The 5 most beautiful places on Guernsey
Guernsey is a wonderful destination for walkers, as Paddy Dillon and many others know well. In this post we share the 5 most beautiful places on Guernsey.
1) Sea Cliffs near Le Gouffre – Guernsey
The ups and downs of the south coast of Guernsey are the most strenuous section of walking on the island. But the seascapes are absolutely spectacular, with vast expansive views. Dips, rises and steps abound, with the sea crashing around the rocks below and a plethora of evil looking Nazi era range finding towers speckled along the cliff tops like giant Daleks.
2) Portelet Harbour and Fort Grey – Guernsey
The Fort was built as a defence by the British in 1804 during the Napoleonic Wars after Charles Grey, 1st Earl Grey. It now operates as a local shipwreck museum. The place is affectionately known as The Cup and Saucer and is situated on a beautiful stretch of sand encompassing several bays over about 4km. Lovely swimming when it is calm.
3) L'Ancresse bay to Fort le Marchant- Guernsey
The Northern Beaches of Guernsey are a delightful serendipitous expanse of creamy sands, including L’Ancresse, Pembroke and Jaonneuse Bays. There is a lot to see while walking this leg of the Walkers’ Britain trail including some more watch towers and old fortresses. A modern restaurant called ‘The Beach House’ does some great seafood dishes, if you don’t fancy picnicking on a headland, beach or seawall, which actually is a Nazi antitank defence.
4) Shell Beach – Herm
The Channel Island Way on Herm is only a couple of hours of walking with a mixture of cliff walking in the south of the island and beaches in the north. Shell Beach wraps around the northern part of Herm, melting into Moulsonniere Beach. At most states of the tide you can walk along the sand for 3km and perhaps have a swim at low tide, although care needs to be taken because of the high tidal range and currents. To the north of the island there is a colony of breeding seals, whilst in the southeast you might see breeding puffins between April and July.
5) Alderney – Unusual, quiet, spectacular
Alderney is becoming famous for its migrant birds that stray from the French Mainland, seabird colonies of gannets and blonde hedgehogs. Just about anywhere that you engage with this island there are wonderful views. At Spectacular Telegraph Bay you look out over sea cliffs painted with sea pinks and campions, down to rocky sea stacks frothing with white ribbons of foam, and beyond, blue green seas. Elsewhere on the Island you have beautiful sheltered beige and white sandy beaches. Even a couple of the Nazi ranging stations have been turned into sea bird observatories.
When to visit Guernsey
Guernsey is suitable as a year-round destination and generally enjoys slightly milder weather than the south of England, but the weather is still highly variable and impossible to forecast accurately. Winters are mild, but there may be frosts and, very occasionally, snow. Very bad weather at any time of year can upset ferry schedules, while fog affects flights. The peak summer period can be very hot and busy, which may not suit those looking for peace and quiet. The shoulder seasons, spring and autumn, are generally ideal for walking, with bright, clear days and temperatures that are neither too high nor too low.
Walking on Guernsey
The walks in this guidebook are mostly short and straightforward, chosen to reflect the diversity of the landscapes and seascapes, along with the history, heritage and natural history of Guernsey. Almost all the walks link directly with one or two other walks, allowing all kinds of extensions to the routes. All the walks are easily accessible by bus services, so a car is not necessary. In fact, cars aren’t even available on the islands of Sark and Herm.
Paths on Guernsey are mostly on firm, dry surfaces, but some stretches may be muddy after rain. Some paths on steep slopes are equipped with plenty of concrete steps. Most of the time a pair of comfortable walking shoes are fine for walking, and hefty boots are not required. If boots are worn, lightweight ones will suffice. There are some signposts, but most paths are obvious even without markers, and it is usually made clear if a path is private.
Walking on Guernsey
25 routes including the Guernsey Coastal Walk, Alderney, Sark and Herm
Guidebook to 24 easy day walks on the Channel Islands of Guernsey, Alderney, Sark and Herm, and the 3-day Guernsey Coastal Walk. Making up part of the Channel Islands Way, the routes follow paths, tracks and quiet roads and total around 240km (150 miles). Uses detailed 1:15,000 scale States of Guernsey maps, with notes on travel, accommodation, plants and wildlife and the islands' fascinating...More information
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