Bermuda shopping & the best stores

 
There is no sales tax as you shop in Bermuda. However that doesn't make things any cheaper except for a few items. Why? Because there are import duties on goods and most of the items in Bermuda are imported. Import duty is a way the government raises funds. Duty varies on the type of goods, but is always included in the price. So the key to tax free shopping in Bermuda is to go for the locally made quality items which are otherwise not available elsewhere. 
 
The best buys in Bermuda 
There are lots of Bermuda made articles like cedar items, blown glass, handcrafts, pottery, fashions and paintings by local artists. Sports clothes and sun straws are also good buys. There are excellent books on Bermuda with wide range of titles including travel, history, art & architecture, diving and lot more. 
 
With the military and British colonial legacy of Bermuda, and a natural tendency for most Bermudians not to throw anything away, the island has become a treasure trove of collectibles. Many types of small items can be found that reflect a slice of Bermuda's history. Many of such items have found their way to the island from other countries. 
 
Such items include old tins, buttons, bottles, original items of china & brass and lot more. You’ll find many of these items in the small stalls and shops in the alleys of Hamilton City. 
 
The sea has played an important role in Bermuda's history. You can purchase a range of items based on marine theme like displays of propellers, brass plates... the marine knots will remind you of the original regatta or ocean yacht races. You can engage yourself for hours searching for that little piece of the past to take home with you.  
 
 
 
You also get excellent imported merchandise in Bermuda like French perfumes, English bone china, Swiss watches, Danish silver and jewelry, cameras, Irish linen, Scottish tweeds, Italian silks, cashmere sweaters, leather goods, liquor and liqueurs and many other great products. 
 
My list of unique and best buys in Bermuda 
  • Bermuda cedar Items: The island has abundance of cedar trees and hence so many uniquely designed handcrafted cedar items are available like mugs, book ends, carvings, sculptures, picture frames, trays etc. 
  • Bermuda Gombey Rag Dolls: Gombey is a traditional and treasured dance tradition in Bermuda. 
  • Banana Leaf Dolls: Made of Bermuda banana leafs. 
  • Bermuda Longtail Jewelry: The beautiful white-tailed tropic birds known as Longtails, are seen on Bermuda's coastline during summer. The birds spend the winter at the sea looking for fishes and come back to the island for nesting during the summer. There are many jewelry of gold and silver that are designed on the longtails. 
  • Bermuda Moongate Jewelry: Moongates in Bermuda are arches that bring good luck to the couples who walk through them. This is a very special tradition of Bermuda. 
  • Bermuda Rum Cakes: These cakes are made with Black Seal rum of Bermuda 
  • Books on Bermuda history and travel: There are some great books describing the fascinating history of Bermuda and its colonization. And there are some travel books that explore the nooks & crannies of the island. You will get them only in Bermuda. 
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    The main shopping centers and the stores in Bermuda are in Hamilton City along the Front Street (located centrally), at the Clocktower Mall in Royal Naval Dockyard (at the western end) and Somers Wharf in St. Georges (at the eastern end). 
     
    If you are leaving by air, then the airport is a good place to buy duty free  items which are cheaper than the stores in the island. Of course the varieties may be less, but you get most of the usual stuff from Bermuda rum cakes to island's Gosling rum.  
     
     
     
    Store/Shop Hours in Bermuda 
    In general, you can shop 9am to 5pm, Monday through Saturday. Except for the stores at Clocktower Mall in Dockyard, shops in Bermuda are usually closed on Sundays and other public holidays. So if you reach Hamilton City after 5pm on a week day or anytime on Sunday, it will look quite deserted. 
     
    However the Supermarkets remain open for much longer (usually from 8am to 10pm Monday-Saturday and 1pm - 5pm on Sundays). 
     
    Harbor Nights celebration takes place on every Wednesday in Hamilton city (April through September), when most of the shops and restaurants on Front street remain open till late evening. Many stores & shops on such nights are usually open until 9pm. Same is the case in St George on Tuesdays when Market Nights are celebrated. Also, stores stay open late on Fridays during the Christmas shopping season. 
     
    Not sure why I took this picture below. My wife was then busy buying a seahorse crystal which we still proudly hold in a glass cabinet back at home. Perhaps I took this picture because this somewhat sums up what shopping in Bermuda is all about. 
     
    A Bermuda Shop 
    Bermuda Shop 
     
    Shopping categories and the best Bermuda stores 
    Following are my Bermuda shopping categories. Click a category to know about the items and find out the best stores in Bermuda selling them. 
     
    Art & Craft: Information about art galleries, studios and craft centers in Bermuda exhibiting & selling paintings, drawings, photos, sculptors, models and other artworks from renowned artists. 
     
    Bermuda Books: Here I have reviewed a number of outstanding Bermuda books covering diverse subjects. I've also listed the top bookstores in the island. 
     
    Bermuda Shorts: Know all about Bermuda shorts - why are they so popular, get a guide to buy the right shorts from the right stores, comments from women & men buyers. 
     
    Clothing Stores: A review of the clothing or apparel shopping options in Bermuda and the top stores in the island. 
     
    Bermuda Local Food & Drinks: If you are looking for the best of Bermuda food products, wine or spirits, or even Cuban cigars, check out these great offerings and places you get them. 
     
    Glassware and Ceramics: Here you will know about some great Bermuda shops on glassware & ceramics, like the Dockyard Glassworks, Bermuda Clay Works Pottery, Island Shop, Bluck's, Bermuda Glass Bowling Studio and such. 
     
    Gifts and Souvenirs: Finding the little gifts & souvenir in Bermuda can be quite puzzling. You may keep searching for hours to get what you want. Know about our favorite stores. 
     
    Jewelry and Accessories: In Bermuda, you can find artists selling their handmade jewelry or accessories which often have island themes and are just lovely. 
     
    Perfume and Cosmetics: Some great shops on Bermuda perfumes and cosmetics include Bermuda Perfumery, Gibbon's Perfume Shop, A.S Coopers & Sons, Dockyard shops etc. 
     
    Kids Stores: Here are the best kids stores in Bermuda selling all sorts of children's items like clothing, art & craft, games, DVDs and lot more. 
     
    Thrift Stores: There are several thrift stores in Bermuda where you can get a lot of value buys. These stores are generally attached to charities and provide various kinds of value items in low price. So if you are looking for small local items that are cheap and at the same time serving as excellent gift or souvenir or even as great household items, then explore some of the thrift stores in Bermuda. Most of the items come through donations and can be used ones. 
     
    Tattoo Parlors: How about finding a clean reputable tattoo parlor in the island and getting them on your vacation as a nice memory of your time in Bermuda? 
     
    People's Market: This is an open area market where vendors sell all kinds of items in an affordable price and in an atmosphere which is family friendly and inviting. It's a great place to pick up traditional Bermudian items like art & craft, food items, clothes, books including used ones, jewelry items, bags & shoes and lot more. The market is held on every Saturday and more like a community event where you can meet many locals. There is also free live music, dance shows and loads of games for children. The weekly theme changes. There is no entry fee. It is held at Cedar Bridge Academy School campus in Devonshire parish. 
     
    Map of Bermuda Shops & Stores 
    Shopping Map: A map showing the main shops and stores in Hamilton City, Bermuda. 
     
    Bermuda Duty Free shopping & allowances 
    Check out Bermuda Duty Free to find out where can you get duty free items in Bermuda and how much of duty free shopping allowance is given. 
     
    Complete Bermuda Vacation Guide on eBooks!! 
    Want to design a perfect vacation in Bermuda? 
     
    Related Articles 
     
    1) Visit Bermuda Activities to know about all the popular activities in the island. 
     
    Visitors' Reviews & Comments 
     
    Jessica Lewis (July 2013) 
    Hi, I am traveling with my 79 year old mother. She was in Bermuda many years ago and said she wants to buy Irish knitwear for her great grandchild. Are there any stores that sell these?? Thanks, 
     
    Raj (bermuda-attractions.com) July 2013 
    Hi, You may not get Irish knitwear like sweaters etc in Bermuda. You can try Irish Linen Shop (31 Front Street, Hamilton City). They mainly keep Irish linen items, table cloths, handkerchiefs, napkins etc and even children dress materials. Regards, 
     
    Jean Klug (June 2013) 
    OK, Bear with me. I was in Hamilton last August wondering around and I came across a building that looked interesting so I went inside. Well, I found myself with 3 floors to explore. Everything from linens to toys, crystal and something that I want to find again. I bought a jar of candy. It was different colored candy coated sea shells.  
     
    Not very expensive and for the life of me I can't remember the name of this wonderful place I found. Guess I was watching the time and wanted to get back to the ferry to take me back to the ship. Is The Bermuda Shop what I was in and where I found that wonderful candy? I am going back to Bermuda in October and would like to find that candy again and buy extras for gifts. Hope you can help me. Blessings, Jean 
     
    Raj (bermuda-attractions.com) June 2013 
    Hi, From your description it sounds like you went to Phoenix building which is located at the corner of Queen and Reid Streets in Hamilton City. Phoenix Group originally started as a drug store in 1902 (this was their original store, The Phoenix Center). The group later expanded to a major chain of pharmacies in the island and then added the large department stores (Brown & Co.). 
     
    The Phoenix Building at Hamilton City (3 Reid Street) houses both the pharmacy and a branch of Brown & Co over three floors. You will find all sorts of items here including gifts & souvenirs, accessories, perfumes & cosmetics, jewelry, greeting cards, chocolates & candies, sunglasses, handbags etc. It's a great place to shop at reasonable prices. The Brown & Co. (which is part of the Phoenix group) also has a separate building of its own in Hamilton (35 Front Street). Open hours (at both places): Monday - Saturday (8:30am to 5:30pm), Sunday & Holidays (1pm to 5pm) 
     
     
     
     
    Shopping in Bermuda Reviewed by Raj Bhattacharya Rating: 4.5
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
    _________________________________________________ 
    By Raj Bhattacharya 
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