2 forts, some Match me if you cans.

Trip Start Oct 16, 2005
Trip End Oct 30, 2005

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Flag of Bermuda  ,
Monday, October 17, 2005

Breakfast is complimentary. And the buffet will satisfy anyone. The problem is you eat too much.

So we decided to walk and bus it to Ft. Scaur. The walk out of the hotel is thru mostly residential areas (and some farming). We cut thru the school yard and out to the main road to catch the bus.

It's not crowded now, since the ships are gone.  The people are more friendly, since they are not being overrun by tourists that have to crowd everything into 3 days.

At the end of the road near the school is a small grocery store. If you're "roughing it" and don't want to pay Bermuda restaurant prices, the hot deli has bbq'd half chickens packed and ready to for under $10. We stocked up on water here, along with some snacks.

And just one bus stop down on the left is a Four Star pizza. We got off the bus at Somerset Church ridge. This has a cemetery worth exploring, and since we see the bell tower from our cabana, I want to see if we can get a photo of our cabana from the church. Got a photo, but it's the cabanas at the end.

Then back on the buss and two stops later we are getting off at Ft. Scaur. But on the way up, we spot some large Match me if You Can plants. This is the Bermudians name for the plant. Each leaf is different. You can't match two leaves from the same plant. The colors or patterns don't match. This is also a  medicine plant. The old time islanders would soak leaves in Bay Rum (some used water). For sun burns or head aches, put the leaves on what body part needs them, then cover the leaves with a linen cloth, or very light weight cloth. Wait about 45 minutes to an hour. The leaves will have drawn the heat out of the area that was affected. Take off the covering, and you will discover that the leaves have turned to "corn flakes." Same color, and little flakes.   Like all things, this plant is one that is being pushed aside with modern times and development of the island. It's quicker to pop an aspirin.

Ft. Scaur sits on the highest hill in Somerset. The views are good here. On a clear day you can see panoramic views of Ely's Harbor and the Great Sound. Britan constructed  the fort in the 1800's, along with the numerous forts on the island. I heard once that Bermuda has the largest concentration of forts per square mile than any other country. Ft. Scaur has underground passages, and peep holes to look out from. There is also a unique water collection area for the fort. Use the free telescope to see St. David's Lighthouse and Fort St. Catherine. It's really worth taking a few hours here to explore.

 Back down to the bus stop and up to the Royal Dockyards aka King's wharf. This is one of what I consider the 2 primo tourists forts on the island. But when we get here, I'm bummed. The parade grounds is being set up for the "Tattoo" on the 21st. I can't change our flights, cause we have to be in Galveston on the 21st.  ($10 to get in per person and well worth it.)  

We still tour around the old fort, going to "high ground" first, then the museum. It's amazing how much of history we don't know or remember from school. These exhibits focus on the melding of cultures and nationalities from England to the Caribbean, and prisoners brought over from England to work literally as slave labor. If you think you're a history buff, challenge your knowledge here, you just might be surprised what you don't know. 

The battlements area is a great place for photos of the new Snorkel Beach, that sits at the bottom of the fort. We decide it's later than we think after we tour the little shops to find earplugs, then head down to the Rum Cake factory that is a cholesterol patient's worse nightmare. But I can't stop tasting, and buying. This is my daughter's favorite "souvenir."

It's time for dinner, and we grab an outside table without a wait and enjoy the view of empty cruise pier. The bus ride back (if you are in Bermuda more than 2 days - get the bus pass. It's cheap - and better if you upgrade it for a couple bucks to the bus/ferry pass).

We head back to 9 Beaches via the long, scenic route. Ferry to Sandy's Bay, then the bus. This gives me time to work up an appetite for the best chocolate desert I have ever tasted. Our waiter tells me that I am the first to order desert at the bar. I ask him what is wrong with all his other customers? We take a peak at the closed gift shop windows before we head back to the cabana. I want a shirt, but we're either too early or late to get one. Tonight I sleep like a log.      
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