Whether you chalk it up to the rich and intriguing pirating history or the enigmatic triangle, Bermuda definitely has a kind of magic about it. Tucked away in the crystal blue waters in the Atlantic Ocean just a two-hour flight from New York City, Bermuda feels otherworldly—part small town time capsule, part living ghost story, all paradise.
Regardless of your vacation goals, Bermuda’s 181 jewel-like islands offer more than just their famous pink sand beaches (of which there are plenty). Here are the 8 best things to do in Bermuda right now.
01 of 08
Jet Ski Through the Bermuda Triangle
You can jet ski just about anywhere on the island, but the best place to take advantage of the open waters is in the mysterious spot that made the region famous: The Bermuda Triangle. Grab a tour from Island Tour Centre and you’ll not only have the chance to explore the fabled waters but also feed the local schools of fish that reside there.
02 of 08
Craft a Custom Scent
The historic City of St. George—a UNESCO world heritage site that was settled in 1692—is one of the island’s crown jewels, and the oldest English settlement in the island chain. Among the town’s many historic sites is Lili Bermuda, an old-world perfumery where each bottle sold is still filled by hand. Swing by to craft a custom scent with the help of the head perfumer.
03 of 08
Browse Contemporary Art
Regardless of where you stay, take a trip to the Hamilton Princess Hotel located in the islands’ capital and grab a drink or a meal at Marcus’ Restaurant. The hotel lobby and adjoining restaurant boasts a seriously impressive collection of contemporary art, including pieces by Banksy, Jeff Koons, Damien Hirst and Andy Warhol. Take a self-guided walking tour and you’ll get a museum-level culture fix, all while sipping one of the island’s signature Swizzles, a combination of black rum, gold rum, pineapple juice, orange juice and bitters.
04 of 08
Spy Turtles from a Paddle Board
No trip to Bermuda is complete without getting into those crystal clear waters. Check out swimming sea turtles, discover some of the area’s more remote beaches and get your exercise in by taking a stand up paddle board tour with Just Add Water. Plan to spend a couple of hours and work up an appetite for a local fish sandwich—this core-intense workout looks easy but burns as much as 400 calories an hour for casual users.Continue to 5 of 8 below.
05 of 08
Take a Historic Bike Tour
The island chain is rich in history, especially when it comes to pirate lore. One of the best ways to get the lay of the land (and sea) is actually by bike tour. Book a tour with Island Tour Centre and cruise along the Bermuda Railway Trail—a defunct national rail project that’s been repurposed as one of the world’s most beautiful recreational trails—before hiking up to Fort Scaur, where you’ll see incredible views of the bay.
06 of 08
Swim With Fish
Thanks to the nearby Gulf Stream, Bermuda has some of the world’s most beautiful coral reefs, ripe for scuba and snorkel exploration. Get up close and personal with the Atlantic’s hidden reef treasures through Island Tour Centre. Fish too tame for you? Spend time snorkeling around Bermuda’s famed shipwrecks.
07 of 08
Catch the America's Cup
Next June, Bermuda’s Great Sound will play host to the 2017 America’s Cup—the oldest international sailing race in the world. Pay a visit to the Royal Naval Dock Yard to see the best sailors of our time racing the fastest boats in the sea for the prestigious award. Even if sailing isn’t your thing, the islands will come alive to host the international event—the America’s Cup Village will boast tons of concerts, culturally inspired entertainment and a host of Bermuda’s famous seafood.
08 of 08
Watch Sunset from the Water
Even if you can’t get in on the America’s Cup action yourself, you can still get some seafaring in. Every Friday evening, you can catch complementary yacht cruises aboard the UberVida, a 70-foot-long catamaran used for celebratory sailings. Cocktails, dancing, and the sunset views can’t be beat.