"Bermuda - an English outpost" Top 5 Page for this destination Bermuda by grandmaR
Bermuda Travel Guide: 735 reviews and 2,306 photos
Bermuda is a unique place - a series of islands divided into nine parishes which are named after the great gentlemen “adventurers”. This is important to recognized since virtually every attraction, restaurant and hotel is located by its parish name.
From northeast to southwest these are
1) St George's Parish which includes the town of St. George and St. David's Island where the airport is.
2) Hamilton Parish which does NOT include the city of Hamilton and does include Tuckers town which isn't really a town
3) Smith's Parish which includes Flatts Village
4) Pembroke Parish which includes the capitol city of Hamilton
5) Devonshire Parish which has the Arboretum
6) Paget Parish
7) Warwick Parish best known for it's pink sand beaches
8) Southampton Parish
9) Sandy's Parish which includes Somerset Village and the Royal Navy Dockyard (aka Kings Wharf) which is on Ireland Island
I have visited Bermuda five times - once in 1963 when my husband's ship was there and I was pregnant with my second child. The second time was for Thanksgiving in 1995, and it started us on our post-children travels. This was a picture taken in 1963.
Just for variety, we came the third time (November 2004) and a fourth time (October 2007) and a fifth time (November 2011) on a cruise ship.
The first time we went we stayed in a hotel in St. George that no longer exists. As a pregnant person I found riding the bus very uncomfortable. They were sprung quite stiff and it was a jouncy ride. I preferred the ferries. Of course I couldn't ride a moped in my condition.
I don't remember exactly what our visit cost in 1963. The hotel we stayed in was one of the least expensive I could find, and was near the airport to reduce taxi fares. We visited St. George, Hamilton, the smallest bridge in Sandy's Parish and the Aquarium
The second time, we flew in on the Tuesday November 21, 1995 (before Thanksgiving). We stayed in the Hamilton Princess. Because I had waited so late to get tickets, we had to fly in on Tuesday and back out on Saturday as there were no tickets for Sunday or Monday. We did a little shopping Tuesday afternoon.
Wednesday was a little overcast, so we took the bus out to the Old Royal Navy Dockyard in Sandy's Parish (and to the Bermuda Maritime Museum), ate lunch and shopped Then we took the ferry back to Hamilton. I walked through the historical society exhibit in the library and Bob went to the Perot post office. Then we did some more shopping. After dinner we went to a slide presentation at the hotel on Bermudan architecture (Night Life tip)
Note on the picture:
Moon gates are round limestone gates through which honeymooners walk to ensure a lifetime of good luck.
On Thursday, we stopped at the Bermuda Aquarium Museum and Zoo in Flatt's Village, Smith Parish (BAMZ) on the way to St. George. After lunch in St. George (and I found out that I hated the Ploughman's lunch), we visited St. Peters, the Carriage Museum and the Historical Society. St. George. We just looked at the Deliverance from the outside, but we did go to see the slide show at the Town Hall and walked around Somer's Garden. I took a swim in the hotel pool in the evening (it was outdoors but heated). I had wanted to snorkel, but the windy weather Wednesday had stirred things up, and the Bermudians thought it was too cold to swim. The hotel had a lavish Thanksgiving buffet. Afterwards there was another slide presentation on the flora and fauna of Bermuda.
Botanical Gardens was our first stop on Friday, November 24th and then after lunch at the cafeteria we hopped the bus to take the Friday tour of Spittal Pond
We left Saturday afternoon November 25th after stopping off at the horse show (jumping) at the Botanical Garden. Pictures are at Show Jumping Then we went on out to the airport on St. David's at Airport (BDA)
Although Bermuda is expensive, at current prices (not what we paid in 1995) this 4 days would cost us $1450.00 *each* (a total of $2900) including transportation (airfare, taxi to and from the airport and 3 day bus tickets), hotel with breakfast and dinner, and admissions to the Aquarium, the Dockyard, and various places in St. George. That's because most of the things we did were low cost or free.
(It doesn't of course include the cost of gifts I bought for my children or souvenirs or film and processing.)
I have some comparison pictures of 1963 and 1995 on the
Hamilton page and on the
Flatts Village page
We visited some places in 1963 that we didn't go in 1995.
Fort St. Catherines and the
Somerset Bridge in Sandy's Parish We visited both of these places again in 2004.
We were supposed to go to St. George on Tuesday, go to Hamilton on Wednesday and then go to Kings Wharf on Thursday and leave on Friday at 11 a.m. Instead, because of the wind and weather, we came into Hamilton on Tuesday November 16, 2004. The travelogue on Hamilton has some pictures and narrative for Tuesday and Wednesday and will eventually have some links to other pictures and tips.
On Tuesday from the Visitor's Center near the docks we purchased two 3-day bus passes ($28 @) which are also good on the ferries. At the same time, we got a Bermuda Heritage Pass at $25 @. The Visitor's Center only took cash. No plastic.
Tuesday we went to Somerset Bridge and King's Wharf.
Wednesday we walked around Hamilton, visited the Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute, Verdmont and the Bermuda Aquarium, Museum and Zoo.
Thursday, November 18, 2004, the ship motored around to St. George Some photos and narrative are in the travelogue, and evenutally there will be links to locations where there are more pictures.
Friday November 19, 2004, the ship left at noon.
In 2004, the cost of the visit, including the cruise ship fare, admissions and transportation on Bermuda and food was $1,958.89 for the two of us (less than $1000 each) - again excluding gifts. This shows that using the cruise ship as a hotel is indeed cheaper.
In 2007, we did a repositioning cruise on Royal Caribbean Grandeur of the Seas. We got a bus/ferry pass from the ship($20 @ for two days), and took the ferry in to Hamilton where we visited Perot Post Office, and went to the Historical Society Museum. We went out to the Botanical Garden (had lunch) and finally got to visit Camden House (free). Then we took a bus out to St. George and got off and took a bus that went around St. Davids where we had not been before. We got back to the ship late.
The following day we took a ferry in to Hamilton and shopped a bit and then came back and had lunch at the Frog and Onion which was $35.00.
The 2011 visit on Carnival Pride was abbreviated by Tropical Storm Sean. We started a day late and didn't get there until Weds. noon. I had a private guide (Duke Somers) and we drove to things that I couldn't get to easily on the bus. The following day I did a little shopping in the Dockyard area and the ship left a half day early.
- Pros:Clean, safe, close, picturesque
- Cons:Expensive, small
- In a nutshell:Pink sand beaches
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