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Bermuda

Bermuda Beach Vacation Tips

St. George, Bermuda; © BigStockPhoto.com
A Bermuda beach vacation is not exactly like going to a Caribbean island because it actually isn’t in the Caribbean.

But they share many of the same characteristics -- island locale, tropical beach and comfortable weather year-round. What they don’t share is price. Bermuda beach vacations are usually more expensive than most Caribbean island vacations.

This overseas territory of the United Kingdom is 650 miles east of North Carolina and nearly 1,000 miles north of San Juan, Puerto Rico. More than 80 percent of its total visitors are tourists from the United States.

U.S. visitors are drawn to Bermuda hotels and resorts because it is a quick two-hour flight from Washington D.C. It has a strong sense of colonial history and has many things to see and do. The island is a popular golf destination as well.

It also is a common stop for Caribbean cruises that begin at ports along the Atlantic coast of the United States.

As a member of the Caribbean Tourism Organization, Bermuda is 16th in popularity among the top Caribbean destinations for total vacation visits -- sandwiched between St. Lucia and Martinique. It is almost equally popular as a cruise visit and as a longer-term stopover visit for tourists.

Hotel and Resort Tips


Hotel and resort tourists fly into L.F. Wade International Airport in the St. George’s parish. The town of St. George’s is about three miles northeast. St. George’s is also a major cruise ship terminal. The capital at Hamilton is nine miles southwest.

From the airport, hotel and resort visitors will need a taxi or shuttle bus to reach a wide number of possible places to stay on this long and curving island. They are scattered all over the place. The longest drive will usually last less than an hour.

Visitors with a tight budget will find a decent number of hotels with pools in the range of $200 to $300 per night in the spring months. But they are usually not on beaches.

That leaves the question of how to get to a beach and other attractions. Tourists can’t rent cars or drive them on Bermuda. Instead, they can rent bicycles, scooters or two-seater electric cars (about $100 a day).

Another convenient option is the island’s extensive public bus and ferry system. Visitors can buy a seven-day pass for $62 at the time of this writing for unlimited use of both.

Bermuda Attractions


Unique attractions include dozens of military forts, large historic churches including Anglican Cathedral with its 157-step tower, and St. Peter's Church, built from island cedar in 1612.

Others include the 36-acre Botanical Gardens, 758 historic homes listed with the Bermuda National Trust; and the Royal Navy Dockyard, built more than 200 years ago.

Shoppers visit King’s Wharf, St. George’s and Hamilton for duty-free clothing, accessories, jewelry, cosmetics and perfumes.

Beach goers swim, snorkel or dive along the island’s famous pink sand beaches. Horseshoe Bay beach is a popular choice for cruise visitors.

Excursions include helmet diving, which is an underwater walk on the ocean floor connected to air tubes that go up to the ocean surface. Other excursions include Crystal Caves and Blue Hole Park, a nature reserve with a tranquil lagoon.

Active visitors can choose among eight different 18-hole golf courses, historic lighthouses and the Bermuda Aquarium and Zoo.

Entry Requirements / When to Go


Royal Navy Dockyard. Credit: Bermuda Tourism Authority
May through August are the dominant months of the year for stopover vacations with half of all visitors coming during that time. The least active months are January and February.

U.S. citizens visiting Bermuda by air need a passport upon returning to the U.S. Those visiting by sea need a government-issued photo ID and document proving citizenship (such as a passport card of birth certificate), unless they arrive via a cruise ship and have previously shown proof of citizenship.

Canadian citizens need a passport, official birth certificate OR original naturalization /citizenship certificate.

Bermuda Weather


The Bermuda climate is subtropical, mild and humid; gales and strong winds are common in winter. The average daytime high temperature ranges from the upper 60s in January and February to the mid 80s during the summer.

Average high temperatures range from the high 60s Fahrenheit in the winter to the upper 80s Fahrenheit in the summer.

Summer is the best time to go for warm weather, but it also is the start of a rainy season that goes from June through October. Historically, October is the worst month for rain. It rains on average between 10 and 17 days a month throughout the year.

Currency / Tipping


The Bermuda dollar equals the exchange rate of the U.S. dollar, but like most Caribbean destinations change will be given in local coins. There are no sales taxes.

A service charge often is added to a bill; if not, 15 percent is the norm for bars, hotels and restaurants, while 10-15 percent is the norm for taxis.

Culture / Geography


The dominant and official language is English because it is an overseas territory of the United Kingdom. The geography is low hills separated by fertile depressions.

Sources / More information


Scott S. Bateman is a professional journalist who has traveled widely throughout the Caribbean and the Americas.

Bermuda Hotel Map

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October 31, 2019
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