Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Beautiful Bermuda

I'm just back from a weekend in Bermuda, where the only sports were on TV. They had a great selection at the resort I stayed at (Grotto Bay) though, with most of the big US sports channels and league networks, along with ESPN Europe showing the Cricket World Cup, and even CBC for a bit of Hockey Night in Canada on Valentine's Day. Seeing the Leafs lose yet again is the best way to express my love for them, wouldn't you agree?

Anyway, flights are around two hours from New York (or Boston, Atlanta and Toronto) and booking in advance during the off-season can see you getting fares in the low $200s, while hotels during this time usually have discounts too. They take US dollars at par (Bermuda dollars are not exchangeable off the island so don't take any back with you), but it is not a destination known for cheap eats, with prices for pub food about 20% higher than what you would typically pay in New York. There are some very good restaurants in Hamilton, the main city, including Coconut Rock, an Asian fusion spot with sushi that looks rather odd at first glance but is staffed by a very talented chef.

Bermuda was hit hard by Hurricane Gonzalo late last year and there are still signs of damage, but for the most part life has returned to normal, although the economy is clearly suffering and tourism is not what it once was. Despite that, those involved in the hospitality industry are extremely friendly, even at immigration, where the officer chatted with us and gave us several recommendations. All in all, a worthwhile destination for a short weekend stay when the winter blahs have got you down, and in season (June-November) probably worth a few more days when the islands are busier and quite a bit warmer.

Below are a few pictures:

Empty Beach - weather was cool and windy, with temps around 15 C, so no sunbathers yet

Front Street in Hamilton

City Hall which includes the Bermuda Art Gallery

View of Grotto Bay which is right next to the airport

The eastern portion of the islands. To the left is the Causeway that leads from the airport



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