Thursday, July 10, 2008

NCL Dawn Bermuda - Fort Hamilton

Step back in time to the 1870s where atop a hillside overlooking Hamilton Harbour, a pentagonal fort was built to protect against a possible attack by American forces. Fort Hamilton is about three or four blocks from the BUEI so it didn't take long for us to walk there.

Entering through a narrow driveway, the first thing we saw was a well maintained garden. Along the perimeter of the garden are ramparts and cannons. When you walk to the highest point, you can see why this location was an excellent choice for guarding the harbour. There are spectacular views of the cathedral and the ships in Hamilton Harbour from this vantage point.

As we arrived at the fort, it began to drizzle a little, but it didn't last long. We weren't the only people that had come from our ship. We met two other couples that were enjoying the beautiful gardens. After taking pictures of each other, we proceeded to tour the garden moat, which is the best kept secret of the fort.

The 30 ft wide dry moat which surrounds the fort has been transformed into a woodland garden. Along the winding path you'll see many species of vegetation including soaring bamboos, palms, palmettos and allspice trees.

There are plenty of passage ways for you to explore along the way. Dimly lit corridors and stairways lead to walkways inside the fort. Ammunition was stored deep inside the fort and the shells were hoisted to the surface by ropes.

We spent about an hour at the fort and that was plenty of time to explore at a leisurely pace. There are benches in several locations where you can rest and enjoy the peacefulness of the beautiful gardens. We were truly glad that we made the walk up the steep hill to the fort. For those that don't want to walk to the fort, I'd suggest taking a taxi there. There is no admission charge to Fort Hamilton. It is one of the best bargains in Bermuda.

From the fort we walked down Front Street, the main street in Hamilton. There you'll find all the shops. View my Fort Hamilton Album and then come back to read about shopping in Bermuda.

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