Cruising around the Channel Islands
Cruising around the United Kingdom is redefining the meaning of the traditional staycation. It gives a foreign feel to those who desire a holiday at home with plenty of choice to suit all tastes, budgets, and needs. While all of the cruise lines visit Scotland and Ireland, many also visit the Isles of JERSEY and Guernsey in the Channel Islands. Thirteen different cruise lines presently circumnavigate the United Kingdom. One of the main advantages of cruising is that it’s a cost effective and seamless way to see a number of cities without the worry of costly hotels or petrol.
While the majority of cruises last from five to fourteen nights, mini cruises are . If you have limited vacation time or want to sample what the cruising life is all about, a mini cruise may be the perfect choice for you. Three and four night sailings offer a wide range of destinations including ports in France, the Netherlands, and Spain. But for those who want to enjoy the comforts of home, they choose itineraries that include a stop in Guernsey or Jersey in the Channel Islands. P&O Cruises are known for their four night short cruises that visit the Netherlands and the Channel Islands. Royal Caribbean offers three night itineraries including France and the Channel Islands while Fred Olsen Cruises offers itineraries ranging from three to eight nights that include a number of destinations including Spain, Belgium, France, and Norway, with stops in Guernsey or Jersey. According to Iglu Cruise, each cruise line has something different to offer and it’s important to understand their respective specialties before deciding which one is right for you. Whether travelling with friends or loved ones, Cruising in the Channel Islands is a popular choice for those seeking fun, variety, and affordability.
PORTS OF THE CHANNEL ISLANDS
The islands of Guernsey and Jersey offer a unique combination of traditions from France and Britain. As a destination, the islands offer the traveler that unique feeling of being abroad but with the familiarity of home along with old world traditions. Most cruise lines visit the Channel Islands during the warmer months between May and October as part of cruises around Britain or Atlantic nations.
ST HELIER ON THE ISLAND OF JERSEY
The island of Jersey is famous for its pristine beaches, historic castles, and secluded country lanes. It is a culinary haven offering fresh ingredients from local farms and rich dairy products from the island’s Jersey cows. The island’s tranquil environment and stunning scenery make it a popular playground for sea angling and golf lovers.
Here are some places of interest to include on your trip: Howard Davis Park is a popular public recreational area for locals. It features a beautiful rose garden, pond, and the Jersey War Graves cemetery. La Mare Wine Estates is an idyllic setting filled with apple trees, grape vines, and a traditional 18th century farm house. It is famous for its selection of refreshments including sparkling wines, apple brandy, and cider which are all available for visitors to sample. St Malo in Brittany is a popular day excursion by ferry from Jersey. The island is joined to the French mainland by a large promenade. Visitors can explore narrow cobbled streets filled with restaurants and shops. The Citadelle dominates the skyline and is a place of historic interest. Cruising around Jersey is a popular activity aboard catamarans that offer 2.5 hour long cruises around the beautiful historic south coast of the island. One of the most famous island landmarks to enjoy from the cruise is the Corbiere Lighthouse.
ST PETER PORT ON THE ISLAND OF GUERNSEY
Once famous as a haunt for pirates, St Peter Port is now famous as one of the most beautiful harbors in Europe. Castles dot the Guernsey coastline including a number of German fortifications from the Second World War. Travelers are greeted by the stunning waterfront that features colorful row houses amidst grey and white stone buildings. The most iconic landmark is a fortified castle that sits perched above the harbor. The Channel Islands were the only part of the UK occupied by the Germans during the war. Some of the island’s popular attractions include an underground military hospital and museum. The island is also home to rugged coastlines, lovely beaches, and beautiful scenery that showcase the island’s famous Guernsey dairy cows. Buses are a great way to enjoy the island affordably offering visitors a good overview. Be sure to pick up a traditional Guernsey Milk Can from the Edwardian Tin Shop at Sausmarez Manor as your island souvenir.
The Little Chapel of Guernsey is a miniature church that is beautifully decorated with shells, pebbles, and pieces of broken china. Sausmarez Manor is a time capsule of Guernsey’s history. The Tapestry Room contains King James II’s wedding coat while family portraits can be found in the Dining Room. Castle Cornet is a 13th century fortress that is known for its long and bloody history. The dark dungeons are full of ancient weapons including catapults and crossbows. The German Occupation Museum and Underground Hospital houses a maze of tunnels covering an area of 75,000 square feet. Popular day excursions travel will bring travelers to the steep cliffs and rocky coves of Sark, one of the last feudal states in Europe and to Herm, the smallest of the Channel Islands covering less than a square mile in area. The stunning scenery and warmth of the Channel Islands with its old world charm and hints of Britain and France will make this one of the most memorable ports on your cruising journeys throughout Jersey and the United Kingdom, written by Julie Martin.