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Best of Bermuda

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6 August 2013 by Bert Hyett

Good things come in small packages, and this is certainly reflected in what Bermuda has to offer. Bermuda has plenty to boast about. As well as its powdery pink beaches, limestone cliffs and alluring waters it has a 200 square mile coral reef plateau, making diving here exquisite. If you'd rather be on dry land however, Bermuda also claims to have more golf courses per square mile than any other country. Nearly 1,000 miles north of the Caribbean this little island is far away from the hustle and bustle and offers seclusion and exclusivity; it's the perfect location for a bit of rest and relaxation.

Festivals and events 

In September Bermuda holds the Gombey Festival to showcase the rich traditional folk art found here. A compelling display of dance, music and colourful costume, Gombey dance and music is a mixture of British, West African and indigenous new-world cultures.

At the Botanical Gardens in June, the Masterworks Museum of Bermuda Art holds the 'Double Fantasy Bermuda Tribute' in John Lennon's honour. The double fantasy freesia flower that provided the inspiration for his final album resides here and the event includes art instillations, exhibits and book debuts. There's also the Peace Day Concert, which honours the music of John Lennon and other great artists.

The Cup Match Cricket Festival is a public holiday unique to Bermuda, usually held on the Thursday and Friday closest to the 1st of August. It's about more than just cricket though and celebrates the emancipation of slavery.

Best beaches in Bermuda

Horseshoe Bay, Bermuda

Famous for their powder pink sands, you won't be disappointed by Bermuda's beaches. With 200 square miles of coral reef plateau, there's an abundance of fish to see, and dozens of wrecks to dive. If snorkelling is more your thing, visit Tobacco Bay where the snorkelling is especially good. Most popular is the sweeping crescent of Horseshoe Bay, and Elbow Beach is especially serene and convenient if you want to visit the capital.

Essential experiences in Bermuda 

Botanical Gardens, Bermuda

  • The parish of St George's is Britain's oldest surviving town in the new world and showcases Bermuda's colonial past. It's so well preserved in fact that it has become a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Bask in the history as you explore museums and churches, highlights include the Historical Society Museum and the Tucker House Museum.
  • Visit the Lili Bermuda Perfumery in St George's where you can buy and sample exclusive scents that represent the natural beauty of the island.
  • Reflect on the beauty of the Botanical Gardens, 36 acres of Bermuda's bountiful flora located in the Paget Parish.
  • Explore Bermuda's hidden treasure; underground lie the crystal and fantasy caves, mystical limestone caves where stalagmites and stalactites have formed over millions of years.
  • Dive the many wrecks that gave Bermuda the title 'wreck-diving capital of the world'.

The Crystal Caves, Bermuda

Read and watch

Read: 'The History of Mary Prince: A West Indian Slave Narrative' by Mary Prince is a record of experiences from the first black woman to escape from slavery in the British colonies.

Food and drink in Bermuda

Typically food in Bermuda has British, West Indian and African influences. Unsurprisingly seafood is excellent here; try the wahoo and the rockfish. Traditional dishes include Bermuda fish chowder, pawpaw casserole and peas and rice.

Make sure you get a good view for the sunset, sit back and enjoy a 'Dark and Stormy', a cocktail made with dark rum and ginger beer, poured over ice.

Recommended restaurants:

  • Try the Black Horse Tavern on St David's Island for some authentic Bermudan cuisine.
  • Ascots Restaurant at Royal Palms in the Pembroke Parish provides culinary works of art in a prestigious setting, a highly rated fine-dining experience.
  • Chef Cheryl Kerr brings Bermudan cuisine to life at the No 6 Passenger Terminal on Front Street.

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Elbow Beach, Bermuda

Elbow Beach Resort, Bermuda

Contemporary resort

One fact about Elbow Beach is perhaps more illuminating than anything else we can say about it: it's a Mandarin Oriental. And like Mandarin hotels all over the world, it's a first-class resort with exemplary service and all the amenities the discerning leisure traveller could ask for.

Rosewood Tucker’s Point, Bermuda

Rosewood Tucker's Point, Bermuda

Contemporary resort

Rosewood Tucker's Point, one of Bermuda's most luxurious resorts, offers 200 acres of waterfront real estate with views of Castle Harbour, Harrington Sound and the Atlantic and a superb Beach Club.

Grotto Bay, Bermuda

Grotto Bay Beach Resort, Bermuda

Traditional hotel

Grotto Bay Beach Resort sits on a lush tropical estate along the water's edge in Bailey's Bay. Scattered across 21 acres and sloping down towards three private beaches are 11 brightly coloured cottages housing just over 200 rooms, all with ocean views and balconies or terraces.

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