Southampton and Hamilton

By the time Natalya and I woke up for the day, Doc had already gone down to the beach for a photo session.  The Bermuda daytime scenery is absolutely breathtaking.  One of the first things that struck us was the vibrancy of the colors.  From the iridescent blue of the waters to the striking green of the grass and palm fronds- everything was so brilliantly alive.  All the buildings and houses were painted in very happy pastels, like powder blue or the soft pink of the Fairmont hotel.  Not that I am very religious but it felt like eternal Easter!

We first went to the dive shop located on the private beach of the Fairmont Southampton to sign up for a scuba dive.  Nat and I were both certified, but Doc had never done it before.  While we signed our lives away via all the waiver forms, Doc got talked into an introductory class for that afternoon.  Nat and I would be diving the following morning.

We then explored the neighboring Horseshoe Bay (literally right next to our hotel’s beach), one of Bermuda’s most popular beaches.  Cruise ship tourists flock to its pinks sands and enjoy snorkeling in its crystal clear waters.

But the best spot is off to the right side of Horseshoe Bay where Jobson’s Cove lies.  This small, tranquil cove is kept separate from the open ocean by jagged limestone cliffs which almost completely enclose the space.

The next stop was Gibbs Hill Lighthouse, which was a 15 minute walk west from the hotel.  The lighthouse was completed in 1846 and it continues to function today.  We paid $2.50 for admission and climbed all 185 steps to the top.  The 360° views from the top are quite spectacular, and it would definitely be worth it to check out during sunset.

Doc went off to his scuba lesson and Nat and I snoozed in the hotel, as we were too lazy to do much else.  Along with the free trolley to transport guests from the hotel down to the beach (otherwise a 10 minute walk), the Fairmont also provides a free ferry between its two hotel properties in Southampton and Hamilton.  We decided to catch the last ferry at 6:30pm to head into Hamilton.  The scenic journey takes about 25 minutes.  When we docked at the Fairmont Princess, we noticed the lobby was packed with beautifully dressed teens – apparently it was prom night!

Hamilton is Bermuda’s capital city, and the island’s only city for that matter.  This is not to be confused with Hamilton parish, where the famed Crystal Caves are located.  Hamilton city is located in Pembroke Parish and boasts several museums, cathedrals, and forts.  We strolled along Front Street heading west towards Fort Hamilton.  It really only seemed to take 15 minutes to walk the whole length of the parish.  As we approached the east end, we noticed the roads were pretty steep to get to the fort.  Since the fort had already closed earlier at 5pm and we were fairly hungry, we decided to just turn around and find some dinner.

We went to the Lobster Pot for dinner, which was located on Bermudian Road.  We put on our lobster bibs and enjoyed a seafood fest.  We tried Bermuda’s famous fish chowder, which was topped with a splash of Black Seal rum and peppered sherry.    Overall, we were generally unimpressed with the food quality in Bermuda… mainly because of the price tag associated with all the mediocre dishes.  Basically, our taste buds are just very spoiled in NYC!

After dinner, we had our own little pub crawl along Front Street: Flanagan’s, Hog’s Penny, and the Pickled Onion.  Flanagan’s is Bermuda’s only legit sports bar, and there are plenty of screens but it was pretty quiet when we walked in around 10pm on a Saturday night.  Hog’s Penny was a very chill pub with a DJ spinning classic top 40 hits, and we enjoyed several rounds of Rum Swizzles here.  The neighboring restaurant, Barracuda Bar & Grill also looked like a great place for food.  The Pickled Onion was the surprise winner of the night.  They had live musicians playing popular song requests from the 80’s to present, and we spent the rest of the night dancing and singing along to Journey, Tiffany, and the Black Eyed Peas.

Return to main menu: “Bermuda Baby!”

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