Travel guide to Bermuda

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Bermuda is clearly influenced by the British colonial era and by British aristocracy. There is no other place on earth where you can find so many golf courses per square kilometre. Alongside the red beaches, on the South Shore, you find many exclusive hotels and bungalows. The wonderful holiday atmosphere lasts all year - and is especially due to the many cruise liners continually docking in Bermuda.

Facts

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Local name
Bermuda
Capital
Hamilton (approximately 15,000)
Size
53 square kilometres
Principal Languages
English is the official language
Principal Religion
Many religions are represented in Bermuda, yet most Bermudians are Anglicans and Roman Catholics.
Inhabitants
64,472 (July 1999)
Government
Self-governing part of Great Britain
Geography
The small island of Bermuda is isolated in the Atlantic Ocean. Actually Bermuda is not an island, but rather a group of islands. This group comprises 150 islands, and the 7 largest ones are connected with bridges and dams. Only 20 of the island are inhabited. Bermuda is only 53 square kilometres and no more than 3 kilometres across at the widest point. Regardless of the postion your accommodation in Bermuda you will never lose sight of the ocean.

Travel preparation

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Best time to visit

You may visit Bermuda all year around, but the tourist season - with guaranteed beautiful weather and ocean temperatures ideal for swimming - ranges from April to October. It is at this time of year that most events take place in the island. One of the advantages of visiting Bermuda during winter is that living expenses on the island are then reduced by approximately 40 per cent. Moreover, for windsurfers this time of year is ideal in terms of weather conditions.

Literature

Fodor's Bermuda 2000 Bermuda Pocket Guide Lonely Planet Bermuda Maverick Guide to Bermuda

Local conditions

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Currency

Bermuda dollar ($B). 1 $B = 100 cents

In case of emergency

In case of emergency, please call the following number: Police, ambulance or fire department (911).

Tipping

When you receive the bill in Bermuda, tips are not included, and most restaurants tack a 15 % service charge. A service charge of 10 %, which covers everything from baggage handling to maid service, is added to your hotel bill. Porters at the airport expect about a dollar a bag.

Timezone

Bermuda is four hours behind GMT.

Weight and Measures

The following units of measurements are used in Bermuda: Weight: Kilo Temperature: Celsius Distance: Metres Capacity: Litres

Photography

Photographing is allowed everywhere in Bermuda. However, you should avoid taking pictures in the airport and near the police.

Drinking water

The drinking water has been filtered and is safe to drink.

Electricity

Electric current operates on 110 volts AC, 60 cycles, and a flat, two-pronged plug is used.

Behaviour

Many luxurious cruise liners go to Bermuda. Thus, in fine restaurants it is expected that you dress properly for dinner. This is also expected in some hotels.

Business Hours

Banks are open from 9.30 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and from 9.30 a.m. to 5.30 p.m. on Fridays. Shops are open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. In the tourist season, some shops have other opening hours, especially when cruise liners are visitng town.

Food and drink

Bermuda's many restaurants offer guests everything from the Mediterranean area's varied kitchen in Hamilton to exquisite local specialities in St Davids. Local dishes primarily consist of fish and shellfish, especially codfish. The most traditional dish in Bermuda is the Sunday-morning codfish. This large meal consists of codfish, eggs, potatoes, bananas and avocado, served with an onion- and tomato sauce. Black rum is the island national drink, and locals drink it together with ginger ale.

Disabled travellers

Generally, Bermuda is not well equipped for travellers with a mobility problem: However, some of the large hotels and cruise liners have facilities for disabled travellers.

Holidays

New Year's Day, 1 January Bermuda Day, May 24 The Queen's Birthday, third Monday in June Labour Day, first Monday of September Remembrance Day, November 11 Christmas Day, December 25 Boxing Day, December 26

Accommodation / Hotel

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Camping

No camping facilities are available in Bermuda.

Hotels

Most hotels are situated near the southern coast of the island. You will find hotels in all price levels, and in some of these hotels, breakfast and dinner will be included in the price

Bed og breakfast or guesthouse

Frequently guesthouses provide accommodation for only 12 people, and they are usually small private homes. In some guesthouses you will find joint kitchen facilities, whilst some of the larger ones provides breakfast.

Hostels

No youth hostels are available in Bermuda.

Other Accommodation

Cottage colonies are a typical feature of Bermuda. Set around a large facility house with dining room, lounge and bar - several smaller individual cottages are placed. You do not have to cook for yourself as you may eat at restaurants or in the shared dining room. All of these cottage colonies have swimming pools. Bermuda furthermore provides apartment buildings where you can cook for yourself. They are similar to the cottage colonies - they simply lack the large facility house.

Local transport

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Planes

Only one airport can be found in Bermuda, situated in the southern part of the island.

Bus

Going by bus is cheap in Bermuda. The bus-stops have pink or blue colours, depending on which side of the road you are on. The pink marks indicate that the bus is heading for Hamilton, whilst the blue marks indicate that the bus is leaving Hamilton.

Trains

You will not find trains in Bermuda.

Taxi

Whilst you cannot rent a car in Bermuda, taxi is by far the most convenient means of transport. They utilise a taximeter and all cars carry a price list. For every passenger in the car there is a basic charge. Having more than 4 people will raise the cost a little. Prices are higher from midnight to 6 am and on Sundays and Holidays.

Car rental

Car rental is not possible in Bermuda.

Other Transport

Scooters have become very popular in the island, and they can be rented for an hour, a day, or a week. The price includes the required helmet. In order to rent a scooter you must be at least 16 years of age. If younger you are allowed to sit pillion - provided you wear a helmet. For further information, please see: http://www.bermuda.com/wheels Travelling by horse-drawn carriage is a pleasant method of transport. But please note that it is not possible to get a ride after 4.30 p.m. Cycling around the island is healthy and a wonderful experience. Many places have bicycles for rent and the prices are fair.

Special conditions

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Tourists are not allowed to drive a car in Bermuda. Bermuda has left-hand driving. Alcohol is expensive in Bermuda, as the government have placed high import duties on alcohol.

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