We may be hurtling towards winter with longer evenings and shorter days but Guernsey is gearing up for spring with the introduction of new activities and product offerings from spring 2019.
Perfect for combining a long weekend of bracing fresh sea-air, scenery that blows the cobwebs away with its beauty and drama and cosy hotels to retreat to, the island is also just a short hop from the mainland making it easy for a weekend escape. With spring days a little bluer and the island alive with wild flowers and new growth what better time to enjoy a break jam-packed full of activities designed to reinvigorate?
Outdoor swimming – For more than 150 years, the residents of Guernsey have been able to enjoy the recently renovated La Valette bathing pools on Guernsey’s east coast. The water in the pools comes directly from the sea at high tide and is trapped there when the tide lowers providing a natural, circulation-boosting seawater enclave that’s not quite as terrifying (or cold!) as swimming in the open sea but just as bracing! The pools are free to use. https://www.visitguernsey.com/content/la-valette-bathing-pools
Puffin watching by kayak – The Channel Island puffin breeding colonies are the most southern in Europe and Guernsey’s sister island Herm provides a protected sanctuary from which to view them from the watery base of a kayak. Beginning in April the trips start from the famous Shell Beach, travel past Belvoir Bay to the eponymous Puffin Bay!
Lead by an experienced kayaking instructor and puffin expert who knows the movements and the routines of these extraordinary birds this is a unique way to get a close-up glimpse of these enigmatic animals
The cost is £40 per person. https://outdoorguernsey.gg/activity/puffin-patrol/
Sark coasteering – For those who like more of a challenge coasteering from the remote cliffs of Sark will give an adrenaline boost to even the most adventurous. Exploring the coastline from sea level coasteering is an exhilarating mixture of swimming, scrambling, jumping and venturing into caves and gullies. A day coasteering in Sark takes in some of the most stunning caves and cavern systems in the world such as the Victor Hugo, Cathedral Cave, the Derrible Head Caverns and the famous Gouliot Caves. Adventure Sark’s guides meet visitors off the ferry from Guernsey before kitting everyone up and going through a full safety briefing before setting off on the adventure.
The cost is £40 per person for 2.5 hrs (£15 per extra hour) or a full day trip from Guernsey Including all travel, transfers, post activity meal and refreshments costs £105 per person. http://www.adventuresark.com/
Explore by bike – cycling offers a great way of exploring Guernsey – the narrow lanes and slow pace of traffic allow for safe and enjoyable cycling and it’s a great way to soak up the local atmosphere and admire the scenery. The three-hour Stride ‘n’ Ride tour takes in the island’s capital parish of St Peter Port and gives an insight into the island’s historical figures and iconic landmarks including Victoria Tower and Victor Hugo’s Hauteville House which will re-open again in 2019 after an extensive renovation. The cost is £27.50 per person including bike hire. http://donkeysdaysout.co.uk/
Accommodation and getting there
After all that activity Guernsey’s hotels offer a haven to retreat to.
For a touch of luxury the OGH, the island’s only five star offers traditional elegance and a nostalgic ambience
Rates start from £193.70 per room including full English breakfast, based on two sharing a classic double room.
Those who want to be situated right in the heart of the action and who enjoyed a contemporary, informal bolthole will love the Ziggurat which is located in the capital St Peter Port near the popular restaurants Octopus and The Slaughterhouse.
Rates start from £135 per room per night excluding breakfast, based on two sharing a double room with terrace.
For a rural location from where to enjoy long walks right from the doorstep the Bella Luce with its on-site gin distillery is elegant and welcoming.
Rates start from £182 per room per night excluding breakfast, based on two sharing a classic double room.
Getting to Guernsey:
Return flights from London Gatwick to Guernsey with Aurigny are available from £62, hand baggage only, and flight time is one hour https://www.aurigny.com/
Return car ferries from Poole or Portsmouth to Guernsey with Condor in September are from £250, carrying two passengers https://www.condorferries.co.uk/
For further information on Guernsey, visit https://www.visitguernsey.com/