITY: The electrical current in
Bermuda is 110 volts, 60Hz AC, which is the same voltage supported by the U.S.
DRINKING WATER: Tap water is safe to drink
TIPPING: Nearly all restaurants in Bermuda automatically add
a tip of 15 to 17 percent to your check. Tips for bellhops are $1 to $2 per bag and
cleaning staff should get $1 to $2 per day. Taxi drivers are normally tipped
between 10 and 15 percent of the fare, more if driver takes you on a guided
The Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) is a free
service to allow U.S. citizens and nationals traveling and living abroad to
enroll their trip with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.
Distance from Bermuda Airport (Airport
code BDA is located on East End, in St. George’s Parish):
Distance in Miles
Royal Navy Dockyard
Where to stay
Bermuda is known as a
great destination for families and couples and offers a wide variety of
accommodations for these travelers.
These are some of our
suggested hotels in Bermuda. For more information
go to www.vacationwiser.com/bermuda. Sample rates below are for a 4-night stay for
2 people. Number in parentheses next to
rates are bi-weekly prices. Number in parentheses by hotel name is Star rating,
Coco Reef (3.5*)
Wake up to the sound of waves lapping the sand of Elbow
Beach at the quiet, beachfront Coco
Reef Resort. Each room can be interconnected to
the next, perfect for families travelling with teens. There’s a grocery market
within walking distance and an in-room mini fridge (read: snack-money savings).
There’s also babysitting, laundry service and three eateries right on-site.
Hamilton is just a 10 minute ride away.
As low as $1,540 ($60) midweek and weekend for
2 people in mid-May 2020
As low as $1,818 ($70) midweek and $1,857 ($72)
weekend for 2 people mid-July 2020
Aunt Nea’s Inn at Hillcrest (3.5*)
Aunt Nea's Inn is a historic Bermudian guest house located
in the UNESCO World Heritage Site of St. George's. From original woodwork and
building craftsmanship from the 1700s to stunning harbor and garden views, you
will love staying in this very special property in the heart of the old town.
As low as $1,621 ($63) midweek and weekend for
2 people in mid-May 2020
As low as $1,621 ($63) midweek and $1,561 ($61)
weekend for 2 people mid-July 2020
Hills Golf Resort & Spa (4*)
Make yourself at home at Newstead Belmont Hills Golf Resort
and Spa, featuring 60 well-appointed waterfront residences. Most units have
fully equipped kitchens, spacious bathrooms and separate living spaces. Amenities include air-conditioning, separate
showers and jetted bathtubs, complimentary Wi-Fi and exclusive privileges at
the semi-private Belmont Hills Golf Club, accessed by water shuttle.
As low as $2,425 ($94) midweek and $2,328
($90) weekend for 2 people in mid-May 2020
As low as $2,328 ($90) midweek and $2,445
($95) weekend for 2 people mid-July 2020
Fairmont Southampton (4.5*)
Perched atop one of Bermuda’s highest points, the Fairmont
Southampton is the largest resort on the island. The 593 rooms are lavishly
appointed with walk-in closets, marble baths and private balconies. Across the
palm-dotted grounds you’ll find nine restaurants and bars (don’t miss the
historic Waterlot Inn steakhouse), shops, Willow Stream spa and the 18-hole,
par 3 championship course at Turtle Hill Golf Club. Relax at the pools or
lounge on a chaise at the full-service beach club, complete with dive center,
tennis courts and private pink-sand beach. Located on Bermuda’s famous South
As low as $2,490 ($96) midweek and $2,082 ($81)
weekend for 2 people in mid-May 2020
As low as $2,623 ($101) midweek and $2,490
($96) weekend for 2 people mid-July 2020
Grotto Bay (3.5*)
Scattered over 21 acres, 11 colorful cottages overlook
clear, turquoise waters. This lush tropical estate features dramatic caves and
acres of woodland preserves along the water's edge. Swim the shallow waters off
a private pink sand beach, take a dip in the freshwater pool, or languish in
the outdoor, garden Jacuzzi. Sail, snorkel, paddle board, dive ancient wrecks
and explore the delicate coral reefs with the help of onsite company, Dive
Bermuda. With lighted courts, you can play tennis night or day, work out in our
ocean-front gym or get pampered in a 500,000-year-old underground cave spa. The
resort is conveniently located within five minutes of two of Bermuda's finest golf courses and the L.F. Wade International Airport.