Bermudaful - The Atoll of Bermuda - Cliff Diving and Cruise ships - Part 2

After the caverns, thinking it a good idea, we went to a locale called the Blue Hole, a proper mangrove grotto. We were going for cliff diving. Based on poor estimate of distance, I nearly killed my mother with this hike (too), but she done did it, she may now be upset that we know what she is capable of; but in the future, I will send the 14yo boy to scout the terrain. The hole was enjoyable to look at but the approach was cobbled with sharp limestone. The kids decided it was too much effort and risk for bug bites. I was just hot and bothered and ragged. I wanted to jump but my family had already moved on to the nearby beach. So, down the hill mom and I retraced our woebegone steps.

We did find some enjoyable cliff diving, at Admiral Cove, a reasonable launch of about 6-10ft off crabgrass and limestone outcrops, splashing deep into clear, briny Atlantic, with pink sand and carved pirates-cove steps. We created a real monster, aforesaid 14 yo keeps asking when the next cliff dive is.

Instead of seeking higher natural diving platforms, we loaded up the scooters, swallowed our fears (hard) and mantra’d: stay left and make wide rights. Like a caravan of camels, we ventured to Horseshoe Beach. This is THE Beach for the Island. Apparently, this is where the cruise ships bring the more adventuresome sunbathers that need a sand fix. Our own St. Peter told us to visit on Saturday because the cruise ships are out of port and the beach is less crowded. On this day, we abandoned my mom at the short-term. She was actually quite happy, her hike the day before was holding her over with plenty of excitement. And I really couldn’t imagine her riding second on any two-wheeled apparatus. The beach, aptly named, is of crescent shape with limestone islets that quintessentially remind me of From Here to Eternity, coves, and tidepools, aquamarine waters, pink coral sand and rolling Atlantic waves. To one end is the Rum Bum, a beach shack with chair rentals, umbrellas and wahoo fish’n’chips. They obviously offer more than bottled water, but coming here by scooter means sans imbibing of any rum swizzles.

While we beached, “St” Peter and “Holy Sister” Serena picked-up my mom and took her to the Aquarium, then sullied her at the Swizzle Inn with several top-ups of the famous rum drink. Cheeky, but she loved it!

We then headed back to our rental for a dip in the pool, shower and a haughty dinner at The Royal Bermuda Yacht Club, it was curry night. It actually reminded me of when my Grandparents, the Colonel and Tutu, took me to lunch at the Denver Scottish Rite. A retiree crowd with lot’s of “how do you do’s” and “very fines”, and bored young boys dressed like their fathers, doing their best to behave. We had a wonderful time! 

We were fortunate that our Victorian abode "Bowmore" was nestled near the main town of Hamilton, it was not very far to scoot to the Ferry. Another transference for tourists and locals to travel from port to island ends. St. Peter and Sister Serena came and picked up my mom by car and parked in Hamilton, then we loaded on to the public transport by foot. I actually had a very spoilt child moment when I realized my mom had “left the cane in the car”. She doesn’t like it and conveniently leaves it behind, o.f.t.e.n. It’s hard when you know a lot of walking is planned, you give forewarning, she forgets it, and ends up using me as a cane. Nonetheless, we carried-on, destination: The Royal Naval Dockyards at the West End. This area is the most protected and now navigable harborage on the island. Of course plenty of shipwrecks have sunk, without mercy, by the coral reefs, but by the 1800s, this area had been mapped and channeled, and today, the channel is regularly dredged to allow the ginormous cruise ships to harbor.
Bath House/Rum Bum, Horseshoe Beach

Commissioners House
This end was fortified by the English, more correctly by the English prisoners. The fort is built of solid grey stone yet the bastion never saw battle. After the War of 1812, it was England’s only outpost-by-Sea to monitor the newly formed United States. It also maintained its’ strategic importance for both WWI and WWII.

To our disappointment, the Commissioner’s House was closed for renovations. Nonetheless, we visited the seafaring exhibit about the shipwreck finds of the Triangle, some dinghy racing hulls and the sheep-grazed ramparts and forlorn gunnery.

In the parish, the cruise passengers amass; blubbery white, with towels wrapped around jowls and ill-fitting swimsuits. They walk and gawk and could care less whom they blocked around them. Fun fact: those who actually stay on the island, spend on average $120 per day, cruise ship goers spend $15. I prefer quality over quantity. (Dad professed how to raise prices and make more.)

Anyhow, we did find a pharmacy and I did buy my mom a collapsible cane, and we did find a viewpoint for her at a nice restaurant patio; therefore the rest of us able to tour the inside of the citadel at a flowing pace. It honestly would have been quite a challenge for her, steep steps and narrow halls, uneven cobbles, and parapets. So we gave her a history paper on the fortress in a shady seat with an iced ginger ale. Again, she seemed perfectly happy with this equilibrium.

I think it quiet appropriate that there is still one cannon that faces the cruise ship quay. If only they still stored gun-powder. The local beach area has been designed to cater to the needs of the less mobile ship-goers; also blow-up slides and obstacle course float for the children, and for I don’t know who, incessant, assault-of-your-senses, entertainment. God-forbid you take your youth to learn about the history of your port-of-call. We saw not one cruiser in the museum. So, my kids thought that was nice, it gave them elbow-room to read the information placards under the artifacts.