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JamieLogical

First Time in Bermuda

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I am sailing on the NCL Escape to Bermuda for the first time this coming weekend. We will be in port at the Royal Naval Dockyard from 6:00 pm Wednesday to 3:00 pm Friday. We haven't pre-booked any excursions. The only one we are thinking about is the Crystal Caves & Aquarium, but I was wondering if anyone has any advice on how to do that more cheaply ourselves by using public transportation and just paying the admission fees directly?

 

Also, we are traveling with my parents and none of us are big beach people, but I think we would love to just be able to walk around and look at shops and historic buildings in a concentrated area. Where is the best area to do something like that and what is the best/cheapest/fastest way to get there?

 

I feel silly for asking these questions so late in the game, but I have been hesitant to make any concrete plans, because we are trying to be pretty relaxed about everything. I just don't want to be completely unprepared.

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Okay, I believe I have found the answers I need regarding getting to the Crystal Caves ourselves, thanks to another recent thread.

 

Still would like some advice on the best area for shopping and sightseeing on foot and how best to get there.

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You want to include a tour of St George's which is a UNESCO World Heritage Center. Since you're visiting Bermuda on the Escape, you'll be able to use the free NCL ferry to SG and return.

 

If you were to take the first ferry over to SG and how long you toured there, you could fit the visit to the caves on the same day. SG is at the eastern end of Bermuda and caves are close by, not walking distance. You'll be saving travel time if you do them on the same day.

 

You could take the public bus to the caves from SG. Depending on when you complete the tour of the caves, you could return to SG for the ferry. Otherwise, you would take the bus to Hamilton where you could catch the Hamilton > Dockyard ferry.

 

SBtS

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There are also shops and historic buildings within the confines of the Royal Dockyard, where your ship will be berthed. While going to St. George is recommended, if it isn't possible for you to do so for some reason, you can stay right in the Dockyard.

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Thank you to both of you! Based on my research I was drawing the same conclusion. We are in Bermda for less time than a typical NCL sailing. We don't arrive until 6:00pm on Wednesday, are in port the full day Thursday, and depart at 3:00pm Friday. So Thursday seems to be our chance to get to St. George's and possibly the caves. Friday, I think we wouldn't want to risk straying too far from the ship and missing a ferry back, so that might be a good option for exploring the Dockyard.

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Thank you to both of you! Based on my research I was drawing the same conclusion. We are in Bermda for less time than a typical NCL sailing. We don't arrive until 6:00pm on Wednesday, are in port the full day Thursday, and depart at 3:00pm Friday. So Thursday seems to be our chance to get to St. George's and possibly the caves. Friday, I think we wouldn't want to risk straying too far from the ship and missing a ferry back, so that might be a good option for exploring the Dockyard.

 

I'm on the same sailing. I'm planning to explore Bermuda on Thursday. It is best to go to St. George's, to Hamilton or to the beach on Thursday and Friday - stay near the dockyard area.

 

I also planned to do the caves at first, but I dont think so after reading about 80+ steps to go down and then to go back up in a small area, I do not think it would be fun.

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I'm on the same sailing. I'm planning to explore Bermuda on Thursday. It is best to go to St. George's, to Hamilton or to the beach on Thursday and Friday - stay near the dockyard area.

 

I also planned to do the caves at first, but I dont think so after reading about 80+ steps to go down and then to go back up in a small area, I do not think it would be fun.

 

My mom is the only one who might struggle with the stairs so I will leave it to her to decide.

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OP: you've gotten great advice above. I just want to suggest two additional things. Assuming you stay put in the Dockyard on Friday (I would) -- I recommend a visit to the National Museum of Bermuda, which is right there. Interesting history, and great views.

 

https://nmb.bm/

 

Also, after your visit to St. George, and especially if you also visit the Caves -- I highly recommend lunch at the (original) Swizzle Inn, which is very close to the Caves. The Bailey's Bay fish sandwich is fabulous, and pairs nicely with the rum swizzle.:D (And even if you don't visit the Caves, you can easily take the bus from St. George to the Swizzle Inn, and afterwards take the bus to Hamilton and the ferry back to the dockyard.)

 

http://www.swizzleinn.com/

 

Enjoy your cruise!

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Plenty of tours available at the dockyard. Less expensive than booking through the ship.

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Do all NCL's sailings have a free ferry to St. George or is just the Escape?

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1 hour ago, LynnKY said:

Do all NCL's sailings have a free ferry to St. George or is just the Escape?

 

All their in season (April through October) Bermuda sailings have the free St. George ferry available. I can't say whether an off season call would have the free ferry service.

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Thank you, njhorseman, for your response.  We are cruising in October so we should be okay.

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Front Street in Hamilton - which runs for just a few blocks from where the ferry from Dockyard drops you, has pretty much all the shopping.you can find in Bermuda.  

 

If if you are willing to pay a few taxi fares, you might like St. George - and the beach at Fort St. Catherine —- otherwise, going by bus or ferry will eat up a lot of your day.

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