by Kristin White
In July 1612, 50 families sailed into Bermuda with the goal of turning it into the most successful colony of the British Government. It had been 2 years since a group of shipwrecked passengers, who’d been stranded on our shores for one year, had departed the island on ships they’d built from salvaged materials and Bermuda cedar. When they reached Jamestown Virginia, the cahows (Bermuda birds) and pigs they’d stored helped save that struggling colony from starvation.
Once word reached that the shipwrecked passengers were not only alive but had thrived on a beautiful island full of resources the decision was made to return. And the Town of St. George’s was established.
Bermuda is indisputably the MOST BEAUTIFUL PLACE IN THE WORLD!
Yep I’m biased… But, I’m sure you’ll agree it’s spectacular. We are so lucky to have oodles of great, gorgeous spots for hiking, biking, swimming, water sports and general outdoor fun.
And while of course St. George’s is known for our incredible history, we also have a great deal of open space just for you to explore. Here are my favourite grassy spots.
Ye Olde Abandoned Golf Course National Park
Okay, so that’s not the actual name of this space. Once upon a time, there was a hotel and golf course perched right on top of St. George’s. These have closed down (in the case of the hotel, demolished completely) and now the entire space just sits dormant while we wait for a new investor. This could sound like a sad story… EXCEPT, on the bright side, we’ve been left with 300 acres to love!
When I moved to St. George’s, the golf course was still in operation. I live just on the edge of the course, so it was a great way to move around St. George’s (as long as I ducked errant golf balls). Once it closed down, I fully explored the area, with tips from my son who knows all the short cuts.
Abandoned Golf Course National Park links five forts and three beaches, plus has gorgeous unobstructed views, cycling/walking trails (ie former golf cart paths), and a mini fruit orchard with loquats and cherries.
There are no maps or signs, but if you’re adventurous, just jump on ANY of the paths and follow them. Some areas are quite isolated, so make good choices like going with a friend, sun block and water.
Parks (Official Ones)
Sometimes, you just want to sit down on a park bench or have a picnic in a space where the grass is cut. We have those too!
Bob Burns Park
Located on Ordance Island, which is just over the bridge from King’s Square, Bob Burns Park is named after our town crier from 1964 to 1994, famous for still holding the Guinness World Record for loudest voice. #truestory The park has an incredible bronze statue of Sir George Somers, the Admiral of the fleet headed for Jamestown that shipwrecked here in 1609. Mimicking the statue pose for your photo memories is a requirement.
This garden has no statue of Sir George Somers, but it has something better – his heart! After Admiral Somers finally made it to Jamestown in 1610 and saw the condition of the starving colonists, he decided to return to Bermuda for more food supplies. He became ill along the way and eventually died here in November 1610. Somers asked to be buried in Bermuda so his nephew partially honored the request by taking out his heart and burying it somewhere on the grounds of what is now Somers Garden. (His body is buried near his hometown of Lyme Regis.)
This gorgeous garden was the spot for my wedding in 2010! Host your own special event there or just rock up for a picnic. And be sure to stand with your loved one under the moongate.
What’s along for the ride?
Loads of snacks including a Giant Cookie from GoJo’s Café (Shelly makes them fresh and they are as large as my head…) and yogurt and bananas from Somers Supermarket. Plus my yoga mat! There are great drop-in yoga classes on Monday and Wednesday evenings (email [email protected]), but on other nights, I just find an outdoor space for solo practice.
I have lived in St. George’s since 2003 and developed an obsession with the town. I am the Development Director for The St. George’s Foundation and, along with my husband, own the bookstore, The Book Cellar, on Water Street. My bicycle and perpetual companion is named Shoshanna and loves the attention.
Follow our adventures on Instagram @kristinslifeinpics.