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Help me understand renting boston whalers


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I have searched on here for answers, but can't really seem to find what I'm looking for.

 

I recently discovered what renting the "boston whalers" meant and after checking into it, thought it would be a neat thing to do (however after reading another thread, it said "book early they fill up quickly", so we might not even find a place to rent one at this point).

 

Anyhow...from what I'm reading (correct me if I'm wrong) once they give you the demonstration on running it, you go on your own? Like without a captain or tour guide?

 

So if that's the case, how do you know where to go? If you do a 4 hour rental, how far will that take you? (Looking at using Sommerset Bridge Rentals).

 

Do you just cruise around looking at the shoreline? Are you able to stop at any time and jump in the water and snorkel? Is there a way to get back up on it easily?

 

Are you able to go to any of the beaches and can you "park" there? Or are you completely restricted to staying out in the water? Just wondering what beaches you would be able to make it to from the Sommerset bridge (Sandys) location.

 

 

What we are thinking of doing (if they have available reservations) is to rent jet skis for 2 hours doing the "tour" and then when we get back go out on the whaler (since we'll be a little more familiar with the water and area after that).

 

What do you think?

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I have searched on here for answers, but can't really seem to find what I'm looking for.

 

I recently discovered what renting the "boston whalers" meant and after checking into it, thought it would be a neat thing to do (however after reading another thread, it said "book early they fill up quickly", so we might not even find a place to rent one at this point).

 

Anyhow...from what I'm reading (correct me if I'm wrong) once they give you the demonstration on running it, you go on your own? Like without a captain or tour guide?

 

So if that's the case, how do you know where to go? If you do a 4 hour rental, how far will that take you? (Looking at using Sommerset Bridge Rentals).

 

Do you just cruise around looking at the shoreline? Are you able to stop at any time and jump in the water and snorkel? Is there a way to get back up on it easily?

 

Are you able to go to any of the beaches and can you "park" there? Or are you completely restricted to staying out in the water? Just wondering what beaches you would be able to make it to from the Sommerset bridge (Sandys) location.

 

 

What we are thinking of doing (if they have available reservations) is to rent jet skis for 2 hours doing the "tour" and then when we get back go out on the whaler (since we'll be a little more familiar with the water and area after that).

 

What do you think?

 

Ok so I have one booked in the next few weeks through Somerset and it will be our first time. I have done a ton of research so I can share what I have read for what it's worth:) I'm sure someone with first hand experience will reply soon.

 

Anyhow...from what I'm reading (correct me if I'm wrong) once they give you the demonstration on running it, you go on your own? Like without a captain or tour guide? Yes

 

So if that's the case, how do you know where to go? If you do a 4 hour rental, how far will that take you? (Looking at using Sommerset Bridge Rentals). Depends where you want to go but you won't be able to go on the south side because of the reefs. Do you want to stop and swim, visit beaches, etc? That will factor in how far you can go.

 

Do you just cruise around looking at the shoreline? Are you able to stop at any time and jump in the water and snorkel? Is there a way to get back up on it easily? All of the above:) Not sure on how easy it is to get in though

 

Are you able to go to any of the beaches and can you "park" there? Or are you completely restricted to staying out in the water? Just wondering what beaches you would be able to make it to from the Sommerset bridge (Sandys) location. There are some islands that are off limits because they are private but I know they give you a detailed map of ones you can go to. I have seen pictures on Tripadvisor of the whalers anchored on secluded beaches.

 

 

What we are thinking of doing (if they have available reservations) is to rent jet skis for 2 hours doing the "tour" and then when we get back go out on the whaler (since we'll be a little more familiar with the water and area after that). That sounds like a good plan. Every review I read...and I read a ton...all said it was the best experience. I literally did not read one bad review. We are planning on a 6 hr rental and we are going to fish, swim, snorkel, and hit some secluded beaches.

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You will get a briefing on how to run the motor then you are totally on your own. The boats sre very easy to operate and are flat-bottomed so very stable.

We rented through H2O as I mentioned in another thread but Somerset also rents them. You'll have a map that shows the bridges and islands and you are free to enjoy all of the West End right into the dockyard. You'll find excellent snorkeling right from many of the small islands that you can beach on, and beaching on a small island can make for a romantic lunch or a nice family lunch in your case Mitsugirly. You will just beach the boat, no anchoring or mooring but be careful of rocks when beaching.

You have the freedom to spend as much time at any one spot that you like, we enjoyed the area around Cambridge Beaches and that bay. Be sure to carry a phone in case of a rare motor problem (we had one), Somerset gives you a phone, both outfits give you a map.

As mentioned you cannot go to the south shore beaches due to the huge reef system in that area. If you perform a search you'll find more detailed info from my and others earlier posts. Be sure to stow your bags in the bow area as the stern can get a little wet.

Great day and an excellent way to experience Bermuda!

Edited by blue_water
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Ok so I have one booked in the next few weeks through Somerset and it will be our first time. I have done a ton of research so I can share what I have read for what it's worth:) I'm sure someone with first hand experience will reply soon.

 

Anyhow...from what I'm reading (correct me if I'm wrong) once they give you the demonstration on running it, you go on your own? Like without a captain or tour guide? Yes

 

So if that's the case, how do you know where to go? If you do a 4 hour rental, how far will that take you? (Looking at using Sommerset Bridge Rentals). Depends where you want to go but you won't be able to go on the south side because of the reefs. Do you want to stop and swim, visit beaches, etc? That will factor in how far you can go.

 

Do you just cruise around looking at the shoreline? Are you able to stop at any time and jump in the water and snorkel? Is there a way to get back up on it easily? All of the above:) Not sure on how easy it is to get in though

 

Are you able to go to any of the beaches and can you "park" there? Or are you completely restricted to staying out in the water? Just wondering what beaches you would be able to make it to from the Sommerset bridge (Sandys) location. There are some islands that are off limits because they are private but I know they give you a detailed map of ones you can go to. I have seen pictures on Tripadvisor of the whalers anchored on secluded beaches.

 

 

What we are thinking of doing (if they have available reservations) is to rent jet skis for 2 hours doing the "tour" and then when we get back go out on the whaler (since we'll be a little more familiar with the water and area after that). That sounds like a good plan. Every review I read...and I read a ton...all said it was the best experience. I literally did not read one bad review. We are planning on a 6 hr rental and we are going to fish, swim, snorkel, and hit some secluded beaches.

 

Thanks for the information you have found. It sounds wonderful and like a lot of fun.

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You will get a briefing on how to run the motor then you are totally on your own. The boats sre very easy to operate and are flat-bottomed so very stable.

We rented through H2O as I mentioned in another thread but Somerset also rents them. You'll have a map that shows the bridges and islands and you are free to enjoy all of the West End right into the dockyard. You'll find excellent snorkeling right from many of the small islands that you can beach on, and beaching on a small island can make for a romantic lunch or a nice family lunch in your case Mitsugirly. You will just beach the boat, no anchoring or mooring but be careful of rocks when beaching.

You have the freedom to spend as much time at any one spot that you like, we enjoyed the area around Cambridge Beaches and that bay. Be sure to carry a phone in case of a rare motor problem (we had one), Somerset gives you a phone, both outfits give you a map.

As mentioned you cannot go to the south shore beaches due to the huge reef system in that area. If you perform a search you'll find more detailed info from my and others earlier posts. Be sure to stow your bags in the bow area as the stern can get a little wet.

Great day and an excellent way to experience Bermuda!

 

You are allowed to go into the dockyard? Like by the ship? That would make for some awesome pictures if so.

 

Did you go to the Cambridge Beaches and area because of picking up yours at h2o (since it's closer down that way) or you just liked that area? Do the private islands have signs on them to stay off so you'll know which they are? I know you said they give you a map, but when in the water, I would imagine after passing so many it would be a little hard to distinguish which is which and that worries me. I don't want to get shot for trespassing by some angry Bermudian in pink shorts. ;)

 

 

I read reviews on TA last night and of course I always read the "bad" ones just to see if the complaints are just nit picking or founded. I do have to say most are positive BUT.....I am a little worried about a few things.

 

Every time I cruise I get so excited about something only to go into complete panic mode right after that with all the things that could go wrong. :eek:

 

I had some concerns about how "fast" they go. We will have 2 little ones with us (age 7) and although they are very adventurous, it still bothers me. My daughter and her boyfriend have jet skis and also a boat and they go tubing every summer, so my grandson is use to doing this and loves it. My youngest daughter goes tubing with them, but has never been on the back of the jet ski and I just start to freak out thinking of things like "what if she let go?" "What if they hit a wake and it threw her off?" I read a few reviews that said they were scared and the tour guide was going too fast. While I understand that it's best to go faster so that it will ride smoother, it still worries me.

 

As for the whaler, I read several reviews that said that since they sit so close to the water and are flat, they had issues with the boat taking on water and was provided a small type of cup to scoop it out and spent most of the time doing that. That doesn't sound like a great time if you are constantly trying to get the water out...especially since there will be 6 of us on this boat.

 

Another thing I had read is that they are pull start? Instead of electric start. Is that true or (since this was an older review) maybe they have replaced the older pull start boats? Me and pull starts don't get along...lawn mowers, 4 wheeler kick starts, weed wackers...I just have the worse problems. LOL

 

 

Please reassure me this will be ok. I spent all day long yesterday on the biggest high thinking this was going to be the most awesome day in Bermuda to the lowest low having nightmares last night. LOL :p

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So far H2o is the only place that has responded to me (emailed both last night). They only do the 1 hour 15 minute jet ski (versus you can do 2 hours at Sommerset). But I figured that since we plan on renting a boat after that, we would have the opportunity to snorkel from that (I believe that's what you get different with the extra 45 minutes on the jet ski tour). So no biggie.

 

However, their boat rental is a little more expensive (by $15) for 4 hours compared to Sommerset. I'm hoping they might give me a deal for renting both that day.

 

My question is...how do you get there? It looks closer to get to from the dockyard than Sommerset, however maybe a little far off the bus line? How much would it cost by taxi to get to? I'm just wondering if that would be cheaper than paying for the bus (which would cost us $25.50 for our crowd).

 

 

Also the only "boat" they have listed is a 17' boat. Is this a whaler? How many people will it hold?

 

 

Oh, I also forgot to say....H2o also said with us having 6 people and renting 3 jet skis, we would get a "private" tour for just our party. This is sounding awesome. (We may actually be adding a 4th jet ski and 2 other people in our party if they decide to do it with us).

Edited by mitsugirly
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H2O was a further bus ride for us that Somerset because we were staying in an apartment across from Warwick Long Bay which is to the east of Sandys. But we chose H2O based on reviews, and because they offered a larger boat for not much more $. We also enjoyed spending time right in that bay on an island. We were out for over 4 hrs and went everywhere on both sides of the island, loved our day and we will do that again.

 

Yes, you can buzz the ships in the Dockyard, and we even went into the marina so we could grab more drinks :p

 

These boats are extremely safe and cannot be tipped, even in higher waves. They go fast enough to get around easily but do not go dangerously fast. You just need to obey the speed limits at the bridge crossings, and when you are in the bays. These boats will get a little water by the motor when you're going slower but not to worry, you just want to keep your stuff dry by placing bags by the center console or in the bow. You will see how safe and easy these boats are to operate and be very comfortable - No worries! ;)

 

Taxi is 10 min, but the bus drops you close to either place. We bussed to both SBW and H2O, you have to walk along the road a little for both, and it's just a little longer walk down a side road to H2O but not bad at all.

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So funny...I was going to mention this to you as another thing to do in Bermuda but I knew you had your Day 1 and 2 booked. I am not sure I would be gutsy enough to do this on Day 3! We are dying to do a rental! What did you decide? Sounds like a riot!

Lauri

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H2O was a further bus ride for us that Somerset because we were staying in an apartment across from Warwick Long Bay which is to the east of Sandys. But we chose H2O based on reviews, and because they offered a larger boat for not much more $. We also enjoyed spending time right in that bay on an island. We were out for over 4 hrs and went everywhere on both sides of the island, loved our day and we will do that again.

 

Yes, you can buzz the ships in the Dockyard, and we even went into the marina so we could grab more drinks :p

 

These boats are extremely safe and cannot be tipped, even in higher waves. They go fast enough to get around easily but do not go dangerously fast. You just need to obey the speed limits at the bridge crossings, and when you are in the bays. These boats will get a little water by the motor when you're going slower but not to worry, you just want to keep your stuff dry by placing bags by the center console or in the bow. You will see how safe and easy these boats are to operate and be very comfortable - No worries! ;)

 

Taxi is 10 min, but the bus drops you close to either place. We bussed to both SBW and H2O, you have to walk along the road a little for both, and it's just a little longer walk down a side road to H2O but not bad at all.

 

Thanks for the info. I really appreciate it Blue (I didn't realize you ever got out of St Thomas my friend :D). Now I can rely on you for the Bermuda boards too. :)

 

I'm really not worried about how fast the boat is, it's the jet skis that I'm worried about with my youngest daughter. She has never been on one, just pulled on a tube by one. I'm just wondering how well she'll do with holding on and not letting go if they go fast (I think recommend slowest rate in the open water is 35mph :eek:). She's a daredevil, so not worried about her being scared or not wanting to do it...just worried about safety, but not willing to leave her behind because I know she'll love it.

 

I have to say that H2o has been on the ball today with answering my questions back and forth...like within a 1/2 hour, which says a lot to me and their service. I have yet to hear anything from Sommerset. I know calling them would be the ideal way to get an immediate response, however I don't like calling anyone because I like to have things in writing not only as "proof" but to refer back to.

 

H2o has said that we will get a private tour for just our family and we can go at a pace we need to go at AND we are getting a "deal" for renting both. I'm back to getting super excited again. :D

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So funny...I was going to mention this to you as another thing to do in Bermuda but I knew you had your Day 1 and 2 booked. I am not sure I would be gutsy enough to do this on Day 3! We are dying to do a rental! What did you decide? Sounds like a riot!

Lauri

 

Please tell me why you would not be gutsy enough on day 3? Just wondering.

 

The earliest appointment for the jet ski rental is 10am. So off on the tour at 10-11:15am. Then hop off the jet ski and onto the boat...I'm guessing around 11:30ish or a little after. A 4 hour tour puts us at 3:30ish (of course we could come back at any time). Grab a taxi back to the dock (which is only 10-15 minutes away I'm told) and we'd be back (should) at least by 4pm. Ship leaves at 5:30pm. Back on the ship by 5pm. I think we should be ok. Right? :confused:

 

I don't know why I didn't think of it either. What I REALLY want to do is parasailing!!! But, we'll save that for another time. :D

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Please tell me why you would not be gutsy enough on day 3? Just wondering.

 

The earliest appointment for the jet ski rental is 10am. So off on the tour at 10-11:15am. Then hop off the jet ski and onto the boat...I'm guessing around 11:30ish or a little after. A 4 hour tour puts us at 3:30ish (of course we could come back at any time). Grab a taxi back to the dock (which is only 10-15 minutes away I'm told) and we'd be back (should) at least by 4pm. Ship leaves at 5:30pm. Back on the ship by 5pm. I think we should be ok. Right? :confused:

 

I don't know why I didn't think of it either. What I REALLY want to do is parasailing!!! But, we'll save that for another time. :D

 

Probably just me being over-cautious! On Day 1 or 2, if there is something that goes wrong with the boat, etc, you have all day to get back to the ship. Day 3 is the only day with a time commitment so it seems safer to be at the South Shore Beaches, with a tour guide or at the dockyard! But that is just me! I am sure people do this all the time on Day 3 and are just fine! I think I remember a review saying they actually give you a cell phone so you can reach them in case of motor trouble or whatever. Don't let me scare you...I am very cautious!

Have a great time! Parasailing is on my bucket list too!

Lauri

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Thanks for the info. I really appreciate it Blue (I didn't realize you ever got out of St Thomas my friend :D). Now I can rely on you for the Bermuda boards too. :)

 

I'm really not worried about how fast the boat is, it's the jet skis that I'm worried about with my youngest daughter. She has never been on one, just pulled on a tube by one. I'm just wondering how well she'll do with holding on and not letting go if they go fast (I think recommend slowest rate in the open water is 35mph :eek:). She's a daredevil, so not worried about her being scared or not wanting to do it...just worried about safety, but not willing to leave her behind because I know she'll love it.

 

I have to say that H2o has been on the ball today with answering my questions back and forth...like within a 1/2 hour, which says a lot to me and their service. I have yet to hear anything from Sommerset. I know calling them would be the ideal way to get an immediate response, however I don't like calling anyone because I like to have things in writing not only as "proof" but to refer back to.

 

H2o has said that we will get a private tour for just our family and we can go at a pace we need to go at AND we are getting a "deal" for renting both. I'm back to getting super excited again. :D

 

H2O sounds great and we did enjoy using their services.

 

Yes concern about the speed on the jet skis makes sense, on a normal excursion the leader will go fast and wait for you at "meet" points. You can go at your own pace but will be behind others who want the speed. But they do a good job with newbies and families, and actually since the water is generally quite calm you can enjoy the ride. There are a couple open water spots like in GCM that are rougher, But the private tour sounds great - can't beat that!!! ;)

 

We found H2O to be very responsive, Somerset not so much, another reason we went with H2O and are are happy to go back there.

 

Not sure why Lauri would be concerned about doing this on day 3, it's certainly something you don't want to miss!

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Probably just me being over-cautious! On Day 1 or 2, if there is something that goes wrong with the boat, etc, you have all day to get back to the ship. Day 3 is the only day with a time commitment so it seems safer to be at the South Shore Beaches, with a tour guide or at the dockyard! But that is just me! I am sure people do this all the time on Day 3 and are just fine! I think I remember a review saying they actually give you a cell phone so you can reach them in case of motor trouble or whatever. Don't let me scare you...I am very cautious!

Have a great time! Parasailing is on my bucket list too!

Lauri

 

I'm definitely considered a "nervous" planner and I completely freak out all the way up to the day of the cruise. Then for some reason I relax and it doesn't cross my mind too often once I'm there. I don't know why. So I guess this is my freak out period. :p

 

Yes, they provide you with a phone and flares and everything, so I think we'll be ok. If all else fails, hopefully our cell phones will work and we'll just have to bite the bullet and pay the cost.

 

H2O sounds great and we did enjoy using their services.

 

Yes concern about the speed on the jet skis makes sense, on a normal excursion the leader will go fast and wait for you at "meet" points. You can go at your own pace but will be behind others who want the speed. But they do a good job with newbies and families, and actually since the water is generally quite calm you can enjoy the ride. There are a couple open water spots like in GCM that are rougher, But the private tour sounds great - can't beat that!!! ;)

 

We found H2O to be very responsive, Somerset not so much, another reason we went with H2O and are are happy to go back there.

 

Not sure why Lauri would be concerned about doing this on day 3, it's certainly something you don't want to miss!

 

I'm glad you liked H2o and were happy with their service. From the reviews I have read, they offer excellent service and with them answering me so quickly, that says a lot in my book. I'm definitely going to book with them. The other company has yet to answer me so...they just lost my business. :)

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Sounds like you are in good hands. I do not think I have researched H2O, just Somerset. They sound like they will take good care of you!

 

Bluewater, thanks for the vote of confidence in doing this on Day 3! I will be sure to put this on my Bermuda list!

 

This sounds like so much fun! So will some of your family be on jetskis and some in the boat and you will travel together to the same places? I could not see if you said both can go into the same areas! I would love to go past the ships and the dockyard..great pictures!

 

Lauri

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Sounds like you are in good hands. I do not think I have researched H2O, just Somerset. They sound like they will take good care of you!

 

Bluewater, thanks for the vote of confidence in doing this on Day 3! I will be sure to put this on my Bermuda list!

 

This sounds like so much fun! So will some of your family be on jetskis and some in the boat and you will travel together to the same places? I could not see if you said both can go into the same areas! I would love to go past the ships and the dockyard..great pictures!

 

Lauri

 

Lauri, I'll be sure to let you know how it goes...and (fingers crossed) how much fun it will be. :D

 

We will all rent the jet skis first (well, 6 of our 8...2 won't be attending) and go out on the tour. Then when we return, we will all get on the same boat and go out on our own. So we all will be doing it ALL....woo hoo.

 

I think going around the dockyard is going to be so much fun as well. Hopefully I'll get some great pictures by the ship. :)

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Sounds like you are in good hands. I do not think I have researched H2O, just Somerset. They sound like they will take good care of you!

 

Bluewater, thanks for the vote of confidence in doing this on Day 3! I will be sure to put this on my Bermuda list!

 

This sounds like so much fun! So will some of your family be on jetskis and some in the boat and you will travel together to the same places? I could not see if you said both can go into the same areas! I would love to go past the ships and the dockyard..great pictures!

 

Lauri

 

Hi Lauri,

 

I can understand having some trepidation about taking the Boston Whaler out in the AM if your ship is departing at 5PM or sometime that night, for most folks a beach day would make more sense. But as long as you have a few hours beyond your planned return time AND you have a working phone you'd be fine. What a great last day in Bermuda!

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I say "Why not go out with a bang!" :D

 

 

I do have a question though...when we take the whaler out, we would like to try to find the sea glass beach right down from Black Bay. I want to get some pictures of it and see what everyone is talking about first hand.

 

How will I be able to find it when we are in the boat, out in the ocean, looking back at the various beaches and land along there? Are there any landmarks to help me figure out which one it is? :confused:

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I think going around the dockyard is going to be so much fun as well. Hopefully I'll get some great pictures by the ship. :)

 

Even though we were staying on the island when we too the boat out we had fun buzzing the 2 ships in port and waving to everyone.

Edited by blue_water
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I say "Why not go out with a bang!" :D

 

 

I do have a question though...when we take the whaler out, we would like to try to find the sea glass beach right down from Black Bay. I want to get some pictures of it and see what everyone is talking about first hand.

 

How will I be able to find it when we are in the boat, out in the ocean, looking back at the various beaches and land along there? Are there any landmarks to help me figure out which one it is? :confused:

 

We haven't been to Black Bay even though it's just a few minute bus ride from the Dockyard. But you should be able to easily spot it because there are now some facilities there. See the link I gave you earlier, Raj did an excellent job with that site and his description of Black Bay should help you locate it from the water.

Note that it is now illegal to remove sea glass from this site. If you want some you may want to stop in Builders Bay Beach f you are visiting the Alexandria battery on the East End during your trip.

Enjoy your cruise!

 

http://www.bermuda-attractions.com/bermuda_0002fc.htm

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Can anyone rent one of these boats or do you need to be an experienced boater?

 

Unlike in some places you do not need to be certified to rent a Boston Whaler in Bermuda, but you do need to be able to recognize safety and right of way requirements. So if you are a novice/beginner boater you will want to let them know that so you can get a full briefing on boating safety and right of ways, as well as what areas you should visit. Other than that it's just common sense and not putting yourself in unwanted situations.

 

Having said that, these boats are very stable and easy to use with the center console and extremely difficult to tip. When going slow (under a bridge for example) it can be a little harder to drive, just as with jet skis. But no worries if you practice safe driving habits, and you can have a very nice day seeing the island and beaches from the water and beaching on a small island for a romantic lunch. Highly recommended!

Edited by blue_water
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We did this last summer with Somerset - did the jet ski tour first & then rented the Boston whaler. We all really enjoyed the day! It was my first time on a jet ski so I felt like I was going extremely fast, but I was the last one tagging along. My DH was the driver of the boat, but I do remember they gave him instructions, a map ( I believe you did have a restricted area) and a cell phone in case you needed help. We took the boat over to a ship wreck & fed the fish, motored around a while just enjoying the scenery, snorkeled some and did find a small beach to pull up on. My only complaint is the snorkel gear they provided wasn't the best (so bring your own) and the boat is small but we had 4 adults. They do have a pontoon boat available also if you have several people. If you are booking the jet ski tour, Somerset will pay for your taxi fare to get there, we then just caught a taxi back to the ship at the end of the day - I think with tip it was $20.

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We haven't been to Black Bay even though it's just a few minute bus ride from the Dockyard. But you should be able to easily spot it because there are now some facilities there. See the link I gave you earlier, Raj did an excellent job with that site and his description of Black Bay should help you locate it from the water.

Note that it is now illegal to remove sea glass from this site. If you want some you may want to stop in Builders Bay Beach f you are visiting the Alexandria battery on the East End during your trip.

Enjoy your cruise!

 

http://www.bermuda-attractions.com/bermuda_0002fc.htm

 

Are there several beaches along this strip? Since we are actually trying to locate sea glass beach. Anything along there that would stand out to let us know that's it?

 

I am aware of the rules about not taking the sea glass from that place, but you can from the other. But all in all, it's just stupid since if you return to the ship with any, there is absolutely no way to know which beach you got it from and from what most people are reporting, the ships are taking all of it if they find it. Kinda silly rules if you ask me. There's just no way to verify where it actually came from. :rolleyes:

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