Friday, 11 March 2016

What’s new in the Channel Islands?

Enjoy starry nights on Sark, glamping or beach breaks on Jersey, Alderney’s wildlife and much more

Written by Wendy Gomersall
Walks for all
The Channel Islands Heritage Festival (25 March to 10 May) takes a maritime focus in its second year, honouring the islands’ timeless relationship with their coastline and the seas. There will be guided walks, museums and lighthouses to explore, bike rides, boat excursions, exhibitions, performances and events taking place across Guernsey, Jersey, Alderney, Herm and Sark.

travel-590-2Transport on Sark

Wild camping

Prestige Holidays now offers Durrell Wildlife Camp on Jersey. A glamping experience with a twist, you stay in a luxury pod in beautiful Durrell Wildlife Park. The pods come complete with wood-burning stove, Wi-Fi and a fully equipped kitchen. Guests also receive free entry to the park, home to 120 species of exotic animals, and in the evening can relax around the campfire to the sounds of lemurs calling. A three-night stay costs from £489 per person, based on two sharing, including private transfers and flights from Southampton.


Foodie heaven
Luxury boutique hotel The Club Hotel & Spa, St Helier, Jersey, is home to the Michelin-star Bohemia restaurant, headed by Chef Steve Smith, which has recently been refurbished. The hotel also has a roof-top bar, The Terrace, plus a heated outdoor swimming pool and loungers. The Club Spa features a thermal suite that includes a rasul mud treatment room, indoor salt pool, steam and sauna rooms and a relaxing sanctuary. Rooms cost from £99 per night for a standard double or from £245 for a suite. Breakfast is included.


travel-590-3Blonde hedgehog

Hotel accolade

Hand Picked Hotels has chosen L’Horizon Beach Hotel & Spa, Jersey, as its Hotel of the Year. Overlooking St Brelade’s Bay, the Victorian former private country house has 106 bedrooms and three restaurants, spa and health club, and is just 10 minutes by taxi or car from Jersey airport. Rooms cost from £160 per night with breakfast.


New observatory
Sark, designated the first Dark Sky Island in 2011 by the International Dark-Sky Association and still only one of two in the world, has opened a new observatory. It sits in the middle, darkest part of the island and has two rooms – one with the telescope and a ‘warm room’ with a screen linking to the telescope so you can stargaze in comfort. Sark’s dark skies are attributed to its isolated location in the English Channel, its lack of public street lighting and few outdoor lights on buildings. Motorised vehicles, with the exception of a few tractors, are banned.

travel-590-4Jersey’s Gorey Harbour and Mont Orgueil Castle

Wildlife watching

Naturetrek is offering a new five-day tour: Alderney – Wildlife and History in Style, from £695 per person. The most northerly of the Channel Islands is a serene backwater with fewer visitors. Wildlife highlights include leucistic (blonde) hedgehogs, dragonflies, butterflies, peregrines, Dartford warblers, gannets and other seabirds, and the chance to enjoy bat-detecting. Tours depart on 22 April, 20 June and 23 September; the price includes return flights from Southampton, bed and breakfast, and guiding. 


Contact Wendy at
Prices are correct at time of going to press.

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