Bermuda: Top Attractions

bermuda
Sandcastle on beach  (Digital Vision)

With clean streets, pink-sand beaches, a touch of British élan, and more golf courses per square mile than anywhere else in the world, Bermuda offers a high-style vacation with lots to see and do.

Beaches
Bermuda is known for its beautiful beaches, especially the calm waters and pink sands of Horseshoe Bay and Warwick Long Bay. Sometimes crowded, Horseshoe Bay has onsite lockers, lifeguards, a snack shop, umbrella rentals, and a shallow area perfect for young kids. Elbow Beach is another wide swath of pretty sand and inviting surf. Shelly Bay Beach in Hamilton Parish is the North Shore's largest beach with facilities. Young kids like the playground and the grassy area.
Additional Info: 800.BERMUDA, www.bermudatourism.com

Shipwreck Diving
Couple underwater visibility of 70 to 100 feet with more than 350 shipwrecks and you get waters worth diving in. Popular wrecks include: the Rita Zovetta, a 360-foot Italian cargo ship that ran aground in 1924; the Mary Celestia, sunk in 1964 and now adorned with a coral encrusted paddlewheel, her nine-foot long cannons scattered about; and L'Herminie, a French gunboat that crashed in 1838. For interesting coral formations, dive Tarpon Hole as well as the South West Breaker.
Additional Info: 800.BERMUDA, www.bermudatourism.com

Royal Naval Dockyard: Bermuda Maritime Museum and Dolphin Quest (Snorkel Park)
Completed in the 1820s, the former British fort now houses shops, restaurants, and art galleries. In the six-acre inner fortress known as the Keep, the Bermuda Maritime Museum displays artifacts ranging from 1878 sounding machines to harpoons and whale vertebrae. At Dolphin Quest, the museum's most popular program, ages five and older can pet and swim with friendly bottlenoses. Newly opened, Snorkel Park is best for beginners, and features a marked trail as well as floating rest stations. Know that when cruise ships pull into port, the Dockyard's facilities become crowded.
Dolphin Quest: 441.234.4464
Additional Info: 800.BERMUDA, www.bermudatourism.com

Railway Trail
The Railway Trail, the route of Bermuda's defunct railroad, runs east-to-west across the island. Vehicles are prohibited on this mostly paved path, thus making it a great place for family hikes, bike rides, and picnics. Popular sections include the three-mile stretch from Warwick Pond to overlooks of the south shore beaches, and the paths from the fishing boats at Black Bay to Middle Road and South Road junctions.
Additional Info: 800.BERMUDA, www.bermudatourism.com

Bermuda Aquarium, Museum, and Zoo
This is a great attraction for young kids. The centerpiece of the aquarium, the 145,000-gallon North Rock coral reef tank, holds hundreds of brightly hued fish. Other exhibits showcase a Galapagos tortoise, harbor seals, a wallaby, and a two-toed sloth. In the Discovery Room, kids ages two to six find out about animals through stories and songs. Check the schedule for program dates and hours.
Bermuda Aquarium, Museum, and Zoo: 441. 293.2727, www.bamz.org

Fort St. Catherine
Children love to explore this fort's maze-like interior passageways, and its ramparts provide views of the barrier reefs that line the bottom of Bermuda's crystal blue sea. Unlike Royal Naval Dockyard, Fort St. Catherine, constructed in 1614 and enlarged over the centuries, isn't part of a bustling harbor marketplace—it has been turned into a museum. As such, families can relax, learn about Bermuda's history, and envision colonial sentinels scanning the horizon for enemy vessels.
Bermuda Department of Tourism: 441.297.1920. www.bermudatourism.com

Bermuda Underwater Institute
The institute makes a famously good stop for grade schoolers fascinated about sea life, from its video featuring a simulated dive to 12,000 feet to the pirate booty on display. Be amazed at videos of submerging whales, schools of toothy sharks, and clusters of floating jelly fish, and gaze at Spanish coins recovered from the depths of Davy Jones' Locker.
Bermuda Underwater Institute: 441.292.7314, www.buei.org

Gibb's Hill Lighthouse
Man your post and guide ships to port by climbing the 185 steps to the top of Gibb's Hill Lighthouse, a curiously historic landmark on the island of Bermuda. Constructed in 1846, the lighthouse shines a powerful beam of light visible 40 miles off the coast. Learn about the ships the lighthouse couldn't save by perusing the displays on the treacherous reefs that wrecked many an ocean-going vessel. The top of Gibb's Hill Lighthouse is the highest point in Bermuda, standing 362 feet above sea level.
Bermuda Department of Tourism: 441.238.8069, www.bermudatourism.com

St. George
St. George is a UNESCO World Heritage site that marks the spot where Bermuda's first settlers came ashore in 1609. Their ship, named the Deliverance and bound for the colony of Jamestown in Virginia, ran aground on the island's reefs. Board a replica of the vessel and recreate life aboard the ship. Fun things to do include sticking your head and hands in the stocks and seeing a ducking stool used to punish "nags" and "gossips." Afterwards (of course) shop for souvenirs.
Bermuda Department of Tourism: 800.BERMUDA, www.bermudatourism.com

Golf
Golf has long been a Bermuda specialty. Home to more golf courses per square mile than anywhere else in the world, this Gulf Stream xanadu is the ideal location to introduce the sport to your ‘tweens and teens. Book tee times and lessons up to 60 days in advance at five of the islands' courses, or use the Tourism Department's golf concierge, who will request space at two additional clubs.
Bermuda Department of Tourism: 800.BERMUDA, www.bermudatourism.com

Published: 8 Apr 2005 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication

Best Hotels in Bermuda

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The Fairmont Southampton
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The Fairmont Hamilton Princess
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The Reefs

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