The lovely British island of Bermuda provides a wonderful vacation for those current readers in Our Town and far beyond. Bermuda is for traveling folks who would like to experience something quite different than the many islands of the Caribbean.

Bermuda is absolutely one of the cleanest, safest, tourist-friendly locations. and possesses the most beautiful pink sand beaches I have ever laid my eyes on in my many years of traveling.

It is also less than a 2-hour jet flight from several eastern U.S. gateway cities, to its cozy LF Wade International Airport (BDA), centrally located on the relatively compact (21 square miles) North Atlantic Ocean island. Several major ocean cruise lines also provide round trips to Bermuda from the U.S. east coast.  Technically, Bermuda is a British Overseas Territory, still under the watchful eye of the Motherland United Kingdom, but Bermuda does practice self-government. It is located directly 650 miles east of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, and has a permanent population of about 70,000 friendly people. 

My bride, Debbie, and I had a delightful stay there several years ago, mixing our visit with a medical meeting held on the island. We stayed for a week in the capital city, Hamilton, population about 1,000. Land-wise, mainland Bermuda is composed of 8 mostly limestone islands, joined together with roads and bridges. It is 21 miles long (east to west), and only about 1 mile wide (north to south). Local government-wise, it is composed of 9 parishes, each 1,250 acres in size. It is unique by not allowing anyone except its citizens to drive automobiles or trucks on its roads; therefore, the most common form of travel for tourists is via rented motorized cycles (so-called Mopeds), Visitors may also hire taxis, ride public buses, rent pedal bicycles, ride several water ferries, or walk to various close destinations.

Several days during our visit, we rented Mopeds, and several other days we took taxis. My bride was not real “excited” about driving her own Moped, so after a brief experience riding across most of the island in a slight rain storm, she opted to park her Moped, and ride double with me driving! Because we stayed in the major commercial town of Hamilton, we walked to the central shopping area, principally located on Front Street. The shops in Hamilton have, over many years, given Bermuda its reputation as the “Showcase of the British Commonwealth”. The antiques. collectibles, leather products, linens and other fine goods make this area a wonderful to look, and look and look some more; possibly even purchase some items? Hint – bring lots of cash $$$ if you decide to follow through with your purchase ideas!

Another very unusual feature of this special island is all the residential roofs are white, and extremely clean, too. This serves a vital function for its residents, since their roofs capture frequent rainwater, and store it in large cisterns, located adjacent to their colorful homes. This practical method provides all their needed household water.  For the island’s hotels, their drinking water is distilled from ocean water. I should also mention the profusion of flowers, virtually everywhere, most of the year, displaying an incredible array of natural colors.

Major sight-seeing attractions include the Bermuda Aquarium, Museum and Zoo, and The Crystal & Fantasy Caves of Bermuda, both located in Hamilton Parish; the Bermuda Botanical Gardens located in Paget Parish; the Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute, and Queen Elizabeth Park, both located in Pembroke Parish, and the Royal Naval Dockyard located in Sandy’s Parish. Of course, there are many other sights to see if you have time and desires.

As briefly mentioned earlier, the beaches, especially on the south shore, are spectacular due to their pink coral color, and also display extremely clear shallow water off -shore, due to very little ocean current. You may also choose to go out on a deep-sea fishing experience, or play a round of golf. Bermuda ranks among the most sports-conscious countries of the world with more than 30 sporting clubs located on the small island.

Hopefully, your traveling interest has been sparked to visit this gem of an isolated island country, not too far off our eastern shores. Visit it soon, You will certainly be glad you did!

Robert Breedlove is an Oklahoma State University news-editorial journalism graduate, and a former newspaper (including News Press) reporter. He resides in Stillwater, and has for most of his life. He has been a contributing writer to various media over the United States for years. He may be reached at dermrefmd@aol.com.

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