Bermuda's miles of coastline is dotted with crescents of pink sand, dramatic rock formations and hidden coves. Here's a quick guide to some of the island's most famous beaches, plus a stellar lineup of shorelines ideal for swimming, splashing with the family or just getting away from it all.
The Big Names
There's a beach for every purpose in Bermuda, from lounging in the sun to swimming to hanging out with the kids. But these five stretches are superstars.
Set foot on Southampton's Horseshoe Bay Beach and you'll realise why it's Bermuda's most celebrated stretch of shoreline. USA Today named Horseshoe Bay one of the Caribbean’s top 10 beaches (even though Bermuda isn’t technically in the Caribbean). The long, sweeping crescent of pink sand is punctuated by rocky outcroppings and lapped by azure waves. The nearby Beach House offers snacks, rentals and changing facilities.
To the west of Horseshoe Bay in Southampton, West Whale Bay Beach has a fitting name because, in April, you may spot humpback whales offshore, migrating north to their summer feeding grounds. The large, grassy area behind the beach is an ideal spot to enjoy a stunning ocean sunset. Locals often shore fish here.
Warwick Parish also features some of the island's most spectacular beaches. With its half-mile (0.8 km) stretch of sand, Warwick Long Bay ranks as the island's longest beach. It's set against a backdrop of scrubland and coastal grasses. Just offshore, a jagged coral island floats above the water, making this an excellent area to snorkel. Just to the west of Warwick Long Bay, tiny Jobson's Cove is one of the island's most visually stunning beaches – here, steep, jagged rocks crash into a sheltered inlet. It's a serene zone to just listen to the waves lap at the pink sand and stick your feet in the calm, stunningly clear waters.
Tobacco Bay Beach earned its name when survivors of the shipwrecked Sea Venture discovered tobacco growing here. Now, you'll notice unusual limestone formations off the shoreline, a haven for marine life like parrotfish and sergeant majors. This most popular beach in St. George's Parish also offers equipment rentals, a snack bar and, during summer nights, frequent bonfires with music and chill crowds.
If you want to get away from it all, these spots will appeal to your inner Robinson Crusoe. Be sure to bring a towel, water and sunblock.
Astwood Cove, tucked into a steep cliff, is so remote that it's rarely crowded. The park overlooking the gorgeous cove has picnic tables and restrooms.
In Black Bay, about three tiny beaches come and go here with the tide. Located on Ireland Island, it's ideal for picnicking.
At the southern extremity of South Shore Park, Chaplin Bay straddles Warwick and Southampton parishes. It features a small, secluded beach that almost completely disappears during storms or particularly high tides.
Somerset Long Bay is both isolated and photogenic, which makes it ideal for a beach escape. With about a quarter-mile (half-kilometre) of sand, the crescent-shaped beach and tranquil waters seem made for walking the beach.
Great Beaches for Swimming
Swimmers, snorkellers and body surfers love Bermuda's pristine blue waters. Here are some beaches ideal for taking the plunge.Picturesque Church Bay is a snorkeller's paradise – the reef here is very close to shore, providing shelter from the waves. Plus, the relatively calm waters harbour a colourful variety of marine life. There's also a concession stand where you can rent snorkelling equipment and buy snacks.
At Clarence Cove two fairly secluded little beaches form an exquisite, lagoon-like setting around a part of the North Shore. Swimming is safe here year-round.
Pale pink sand stretches for almost a mile (1.5 km) at beautiful Elbow Beach, which has a gentle curve like an elbow. Because of the protective coral reefs in the surrounding waters, you'll find some of the island's calmest waves, ideal for swimming and body surfing. This is one of the closest beaches to the City of Hamilton.
At Elbow Beach, a protective coral reef makes for some of the island's calmest waves, ideal for swimming and body surfing.
Long, flat and covered in the pale pink sand that makes the South Shore so famous, John Smith's Bay is popular with swimmers. It has a lifeguard in summer months plus toilets and changing facilities.
Beaches Ideal for Kids & Family Gatherings
All beaches in Bermuda are kid-friendly, but here are a few that are especially suited to families.
In St. David's, Clearwater Beach encompasses two spacious, sandy stretches ideal for families and parties. The 36-acre public park features nature trails, playground equipment and views of wildlife-filled outer islands. Both beaches were artificially created for Army personnel.
At Parson's Bay in Sandys Parish, the sheltered beach offers coarse, white sand and shallow, calm water ideal for children. It may be off the beaten path, but it's worth the journey.
You'll discover calm waters and soft pink sand at Shelly Bay Beach in Hamilton Parish. The water is very shallow even at high tide, making it perfect for children. Bonus: Trees line the beach, offering shelter from the sun.
All of the island's beaches are beautiful, but these spots boast a wealth of natural appeal and wildlife.
Mangrove Bay is a favourite for fishing, sailing and swimming. The mangroves and the gentle curve of the shoreline give the bay a serene, picturesque quality.
In Daniels Head Beach Park, located on 17 acres of coastal land, you'll find two beaches where the water is always calm and shallow. Snorkellers love to visit for the marine life like angelfish, sergeant majors and wrasse.You'll find a stunning combination of water, rose-hued sand and rocks at Stonehole Bay. Listen to the swishing sounds of the ocean against the limestone rock formations. Like many of Bermuda's South Shore beaches, it may be small, but it's undeniably gorgeous.