or many years this beach was private, used by visitors staying at a
nearby hotel, now demolished. But these days, we’re happy to
say, it is open to the public. However, it still has a private feel
to it since, outside the Town of St. George, it is quiet and
secluded. The only buildings are a beach restaurant close
by and Fort St. Catherine itself, complete with ramparts
on the hill behind, creating a dramatic backdrop. The
spacious beach has soft sand with no rocks or pebbles.
St. Catherine’s Beach has historic significance since it was precisely here
that Sir George Somers and crew rowed ashore after their ship, the Sea
Venture, was wrecked on the reef on its way to Virginia. It is said that Sir
Thomas Gates stepped ashore and instantly claimed it: “This is Gates, his
bay!” Indeed, it is often referred to as “Gates Bay” by older Bermudians. In
2009, it was the setting for a re-enactment celebrating our 400th anniversary.
St. Catherine’s Beach