If you are looking for a high energy vacation, look elsewhere. Life on Bermuda definitely moves at a more relaxed pace than the rest of the Caribbean – many locals even close up shop every day for afternoon tea ala Great Britain. Pack your swim suit, your sunglasses, and a good book, and get ready to relax on Bermuda.
Although it is techincally not located in the Caribbean Sea at all, the island retains many of the same qualities of other countries in the region and is often noted as a Caribbean Island. Pink sand beaches, underground caverns, and a laid back attitude along with the unique culture and locale are all things that aided Conde Nast in their decision to include Bermuda on their list of the "Top 30 Islands in the World" in 2014.
|Currency||The Bermuda dollar (BD$) is the legal currency of the island. It is fixed through gold to the U.S. dollar on an equal basis. While U.S. currency is generally accepted, tourists should exchange some money for transportation and incidentals.|
|Electricity||Bermuda uses the 110-volt electrical system, so residents of countries with different systems should bring adapters.|
|GDP Per Capita||Bermuda has an average per capita income of $69,900(USD).|
|Island Size||The island is a small 21-square miles in area.|
|Language||English is the official language, but Portuguese is also spoken on the island.|
|Population||Bermuda is home to about 64,806 residents; 278,200 tourists visit annually, 77 percent of whom are from the U.S.|
|Entry Requirements||All U.S., U.K., and Canadian citizens are required to show an up-to-date passport to enter Bermuda. All visitors must also have a return or onward ticket in addition to a valid passport. Travelers from other countries should check with their local embassies to ensure they are able to provide the proper documentation upon arrival on Bermuda.|
...relaxation with a view...
With a total area of 20.58 square miles, Bermuda is located in the North Atlantic Ocean, about 1,100 miles northeast of Miami, Florida. The 138 islands of Bermuda are of volcanic origin, giving the island a base of igneous rock, while the top is covered in limestone. Because the limestone is so porous, rainwater quickly seeps into the ground, leaving no significant streams or rivers on the islands. Despite this lack of surface water, Bermuda is covered in lush, greenery. Just off the coast of Bermuda is one of the most northerly coral reefs found in the world.
The people of Bermuda have held fast to their British heritage, despite being closer in proximity to the United States. Race relations, once tense on the island, have now eased as the civil rights movement has increased involvement of minorities in the island's government. On the whole, Bermuda is quiet and relaxing. There is no need to worry about aggressive vendors here, and visitors can look forward to a predictable afternoon teatime. Golf is the main sport on the island, and is well-loved as a British custom.
Unlike many of the other Caribbean islands, Bermuda does not have a tropical climate. Instead, it is characterized as Sub-Tropical. The islands experience mild and extremely comfortable weather for most of the year, but very hot and humid weather throughout the summer months. Average temperatures range from a low of 59 degrees Fahrenheit in the winter to 85 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer, with an average rainfall of 59.9 inches.
Though Bermuda is best known to vacationers as a place for “relaxation with a view,” there are still plenty of activities to do and attractions to see for those who want to get up and go. Water sports like jet skiing, snorkeling and scuba diving are great ways to get your adrenaline pumping, while getting a view of the islands from out on the ocean or below sea level. Scuba diving and snorkeling in particular easily dazzle guests, with 300 square miles of reef featuring the remains of over 350 ship wrecks located a short ways off shore.
Visitors also have the opportunity to swim with dolphins at Dolphin Quest in Sandys. Programs at Dolphin Quest range from simply sitting on an underwater platform and interacting with the dolphins, to signing up to work alongside the dolphin trainers for a day. Participants of the Trainer for a Day program spend five and a half hours learning about dolphins through health exams, preparing meals, training and playing with the dolphins. Program prices range from $160 to $3250(USD).
...sand takes on a pink hue...
There are numerous historical and cultural attractions on Bermuda. The National Maritime Museum, which used to be a stand alone location, and local water crafts, has recently expanded and joined forces with the National Museum of Bermuda. Together, the two combined to feature exhibits that cover the history of Bermuda both on land and at sea. Other attractions include Gibbs Hill Lighthouse (the oldest cast iron lighthouse), St. Catherine Fort (the first fort built on the island), and Crystal Caves (a nature-made 55 foot deep lake surrounded by crystal stalactites and stalagmites).
For those who really would rather spend their entire vacation lounging around and being pampered, there are 32 beaches, dozens of spas and beauty salons, 10 golf courses, and many high-end restaurants.
Bermuda's beaches differ from others in the Caribbean in that the sand takes on a pink hue due to the fact that it consists of the crushed skeletons of finely eroded sea life. There are both public and private beaches on the island, with the private beaches typically belonging to the resorts that are situated along the corresponding shore. The highest concentration of private beaches is in Paget Parish, while all of the beaches in Pembroke Parish are public.
A trip to Bermuda isn't complete unless you sample the local cuisine. A few of the regional favorites include cassava pie (which originated when the island was first settled), two types of bean soups, fish chowder, conch, Paw Paw Casserole, shark fritters, and syllabub. Don't forget to wash your meal down with a beer made at North Rock Brewing.
If none of this has quite convinced you that Bermuda is the location for your next getaway, perhaps the fact that the island has retained he title as the "Best Island in the Caribbean & Atlantic" as voted by Conde Nast readers for more than a decade. In 2013, Bermuda received the award for the 11th year in a row after over three million voted cast their votes.
Bermuda is a peaceful island, with very little serious or violent crime; however, common sense should always prevail. Watch mopeds, make sure to lock them behind you when parking, and be careful of valuables which may disappear at the beach. Water on Bermuda is potable and safe for consumption.
A vacation in the Caribbean is meant to be a relaxing affair where getting away from it all is key. This is easy to do on Bermuda, where the beaches are beautiful, the attractions enjoyable, and the pace of life unhurried. Pack your bags, hop on a flight, and soon you can sink into the warm, pink sand of Bermuda.
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