Hamilton Harbor Bermuda
Hamilton Harbor is the port area formed between Bermuda's Pembroke and Paget parishes. This is a natural port and is an extension of the Great Sound water area towards the east. It actually forms a tapering wedge between Pembroke and Paget.
With hundreds of boats and distant parish landscapes, Hamilton Harbor looks wonderful. The harbor serves as a major port for passenger cruises, freight ships and private yachts.
Hamilton harbor has been named after the capital port city of Bermuda - the City of Hamilton, which is located in Pembroke parish. Pembroke surrounds the northern side of the harbor while paget surrounds the southern part. Hamilton city itself was named in 1793 after the then governor of Bermuda - Sir Henry Hamilton. Before that, the harbor was known as Paget's Port, named after the Paget parish.
There are quite a few small islands like the Hinson's island, Marshall's island, Long island, and Hawkins island that are scattered across the entrance of the Hamilton harbor. This along with the small peninsula jutting out from Paget used to create blocks for large ships to enter the harbor.
The British navy spent some twelve years to finally discover a channel (called The Narrows) that was safe enough for their war ships to enter the Hamilton harbor. And when they found this channel, they opened it up to commercial freight lines and passenger cruise ships as well so that the port of Hamilton could flourish.
Although the British Navy initially used the St. George's port (the Convict Port) for their navy ships, Hamilton flourished to such an extent that in 1815, the capital of Bermuda was shifted from St. George to Hamilton. Lot of large ships started docking in Hamilton port. The city of Hamilton became the most bustling and busy place in Bermuda.
There is another small island (known as White's Island) that sits right in the middle of Hamilton Harbor. This is where a businessman William White lived with his family in 18thy century. He used to make sails for yachts. After he died in 1802, his sons continued his business till 1855 when they too had to leave as the demand for sail boats ceased. The island was acquired by City of Hamilton in 1885 and was later rented out to US Navy who set up an anti-submarine base here.
The port in Hamilton harbor comprises of berths for passenger cruise ships and freight carriers along the Front Street. So if you happen to come by a cruise ship that docks at the Hamilton Harbor, you will walk straight into Front Street, Bermuda's most happening place. There are also Yacht Marinas
at the eastern end of Hamilton Harbor where the tapering edge meets the land like a corner of a triangle.
However with time, the size of cruise ships started increasing. Now many of the cruise ships are so large that they find it difficult to navigate through the narrow channel in Hamilton harbor, and instead dock at the Dockyard at the west end.
There had been suggestions to widen the entry to Hamilton Harbor by removing the small islands that create the barriers. However, Corporation of Hamilton (the municipality) has been instead thinking of redeveloping the dock area in a different way.
The Yacht Marinas have been growing though. Royal Bermuda Yacht Club
has widened their private yacht marina along the harbor and added many amenities, and so did Royal Hamilton Amateur Dinghy Club
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