The weather outside might be getting frightful, but nestled in the Atlantic is a paradise where the sun never stops shining. Made up of 181 islands, islets and rocks, Bermuda is an irresistible paradise known for its pristine pink sand beaches, a pleasant climate that rarely sees extremes of either hot or cold, and locals who feel more like family than strangers.
But there’s more to this British territory than beach life. If you’re looking for a way to stretch your summer and escape the winter blues, Bermuda’s diverse culture and activities are sure to provide enough fun and adventure to carry you all the way into spring.
Make Yourself at Home
Every island paradise comes chock full of big cookie cutter hotels, but if you’re looking for luxury with a traditional Bermudian feel, search no further than Cambridge Beaches Resort and Spa. Cambridge is one of the oldest resorts on the island, and its traditional charm—combined with breathtaking views, three private beaches, three delicious restaurants, lush manicured gardens, adults-only accommodations (minimum age 13), the relaxing Ocean Spa, and enough water sports and activities to keep you busy from sun up to breathless sunset—is why guests return year after year.
Learn and Explore
Sure, you can spend your days lounging on the beach, but Bermuda has so much more to offer. Ditch the normal tours and opt for exploring the island by Segway instead. Roll through local neighborhoods, along glass beaches, through the historic Royal Navy Cemetery and down to the Royal Naval Dockyard to grab some famous Bermuda rum cake.
If water is more your speed than wheels, go on a jetski safari with H20 Sports and discover unique wildlife, historical points of interest and amazing island beauty. Dig beneath the island’s sandy surface and explore the Crystal and Fantasy caves or the Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute, where you’ll learn about the many famous shipwrecks you can dive, like The Cristóbal Colón.
Need an activity that keeps both of your feet on and aboveground? Head to the town of St. George and visit the home of James “Jemmy” Darrell, a pilot and free slave considered the first Black to own a home in Bermuda. A few doors down from Jemmy’s, you can spend the day learning how to make your own perfume at The Bermuda Perfumery before heading to Paget Parrish to the Masterworks Museum of Bermuda Art, where you’ll learn how Bermuda has inspired famous artists like Winslow Homer, Georgia O’Keeffe and Charles Demuth.
Eat Like a Bermudian
There’s no way you can come to Bermuda and not indulge in the amazing local cuisine. The culinary scene in Bermuda is as diverse as its people, and delicious! If you’re in town on a Sunday, you must do like locals do and eat a traditional Bermudian breakfast. The Paraquet Restaurant is one of many places on the island serving the quirky but delicious combo of salted codfish, boiled potatoes, bananas, boiled eggs and avocado that Bermuda locals know and love.
Everyone who comes to Bermuda knows that if they eat nothing else, they have to have one of the island’s famous fish sandwiches. The debate on who has the best can get heated, but if you stick to Woody’s in Somerset or Art Mels in St. George, you won’t be disappointed. Both of these island faves serve up light, spicy fish sandwiches (usually made with the locally caught Wahoo fish) topped with just the right amount of tartar sauce, lettuce and tomatoes. For a bit of sweet, try it on raisin bread…trust me.
Looking for a more traditional dining experience, with a non-traditional menu? The capital of Hamilton is home to Devil’s Isle, where you can experience a farm to table dinner that includes Arabic spiced cinnamon lamb lollies, duck tacos and blue cheese fries. For stunning views of the Hamilton Harbour, reserve a table at chef Marcus Samuelsson’s latest culinary delight, Marcus’, and dine on coco ceviche, jerk pork belly and peppered veal loin.
Don’t worry, I didn’t forget dessert. Bailey’s Ice Cream Parlour churns out over 30 all-natural house-made flavors; try them all!
Shop Like the Cool Kids
Style in Bermuda definitely follows the island’s laid back vibe, but when you’re ready to ditch the Bermuda shorts for something more on trend, there’s only one place to go. Located in the historic Somers Building in Hamilton, Urban Cottage is the place to shop. Owner Nicole Golden has created a retail space with a retro-futurist vibe that mixes cool new products (the urban) with timeworn, vintage Bermuda items (the cottage) effortlessly. From top to bottom Urban Cottage is filled with all of Nicole’s favorite things: flirty dresses and edgy jewelry, throw pillows and wine glasses, gummie worms and bread mixes, just to name a few. In typical island fashion, you can often find Nicole showing off that famous Bermudian hospitality by pouring wine for her guests as they shop and helping to pick out the perfect souvenir for loved ones back home.
Party the Night Away with New Friends
The marina at the Fairmont Hamilton Princess is a great place to grab a drink and a fresh hand rolled cigar, and get your two-step on after a long week at work. However, if you really want to have a great time, party with the locals. The people of Bermuda love a good time and have no problem opening their homes, bars and restaurants up to visitors looking to have a great time with new friends. One of the best times to party in Bermuda is over the holiday season, when every local bar on the island takes turns throwing a bash from the beginning of December on to well past New Year’s.
Danielle T. Pointdujour is a proud Howard University grad and Brooklynite living the passport life to the fullest. With over 70 countries under her belt, you can always find Danielle traveling the globe in search of new experiences and the hottest luxury hotels. You can follow her writing, musings and global adventures on her blog Hotel Whisperer and on Twitter and Instagram.