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Explore the coast and culture in each of the Channel Islands, enjoying them at an unhurried pace.
Take your time to get to know these island jewels on an unhurried multi-centre holiday. So much of life seems to run at full tilt; deadlines, timetables and targets to be met. We like to think we can help alleviate all of these on one of our popular Slowly… holidays, and we’re delighted to present this latest addition to the collection, taking in five of the delightful Channel Islands. Peaceful travel by ferry and hand-picked accommodation full of character, alongside one or two gentle guided experiences makes for the most relaxing and varied of trips.
Check out our other “Slowly…” holidays for inspiration, if you’re keen on a laid-back travel itinerary.
Following our tailor made route from your starting location, make your way to Poole in Dorset and board the ferry for the three hour crossing to the first of your island destinations, the Bailiwick of Guernsey. Disembarking at St. Peter Port, it’s just a short drive to your accommodation.
In a tranquil location away from the bustle of St. Peter Port, your accommodation on the island is a small, family owned hotel offering friendly, attentive service, welcoming en-suite rooms and an ever changing menu of seasonal classics.
With five nights here on Guernsey, time is on your side however you wish to spend it. Long, rambling walks on clifftops and coves, lazy lunches at beachside bistros, and discovering ancient and modern history, all while tuning in to the distinctive rhythm of island life; enjoy all of this and more with our specially created recommendations to hand.
It’s a pretty universal truth that the best way to get under the skin of a location is in the company of a local. Head for the island capital after breakfast and meet with one of Guernsey’s best guides for a private walk through the cobbled streets and hidden nooks of historic St. Peter Port.
You’ll take a short twenty minute ferry ride this morning, departing from St. Peter Port and heading for the tiny island of Herm – one of the outlying islands included in the Bailiwick of Guernsey. Stepping off the boat you’re immediately struck by the calmness and tranquillity here. With virtually no motorised transport apart from a few farm vehicles and no roads, much of the island presents the antithesis of modern life. Visitors can easily traverse its entire circumference on well defined paths in an hour or two, perhaps stopping for a paddle at beautiful Shell Beach or to admire the famous award winning coastal gardens. Appetite sharpened, take lunch with a cold drink at the island’s only hotel, then pick up a trinket at the shop before boarding the return ferry to St. Peter Port.
A day for a lazy breakfast – in bed perhaps – before a stroll on a nearby beach, a trip to Victor Hugo’s house or the eerie underground hospital. We’ll make it as easy as possible for you to make the most of your time with our personalised recommendations.
Take your time deciding what to do on your last day on the island. Head out in the car, maybe, to one of Guernsey’s secluded spots. Pack a picnic and settle into a cove, watching the waves and the seabirds. Later, clamber the ramparts and gardens of historic Castle Cornet before a leisurely dinner back at your hotel and a restful night before tomorrow’s quiet thrills.
Though it’s a tough choice, this is possibly one of the holiday highlights. Setting off from St. Peter Port, a fifty minute ferry crossing takes you to the island of Sark – and what a contrast this spellbinding place presents. With no traffic, no paved roads and few concessions to modernity, this rustic rock, with its rugged coastline, is nonetheless a wonderful location on which to spend a day or two.
Stepping off the ferry at Sark, the adventure continues as you’re met by tractor bus for the short transfer up the hill, then it’s just a short stroll to your accommodation. Arriving at your hotel, a three-hundred-and-fifty-year-old country house central to life on the island, you’ll find the warmest welcome, simple, comfortable en-suite rooms and a quite stunning multi-level garden with terrace overlooking a heated pool. Seafood lunch here with a glass of local cider or chilled white wine could well be the very definition of bliss.
Rent a bike to gently pedal the criss-cross tracks and across La Coupee to Little Sark; learn about the island’s history and inhabitants at the museum; dawner along the clifftops to take in the magnificent sea views; bathe in the inky, star encrusted blackness of a Sark night and really wind down at your hugely appealing island hotel.
Some of our favourite days on holiday are those featuring no plans and we can’t think of anywhere better to be on a day like today. Stroll to The Avenue to pick up a souvenir, perhaps have a drink and a snack at the pub, and a bike ride to the lighthouse. Or simply repair to the garden and the pool with a book and a floppy hat.
Say goodbye to Sark this morning, taking the short walk back to the quay to catch the ferry to Guernsey. Once here, board the ferry for the crossing to yet another wonderful location: the island of Alderney. At the quay, you’ll be collected by a friendly local driver and transferred to your accommodation.
Beloved of locals and an instant hit with guests, your accommodation in St. Anne (or ‘Town’ as it’s known) is a family owned property of endless appeal. Whitewashed clapboard, stripped floors and the odd nautical feature create a welcoming, unfussy atmosphere in the bar and restaurant, while the theme continues to the comfortable en-suite rooms.
‘The world’s most fortified island’ is just one detail the islanders love about their home, with evidence of habitation as early as Neolithic times. Romans, Vikings, Normans, British and Nazis have all left their indelible mark, contributing to the multi layered story much bigger than its three square miles. You’ll find fascinating wildlife here, including the island’s own unique blonde hedgehog and an abundance of seasonal seabirds littering offshore outcrops. Take the opportunity to indulge in quite superb local produce at several island restaurants.
Bring the island into sharp focus with a walk in the company of a guide from the island’s Wildlife Trust. Take to the clifftop paths and steal away to some of the corners visitors are unlikely to uncover alone; hear stories of occupation and liberation and a little of some of the darker side of Alderney’s history.
Set off from the quayside in the company of a Wildlife Trust skipper for the chance to experience Alderney’s sometimes intimidating coastline from a superb perspective. At certain times of the year, you’ll find breeding puffins on Burhou and a vast colony of gannets – some two percent of their world population, in fact – at Les Etacs and Ortacs inlets. Throughout the tour your skipper will bring the journey even further to life.
A day to enjoy travelling. After breakfast, you’ll be transferred to the quayside to board the ferry to St. Peter Port on Guernsey. Here, reunite with your car and catch another ferry for the hour long crossing to Jersey. Disembarking at St. Helier, follow the road around curving St. Aubin’s Bay as you head to your base for the next three nights.
Another of our handpicked, family owned island gems, your accommodation on Jersey features all the detail and service of a refined hotel, without any of the fuss. Relaxed, friendly service dovetails seamlessly with plush en-suite bedrooms to deliver the most calming of experiences.
Compact in size and with vast personality, Jersey is an island of endless charm. Wherever you are, you’re never more than ten minutes from the sea and with some of the world’s most staggering tides, the coastline is a true wonder. For history lovers the hardest part is choosing where to start; imposing castles, enigmatic towers and labyrinthine tunnels telling the story of recent, dark events can easily consume your entire time here. Cute coastal towns and villages offer inviting shopping and even better (often alfresco) dining, with a sea-to-table feel to the many sea-side bistros and brasseries.
No hurry this morning; take a lavish breakfast, then wander off to the southeastern-most tip of the island at La Rocque Harbour. Here, meet your guide for a private walk on the extraordinary beaches of the island, between eerie Icho and Seymour towers. At lowest Spring tide, Jersey doubles in size, revealing a vast intertidal coastline teeming with nature, home to the British Isles’ largest oyster beds, and your guide will help you bring this extraordinary location to life.
On selected tide-dependent days, this walk takes place in the afternoon, giving you time to explore the island in the morning.
Take the last day of your holiday to do as you please, whether that be a picnic on the beach, exploring a castle, shopping in St. Helier, or simply lazing at your hotel, we’ll make sure you have all the information you need to get the most out of your final day on the Channel Islands.
This morning, return to the harbour at St. Helier for your ferry to Poole. We’ll provide tailor made directions for the most convenient route back to your desired destination.
This holiday covers stays on the main Channel Islands of Jersey, Guernsey and Alderney in addition to the smaller island of Sark. It also includes a visit to the island of Herm.
£2540 per person for March & November, £2803 per person for April & October, £2755 per person for May, June & September, £2855 per person for July & August.
Prices are based on two adults sharing a double/twin room en-suite for thirteen nights on a bed and breakfast basis in one of our hand-picked selection of small hotels and guest houses. Included in the price are:
This holiday can also be arranged in fly-drive format, with flights from the UK mainland and car rental on Jersey and Guernsey. Please let us know at time of enquiry if you would prefer us to check availability and prepare a quote for you on this basis. Prices for the fly-drive version of this holiday are: £2850 per person for March & November, £2960 per person for April & October, £3075 per person for May, June & September and £3250 per person for July & August.
Before your departure, you will receive personalised holiday information including full directions, recommended routes, and suggestions on places to visit depending on your interests and our local knowledge to ensure you get the most from your holiday.
All holidays and room types are presented subject to availability at specific hotels.
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This holiday can be arranged in March to November.
Availability is individually checked for a hand-picked selection of smaller hotels, guest houses and other independent businesses, so please bear with us and we will respond in 1-2 working days.
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All our holiday prices include a service charge of £9 per person per night towards the costs we incur in researching, planning and designing your holiday.
We guarantee to refund this service charge if you believe that arranging your holiday through McKinlay Kidd has not met your expectations for value. All we ask is that you write to us within 7 days of your return and explain your reason for claiming the refund. This will ensure that we can improve the experience for all our future guests.