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10 things to do in Jersey

Don’t be fooled by Jersey’s size – this small island has a whole lot of spirit and so much to do and see. As well as some incredible historical sites, the island's countryside and coastline are beautifully diverse with plenty to offer walkers, nature lovers and watersports enthusiasts. Family-friendly attractions and safe beaches also mean Jersey has plenty for the kids as well. The culture is also unique – Jersey's heritage is a blend of British and French influences. You may even hear locals still chatting in Jèrriais, a form of Norman French. 

  1. Visit some glorious beaches
  2. Hike picturesque tracks and trails
  3. Dive into water sports
  4. Discover Jersey’s important historical sites
  5. Taste the local cuisine
  6. Join Jersey’s best summer events
  7. Explore the great outdoors
  8. Wander around gardens
  9. Entertain the whole family
  10. Discover cultural gems

1. Visit some glorious beaches

Jersey is possibly the UK's sunniest spot, perfect for enjoying its mile after mile of coastline. Head north for windswept hikes along towering cliff tops while, to the west, crashing waves attract surfers and other water adventurers. Too dramatic? The southern coastline is lined with sandy beaches that slope gently down to safe shallow water. Family-friendly beaches include Grève de Lecq and St Ouen's Bay while the sweeping views of St Brelade's Bay are lit up at sunset. To escape the crowds, climb down to romantic Portelet Bay or search out the tiny cove of Beau Port.

Not to be missed: The hidden caves at Plémont Beach. Visit at low tide for a waterfall shower experience

2. Hike picturesque tracks and trails

In 1994, Jersey designated many roads as Green Lanes, giving right of way to pedestrians, horse riders and cyclists while restricting vehicles to 15 miles per hour. Along with clearly marked tracks and trails, these Green Lanes cover the island, providing a 48 mile network of hiking routes for all ages and abilities. The winding cliff paths of the north coast provide a tough hiking challenge, especially the stretch between Rozel and Bonne Nuit. On clear days, you can see the French coastline. A gentler route is the countryside trail from Saint-Aubin to the Corbière headland.

Not to be missed: A low-tide walk to the Corbière Lighthouse (Jersey's symbol) across a path carved out of the rocks.

3. Dive into water sports

Gulf Stream warmth, Atlantic waves and the sheer variety of beaches make Jersey ideal for water sports. In fact, the island was home to Europe's first surf school back in 1914. As well as surfing, there's snorkelling, kayaking, windsurfing and wakeboarding for all experience levels. St Ouen's Bay on the west coast is a surfer's paradise while kayak tours can be booked from beaches such as Grève de Lecq. Try coasteering, an exciting blend of rock climbing, scrambling, supervised cliff jumping and swimming or try blokarting on the long beach at St Aubin's Bay to really get your adrenaline pumping.

Not to be missed: Have a go at surf skiing. Surfskis are long kayaks designed for speed on open water

4. Discover Jersey’s important historical sites

Visit the 6,000-year-old passage grave at La Hougue Bie Museum to understand an island heritage stretching back to Palaeolithic and Neolithic times. You'll need to stoop down to enter the funerary chamber. The island's most famous and poignant historic site, however, is the Jersey War Tunnels. Dug by forced labour during the occupation of World War II, the tunnels contained artillery stores, barracks and a casualty clearing station. Emotional audiovisuals, photographs, interactive exhibits and sensitive recreations graphically recall the horrors of occupied life.

Not to be missed: An underground tour of the Jersey War Tunnels once the sun has gone down

5. Taste the local cuisine

Part of the fun of any holiday is exploring and enjoying the local cuisine and Jersey gives you plenty to savour. Its island position guarantees fresh seafood, from fish and chips on the beach, to fish with a twist in Michelin-starred restaurants such as St Helier's Bohemia. Closed herds of gentle Jersey cows produce creamy milk which, in turn, makes deliciously rich yellow cream. Treat yourself to an afternoon tea where this Jersey cream enhances your scone and jam. Whether shopping for picnic delicacies or tasty souvenirs such as Jersey fudge, always look out for the Genuine Jersey label.

Not to be missed: A taste of Jersey Black Butter. This unique blend of apples, cider, lemons and liquorice is the perfect spread for fresh brea.

6. Join Jersey’s best summer events

The Jersey Battle of Flowers has been bringing island communities together since 1902. Created to mark King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra's coronation, it's a colourful feast of dancing, music, food and a huge parade of flower floats that takes place every August. Once upon a time, friendly flower fights took place while the floats were being dismantled – hence the name, Battle of Flowers. Another great summer event is the Island Walk. Jersey's place as a hiking destination is celebrated every mid-summer with this 48.1 mile route. Join in and walk the entire route around the island or dip in and out of smaller segments.

Not to be missed: The Moonlight Parade at the Battle of Flowers. This party evening finishes with fireworks

7. Explore the great outdoors

While many Jersey beaches appear calm, the Devil's Hole on the north coast is anything but. Created by sea erosion, this raging blowhole demonstrates just how powerful waves can be. Not far away but much calmer is Plémont Headland, the world's most southerly point for nesting puffins. Visit in late spring to see this amazing spectacle. In Jersey National Park, flora, fauna, history and heritage are protected but there are miles of tracks and trails to hike or cycle. Or, take an invigorating sea safari to the Minquiers. Lying off the south of Jersey, this large group of islands disappears at high tide.

Not to be missed: A visit to the UK's most southerly public toilet on your trip to the Minquiers, flushed with seawater! 

8. Wander around gardens

Dating back many centuries, Samarès Manor near St Clements is surrounded by exceptional gardens designed by Sir James Knott in the 1920s. These are packed with hundreds of species, many of them exotic and rare. Inhale the aromas of the spice and herb garden, admire the dovecote and destress in the tranquil Japanese Garden. As well as the large gardens of Samarès, Jersey blooms with smaller botanical gems. Judith Queree's garden at Creux Baillot is known for its bog garden full of irises while, in the summer months, the rare Jersey wild orchid flowers at Le Noir Pré.

Not to be missed: The sight and smell of summer lavender at Jersey Lavender Farm.

9. Entertain the whole family

Go-karts, tractors to ride, giant slides, crazy golf and farm animals to pet should be enough to entertain the whole family at aMaizin! Adventure Park. Visit before harvest time when there's a giant maize maze to get lost in as well. Elizabeth Castle straddles two small islands as it protects St Aubin's Bay. It's a great place for the kids to have fun as they soak up history. Let them explore the battlements and bunkers before taking them on an amphibious vehicle trip along the causeway. If cars, trains and machines fascinate them, visit Pallot Steam Museum where Jersey's horse-drawn and mechanical heritage is celebrated.

Not to be missed: A train ride in a Victorian carriage pulled by the steam locomotive, Kestrel.

10. Discover cultural gems

The ornate Jersey Opera House in the centre of St Helier dates from the mid-19th century. It plays host to much more than just opera. Pick up tickets for plays, concerts, ballet, circus acts and children's performances. Spread across five Victorian warehouses in St Helier is the Jersey Maritime Museum. This brings alive the island's history, especially its links with the sea. A huge animatronic globe charts the voyages of vessels built in Jersey's shipbuilding heyday. On the same site is the Occupation Tapestry Gallery, a huge community project depicting Jersey's difficult wartime years.

Not to be missed: The huge Opera House chandelier. Its 10,200 crystal pieces are carefully cleaned once every five years.

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