Bermuda is world renowned for our dazzling pink sand beaches. Clear blue waters are universally coveted, but what do born-and-bred Bermudians value? Are the famously picturesque spots like Horseshoe Bay also local family favourites?
Kirk Atwell holds memories of family time at Somerset Long Bay most dear. “From as long as I can remember, I grew up going to Long Bay Beach in Somerset. I have many fond memories of family picnics there, especially during the Cup Match weekend.”
Having relocated to Toronto, Canada many years ago, Mr Atwell regularly brings his family back home to visit their favourite Bermuda beach: “Horseshoe Bay is a must visit whenever I bring the girls. It’s actually their favourite.”
Families with young children will surely adore Somerset Long Bay. The beach is usually calm, features a plateau that keeps the water shallow for what seems like 100 meters, and offers a clear view for keeping an eye on the little ones at all times.
Krystal McKenzie also names Horseshoe Bay as a family favourite, while also noting John Smith’s Bay, Warwick Long Bay, and Jobson’s Cove. “Not only are they beautiful and easy to get to, but for the most part, they also have facilities that a family might need (i.e., bathrooms, rinsing stations, and food).”
Convenience is absolutely a real consideration when choosing where to take the family for a dip, and many beaches have put concessions and rinsing stations in place for that very purpose. Places like Clearwater Beach and Tobacco Bay also offer similar facilities.
John Smith’s Bay is a definite favourite family beach for Bermudians. Thomas Smith emphasizes the ‘neighbourhood’ feel of the beach, while Jodie Rudo waxes poetic about the ‘perfect’ waves:
“My favourite beach in Bermuda is John’s Smith’s Bay. What I love about this beach is the perfect size of the waves. They are not too big or too small, making it an ideal spot for a day of fun in the water.
“One of my favourite memories at John Smith’s Bay was when my girls and I decided to try boogie boarding and attempted to surf the waves. However, the waves had other plans for us! We were knocked off our boards multiple times and ended up rolling in the waves, laughing, and enjoying every moment of it.”
Here is where I have to mention Turtle Bay. This little gem of a beach is located just South of Clearwater Beach, at the gate to Cooper’s Island Nature Reserve. This is a beach that we didn’t grow up swimming at, because the U.S. base restricted access for Bermudians, but the beach is absolutely delightful!
Jodie Rudo agrees: “Another one of my favourite beaches in Bermuda is Turtle Bay. It’s an incredible spot for camping, especially during the Cupmatch holiday. We had the opportunity to set up our tents right by the beach, and waking up to the sound of the ocean was magical. Before even having breakfast, my family and I would jump into the crystal-clear waters for a refreshing morning swim. It was a fantastic way to start the day and create lasting memories with loved ones.”
I try to take my son to Turtle Bay at least twice a week after school in June and September, and all the time during the summer – it’s our spot!
The last beach that demands to be mentioned is Admiralty House. Once again, Mrs Rudo says it best: “Admiralty House holds a special place in my heart. Some of my most cherished experiences there are Sunday barbequing on the hill, and taking turns jumping off the cliffs into the crystal-clear waters below. The thrill and excitement of the cliff jumps make it an unforgettable experience.”