It’s easy to overlook Bermuda – literally. The archipelago encompasses just 21 square miles in total. (For comparison, Rhode Island covers 1,214 square miles.) If Bermuda was a country, it’d be the fifth-smallest in the world. Instead, it has been a British territory since it was settled in the early 1600s.
Today, Bermuda is simply a small slice of paradise floating 650 miles off the coast of North Carolina. Packed within its small footprint is a culture and landscape you won’t find anywhere else in the world. You can experience all that Bermuda has to offer by booking a vacation with Norwegian Cruise Line, which sails to the island oasis throughout the year.
So, what exactly makes Bermuda so great?
It wouldn’t be a stretch to say Bermuda has some of the best weather in the world. Unlike the Caribbean islands to the south, Bermuda has a subtropical climate. This keeps temperatures between the mid-60s and mid-80s year-round. Additionally, Bermuda avoids the rainy seasons that typically impact island destinations.
Influenced by its geographical location and colonial history, Bermuda has a distinctly unique cuisine that takes inspiration from British, Caribbean, African, Native American and Portuguese cultures.
You’ll likely find a wide variety of menu items anywhere you choose to dine, from fish chowder to ribs to curry. Of course, no trip to Bermuda is complete with trying some of the locally caught fish.
Getting around Bermuda is a breeze. In fact, you can feel that breeze upon your face if you rent a scooter or bicycles, two popular forms of transportation. If you’re traveling along the roads, remember that Bermuda adheres to Britain’s rule of driving on the left side of the road. Also, the speed limit never exceeds 20 mph.
Buses and taxis are also widely available throughout the islands, but the most efficient way of getting from one end to the other is via ferries. While there are local operators that travel to different spots across Bermuda, Norwegian Cruise Line offers its passengers a complimentary ferry service from the Royal Navy Dock Yard on the western end to St. George on the eastern end.
For such a small country, Bermuda has ample attractions worth visiting. Whether you want to explore the region’s history and shop for handmade artisan crafts, or sit back at one of the many pristine beaches before grabbing an authentic Bermudan meal, there’s no limit to the adventures to be had.
The Royal Navy Dockyard
The dockyard, located just of the cruise ship pier, is an ideal place to spend an afternoon as it offers a little bit of everything. Those looking to indulge in a session of retail therapy can peruse the shops of the Clocktower Mall. Originally constructed in the 1850s as a warehouse for the British Navy, the building is now home to boutiques and shops selling souvenirs, jewelry, handmade crafts and more.
Just a stone’s throw away sits what will be the jewel of any history buff’s itinerary: the National Museum of Bermuda. Housed within the country’s largest fort, the museum tells the 500-year history of this resilient island territory. As an added bonus, visitors will get one-of-a-kind views from the site’s hilltop location.
Just below the said hill is Snorkel Park Beach, the area’s top family attraction. Guests can rent everything from float toys and snorkel gear to kayaks and jet skis, or simply opt to lounge on the beach underneath the perfectly blue sky.
As the region’s geographical, political and social epicenter, the city of Hamilton is as cosmopolitan a neighborhood as you’ll find in Bermuda. Centrally located, Hamilton serves as Bermuda’s capital city and a cultural hub filled with shops, museums, galleries and gardens. Among them are the Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute, Bermuda Botanical Gardens, Masterworks Museum of Bermuda Art, Fort Hamilton and the Cathedral of the Most Holy, where visitors can climb 155 steps to the top of the cathedral tower for panoramic views of the surroundings.
Hamilton may be at its best when the sun goes down. On Wednesdays during the summer, downtown Hamilton’s main road, Front Street, is shut down for the weekly Harbor Nights festival, complete with dancers, artisans, family activities and street food.
The town of St. George is situated on the eastern end of Bermuda. The country’s former capital and an UNESCO World Heritage Site, St. George holds the distinction of being the oldest continuously occupied British settlement in the New World. That history is on full display to this day. A walk around the town’s centuries-old streets will lead you past colonial-style cottages and well-preserved historic sites. Most notable among the latter is St. Peter’s Church. Originally constructed in 1612, this place of worship is the oldest Anglican church outside of Britain.
There’s plenty of natural wonders to explore in and around St. George, as well. To the north sits Tobacco Bay Beach and its incredible limestone formations. Along the southern coastline, Cooper’s Island Nature Reserve is home to unique plant and wildlife you won’t find back home. But the east end’s most popular attraction may just be the Crystal Caves. Daily tours guide visitors down into these natural underground wonders to get a front-row look of a crystal-clear lake, stalagmite towers and white limestone icicles.
Those visiting Bermuda on a Norwegian Joy cruise can explore everything the island has to offer in unique and exciting ways through a variety of shore excursions. These include snorkeling through a protected coral reef, catching an epic sunset while sailing on a catamaran, cruising through nature preserves on an e-bike, exploring ancient shipwrecks, taking in a round at Belmont Hills Golf Course and touring the shoreline from boat or kayak.
These excursions are available to all Norwegian Joy passengers, so make sure to book your spot early!
Book your Norwegian Cruise today!