You know you’re Bermudian when…
1. Running Away from a Centipede
Maybe not an exactly positive experience, but one a Bermudian can’t miss out on nonetheless. Centipedes can be found most easily in St. George and St. David’s, where they scuttle around searching for small invertebrates to eat, like cockroaches. They are most active in slightly damp conditions because this increases the chances of finding prey. If you do get the chance to see a centipede in person, take care to avoid their venomous bite, which can hurt as badly as a bee sting. However, looking at one of these creatures up close is interesting – they are active predators that hunt their prey, and their bodies lack the waxy coating most insects have, making them susceptible to loss of bodily water, which causes them to be active at night and in the wet.
2. Seeing a Bluebird Nest
The eastern bluebird is an important native bird, which was in danger of losing nesting sites to encroaching sparrow populations, and whose eggs were prayed upon by kiskadees. Now, bluebirds nest exclusively in protective bluebird boxes, which are designed with holes too small for kiskadees to get in. To watch a bluebird life cycle up close, install a box in your garden. You will be able to very carefully observe the nest being built, the eggs, and the chicks by opening the side panel of the box. Benefit these beautiful birds and learn a little about nature by installing a bluebird box on your property! Check out our helpful guide for building your own bluebird box.
3. Seeing a Butterfly Emerge
We have eight species of butterfly in Bermuda, with some being more common than others. You can attract certain species of butterfly to your garden with certain plants. Monarchs need milkweed for their life cycle, and gulf fritillaries need passion flower, for example. There are few things more magical than watching a butterfly emerge from a chrysalis. When you discover a chrysalis near your home, monitor it until it begins to change colour. When the butterfly breaks free, it will appear crumpled. It needs a few hours to pump its wings full of blood and enlarge them to their true size in order to fly. Most butterflies only fly for a matter of days before laying eggs and passing on.
4. Camping Out on an Island
You live on an island, but Bermuda has many smaller islets to offer that you might have never visited or ever even heard of! In St. George, Higgs and Horseshoe island offers a beautiful campsite and cliff jumping cliff, and Paget island was the base of Outward Bound sleepaway camp for many years. In order to camp on many Bermuda islands, you have to have prior permission from the government – but it’s so worth it to have a home-away-from-home adventure.
5. Taking the Ferry
There’s not many places where you can take a novelty ride on public transportation as an event within itself. The Bermuda ferry service is often quicker than taking a car or bus, especially, for example, from town to Dockyard. Have a tourist’s day out and take a relaxing ride on top of the ferry. You might get to see turtles, sea birds, or jacks hunting fry on the open water.
Geocaching is an activity that can be tapped in to worldwide, and many geocaches exist in Bermuda. It’s basically a worldwide treasure hunt, where individuals use GPS devices and clues to locate hidden capsules. Inside the capsule is a guestbook, and individuals are invited to take a small trinket left by a previous visitor, and leave a small trinket of their own in return. Learn more here!
7. Snorkeling in a Place you’ve Never Tried Before
Bermuda is surrounded by beautiful reefs, and the old familiar spots sometimes get worn out. Why not try somewhere you’ve never snorkeled before? The point off of Fort Saint Catherine can be rough seas, but holds a huge number of zebra nudibranchs. John Smith’s isn’t usually seen as a snorkeling beach, but is home to many eel species. You might not have been to Gibbet’s bay since you were small, but the bay is a favourite haunt of octopi.
8. Camping for Cup Match
In the hot summer, what better way to spend a few days that camped out right next to the beach! Camping spots for cup match go fast, so you better have your wits about you in the months leading up to cup match. This charming Bermudian tradition turns whole coastlines into parties with hot food and beach adventures – a classic Bermudian tradition.
9. Attending Peppercorn Ceremony
Every year in April, the Peppercorn Ceremony is held in the town of St. George. It is a formal ceremony full of pomp and pageantry, attracting Bermudian leaders including the mayor of St. George, the premier, and the governor. The ceremony marks the exchange of the symbolic peppercorn rent from the freemasons of St. George to the governor for their use of what used to be the state house of Bermuda when its capital was St. George, before 1816.
Attending the peppercorn is something every Bermudian should experience at least once. Attendance is possible by invite, or for members of the public who can gather in the square around the ceremony. Be sure to wear your morning suit, or high tea hat to this historic event!
10. Picking Fresh Easter Lilies
Bermuda is famous for a few types of produce – onions and Easter lilies! Every year the governor of Bermuda picks a bunch of Easter Lilies to send to the queen. Historically, Bermuda used to be known as the Easter Isle for our exports of the beautiful flowers, and used to control 90% of the Easter lily market in the U.S.
Lilies are carefully cultivated by Bermudian farmers to produce big blooms in time for Easter, but many Easter lilies grow wild in Bermuda and you can collect or buy bulbs to add this Bermudian classic to your garden!
11. Catching Tree Frogs
Tree frogs are small amphibians that make the sound that lulls us to sleep every night. As part of their mating ritual, males sing to females and produce the characteristic “gleep gleep” sound. They are also a positive addition to gardens as they eat many plant pests. It’s easy to catch tree frogs, especially on warm wet nights when they’re on the move. Consider catching a few in a jar or in your hands to have a closer look at and then release.
12. Looking for Turtles at Daniel’s Head
Bermuda is one of the few places in the world where turtle numbers are thriving, and we’re lucky to have a tropical oasis at Daniels’ head, full of a huge turtle population that seem relatively tame. Standing in the waters there, or near Somerset Long bay, may reward you with sightings of dozens of turtles.
13. Going Beachcombing
Bermuda beaches are full of wonderful treasures, like mermaid’s purses and seaglass. Many beaches on island are great for beach combing, like Cooper’s Island, and Somerset Long Bay. Check out our beach combing guide that’s good for any season, and take an afternoon to find some beach treasures this summer!