Many people come here expecting to find a beach laden with shells. However, the beach takes its name from Henry Shelly, one of the crew of Sir George Somers’ wrecked ship, the Sea Venture.
Shelly Bay isn’t the prettiest of the beaches in Bermuda, but it is one of the best for children and families. Located within a bay, the ocean here is generally calmer than at most other beaches. The water is also shallow. Kids can wander out for hundreds of yards without getting out of their depth. Trees line the beach and provide cover from the hot sun.
The adjacent park has a playground with climbing frames, swings and slides. Local soccer and cricket teams also play here at weekends.
The Shelley Bay Nature Reserve is also here and features a red mangrove forest, a saltwater pond, and endemic Bermuda cedar trees. It’s fairly small but is a good spot for bird watching or a relaxing walk.
Shelly Bay is situated in Hamilton Parish (nowhere near Hamilton incidentally). To get their by public transport catch bus number 10 or bus number 11 from Hamilton or St George. There’s a parking lot between the beach and park with spaces for both scooters and cars.
There’s a supermarket ½ mile north of the beach where you can stock up on provisions for a picnic. There’s also an ATM here.
The Hamilton Parish section of the Bermuda Railway Trail starts near Flatts and runs north to Coney Island, passing Shelly Bay on the way. With dramatic ocean views it’s one of the most scenic sections of the trail. Other attractions in the area include BAMZ, Crystal and Fantasy Caves, and Blue Hole Park.