When you touch down at L. F. Wade International Airport, it won’t take long for you to understand why Bermuda, the storied and picturesque North Atlantic British Island territory, is such an unforgettable destination. Maybe it’s the pearly-pink sand beaches, the breathtaking humpback whales heading north, the dream-like crystal caves, or the welcoming locals; regardless of what catches your interest on this beautiful 21-square-mile island, we have a feeling it won’t be long before you’re back for more.
One of the best things about Bermuda is that it’s the kind of place where you can spend a couple of weeks for an extended trip, or you can slip away from work for a long weekend with a loved one and get in some serious R&R or seaside adventures. Just a quick trip from the southern states and east coast of the U.S. (usually less than a three-hour flight), it’s easy to book a few nights at one of the award-winning hotels and get to know this lovely little island in just a few day’s time.
And while we know there’s been a lot of buzz around the vexatious Zika virus, which has prevented many a traveler from enjoying the wonders of islands in the Caribbean and North Atlantic, Bermuda is completely Zika-free.
Leave your worries back at the office and start looking for those flights. Here’s why we deem Bermuda one of the best weekend getaways the world.
Surely when you think of the ideal island vacation, you envision turquoise blue water, endless stretches of pristine sandy coastline and lush, green vegetation. Well, welcome to Bermuda, because that’s exactly what you’ll find when you arrive. Except some of the beaches along the island’s south shore are actually a dreamy shade of light pink, thanks to the red-colored foraminifera organisms that live within the coral reefs. You’ll want to spend hours lounging on the crescent-shaped Horseshoe Bay Beach and the swimming in the clear waters at Jobson’s cove. It’s an Instagrammer’s dream come true.
Where to Eat in Bermuda
Dark ‘n stormys made with local rum. Fresh fish sandwiches. Spiny lobster. Whether you’re feasting on a fresh catch at a celebrity chef’s restaurant (ahem, Marcus Samuelsson) or ambling through an open-air market in search of quick local bites, you can experience the heart and soul of this island through its cuisine. Influenced by a mix of cultures (African, Caribbean, Native American, British, and Portuguese), Bermudian culinary tradition is just as rich and flavorful as it is constantly developing. Local chefs prepare fresh seafood daily for their menus, and also present innovative dishes that wed tradition with exciting new flavor combinations. From a high-end steakhouse like the Waterlot Inn to little-known gems like Art Mel’s Spicy Dicy (which apparently serves up the world’s best fish sandwich), the food in Bermuda will be the cherry on top of a perfect weekend. Pro-tip: be sure to order at least one Rum Swizzle while you’re on the island.
When it comes to booking comfortable accommodations, you’re spoiled for choice in Bermuda. If you’re staying in the harborfront capital city of Hamilton, check out high-end options like the famed The Hamilton Princess Hotel & Beach Club, where a recent renovation yielded the likes of a sparkling infinity pool and two harborside restaurants. Or maybe you’ll feel more at home at a smaller boutique retreat, slightly off the beaten path, like the gorgeous family-owned Reefs Resort & Club in Southampton Parish. If you’re after some opulent British colonial charm, the Rosewood Bermuda boasts island-style elegance and everything that goes along with it (think 240 coastal acres, waterfront balconies off a whitewashed manor, and an 18-hole golf course). Rosedon Hotel is also a great choice as the 20th-century mansion just wrapped up a head-to-toe renovation, giving it a bit more updated feel.
On and Off the Water
Diving, snorkeling, sailing, whale watching, fishing—the list of both over and underwater activities is extensive and dynamic, and sure to appeal to all kinds of warm-weather vacationers. Imagine cruising past humpback whales on their migration journey north; sunbathing on a beautiful yacht off the shores of pink-sand beaches; diving among the famous Bermuda reefs and fascinating shipwrecks. There’s no shortage of adventures to embark on within the sparkling blue waters surrounding the island. And while you might picture yourself spending the entire weekend on the beach or by the turquoise surf, it’s worth checking out some of the fun on-shore activities available to visitors, like taking your clubs to one of the manicured golf courses on island, or posting up at an award-winning spa for a rejuvenating treatment.