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Welcome to our Port Day Guide, your ultimate guide for exploring the enchanting island of Bermuda. If you’re looking for the best things to do in Bermuda on a cruise, you’ve come to the right place! Bermuda is renowned for its iconic pink sand beaches, pristine waters, and rich maritime history, making it a treasure trove of unique experiences and captivating sights just waiting to be discovered.

Whether you’re a day-tripper boarding from a cruise ship or have the luxury of more time to explore, this guide will help you discover the best of Bermuda. Find the hidden gems and must-see sites that make Bermuda a destination unlike any other.

So, buckle up as we dive in and make the most of your time in this island paradise!

Best Things to Do in Bermuda

Things to Do in Bermuda on a Cruise | The Common Traveler | image: Royal Naval Dockyard buildings

Royal Naval Dockyard

Start your day with a visit to the Bermuda Royal Naval Dockyard, also known as “King’s Wharf.” This historic naval station, nestled gracefully on Bermuda’s picturesque western coast, bears a storied legacy tracing its roots back to the early 19th century.

The Dockyard was founded in the early 19th century to serve as a station for the Royal Navy’s West Indies Squadron. It also served as a refuge for naval warships and maintenance and storage facilities. It was also used as a base for anti-piracy patrols and the abolition of the transatlantic slave trade.

The Dockyard is an expressive testament to Bermuda’s long maritime heritage. It is marked by its remarkable naval architecture featuring imposing stone defenses and robust docks. Among its most notable features is “The Keep,” a fortress-like tower that once occupied the role of administrative headquarters for this formidable naval stronghold.

Today, the Royal Naval Dockyard has transformed into a bustling tourist destination. The Dockyard offers a variety of shops, restaurants, museums, and exciting activities that draw travelers in. Some notable attractions include the charming Clocktower Mall, the National Museum of Bermuda, and the thrilling Dolphin Quest adventure.

Things to Do in Bermuda on a Cruise | The Common Traveler | image: colorful buildings along Front Street

Front Street

Front Street, Bermuda’s bustling main street in Hamilton, represents the island’s unique charm and vibrancy. What sets this thoroughfare apart is its captivating waterfront promenade, where colonial buildings adorned in shades of pink, yellow, and blue overlook the tranquil Hamilton Harbor.

One of Front Street’s captivating features is its lovely coastal location. Here, you can soak in scenic views of Hamilton Harbor, observe the graceful arrival and departure of boats and cruise ships, and take leisurely strolls along the charming harborfront promenade.

Front Street is also a true treasure trove for shopping enthusiasts. Boutiques, department stores, and specialized shops fill the Boulevard. You can find everything from high-end clothing and beautiful jewelry to locally produced souvenirs. It’s a treasure trove of one-of-a-kind gifts and Bermuda-themed items that represent the essence of the island. 

Dining options abound, with many restaurants, cafés, and guests lining the street. Front Street caters to all culinary tastes, whether you’re in the mood for mouthwatering seafood, international cuisine, or traditional Bermudian delicacies like fish chowder and fish sandwiches.

During the summer, Wednesday nights on Front Street come alive with the weekly Harbour Nights event. Here, you may enjoy Gombey dancers’ vibrant performances, enjoy street food delights, participate in family activities, and discover the works of local artisans.

PRO TIP: If you want your photo in front of the Bermuda letter sign, you’ll find it on Front Street, to the left of the Visitor’s Center, as you face the water.

Things to Do in Bermuda on a Cruise | The Common Traveler | image: Horseshoe Bay Beach

Horseshoe Bay Beach

Horseshoe Bay Beach, Bermuda’s crown gem, is known for its stunning pink beaches and turquoise waters. This famous spot, nestled along the south coast of Bermuda’s main island, is loved by both locals and tourists. The impressive natural limestone cliffs and rich flora surrounding its shoreline add to its enchantment. The beach boasts a unique curved shape resembling a horseshoe from the name itself, adding to its charm.

Horseshoe Bay Beach provides a variety of activities for visitors seeking fun and relaxation, including beachcombing, sunbathing, beach volleyball, swimming, and snorkeling in crystal-clear waters. Adventurous ones can explore the surrounding areas via hiking paths, soaking in the scenic beauty of the coastline.

The beach has everything you need for your comfort and convenience. Changing rooms, bathrooms, and beach equipment rentals are all conveniently available. When you’re thirsty, the beachside café serves a range of snacks and refreshing beverages. A gift shop also allows you to take a little of Bermuda’s charm home with you.

However, it’s important to note that Horseshoe Bay Beach’s popularity can lead to overcrowding, especially when multiple cruise ships are docked. To enjoy a more serene experience, consider planning your visit during the early morning or late afternoon hours, when the crowds tend to be smaller.

Things to Do in Bermuda on a Cruise | The Common Traveler | image: Warwick Long Bay Beach

Warwick Long Bay Beach

Warwick Long Bay Beach, located on Bermuda’s serene South Shore, is a hidden gem waiting to be discovered. This lovely beach stretches for half a mile. It is bordered by rugged outcroppings and graced by a coral island rising from the dazzling blue oceans offshore.

What truly sets Warwick Long Bay Beach apart is its sense of isolation and serenity. Compared to some of Bermuda’s more bustling beaches, it offers a quieter and more peaceful escape. It is a perfect choice for those seeking a tranquil retreat.

Walking paths in South Shore Park connect this expansive pink-sand beach to several serene coves and gorgeous shorelines. Despite its limited profile, the beach is ideal for families thanks to its shallow, quiet waves, which offer a safe sanctuary for swimming and relaxing.

Warwick Long Bay Beach’s crystal-clear and calm waters make it an ideal spot for snorkeling and exploring the vibrant underwater world. Depending on the weather conditions, it can even be a fantastic destination for inexperienced surfers looking to catch some waves.

Warwick Long Bay Beach is easily accessible, with public transit readily accessible. The Number 7 bus route travels conveniently along the South Shore, providing an easy and picturesque trip to this hidden gem.

Whether you’re searching for tranquility, water adventures, or a peaceful day by the shore, Warwick Long Bay Beach invites you with its unspoiled beauty and serene ambiance, making it a must-visit destination for a blissful beach experience in Bermuda.

Things to Do in Bermuda on a Cruise | The Common Traveler | image: Fort St. Catherine in St. George's

St. George’s

A short ferry or bus ride from the Royal Naval Dockyard will transport you to St. George’s, a UNESCO-listed town that is a testament to Bermuda’s rich and enduring history. As the oldest continuously inhabited English-speaking town in the Americas, St. George’s invites you to wander through its narrow streets and immerse yourself in a past era.

A stroll through St. George’s feels like a journey into a charming time capsule. Beautifully preserved historic buildings line cobblestone streets, each whispering stories of Bermuda’s historical past. Among these architectural treasures stands St. Peter’s Church, a living relic and the oldest Anglican church in continuous use beyond the British Isles. Its serene interior and ancient graveyard are testaments to centuries of history.

One of the town’s must-visit sites is the Bermuda National Trust Museum, housed in the historic Mitchell House. Here, you can dive deeper into the island’s captivating history and gain insights into the lives of its early settlers. The museum’s exhibits shed light on Bermuda’s maritime heritage, display centuries-old artifacts, and illuminate the island’s essential role in shaping historical events.

St. George’s enchants visitors not only with its historical landmarks but also with its natural splendor. Magnificent views of crystal-clear waters and breathtaking scenery surround the town. If you still have time, I highly recommend taking a leisurely stroll along the sandy shores of Tobacco Bay Beach, where you may bask in the sun’s warmth or go snorkeling to see the diverse marine life that thrives beneath the surface.

Things to Do in Bermuda on a Cruise | The Common Traveler | image: St. Peter's Church

St. Peter’s Church

St. Peter’s Church, located in St. George’s Parish, is a historical treasure that serves as a testament to Bermuda’s lasting spiritual heritage. Built in 1612, it is the oldest operating Anglican Church outside the British Isles. St. Peter’s Church, located on the northeastern edge of Bermuda’s main island, provides an intriguing glimpse into the island’s early history.

Within its hallowed walls, you will encounter a variety of historical relics and architectural splendor. The church still has its original altar, an 18th-century throne recovered from a shipwreck, and communion silver from the 1600s. The African Diaspora Heritage Trail includes two historic cemeteries near the church that were historically divided for white and black Bermudians.

St. Peter’s Church represents the architectural style that was popular at the time. The church’s simple yet attractive architecture, made of locally gathered Bermuda stone, blends beautifully with its lovely surroundings. Inside, a wooden altar, a pulpit, a baptismal font, and stained glass windows portray the church’s and the island’s history, among its historic and modern features.

The surrounding cemetery was the final resting place of numerous early citizens and notable figures from Bermuda. Gravestones tell intriguing stories about Bermuda’s past, providing a meaningful connection to the island’s history.

With no entrance fee, St. Peter’s Church welcomes the public, making it an accessible and culturally stimulating visit for anyone touring St. George’s town. A visit to this old church, whether by foot or bus, promises a meaningful experience of Bermuda’s history, spirituality, and architectural splendor.

Things to Do in Bermuda on a Cruise | The Common Traveler | image: Unfinished Church

Unfinished Church

The Unfinished Church, a remarkable Gothic-style architectural wonder, holds a unique allure with its unfinished state, adding to its fascinating charm. Its walls and structural foundations are in place, yet it lacks both a roof and interior furnishings. The result is a hauntingly beautiful, open-air space.

The church’s history is connected with a mission to rebuild the storm-damaged St. Peter’s Church, destroyed by a storm in 1824. The new church’s construction started in 1874, guided by the design of Scottish architect William Hay. However, it was never completed due to congregational differences and budgetary restrictions.

The Gothic Revival style of the church’s construction is a visual wonder, with pointed arches, ribbed vaults, and flying buttresses. Its striking look against the backdrop of a beautiful sky and the sea makes it a popular photo spot.

The Unfinished Church, open to the public, has no entrance fee. It welcomes you to explore its interior and exterior, allowing you to admire its architectural structures and the tranquil gardens.

Whether you’re drawn in by its unique aesthetics, historical tales, or the dynamic activities it hosts, the Unfinished Church guarantees an unforgettable experience for those who walk through its walls.

Things to Do in Bermuda on a Cruise | The Common Traveler | image: Bermuda Botanical Gardens

Bermuda Botanical Gardens

The Bermuda Botanical Gardens, established in 1898, extends over 36 acres of natural grandeur in the heart of Paget Parish, only a short drive from the island’s capital, Hamilton. This charming floral paradise is easily accessible, with handy public transit, taxis, and scooters readily available.

Initially designed by the Bermudian government as an area for research and teaching, these Gardens have grown over time into a renowned public attraction known for their breathtaking landscapes and botanical diversity.

During your visit, you can enjoy a kaleidoscope of plant species, trees, and blossoms from all over the world. The Palm Garden, Rose Garden, Camellia Collection, and Orchid Collection are among the themed gardens that highlight the grounds, each providing a unique and visually engaging experience. Greenhouses house exquisite orchid and succulent collections. The gardens also include historic buildings such as Camden House, Bermuda’s prestigious government residence, and the Masterworks Museum of Bermuda Art.

The Bermuda Botanical Gardens also provides an excellent spot for leisurely walks, picnics, and birdwatching. Educational displays, such as a sensory garden for the visually impaired, offer unique insights into Bermuda’s agricultural heritage. If you want to learn more about the garden’s secrets, take a tour. Complimentary 90-minute guided tours are offered every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday at 10:30 a.m.

Whether you seek a tranquil escape, an educational adventure, or simply a day immersed in the beauty of nature, the Bermuda Botanical Gardens invite you to explore their lush landscapes and rich history.

Things to Do in Bermuda on a Cruise | The Common Traveler | image: Gibbs Lighthouse

Gibbs Hill Lighthouse

Gibbs Hill Lighthouse is a famous and beloved tourist destination representing Bermuda’s unique charm. This 117-foot-tall lighthouse is in Bermuda’s heart because of its towering grandeur, breathtaking panoramas, and historical significance. Built in 1846 from cast iron, it is the world’s oldest of its kind and one of only two remaining cast-iron lighthouses.

Strategically located, the lighthouse boasts panoramic views of Hamilton, the Royal Naval Dockyard, the South Shore, and the scenic Little Sound. Embarking on an adventure here involves climbing the lighthouse’s spiral staircase, which consists of 185 steps, to one of the island’s most panoramic viewpoints.

While Gibbs Hill Lighthouse is a popular tourist attraction, it also serves as a navigational beacon, flashing white lights every 5 seconds to guide ships safely through nearby waterways and reefs.

Gibbs Hill Lighthouse is open daily from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The lighthouse is open to the public for an entrance fee of $2.50 per person, charged at the on-site gift store. The gift shop is also an excellent place to buy iconic Bermuda souvenirs or a cold beverage.

Bermuda Railway Trail

This captivating pathway promises a distinctive and unique journey through the island, meandering through charming villages, green forests, and scenic coastlines.

Starting at the Royal Naval Dockyard, your tour will take you through the charming Bermudian towns of Somerset and Flatts Village. These charming villages represent Bermuda’s rich cultural past, with vibrant architecture and warm greetings from the locals. Watch for the different kinds of birds and unique plant life that adorn the trail, adding to its attraction.

One of the most intriguing parts of the Bermuda Railway Trail is its historical tapestry. Along the route, you’ll encounter well-preserved remnants of Bermuda’s historic railway system, which once operated from 1931 to 1948. Crossing these antique railway bridges offers a portal to the past and provides sweeping panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes.

The trail’s main attraction undeniably lies in its breathtaking coastal vistas. Cycling along this scenic route rewards you with breathtaking views of Bermuda’s crystalline waters and rugged shorelines, making it a photographer’s and wildlife enthusiast’s paradise.

To take your experience to the fullest, I recommend renting a bicycle, readily available at numerous rental shops. Remember to pack essentials such as sunscreen, water, and snacks to keep you energized and prepared for an unforgettable journey through Bermuda’s captivating landscapes.

Things to Do in Bermuda on a Cruise | The Common Traveler | image: Crystal Caves

Crystal and Fantasy Caves

The Crystal and Fantasy Caves in Hamilton are unique natural wonders known for their impressive geological structures. These subterranean caverns, now known worldwide, were discovered by accident in the early 20th century. The caves were stumbled upon by two young boys in 1907 during a game of cricket that led them to a small hole in the ground. Little did they know that this chance discovery would unveil the hidden treasures of these underground wonders.

Crystal Cave’s crystal-covered tunnels and fascinating 55-foot-deep lake reveal an enchanting world of azure-blue underwater waters. During your visit, you will find a variety of unique formations inside its depths, from stalactites and stalagmites of all forms and sizes to the unique and beautiful chandelier clusters and wonderful crystallized soda straws gracing the cave ceilings. Each cave has its own unique and breathtaking beauty.

You may discover these natural beauties by taking guided tours that provide an immersive and informative experience. You will be guided through the caves by knowledgeable guides. The guides offer intriguing insights into their formation, historical significance, and geological significance. These guided tours last 30 to 40 minutes and provide a view into the captivating environment under Bermuda’s surface.

Things to Do in Bermuda on a Cruise | The Common Traveler | image: Blue Hole
Yes, sadly, that’s a layer of oily sunscreen on top. Please wear Reef Safe sunscreen!

Blue Hole Park

Blue Hole Park, known locally as Tom Moore’s Jungle, is a mesmerizing natural beauty tucked away in Hamilton Parish on Bermuda’s eastern coast.

The captivating Blue Hole, a large, deep pool surrounded by thriving mangroves, is at the heart of Blue Hole Park. It offers an appealing natural swimming spot set within the island’s rich nature. The park’s allure doesn’t end there. Explore the network of caves and grottoes adorned with natural lakes and stalactite formations and connected by underground tunnels!

Some of the blue holes are swimmable, providing a one-of-a-kind opportunity to immerse yourself in the crystal-clear waters. While exploring these natural treasures, practicing caution and being aware of changing depths is essential.

Blue Hole Park also has well-kept walking paths that wind through the lush forest. This park has it all, whether you want a tranquil stroll, a refreshing swim, or a look into underground mysteries.

PRO TIP: You can only visit the Blue Hole on an accompanied tour for safety reasons. Book a tour if you’d like to try them.

Things to Do in Bermuda on a Cruise | The Common Traveler | image: rum swizzles

Sample a Rum Swizzle

What’s a rum swizzle? It’s Bermuda’s national cocktail, of course! Named after the Swizzle Inn, which made it famous, the Rum Swizzle contains rum, orange and pineapple juices, bitters, and grenadine. Thanks to the pineapple, the tropical rum punch hits all the right notes. Don’t leave Bermuda without sampling a Rum Swizzle, but be careful, as some places make them really strong! 

Things to Do in Bermuda on a Cruise | The Common Traveler | image: four red phone booths

Know Before You Go to Bermuda

Best Time to Visit Bermuda

Bermuda’s latitude is similar to North Carolina’s in the United States. With its location in the Atlantic, it enjoys a temperate climate year-round. The high season in Bermuda is the summer when the beaches are most popular. Late April to mid-October are excellent months – and the shoulder months before or after the summer are the best. Cruise ships sail to Bermuda from the United States from April to November.

Keep in mind that Bermuda is located in an area prone to hurricanes. Hurricane season lasts from June 1 to November 30, with September the busiest hurricane month. But don’t let that deter you from visiting this beautiful island paradise! The island is well-equipped to deal with any weather emergency.

Bermuda Currency

Bermudians use the Bermudian Dollar. The exchange of the Bermudian Dollar to the U.S. Dollar is one-to-one. This means that travelers to Bermuda can easily use their U.S. Dollars to pay for items but should be aware that they may receive Bermudian Dollars as change.

Bermuda Language

As a former British colony, Bermudians speak primarily English, with some island influences. English speakers will have no problems in Bermuda.

Getting Around Bermuda

The island offers fantastic public transportation, from ferries to buses. Taxis are plentiful. You can even rent an electric vehicle. Read this blog for more transportation options.

Things to Do in Bermuda on a Cruise | The Common Traveler | image: canon at Royal Naval Dockyard

Final Thoughts on Things to Do in Bermuda on a Cruise Day

If you’re wondering if Bermuda is worth visiting on a cruise, the answer is a resounding yes! Whether you want to learn about history, engage in a little adventure, or just relax on the beach, Bermuda has someone to offer every type of visitor.

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Happy travels,
Annick, The Common Traveler

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Things to Do in Bermuda on a Cruise | The Common Traveler shares what to do in Bermuda when you're on a cruise. Whether you're interested in history, nature, food, shopping, or pink sand beaches, we've got it all!

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