Breathtaking countryside, beaches, centuries-old castles and a distinct cuisine make this one of the most appealing destinations of the British Channel Islands.
Jersey, the largest of the Channel Islands, is a destination to discover at a leisurely pace. This island of sweeping coastlines and picturesque countryside is interspersed by quaint villages and medieval landmarks. Jersey is a British-ruled island, although is actually closer to the coast of France than England.
At just 9 miles (14 kilometers) wide and 5 miles (8 kilometers) long, it’s a great place to explore on foot or by bike. St. Helier, the island capital, is the center of activity. Find museums that expertly retrace the island’s maritime and smuggling heritage.
Many people visit Jersey to discover its varied landscapes, ranging from rolling green meadows to dramatic coastlines and secluded bays. Hike through the scenic woodland of Fern Valley north of St. Helier. Relax on the pristine southern beaches of St. Brelade’s Bay and St. Aubin.
On the western shore, Les Mielles Nature Reserve has myriad birdlife and picturesque walking trails. Explore the rugged dunes at St. Ouen’s Bay, a beach popular with surfers and kite-surfers. Go to the northern coast and walk across the cliffs at La Gréve de Lecq. Alternatively, visit the traditional fishing villages of Bonne Nuit Bay and Rozel.
The area’s 800-year history has created a legacy of significant landmarks. Visit the 16th-century Elizabeth Castle, the former home of English explorer, Sir Walter Raleigh. Admire the hilltop fortress, Mont Orgueil, which protected the island from French invasion. Hear stories of German occupation during World War II at the Jersey War Tunnels.
Jersey has much to offer in terms of cuisine and makes great use of local produce. Sample scallops at Bouley Bay and oysters at Grouville. Come in May and June to see farmers harvesting the famous Jersey Royal potatoes or visit in July for the Jersey Fish Festival.
Reach Jersey by catching a ferry from the south coast of England or from northwest France. Once here, everything is within a 30-minute drive away. Quiet roads allow for easygoing vacations.