Bermuda in Winter
How is Bermuda in Winter
Winter in Bermuda is typically the period between November to February, but the air and water remains quite cold until April. November to April is the time when there are no cruise ships on port, hardly any tourists around and Bermuda looks so much of its own. Those who are in search of real Bermuda can take this opportunity for a visit and get the island in its most pristine form, and the island puts its best foot forward to offer all its charm and elegance.
Photo: Rick McCharles, flickr, cc by 2.0
It's true that several tourist attractions remain closed during this period (November to April), and most water activities either close down or operate at much reduced frequency due to lack of customers, but there are still enough attractions and activities that remain open. In fact, Bermuda's Department of Community and Cultural Affairs and Bermuda Tourism Authority organize programs to showcase Bermuda's rich art, culture and many other family friendly entertainment.
While public transport including buses and ferry continue to operate during winter, the ferry switches to its winter schedule during this period with reduced services. The winter ferry schedule usually remains in effect from early November until late April. Buses however continue to run as usual like in summer.
What usually remains open in winter?
All public beaches in Bermuda
remain open during the winter, although it may be difficult to swim with temperature hovering around 60-65°F around that time (it's possible with wet suits though). But the beaches are free of tourists, you do not have to walk on the beach trying hard to avoid bumping against sunbathers.
Note that other than Horseshoe Bay Beach and Tobacco Bay Beach, no other beach would have any on-beach concession stalls for renting chairs, umbrellas etc or buying snacks during this period. That's obvious, after all who do they sell them to?
National Museum of Bermuda (Old Fort Complex)
Some other key tourist attractions and places which remain open during winter include:
7) Art Galleries including National Gallery
at City Hall and Arts Center, Masterworks Museum
in Botanical Gardens etc. Masterworks houses a collection of some 1400 fabulous art work that are mostly inspired on Bermuda. A guided tour takes place from 10am to 4pm.
14) Spas at the hotels like of Grotto Bay Beach Hotel in Hamilton Parish.
16) Swimming, Snorkeling and Diving require wet suite.
17) For water sports activities like snorkeling, kayaking, paddle boarding, jet ski safari, motor boat rentals etc, you can contact H2O Sports
located in Sandys. They are usually open by reservations only. Tobacco Bay Beach House in St. George is open daily for rentals, snacks and drinks.
20) Many Events and Festivals
also take place during this time including Bermuda International Film Fest, Remembrance Day Celebration, Beach Art Festival, Bermuda Festival of Performing Arts, World Rugby Classic and more.
21) Christmas time (late November to end December) is a great time to visit Bermuda. Several Christmas events are held in different parts of the island including Lighting the tree ceremony, Christmas walkabout, boat parade and more. Visit Christmas in Bermuda
to know them all.
St, George, Bermuda
Photo: Charles Lewis, Shutterstock
Bermuda Tourism Authority in collaboration with Department of Community and Cultural Affairs, organizes many ongoing activities during the winter featuring local art, culture and entertainment. Many tours are offered, several of them are free. However most such activities do not take place on Public Holidays
Below is a synopsis of events and festivals that took place as part of winter activities during the period November 2017 - April 2018. Program schedules and activities change every year.
UPDATE: Many winter events & festivals below are suspended since 2020 due to Covid pandemic.
Food Truck Festival
November 5 , 12:00 noon — 5:00 pm
Pitt’s Bay Road and Barr’s Bay Park
Savor authentic Bermudian food and beverages from mobile food trucks as you enjoy gatherings of both locals in tourists in a festive mood to try out local fares. Visit Food Truck Festival
Bermuda Plein Air Festival and Exhibition
Watch local and overseas talented artists paint stunning pictures of Bermuda's best locations over a week, judges selecting the best paintings and finally exhibition of the paintings on sale.
Painting date: Nov 11—18 from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm.
Exhibition date: Nov 18 from 4:00 pm—7:30 pm.
Bermuda Goodwill Golf Tournament
This is world's oldest Pro-Am golf tournament. Teams from the US, UK and Canada participate in some of the best gold courses in the island.
Saturday Night Live at the Grand
A wonderful opportunity for locals and visitors to enjoy live local musicians begins on Saturday, November 11th and will run through March, 2018. Every Saturday from 9-11 pm, a soulful blend of live local performers would provide entertainment at The Grand, 39 Church Street, Hamilton. Admission is FREE. Phone 441- 292 1681 for further info.
(January 11 - February 4)
Great opportunity to savor Bermudian food at many participating restaurants in the island, Special two course meals at special price. Visit Restaurant Weeks for details
Bermuda Marathon Weekend
Watch great runners at Bermuda Triangle Challenge, the 10k and the Half Marathon events. To be held between January 12 - 14. More info...
Bermuda Festival of Performing Arts
Featuring many international acts, dance performances, music and more. Jan 19 - Mar 17. More info...
Bermuda International Film Festival
Series of short film from producers all over the world.
March 17 - 25 | The City Hall and Arts Center, City of Hamilton
Wine tasting every month from a wide selection of wine along with party games.
Visit the website www.uncorkedbda.com for details.
ITU World Triathlon Bermuda
This is Bermuda's own ITU World Triathlon championship. There will be sprint and other events including swimming, biking and running. Date: April 28, 2018. Website: www.tribermuda.com
Food Tour - Take a bite out of Bermuda
Conducted at the west end (dockyard - starts at Ferry Dock). This is a new tour which gives insights into food culture of Bermuda. You will eat Bermudian way as you visit several attractions and sites at the west end. Tour takes place 11am to 2pm (Monday to Friday, except public holidays). Cost $85 per person. Contact (441) 705.6606 or email [email protected]
for further info.
Participate in wreck and reef diving in the Atlantic. Visit Scuba diving in Bermuda
to know about the top dive centers in the island, their offers and the best dive sites.
Undersea walk amidst stunning marine life and corals. More info...
Masterworks Museum of Bermuda Art
(Mon - Sat | 10:00 am - 4:00 pm ).
Great art gallery and amazing art collections dating from 1700s. Entry: $5. More info...
Saturday Night Live
Great vocal performances from local vocalists.
Sat | 9:00 pm - 11:00 pm | FREE
Location: The Grand, Church Street, City of Hamilton
For more information call 441-292-1681
Concludes March 31, 2018
Hidden Gems Tours
Eco Tours: Monday, Wednesday, Friday. Explore caves, nature reserves, jungles, forts.
Forts Adventure: Tuesday, Thursday
Photography Adventure: Saturday.
$100 per person with packed lunch, gears, transport and experienced guide.
Visit Hidden Gems
for details of tour, contact info etc.
Great island tours by minibus. Visit Byways Tours
Longtail Eco Adventure Tours
(10am to 5pm... can be customized)
Take a personalized tour of Cooper's Island in St. David's which includes a visit to Cooper's Island Nature Reserve. This is a great bird watching tour and it will show you nesting sites of longtails, Bermuda's national bird Cahow etc.
Take a guided tour and know about Bermuda's first national park, its unique geological formations, wildlife, birds, many endemic plants etc and also get awesome views. Check Spittal Pond for details.
One-hour guided tour of the Tom Moore's Jungle. This is a great hiking adventure and you will get to experience amazing natural pools, grottos, caves, forest and wildlife.
$25 per person per hour. Includes to and fro private transportation as well as water and snacks.
Blue Sky Flights
Take an aerial tour of Bermuda and see the island from the sky. Visit Blue Sky Flights
Kinetic Aerial Arts
Aerial circus ... observe great tricks and mini performance on first Saturday of the month.
Nov, Jan and Mar: Albuoy’s Point, Hamilton
Dec, Feb and Apr: Town of St. George
Visit website www.gokinetix.com or call 441-704-0701
Time: 7pm to 8:30pm.
Explore Railway Trail
Pristine walking and biking trail of 18 miles spanning the island end to end and ideal to explore the stunning northern rocky coastline and wonderful lush landscapes. Visit Railway Trail
for full details.
Free Guided walk through Herbal Garden
An experienced Bermudian offers a free guided walking tour at Botanical Gardens (Paget). She also explains the herbs and other plantations that you come across along the way and let you know how the Bermudians used them for healing in the earlier days. She offers you complimentary tea and light refreshments when the tour ends. Tour time: 2-4pm. Concludes on March 31.
Visitors Golf Day
Golf tournament on Mondays (8am to 12noon) for the visitors. It is held at the famous Port Royal Golf Course
in Southampton with sweeping views of the ocean. This 18 hole par 71 course is a venue of PGA Grand Slam of Golf. There is an entry fee ($110 for 18 holes) which includes carts. You can also rent golf clubs ($30). Prizes are given away to first, second and third places, and certificate to the winner. Call up 441/234-0974 or email [email protected]
for further info and booking.
African Diaspora Heritage Trail
About 60% of Bermudians are descendents of slaves brought into the island in 1700s from West Africa and West Indies. Explore the trail
to know about historical facts during the slavery period in Bermuda.
This mini golf course located at Royal Naval Dockyard in the west end features 18 challenging holes designed after famous holes in USA, Scotland and Bermuda. It covers an area of 1 acre and has stunning ocean view.
Fri, Sat and Sun | 10:00 am — 8:00 pm
Price: $15 adults, $12 children
Bermuda Aquarium, Museum and Zoo
Watch some of the all time favorite marine life like the sea turtles and seals at the Bermuda Aquarium. Also see wildlife from places as far away as Australia and Madagascar. Another amazing exhibit here is the 145,000-gallon North Rock coral reef. More info...
Fort St Catherine and Museum
This is the largest fort in Bermuda originally built in 1614. The fort went through several upgrades subsequently. Inside there are numerous exhibits and artifacts showcasing the history of Bermuda in 17th century. Get more info...
Wednesday - Sunday (1:30pm) at Dockyard: Watch spectacular dolphin show and demonstrations. Visit Dolphin Quest
for more info.
Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute
Explore the mysteries of the ocean through various exhibits and interactive systems. Know more...
Free tour of Royal Naval Dockyard
A guided tour of the dockyard takes place exploring the Casemate Barracks
and other historical buildings that played significant roles during the days of Royal Navy. Concludes on March 31.
Sunday: 11.30am to 12:30pm; Thursday: 2:00pm to 3:15pm
Meeting Location: Sunday - Next to Anchor Fountain, Clocktower building. Thursday - Across from the entrance to the National Museum of Bermuda.
Somerset Boat Tour and Slide Show
A boat tour (with maximum of 20 persons) leaves from Somerset at 10am and takes you through the narrow inlets and into the ocean as you watch beautiful colonial homes along the coastline, architecture and listen to the history of the island. The boat will take you to the partially submerged shipwreck 'Vixen' in western waters and you can feed fish along the way.
On return a 20-minute slideshow takes place where you are served complimentary coffee and danish. The tour leaves from the Somerset Country Squire
which is easily accessible from the cruise ship dockyard by bus #7 and 8, and ends at 11:35am. This tour ends on March 31.
Experience amazing glass blowing techniques from local artisans who make stunning glass items and glass jewelry. They also offer full instruction classes even to beginners. The lesson costs $120 per person (daily by appointment). Visit Dockyard Glassworks
for details about what to expect there.
Free Guided tour of Hamilton City
This is a free 2-hour tour of Hamilton conducted by an experienced guide. It takes place on Mondays at 10am and starts from the National Library at the Queen's Street, and covers attractions such as City Hall and Arts Center
, House of Assembly
, the Anglican Cathedral and finally ending at the Fort Hamilton
for joining the Skirling Ceremony (Bagpipe music and dance). Tour concludes on March 31.
Sessions House Tour in Hamilton City
Explore the historic building with a guide where Bermuda's parliamentary sessions take place. The guided tour takes place on Mondays and it's free. Visit Sessions House
for more info about the building and the activities that take place here. Meeting Location: Public elevator entrance on the east side of the building. Tour ends on March 31.
Skirling Ceremony - Free
You can visit the Fort Hamilton
to experience this bagpipe music with dance performed by kilted pipers, drummers and dancers. It's performed in an open terrace area in the fort with great views of Hamilton Harbor. The event takes place between 12noon to 12:30pm. There is no admission fee (either to enter the fort or attend the skirling ceremony). Complimentary refreshments are served. Ends on March 31.
Cookery Demonstration - Free
This is held at Fort Hamilton on Mondays at 12:30pm to 2pm. It is free. So after watching the skirling ceremony, you can join this free cooking demo offered by an experienced chef of Bermuda demonstrating how to make some authentic Bermudian dishes. You can sample them too. Ends on March 31.
Bermuda Gombey Revue
This is a great opportunity to watch Gombey dancers
perform live in full costume. It's a free show held at 4:15pm at Pier 6, Passenger Terminal, Front Street Hamilton. Ends on March 31.
Hamilton History and Tales
The tour departs from the Visitors Information Center next to the Ferry Terminal at Hamilton. As you walk through the various streets, the guide will narrate stories about many interesting characters of Hamilton, the city's heritage and history etc. 10:30am to 12noon.
Free Tour of Bermuda National Gallery
The guided tour of Bermuda National Gallery
takes place on Thursdays at 10am. The gallery is located at City Hall and Arts Center in Hamilton. You will see many local and international arts and exhibits and know about the development of the gallery. The Ondaatje Wing
of the gallery is dedicated to historical story telling. Tours are free with admission.
Hamilton Shopping Tour
(Thursdays, 10.30am - 1pm)
A guided tour in Hamilton city to explore the top stores and authentic Bermuda made items. The tour departs from Queen Elizabeth Park, Queen Street. Call 441-296-9200 for further info.
Bermuda Society of Arts Gallery
(5pm - 7pm)
Enjoy a cocktail during happy hour, meet with local artists and scan through numerous amazing artwork. Enjoy art demonstration, projects and art exhibitions. The art gallery is located at City Hall and Arts Center, Hamilton. Gallery opening dates: November 17, December 15, January 19, February 16, March 16, April 20. Visit Society of Arts Gallery
for more info.
Hamilton City Tour
Join this 2 hour Free tour with the Town Crier and explore the historical landmarks in Hamilton city and learn about their history. Visit Hamilton Tour
and see the last section for more info about the tour. The tour starts from City Hall. The tour ends on December 31.
(Monday, Wednesday, Friday. Jan 1 - April 21, 3:30pm to 5:30pm)
Experience the traditional afternoon tea which is part of Bermudian tradition that originated from the British. Your host will be Carole Holding - a leading water color painter and a professional chef, and your venue is her personal home Watercolors by the harborside
. You can savor fine tea, relish finger sandwiches, banana breads, English scones etc.
Location: 73 Harbor Road, Warwick. Price: $27.50 (includes a signed gift of matted Bermuda scene “Houses on Harbor Road”). Email [email protected]
or call 441-535-4000.
St. Peter's Church - Bibles and Bones
A guided tour in St. George to explore the oldest Anglican church in Western Hemisphere, its darkest corners, get to know why it was conferred the Royal tittle 'Their Majesties Chappel' and visit the crypt and the clocktower. Entry $20 per person. Read St. Peter's Church
for more info about the church.
(Monday and Thursday, 1pm to 2pm)
Board the replica of this historic sailing boat which was built by Sir George Somers men to continue their journey to Jamestown after their ship got wrecked. Hear the story from the guide. More info...
Create Scents at Bermuda Perfumery
Tuesday and Thursday | 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm. Try your hands to create your own fragrance with the master perfumer at Bermuda Perfumery, St. George. Know more...
World Heritage Center Tour
Wednesday, Saturday | 10:30 am – 11:15 am. Take this guided tour to know the development of St. George where the first settlement of Bermuda took place. Price: FREE. More info...
Mitchell House Printery
(Wednesdays, 10am to 2pm)
This was the home of the first printing business in Bermuda. The house is now known as St George's Historical Society Museum. Take a guided tour. Price $5. Call: 441-297-0423. Know more...
Historical Re-Enactment and St George's Walking Tour
A guided FREE tour of the historic town of St George
is offered which also includes the historical re-enactment of a punishment known as ducking wenches. The activities include: 1) A walking tour of Unesco World Heritage Town of St George that starts at 10:30am. You walk through the narrow lanes that still bear the 17th century names when the town was first established. Complimentary light refreshment is served at the end of the tour. 2) At 11:45am the Mayor of the town meets and greets the visitors. 3) At 12:30pm the ducking stool historical re-enactment takes place where a wench on a stool is ducked into the water as a form of punishment that was practiced in the earlier days. The tour concludes on March 31. Meeting location: Kings Square, St. George.
Bermuda National Trust Walking Tour
(Wed | 11:00 am—11:45 am)
This guided tour starts at the Globe Hotel
, opposite St Peter’s Church. Get to know about the history of Globe Hotel and Bermuda’s role during the American Civil War. The tour takes you along Water Street to Tucker House museum
... another historic building which has retained the traditional Bermudian household goods as used by Henry Tucker and his family in those days.
Location: Globe Hotel, Duke of York Street, St. George’s
Price: Adults $10; 18 and under $4; Call 441-236-6483 for more info.
Experience the traditional afternoon tea which is part of Bermudian tradition that originated from the British. Visit the eatery 'Sweet P' located at Stewart Hall in St. Georges (the home of Bermuda Perfumery), taste fine tea, relish finger sandwiches, goodies, special sweets etc. 1pm-4pm. $30 per person plus 15%gratuity. Email: [email protected]
or call 441-705-2390 for booking.
Glass Bottom and Sightseeing Boat Tour
Get to see famous homes in St. Georges, spectacular marine life and lovely beaches from the water in St. George. Location: King’s Square, St. George’s. Price: $55 (ask about our family rates). Tour operates on Mon, Wed, Fri (1pm to 4pm).
Haunted History Tour
Experience the guided haunted history tour
of St. George where characters come alive and you explore the many narrow alleyways of the olde town and its centuries old history. Tour time: 7pm-8pm. Price: $35 per adult ($25 per child under 16).
Horse trail rides
(Monday to Saturday)
Explore the country lanes, lush trails and pristine beaches along the north eastern coastline of St. Georges as you take a personalized and guided horse trail ride. The rides take place on advance bookings only. Go through Horseback Riding Tours in Bermuda
Horse Carriage Rides
Explore St. George's town, coastline, forts and beaches on a horse drawn carriage. Call 441 704 7840 (Bronco Stables Horse n Carriage Tours) for booking.
Tours and Activities of Previous Years
3day/4night yoga retreats. Package includes trail runs, breakfast, spa treatments etc. Dates: November 24 – 28 | January 5 – 9 | February 9 – 13 | March 9 – 13 | April 13 – 17 | May 4 – 8. Call 441-704-0701 for further info.
Visit of Wadson's Farm
Join a guided tour of Bermuda's largest farm
with the owner himself who has been farming in the island for decades. Many hotels and restaurants source organic and fresh vegetables from this farm. $20 per person. Contact 441-238-1862, email [email protected]
Guided tour of St. George's historical forts
East End Museum Tour
(Tuesdays, 10:30am to 2pm)
Take a guided tour at St. George with a resident to know Bermuda's role and connections with hostoric events such as American Civil war, Revolutionary war, emancipation etc. Price: $25 adults. Tickets are available at Visitors Information Center, Kings Square, St. George.
Photography Walk About
(Tuesday, 11am to 12:30pm)
Take a photography tour in St. Georges with local photographers. Price: $65 per person.
Train Trolley Tour of Hamilton
(Monday to Friday, 10am to 5pm)
Take a 35-minute train trolley ride (with audio commentary) through Hamilton and see the historical sites of the capital including City Hall and Arts Center, Cabinet Building etc. $35 per person (cash only). Train starts and terminates at the Hamilton Ferry Terminal, Front Street.
Walking tour of South Shore Park and Beaches
From 10:30am to 12noon, a guided walking tour takes place for groups of up to 25 covering the lovely South Shore Beaches
, dunes, coves, coastal flora and fauna. As you start from the top parking lot at Warwick Long Bay, you will see some amazing coves and beaches as you walk along the trail, see boiler reefs, coastal birds, plants and animals and learn about the history. If you are lucky, you can even see migrating humpback whales. Cost: $10 per person. Meet at the parking lot of Jobson's Cove (you can pay your tour fee on site).
Learn how to make traditional bake items of Bermuda with a friendly experienced baker. You will be offered rum swizzle and snacks as you take part in the fun of baking. $45 per baker. time: 5.30pm to 7.30pm. Contact the bakery Sweet Saak at St. George, York Street (Email: [email protected]
) for booking a session.
Free tour of Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences
(First Wednesdays of each month)
Starting at 10am a guided free tour is offered at the BIOS Institute
which is known for its pioneering work in the area of Ocean research. You can also meet up with scientists who work here and chat with them on their day to day work.
Guided tour of St. David's
Explore St. David's and visit some of the great attractions like St. David’s Lighthouse, St. David’s Battery, Clearwater Beach, Cooper’s Island and Carter House. 1-4pm. $25 per person. Book at St. George Visitors Information Center.
Hands-on Craft: Free
If you are interested in craft work, this is a great opportunity to see demonstration, learn and even try your own hands on creating craft work using paper or natural forested medium like wood, leaves etc. A local artist will guide you through all this at Craft Market
located at the dockyard. You can also see demos of cedar turning on lathe, embroidery and needle work and more. The guided crafting and demo takes place on Thursdays and Saturdays (1:30-4pm).
Bermuda Matinee Film Show
Enjoy a matinee show in World Heritage Center at Penno's Wharf, St. George featuring Bermuda's history, heritage and culture. Starts at 2pm. $5 per person.
Visitors' Reviews and Comments
Krista Larouche (February 2014)
Hi Raj! AMAZING website!! So much helpful information!! We will be visiting Bermuda later this month (February) with 2 small children (6 and 1 yrs old). I am compiling a list of activities and sites for us to see (with many recommendations coming from your website!) and I was wondering if snorkelling, swimming or beach activities are still recommended in the off season?? Is the water temperature still ok for that? I know the average temperature during the day is about 20 - 23 C (70-75 F). Does it cool off dramatically in the evenings? Thanks for your time and information!!
Raj (bermuda-attractions.com) February 2014
Hi, Average water temp in February is about 64 deg F. So it won't be suitable for swimming and snorkeling unless you are carrying wet suits. Air temperature varies from min 60 to max 68 deg F.