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Typical Bermuda Beach

Contributed by
Nancy Norris

Welcome to Contrary to public thought, Bermuda is not part of the Caribbean, but actually a cluster of 150 small islands in the western Atlantic Ocean, located 600 nautical miles off the coast of North Carolina. Eight of the largest islands form a crescent string linked by causeways and bridges that comprise the 21 square miles of inhabited land that we identify as Bermuda. This self-governing British territory is one of the wealthiest countries in the world, with an average per capita income of $36,500. It is a highly successful offshore financial center.

Rather than the tropical paradise some visitors expect, Bermuda delivers its own brand of unique old world charm. This prosperous oasis is awash with bougainvillea, hibiscus, oleander and tiny whistling tree frogs. Tidy pastel cottages, quaint shops and manicured gardens line the neat, narrow, winding streets where bobbies direct traffic and gentlemen wear jackets, ties and Bermuda shorts. Add turquoise waters, coral reefs and the glorious, soft pink sand that line the sun soaked beaches and Bermuda truly is a destination for the discerning traveler.

Friendly residents offer warm greetings and the island moves at a relaxed pace. With no income tax, no sales tax, no slums, and virtually no unemployment or major crime problems, it is obvious why residents are proud of their surroundings and willingly offer to share its rich heritage.

The Bermuda cruise season runs from April to the first of November, with high season being the summer months. There are 3 ports in Bermuda, and on an island that is a mile wide at most, it is easy to get from one port to the other via land. There are some unique aspects of a Bermuda cruise that differ from the norm. A land vacation to Bermuda is expensive, so many choose a cruise as a less expensive alternative and with ships docked overnight in port, use the ship as if it were their “hotel”. During your days/nights docked in Bermuda, entertainment on board is at a minimum. Due to Bermudian laws, cruise ships are strictly regulated as to music on deck, casino operation and presentation of shows. Many of the usual activities enjoyed on board ship, are not provided on a Bermuda cruise. The destination is the reason one takes a Bermuda cruise.

There are basically only 2 types of Bermuda cruise. A repositioning cruise will sometimes include a day or two in Bermuda as one its stops. As a side-note, NCL is offering 2 days in Bermuda as part of a 7 day Eastern Caribbean cruise from Boston. But, for the most part, a Bermuda cruise departs from New York, Boston, Philadelphia or Baltimore for a 6 or 7 day round trip, with 3-5 days/nights spent at one of the 3 ports. If you are looking for a typical cruise experience than a Bermuda cruise is not for you. But, on the other hand, if you are looking for an opportunity to explore this oasis of calm, at an affordable price, by all means hop aboard.

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