Kristin White 2017-05-02 09:39:49
WHETHER YOU HAVE THREE DAYS OR THREE WEEKS, THERE’S SO MUCH TO SEE AND DO IN BERMUDA. Bermuda, an island created as a result of a volcanic eruption from the ocean floor some 100 million years back, is truly unique. From the moment you set your sights on its crystal-clear, turquoise waters stretching over its soft pink sands and the white stepped roofs of its brightly coloured homes, you’ll agree — Bermuda is a magical place with so much to explore. THE GREAT OUTDOORS In Bermuda, known for its famous pink-sand beaches, you’ll find countless bays and coves dotted along its coastline. The better-known beaches are located along the southern shore in the West End. Take a walk from popular Horseshoe Bay along sandy trails to visit other beaches, including Jobson’s Cove (perfect for children) and Warwick Long Bay (Bermuda’s longest beach). For even more fun, get under or on the water. Snorkel or scuba dive Bermuda’s waters, which are home to the northernmost coral reef system in the world. Whether you rent a boat, Jet Ski, kayak or paddleboard, the opportunities for an aquatic experience of a lifetime are virtually endless. Once you’ve dried off, remember there’s just as much to see on land. Explore Bermuda by foot or take a bike ride along the Bermuda Railway Trail. This 22-mile-long railway that served Bermuda from 1931 to 1948 was transformed into a trail for hikers and cyclists in 1984. The trail is closed off to motor vehicles but has access points in most of the island’s parishes. Consider hopping on the trail just past the Bermuda Botanical Gardens in Paget — which are also worth a visit — and hiking deeper into the western parishes, travelling through a spooky underground tunnel, past farms and through close-knit residential communities. The western railway trails are filled with loquat and cherry trees, which are hopefully ripe for the picking! RICH IN HISTORY Bermuda was discovered in 1503 by the Spanish explorer Juan de Bermúdez. In 1612, an English ship destined for Jamestown, Virginia, was shipwrecked on Bermuda’s shores, which led to the settlement of the island. For more than four centuries, people have called this island their home; and it is rich in history and culture. Learn Bermuda’s full story at the National Museum of Bermuda, located in The Royal Naval Dockyard. The museum is full of treasures that trace the island’s maritime and military history. Visit the Hall of History, which features artwork by local artists like Graham Foster, whose 1,000-square-foot mural brilliantly depicts Bermuda’s history through five centuries. At the opposite end of the island is the historic Town of St. George, a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site and an outstanding example of the earliest English urban settlement in the New World. Founded in 1612, the town tells the tale of life in Bermuda over the first two centuries, including its role in America’s Revolutionary and Civil Wars. Visitors can spend hours getting lost in the town’s old winding streets and cobblestone alleys and exploring forts and historic homes and churches from the 17th century, including the oldest continuously used Protestant church in the New World, St. Peter’s Church. ART ABOUNDS Bermuda has been calling to artists for hundreds of years. Countless writers, painters and musicians have all put pen to paper and brush to canvas to capture the island’s sights and sounds. The bustling capital is a visual art lover’s dream. Just outside of Hamilton, in the Botanical Gardens, is the Masterworks Museum of Bermuda Art, a multilevel gallery featuring art inspired by Bermuda. The collection features pieces by artists like Georgia O’Keeffe and Winslow Homer. At the City Hall & Arts Centre, you will find the Bermuda Society of Arts (BSoA). Also known as “the people’s gallery,” this warm space is where local artists showcase their work. BSoA’s monthly Friday night show openings are the perfect start to the weekend as you mix and mingle with other art enthusiasts — and perhaps take home some artwork as a memento. The Bermuda National Gallery, also at the City Hall & Arts Centre, is an impressive and welcoming space featuring local and international artists. Its exhibitions, both permanent and rotating, often provide provocative and compelling commentary on Bermudian and island culture. Not all art is in the galleries! The Corporation of Hamilton has commissioned public artwork, so as you explore the city, be on the lookout for murals, artistic poetry and mosaics. The Hamilton Princess & Beach Club has undergone a massive renovation, including the addition of a world-class collection of contemporary art, with works by Banksy, Liu Ye, Andy Warhol and Nelson Mandela, amongst others. Guided tours are offered weekly. BERMUDA EXPLORER Tel: 534-1797 Website: bermudaexplorer.com Bermuda Explorer provides visitors to the island with the unique opportunity of experiencing Bermuda the way locals do. Have you ever taken a trip to a country and left feeling like you really did not get to know the local native people and their culture? Bermuda Explorer introduces you to vetted local families that welcome you to their home where you learn their traditional ways of cooking local cuisine, and then you get to eat with the family as they tell you about their island home and heritage. Some families may even take you fishing, “Bermuda style, off de rocks,” then take you back home to cook up the fish you just caught and enjoy some Bermuda Rum Swizzle. Or maybe you prefer to have a traditional afternoon tea at a cosy Bermudian home. Tell them what sort of an experience you are looking for and they will customise it for you. This truly will be an unforgettable experience as you meet new friends and create memories of a lifetime with these friendly and hospitable locals. BERMUDA NATIONAL GALLERY (BNG) City Hall & Arts Centre 17 Church St., Hamilton Tel: 295-9428 Website: bng.bm Bermuda National Gallery celebrates 25 years in 2017. Join them as they explore The Power of Art in an exhibition that challenges ways of seeing. Artwork is arranged to generate dialogue on current topics, such as environmental protection and artist as activist. Visitors may be surprised by the museum’s permanent collection, which spans several centuries and geographical regions. The exhibition is augmented with loans of artwork by Damien Hirst and Shepard Fairey. BNG is conveniently located in City Hall & Arts Centre in Hamilton, beside the main bus terminal and a short walk from the ferry. Admission is $5 for non-members; free for seniors, students of all ages and NARM members. BERMUDA PERFUMERY, THE Stewart Hall, 5 Queen St., St. George’s Tel: 293-0627 / 800-527-8213 Lili Bermuda Butterfield Place, 67 Front St., Hamilton Tel: 296-2885 Website: lilibermuda.com The Bermuda Perfumery is an internationally recognised couture perfume house that is open to visitors. Lili Bermuda fragrances for men and women, which capture the essence of Bermuda, are created on property at Stewart Hall in St. George’s and are sold in their retail stores at Stewart Hall and their new Lili Bermuda store in Hamilton. The line is sold exclusively in Bermuda and makes a crowd-pleasing gift for loved ones upon your return home. The store and adjacent history room in St. George’s are open Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in summer, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the winter. CRYSTAL CAVES OF BERMUDA, THE 8 Crystal Cave Rd., Hamilton Parish Tel: 293-0640 Website: caves.bm Stunning natural beauty is on display more than 140 feet below the Earth’s surface, where stalactites and stalagmites have been forming for millennia. Visitors can choose to encounter the Crystal Cave, the Fantasy Cave or both. In the Crystal Cave, state-of-the-art lights glitter off the natural rock; and visitors cross a beautiful lake via a pontoon bridge that rises and falls with the tides. Meanwhile, the Fantasy Cave shows off a completely separate display of amazing rock formations. DELIVERANCE 1 Ordnance Island, St. George’s Tel: 297-0045 / 297-5791 Website: sgf.bm/about/deliverance Visit this life-size replica of one of the two ships built by the castaways of the Sea Venture wreck of 1609. Explore above and below decks and follow the audiovisual exhibits that portray life on board and how this ship became famous as “The Ship that Saved America.” Below decks you will meet William Strachey, Secretary to the Virginia Company, an automatronic life-size character that tells the tale of survival on this bounteous island and of the eventual rescue of the starving settlers in Jamestown, Virginia, in 1610. Open Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; closed public holidays. Disabled entrance for lower dock. Admission: adults, $3; seniors and children 5 to 12 years old, $2. DOLPHIN QUEST National Museum of Bermuda The Royal Naval Dockyard, Sandys Tel: 234-4464 / 800-248-3316 Website: dolphinquest.com Dolphin Quest is a place where you can swim with beautiful dolphins in their ocean-water safe haven within the old stone fortress, now home to the National Museum of Bermuda, one of the world’s most extraordinary naval history museums. Feel the thrill of a lifetime as you touch, swim with and even kiss a dolphin. Enjoy a wide range of encounters for adults, children, families and groups. Dolphin Quest is open daily all year round from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Reserve your encounter online or by phone. Be inspired and make a difference. Your Dolphin Quest participation supports marine mammal education, conservation and scientific study. ELBOW BEACH CYCLES LTD. Elbow Beach Bermuda Resort & Spa 60 South Shore Rd., Paget Tel: 296-2300 Website: elbowbeachcycles.com Why follow the crowd when you can discover Bermuda’s hidden coves and dazzling pink-sand beaches for yourself? And in high style. Pick from the island’s newest and most advanced rental fleet, and then put yourself in the laid-back island mood with their industry-leading YouDrive™ tuition. For the widest choice of gas scooters, electric scooters, hybrid electric bikes and mountain bikes, and the most reassuring safety record on the island, book online or call today. HIDDEN GEMS OF BERMUDA LTD. Tel: 236-1300 Website: islandtourcentre.com Come along for a fun-filled day on tour with Hidden Gems of Bermuda Ltd. Their mission is to provide an experience of a lifetime exploring Bermuda’s best-kept secrets. Travel with them to exquisite locations offering a sense of excitement for individuals with an adventurous spirit and passion for the great outdoors. They promise to take you on a journey to some of the finest places that nature has to offer, including entering into the island’s one and only jungle, exploring caves off the beaten path, interacting with tropical fish and much more. Get ready for an exclusive experience learning about Bermuda’s natural habitats and geological formations. MASTERWORKS MUSEUM OF BERMUDA ART Botanical Gardens 183 South Shore Rd., Paget Tel: 299-4000 Website: bermudamasterworks.com Masterworks is Bermuda’s only purposebuilt museum and is home to more than 1,400 works of Bermuda-inspired art by such famous names as Winslow Homer, Albert Gleizes and Georgia O’Keeffe. Local artists are also on display throughout the year, and they also offer art courses in various mediums for all levels of experience. Children’s art classes are available, and on one Saturday of the month, Super Saturday offers free art activities to all. The museum shop sells prints and original local art, and Homer’s Café serves baked goods, gluten-free goods and lunch items. The museum is open Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., with Homer’s opening Monday through Saturday at 9 a.m., and Sundays at 11 a.m. MEMORABLE EVENING IN BERMUDA At Fourways Inn & Restaurant Tel: 236-6517 Website: marktwain.bm The three-hour Memorable Evening in Bermuda has received rave reviews. Now entering its second year, this five-star (TripAdvisor) evening has been hailed as, “Awesome,” “The Best Evening in Bermuda,” “Fantastic Performance.” Enjoy two complimentary wine beverages from 6:30 p.m., then an exquisite candlelight dinner in one of Bermuda’s finest restaurants, Fourways Inn & Restaurant, located in Paget. After dinner, step back in time to 1905 with 60 minutes of wit and humour in the performance of Mark Twain in “Reminiscences and Other Lies.” Mark Twain was a frequent visitor to Bermuda between 1867 and 1910 and said, “You can go on to Heaven if you want. I’d rather stay in Bermuda.” NATIONAL MUSEUM OF BERMUDA 1, The Keep, The Royal Naval Dockyard Sandys Tel: 234-1418 / 234-1333 Website: nmb.bm Immerse yourself in 500 years of history at the National Museum, housed within the island’s largest fort. The 15-acre property includes British military buildings of the Keep citadel and the award-winning Commissioner’s House. Inside its historic limestone walls, learn about Bermuda’s cultural links with the West Indies and the Azores, trans-Atlantic slavery, and the island’s defence through two World Wars. Marvel at local artist Graham Foster’s 1,000-square-foot mural of Bermuda history and other maritime art. Explore the collection of small local watercraft and Shipwreck Island: Sunken Clues to Bermuda’s Past, an exhibit showcasing Spanish gold, colonial trade goods and other artefacts recovered from local shipwrecks. Kids will love the whimsical Museum Playground & Playhouse, complete with maritime interactives and a 70-foot moray eel. Open April through November from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (last admission at 4 p.m.); December through March from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (last admission at 4 p.m.). Adults, $15; seniors, $12; free for children under 16. SPIRIT OF BERMUDA Bermuda’s Iconic Sail Training Vessel Tel: 737-5667 Website: bermudasloop.org Facebook: bermudasloopfoundation Twitter: @SpiritofBermuda Instagram: SpiritofBermuda Spirit of Bermuda, the island’s only sail training vessel, spends two weeks on sail training voyages with local students, then a week of maintenance, then two more weeks of sail training, and so on throughout the school year. On weekends throughout the year, and during maintenance weeks, Gavin Spirit is available for charters and is perfect for birthdays, family reunions, corporate events and other special occasions. Learn about Bermuda’s maritime history, their sail training programme and the island. Spirit has a capacity for 50 passengers/guests, and food and beverage can be arranged by the charterer or can be provided by special arrangement. They offer two- or three-hour daytime or sunset sailing cruises around the Great Sound. Cruises can start from either Dockyard or Hamilton, and rates start at $3,400 for the two-hour cruise which includes the ship and crew. Spirit was voted “Best Charter Boat” in this year’s Best of Bermuda Awards. Create your own unique experience and find out for yourself how enjoyable a day or evening on the water can be! ST. GEORGE’S FOUNDATION, THE Somers Wharf, 16 Water St., St. George’s Tel: 297-8043 Website: sgf.bm The mission of The St. George’s Foundation is to invest in the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Town of St. George and its related fortifications future by providing cultural, educational and recreational experiences that will benefit both residents and visitors now and for generations to come. They work to support and revitalise the local economy by creating new opportunities for business, and to develop historic St. George’s as a world tourism destination. Their visitor attractions are the first-class World Heritage Centre, which serves as the prime orientation centre with a full range of related activities, from walking tours and educational programmes to lively historical reenactments and open-air concerts on the Plaza. They also operate the Deliverance replica, “The Ship that Saved America,” located on Ordnance Island, just off the Town Square. The foundation’s vision for St. George’s involves more than bricks and mortar. It’s about fostering a sense of pride amongst citizens and developing a rejuvenated town that’s alive with activity and excitement, a place people will want to visit time and time again. Their motto is “Celebrating 20 Years of Bringing Bermuda’s History to Life within the UNESCO World Heritage Site.” WORLD HERITAGE CENTRE, THE 19 Penno’s Wharf, St. George’s Tel: 297-5791 / 297-8043 Website: sgf.bm/about/world-heritage-centre Enhance your East End experience at this orientation centre housed in a massive restored U.S. Civil War warehouse. Discover why the historic town and its related fortifications have been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in a range of interactive and family-friendly exhibits, including life-size dioramas, informative touch screens and a short orientation film entitled A Stroll Through St. George’s. There is the maritime exhibit of original artwork highlighted by the scale models of the Sea Venture, Deliverance, and Patience, the first ships critical in Bermuda’s first settlement. The newest displays are the huge restored painted murals of old Bermuda done by Emile Verpilleux. Pick up maps and guides and unique souvenirs from the charity gift shop, Second Hand Rose. Open Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; closed public holidays. Disabled/elevator available. Free Wi-Fi. Admission: adults, $5; seniors, $3; children 5 to 12 years old, $2. Explore bermuda by or Take a bike ride Along With bermuda Railway Trail. Bermuda National gallery celebraties 25 yers with art arrenged to generate dialogue on current topics. Spirit is available for chapter and is perfect for birthdays, family reuniomns, corporate events and other special occasions.
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