Top places to visit in Bermuda
Best places to visit in Bermuda? Well, this is probably the most loaded question that I have ever faced and interestingly, this is one of the most frequent questions that has come to me from the travelers to Bermuda. So, what kind of places are you looking for? Beaches, Museums, Caves, Forts, Parks, or Scenic sites? You have them all here and in plenty.
Are you ready to travel end to end across the island to experience best of the best that Bermuda offers? Or, are you wanting to see whatever is best available nearby and around the place of your stay in Bermuda. And how many days do you have? My answer will vary accordingly and more so depending on the type of things you actually like to see. After all, not everyone likes everything.
Let me first assume that you are willing to travel anywhere in the island (after all, Bermuda is only 21 square miles in area). In the last section, I shall discuss what you can find in each parish of Bermuda so that you can visit them within short distances. Here are the best places to go in Bermuda.
Visit the top beaches
There are some unbelievable pink sandy beaches in the island. Some of them are fairly large expanses of sand and some are beautiful tiny coves. While all beaches are lovely and have their own unique charm, some are specifically great for swimming and snorkeling, some are secluded and relatively unknown, some are great for families with kids, and few have spectacular sea glasses on them.
Horseshoe Bay Beach, Bermuda
Source: Wikimedia Commons
Horseshoe Bay Beach
in Southampton is undoubtedly the most popular beach in the island... not only it's a scenic beach with turquoise waters and a cliff line fringing its long curved stretch of sands, it also has most amenities among all the public beaches in Bermuda including changing rooms with showers, beach bar, beach and snorkel rentals, etc. No wonder, this beach is the most crowded one of all.
Warwick Long Bay Beach
, little further away in Warwick parish is another lovely beach with long expanse of sands... it's relatively secluded and great for swimming and snorkeling. Next to it is the picturesque Jobson's Cove
surrounded by rocky cliffs... the shallows here is ideal for snorkeling.
Tobacco Bay Beach
in St. George is a small but popular beach because of its amenities and great opportunities for snorkeling with many rock formations that are home to many colorful fish. Shelly Bay Beach
in Hamilton parish on the other hand is a great beach for family picnics and swimming.
Visit the top Sites
While there are many tourist sites in Bermuda, there are a few which are always bustling with visitors... these are the places that have won hearts of most tourists. And that's because each of them encapsulates a characteristic that represents a unique aspect of Bermuda. Here are those hot spots:
Being the port capital of Bermuda, Hamilton City is the commercial hub of the island. Starting from numerous shops of all types, restaurants, bars, pubs and nightclubs to some of the finest hotels, lovely parks and monuments are all present here. Front Street in Hamilton is also the venue for the weekly summer street festival Harbour Nights which is a huge crowd puller.
Front Street, Hamilton Bermuda
Photo: Darryl Brooks, Shutterstock
Almost all tourists spend some time in Hamilton City to do some shopping, savor some great island cuisine, experience the island nightlife and feel the real heartbeat of Bermuda. Hamilton City is located centrally in the island and is the origin of all major public bus routes as well as ferry routes in Bermuda.
With all the large cruise ships docking at Kings Wharf, this place has developed into a major tourist attraction. Once a British Naval Dockyard, it is now become a large complex that houses some of the top places to visit in Bermuda including museums, fort, a beach of its own, art and craft centers, a shopping mall with many boutique stores, several stand-alone stores, a dolphin training center etc. The dockyard also has several great restaurants, bars and pubs.
Clocktower Mall, Dockyard Bermuda
Source: Wikimedia Commons
Located at the eastern end of Bermuda, the town of St. George is a World Heritage Site and has a lot of historical significance. This is where the first human settlement in Bermuda began way back in 1609 when George Somers arrived on a ship along with his crew members.
St, George, Bermuda
Photo: Charles Lewis, Shutterstock
If you are interested in history of Bermuda, like to wander about the olde town along the narrow alleyways, take a look at the quaint shops selling many different items including local artworks, and dine as you soak in the wonderful view of the harbor, then this is the place to go.
Two stunning subterranean caves located in the same cave complex in Hamilton Parish. The caves have underground lovely lakes and stunning formations of stalactites and stalagmites. Walk over a pontoon bridge and watch the wonders of the nature. Guided tour of the caves is included in ticket cost.
Crystal Cave and Cahow Lake, Bermuda
Source: Wikimedia Commons
This is where you can see the colorful marine life and corals which the scuba divers can see in the Atlantic around Bermuda. One of the main features here is the 140,000-gallon North Rock tank which has vast collection of live corals. You can see over 200 species of marine life and fish here.
North Rock Tank, Bermuda Aquarium
The complex also has a natural history museum and a zoo that has a collection of exotic small animals from islands across the world including from Bermuda.
The museum located at the dockyard showcases numerous exhibits and artifacts which depict the early maritime life in Bermuda as well as the island's centuries old history.
National Museum of Bermuda (Old Fort Complex)
Built in 1846, this is one of the oldest cast iron lighthouses in the world. Gibbs Hill Lighthouse is located in Southampton parish and close to Horseshoe Bay Beach. In the early days, the powerful light beams from this lighthouse which could be seen from as far as 40 miles away, used to guide the ships to navigate through the treacherous reefs on the waters. You can climb the 185 spiral steps inside and go up to the top balcony and get a panoramic view of parish and Great Sound water area.
Gibbs Hill Lighthouse Bermuda
During the colonial days, the British had built several forts in Bermuda... Fort St. Catherine was one of the first such forts that was originally built in the early 1600s although it was later rebuilt several times.
It is also the largest fort in the island. It's located at the north-eastern fringe of St. George and has been converted into a museum showcasing various military exhibits and artifacts that belong to the British time. You can see the canons, pistols, swords and even muzzle loaders. The fort has many tunnels, towers, redoubts and ramparts, and is surrounded by a dry moat.
Fort St. Catherine, Bermuda
Photo: reivax / flickr, cc by 2.0
Those were only a few. There are many other great tourist places in Bermuda. If you are staying in Bermuda for several days, then you can definitely plan to see more.
Check out Top Sites in Bermuda
to know about all the best places to visit in Bermuda including museums, forts, lighthouses, caves, parks and gardens, churches and more.
If you have limited time, then check out the following two links to plan out your days:
Visit the best places in a Parish
If you rather want to explore the best sites within a parish (may be you like the parish or staying in a hotel there), then this section will help you to find all the great tourist attractions within a parish. There are nine parishes or districts in Bermuda. They are like small counties and each is about 2 miles long.
Depending on the Parish that you want to explore, you can choose one of the parish links listed below (ordered west to east). It will tell you all about the parish including all the great places to visit. You can choose to walk or rent a scooter
or a 2-seater electric car
to get around and visit the places.
This is the western most parish in Bermuda where the Dockyard is located. If you are visiting by a cruise ship, you are likely to be docked here at the western tip of the Parish in an island called the Ireland Island. National Museum of Bermuda along with Dolphin Center, Art Center, Glassworks, Clayworks etc are located at the dockyard itself.
Some great beaches like Snorkel Park, Sea Glass Beach, Daniel's Head Beach are also located in this parish. Dockyard also has several nice restaurants, bars and pubs, plus the Clocktower Shopping Mall. Lot's of tours including boating, sailing, snorkeling, island and other tours and watersport activities operate from the dockyard.
This is also a western parish and is located adjacent to Sandy's. Southampton is home to the famous Horseshoe Bay beach, Gibbs Hill Light House and several other attractions.
Warwick Parish is known for great hotels, sightseeing attractions and some of the best pink south shore beaches of Bermuda. It is to the east of and adjacent to Southampton. Warwick Long Bay Beach, Jobson's Cove etc are located here.
Paget is centrally located an has several great hotels. The famous Elbow beach is located here.
This is the central parish where Hamilton City, the capital of Bermuda is located. The parish and the city are full of historical buildings, churches, parks and great restaurants, bars and hotels.
It has flourished on farming. It has beautiful landscapes and other attractions.
The parish offers delightful country rides and charm. It has its boundaries on north shore, south shore as well as on the southern part of Harrington Sound.
This is an eastern Parish of Bermuda connected to St. George by a causeway. This parish is home to the well known attractions such as the Aquarium, Crystal and Fantasy Caves etc. This is also where Bermuda's famous and oldest pub Swizzle Inn is located.
St George's parish is located at the eastern end of Bermuda and is by itself an island. St George's town, a UNESCO world heritage site is located in this parish and is steeped in history because this is where the first settlement began in Bermuda in early 1600s. It's full of historical buildings, British forts, centuries old traditional homes etc. It is also home to the well known Tobacco Bay Beach, St. Catherine Beach, Clearwater beach, St. David's Light house etc.
Visitors' Reviews and Comments
J Tibbles (September 2019)
HI...your responses are great. I will be visiting Bermuda in Oct. for 3 days. What are the must see sites? Horseshoe beach and the Crystal cave? Is it best to buy multiple day pass for the buses? What about using the ferry services too... can you purchase passes for them as well. Can I purchase bus and ferry passes in advance? I am pretty adventurous, and would like to see as much as possible...in the least expensive way. Thank you for your time, I look forward to hearing from you... and any info you share to offer to make this visit the best.
Raj (bermuda-attractions.com) September 2019
Hi, must see sites depend on what you may like.... there are plenty. Horseshoe Bay Beach, Crystal and Fantasy Caves, Bermuda Aquarium are certainly some of the most popular sites, however there are several other great sites as well, for example Gibbs Hill Lighthouse, Jobson's Cove, Warwick Long Bay Beach, Tom Moore's Jungle with Blue Holes and Caves, Fort Hamilton, Fort St. Catherine, St. Peter's Church etc etc. You should also visit and spend some time in Hamilton City and St. George, and there are several great attractions within Royal Naval Dockyard including the National Museum of Bermuda and Dolphin Quest. I suggest you go through my page on Must See Sites
and choose as you may like.
Multi-day transport pass is convenient, works for both public buses and ferries, and is a good option if you plan to travel to several places a day. You can otherwise buy tokens for one-way journeys ($4.50) or even pay in cash ($5)... but this can become expensive if you plan to use local transports often. Another option is a pack of 15 tickets which is available at Hamilton ferry and bus terminals and also at several post offices... if you plan out your day-wise local travels in advance, you can purchase the packs accordingly and that can be the cheapest option. However you can not buy passes, tickets or tokens outside Bermuda in advance.