How to Holiday in Europe's Best Walking Destination - Channel Islands, JerseyWednesday 08 January 2020 Thanks to its ‘quiet coastal hikes and fabulous food’, Jersey was recently voted the best walking destination in Europe by Condé Nast Traveller Magazine. If you’re in the market for a few days full of cliffside walking trails, historic sights and inland valleys then this is the holiday destination for you - let us tell you why.
Jersey's Channel Islands recently stole the crown as Condé Nast Traveller Magazine's best walking destination in Europe. You don’t have to travel far and wide to enjoy a leisurely break; being a self-governing dependency of the United Kingdom (so essentially, a bit British but also a bit French) Jersey still falls under our ‘staycation’ category. We may be slightly bias but if you’re looking to kick off the New Year somewhere slightly more relaxed, the Channel Islands really are the best place to do just that. Ready to book a long weekend but stuck on an itinerary? Let us help you.
Photo credit: @jack16_clayden
Embark on a walking trail
It would be a little frivolous to visit Europe’s best voted walking destination and not stretch your legs along its winding coastal paths, hence this activity nabs the top spot on our Channel Islands to-do list. Whether it’s a woodland walk, seaside stroll or hilltop hike you’re keen on, Jersey offers everything all within close proximity of each other so you can explore everything during the course of a weekend. Friendly locals aren’t in short supply either, so don’t be hesitant to go it alone and meet some like-minded individuals along the way. There’s no better way to spend the day than trekking (or gently ambling) coast to coast through the island’s natural beauty whilst accompanied by the sound of birdsong and sea breeze.
With so many paths and directions to choose from, there is no real start or end trail; simply head for the hills and when you need a break, stop off on a watering hole or two along the way.
Photo credit: @wanderintwo
Visit the sights
Don’t be fooled, the island may be small (nine miles by five, to be exact) but it still boasts an impressive array of iconic sights and points of interest you’ll want to snap a picture of. Probably the most recognisable is Mont Orgueil Castle which sits overlooking Gorey harbour and is renowned for protecting Jersey again French invasion for over 600 years. Elizabeth Castle is another hotspot which isn’t camera shy and impressively dates all the way back to the 16th century. Situated just a short distance from our spacious studio, one and two bedroom apartments in Jersey, if you opt to stay with us you can enjoy the convenience of exploring all the best sights on foot.
Also a favourite are the Jersey War Tunnels, an extraordinary exhibition telling the tale of Jersey during the German occupation in the words of the people who were there themselves. If you’re visiting Jersey with children and looking for things to do, then witness some of the world’s rarest animals at Jersey Zoo – it guarantees a day out that both big kids and little kids will love.
Photo credit: @our_little_house_in_wales
Hit the beaches
When you’re in Jersey, every day can be a beach day! From shingle to sandy and even pebble, Jersey is well known for its endless stretches of rolling sands and surf-friendly waves - especially during this time of year. This presents a great opportunity to bring your surfboard (or paddleboard, if that’s more your thing) along and experience first-hand why the locals love it so much. Claiming the top spot for being the longest beach in Jersey, St Ouens Bay (also known as ‘The Five Mile Road’ for obvious reasons) is arguably the most popular and as a result can get pretty crowded during the summer months so we’d suggest the beginning of the year to be the best time to visit. To name a few, Grouville Beach, Bonne Nuit Beach, Beauport Beach and St Brelade’s Bay are amongst some of the other much-loved sandy spots on the island that are also worth a visit.
Photo credit: @magspangeni
Grab a bite to eat
Foodies far and wide rave about Jersey’s offerings, and with delicious seafood unsurprisingly on offer almost everywhere you go it’s not hard to understand why. Enjoy fresh catches whilst sitting back and taking in the scenic views. Whatever your taste, you’ll feel right at home as it’s not just fish on offer here, the island’s best produce also includes a variety of cheeses, chutneys and home-grown tomatoes. Almost everywhere you look there’s Michelin stars and AA rosette boasting venues aplenty.
A trip to the Jersey Crab Shack in Saint Brélade is recommended for those who are after cuisine straight from the sea. Enjoy a fresh seafood dinner from the generous seafront terrace - or indoor dining area if the sun has its hat on. Alternatively Rozel Bay’s candy-striped kiosk The Hungry Man nestled on the harbour is a notable favourite amongst tourists and locals alike, so make a note to drop by if you’re visiting North East of the island.
If it’s specifically the varied (and extremely delicious) cuisine of the island you want to celebrate, it’s worth visiting during the highly anticipated Tennerfest festival. It’s an iconic fixed price food festival which usually runs over the course of a month towards the end of the year. Hold tight for this year’s dates as they’re still yet to be announced.
With picturesque landscapes spanning long-winding coastlines, and an excellent location just a short one hour flight from London, you really don’t need any more excuses to visit. So go on - book now and make it one to remember by staying in one of our fabulous apartments at SACO Jersey – Merlin House.