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nzdisneymom

Build our own shore excursion for Bermuda??

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We are traveling with another couple and have an overnight in Bermuda in September.  We are considering a "build your own" itinerary for the day we're there (ship leaves at 4 PM) and I've been put in charge of making a short list.  We've looked at a few "suggestions" from tour companies, but I'd rather hear from you all.

 

We want to see the beaches, but not have a beach day.  We're not interested in swimming, snorkeling, golfing, horseback riding, etc.  We are interested in seeing and learning about Bermuda from a history and development perspective, and some picture taking.  The other couple wants some time for shopping while DH and I only need a little time for our usual souvenirs (magnet, postcard, etc.).  I also like to bring home some local sweets/candies, etc., for my office-mates, so if there's something like that that I should look for, please let me know.

 

For those who have been and/or have done their homework, what places would you put on your short list for a 6-hour day?  

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6 hours? Take a taxi tour with a blue flag driver, because that's really all you have time for. Going to the graves of the former Governor (Sir Richard Christopher Sharples) and his aide-de-camp in St. George will give you an idea of how un-idyllic Bermuda used to be.

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To answer your question better: I really enjoyed this walking tour http://www.cityofhamilton.bm/things_to_do/city_tours/city_of_hamilton_walking_tour.php

There are also some shops in Hamilton for the odd souvenier. 

 

I always try to see the South Shore Rd beaches, either by walking (can take a bit of time and I don't think you'd want to do that) or just by riding the public bus. You can get off at one or two stops for a closer look but of course that adds to your time having to wait for another bus to come along.

 

And I will usually go somewhere for a light lunch and rum swizzle (usually the Swizzle Inn. Go to the one in Hamilton or the South Shore one, whichever is more convenient in your travels.)

 

The buses are efficient, but not fast, so it pays to map out what you want to do and try not to overschedule yourself. There have been times when we cannot catch the first bus or ferry out, or we are waiting for a bus and it is full. That is why a private tour can be well worth it: your time is most effectively managed.

 

If you want to go to St George's, skip Hamilton. There is just not enough time to do both and see beaches in 6 hours.

Edited by marci22

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Thanks for the recommendations.  I'll check out the private guide recommendation. The other couple decided they'd like to just go shopping that day, so DH and I will be able to move about a bit faster and can customize our "wish list" to our interests.

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Keep in mind that if doing private excursions and you run into traffic that delays you from getting back in time then the ship wont wait for you.  Only times the ship will wait is if booked through the cruise line.

 

Just make sure you plan on being back at least 1-2 hrs before final boarding to be safe.

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On 2/10/2019 at 4:51 PM, marci22 said:

Heidi Cowan of Bermuda Byways Tours is very popular on CC. https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g147257-d2256601-Reviews-Byways_Tours-Hamilton_Pembroke_Parish_Bermuda.html#REVIEWS

 

She can customize your tour. I wouldn't waste time doing multiple stops on your own, changing buses, etc. She will make the most of your 6 hours. 

AAA+++

 

We toured with Heidi two years ago and she was great.  She picks you up right at the ship and is very knowledgeable about the island.  Very reasonably priced, you won’t be disappointed.  

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Posted (edited)
On 2/13/2019 at 10:50 PM, nzdisneymom said:

Thanks for the recommendations.  I'll check out the private guide recommendation. The other couple decided they'd like to just go shopping that day, so DH and I will be able to move about a bit faster and can customize our "wish list" to our interests.

 

As you will see from some other threads, we toured with Quinton Bean and loved him. We did exactly the kind of tour you appear interested in, history and local sites. We saw, in order:

1. World's smallest drawbridge

2. Ft. Scaur

3. Gibb's Hill Lighthouse

4. walk around Hamilton, stopped at Cathedral 

5. walk around St. George's, with a stop at the church, which was fascinating (including the page in the Parish register of the date where they stopped noting the race of the baptized)

6. Unfinished church

 

also stopped at various beaches, lookout spots, stopped at a cemetery to learn about interment, stopped at a home to learn about gathering water off the roofs, and stopped at a local fish joint right on the water for lunch.

That's just where we stopped. Not to mention the drive-by's...

 

If there is something in Bermuda's history that Quinton doesn't know, or a person on the island (s) he doesn't know, I would be shocked.😉

 

Good luck!

Edited by elhenry

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12 hours ago, elhenry said:

 

As you will see from some other threads, we toured with Quinton Bean and loved him. We did exactly the kind of tour you appear interested in, history and local sites. We saw, in order:

1. World's smallest drawbridge

2. Ft. Scaur

3. Gibb's Hill Lighthouse

4. walk around Hamilton, stopped at Cathedral 

5. walk around St. George's, with a stop at the church, which was fascinating (including the page in the Parish register of the date where they stopped noting the race of the baptized)

6. Unfinished church

 

also stopped at various beaches, lookout spots, stopped at a cemetery to learn about interment, stopped at a home to learn about gathering water off the roofs, and stopped at a local fish joint right on the water for lunch.

That's just where we stopped. Not to mention the drive-by's...

 

If there is something in Bermuda's history that Quinton doesn't know, or a person on the island (s) he doesn't know, I would be shocked.😉

 

Good luck!

 

That's who I was going to contact.  I hope he's available.  How long was your tour?

 

 

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8 hours ago, CruisinCrow said:

 

That's who I was going to contact.  I hope he's available.  How long was your tour?

 

 

 

Our tour was six hours; I believe that is the maximum that Quinton will book, although we had such a good time we went over and we didn’t mind.

 

We left it up to Quinton where to go, although he will gladly accommodate requests. Our only request, other than a “local cuisine” lunch, was to stop at some beaches on the way back to the ship so we could make up our mind about which beach to go to the next day: out of the way, popular, in between. And it was very helpful.

 

happy cruising!

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