A Bit About Bermuda
Bermuda sits by itself in the Atlantic Ocean, the closest land mass being Hatteras Island North Carolina, 653 miles away. The first known sighting of Bermuda by Europeans was Captain Juan de Bermudez whom the island is named after in 1505. Spanish sailors sipwrecked there in 1603 for several weeks while repairing their ship mapped the area and claimed it for Spain, who showed no more interest in the island at that time than they had at its initial discovery.
Settlers heading for Jamestown on the Sea Venture captained by Admiral Somers shipwrecked there in 1609 and thrived for a year living partly on feral pigs left behind by former visitors to the island. They eventually built 2 ships out of salvage from their original ship and native wood, arriving in Jamestown only to find that colony struggling and badly in need of the supplies they brought. Admiral Somers returned to Bermuda for more supplies, but died there only to rest in pieces because his nephew left his heart on the island but brought his body back to England. Bermuda became a British colony in 1684 and remains one still. They have their own money and are more similar to Americans than British due to the influence of American TV which is what they get there.
Bermuda is not just one island, but rather a group of 181 islands with some connecting bridges. It has a humid subtropical climate and no fresh water. Homes are constructed with rooftops designed to collect rainwater and tanks to store it. Their homes are also very sturdy and hurricane proof because there is no high ground and people have nowhere else to go to ride out the storms. Tourism is a major part of the economy. Bermuda’s signature pink sand comes from the shells of a single-celled organism living on the undersides of its coral reefs, upon which many ships have met their demise. At an 11% decline, Bermuda’s highly protected coral fares better than coral in other areas like the Caribbean where it is at an 80% decline.
Electricity is diesel generated because nobody will insure hydroelectric, wind, or solar equipment due to the probability of hurricanes damaging it. Cost of living is high in Bermuda since nearly everything is imported.
Bermuda Cruise Port at King’s Wharf
Just off the ship at King’s Wharf in the dockyards there is shopping, restaurants, and a free train shuttle around the local area. There is a little building with watersports and tours. The cost of their tours is similar to what the cruise ships charge for excursions. Scooters and jet skis are available for rent.
You can take glass bottom boat tours, ride segways, or go snorkeling, but nothing is cheap. The taxi tours are particularly expensive running about $150-$200 for a 3-hour island tour. Following the green footprints on the street off to the right as you exit the cruise ship dock into the dockyards area brings passengers on a short walk to the museum/dolphin swim area and beyond to an archway leading to snorkel beach and fun golf.
Exploring the island on your own is cheap and easy with the 24-hour pass for busses and ferries at $19. Just be sure to check the schedule for the last bus or ferry back to the dock each night. Just because the ship stays overnight doesn’t mean public transportation runs 24 hours a day because it doesn’t. You can take a bus or ferry just to Hamilton without buying the 24-hour pass if that is as far as you want to go.