You can drive across Jersey's length in just 30 minutes. That means everything this tiny British isle has to offer – and it's a lot – can be lapped up in a short weekend. It may not be your typical bucket-list destination, but Jersey should be on your mini-break radar for its relative accessibility and impressive cache of amazing things to do. For such a tiny island, it definitely punches above its weight. Here's how to get the most out of your island holiday.
What can I see and do there?
For a teeny-tiny island, so much. Jersey’s natural beauty means you could spend an entire trip ambling along the coastline (the circular cliff path from Bouley Bay to Bonne Nuit Bay is delightful) or kicking back on one of its beaches. Plemont Bay, St Brelades and St Ouen are all radiant, and the latter also offers surf lessons and a fab café. Further off coast, the rocky Minquiers outcrop, home to Britain’s most southerly buildings, can also be explored on a speedy RIB ‘Seafari’.
When the weather turns, Jersey’s fascinating historical sights come to the fore. The Nazi-built Jersey War Tunnels give a grimly evocative flavour of island life under occupation, while La Hougue Bie in Grouville – a Neolithic grave tunnel under a huge, manmade mound topped by a medieval chapel – brings more lost-in-the-mists-of-time vibes. Conservation lovers, meanwhile, can get their furry fill at the Durrell Wildlife Park, founded by Gerald himself.
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Where should I eat and drink?
Jersey cuisine isn’t all those royal potatoes (though God knows we wouldn’t mind if it were) – this rock has an amazing provision of great eateries, from high-end fare to low-key seaside shacks. No 10 in St Helier is spenny but meticulous, with a fab menu of creative Modern Euro titbits – think Jersey oxtail tortellini with mostarda, or damson and fig-leaf ice cream sandwiches. More informal local faves come in the form of brilliant brunches at the Potato Shack Cafe at Woodlands Farm, and the killer beachside pizzas at Portelet Bay Café. Wash the lot down with a beer or three at JB’s – St Helier’s own craft bar, and home to local brewery Bliss Brew Co.
What’s the nightlife like?
For such a tiny island, Jersey’s after-hours offering is impressive. Start your night at the Blind Pig, a stowed-away speakeasy that’s accessed through a wardrobe. Later on, local party seekers head to Watersplash overlooking St Ouens Bay, where dance parties are set to views of the sea. And of course, cosy pubs abound, like the cute St Mary’s Country Inn, with its roaring log fire and comfort-food menu, and the pirate-themed Smuggler’s Inn, where 40 real ales reign supreme.