The beautiful island of Jersey is the largest of the Channel Islands at nine miles by five. Its size means you won’t ever be more than 10 minutes from the coast where you can soak up the sun on one of the stunning beaches or take in the coastal landscapes by foot.
The amazing array of things to do in Jersey means you won’t need to worry about figuring out how to spend your time. Jersey has a rich history and offers numerous attractions for the whole family to enjoy, from war tunnels to castles, underground museums to adventure parks. The only hard decision to make is what to visit first.
Here are our top 10 Jersey attractions that you really shouldn’t miss out on, whatever age you are and whatever the weather. Get these ticked 10 off for a true Jersey experience - although we can’t promise you won’t be coming back for more.
Jersey Zoo is located in the north-east of the island, only 15 minutes away from St Helier. The wildlife camp has over 60 different animal species, and acts as a safe conservation site for those species at risk in the wild. Not only is the zoo a fantastic day-out, but you can also arrange to stay there at the Durrell Campsite or Hostel. To make the most out of your visit, you can catch one of the keepers’ talks to learn more about your favourite animals, or even have a go being a keeper for the day with one of the zoo’s educational experiences.
Mont Orgueil lies on the east of the island, with stunning views over the coastal town of Gorey. The castle has been a landmark of the island for over 800 years and was the island’s forefront of defense before being superseded by Elizabeth Castle in the 16th century. No longer the primary fortress of the island, the castle was then used as a prison and kept some of those responsible for signing the death warrant for Charles in its walls. As a result of St Helier prison, the castle was made redundant and became a tourist attraction where visitors now can discover the castle’s fascinating past.
Explore over 1km of tunnels, dug deep into the island’s hillside by the slave labourers during World War II. The Jersey War Tunnels are a unique way to find out more about the island’s past, only 15 minutes away from the capital. The tunnels allowed the German troops to withstand the air raids and attacks during the Second World War before being turned into an emergency hospital in 1943. At the tunnels, you can gain a fascinating insight into what life was like during the war and read moving stories about some of the islanders’ own experiences.
Corbière Lighthouse is one of the most breath-taking sights of the island, with its south-westerly position and picturesque causeway creating the perfect backdrop. The best way to get there is by foot or on two wheels at low tide. You get the first glimpse of the lighthouse from the gorgeous St Ouen’s Bay on the west before making your way through tree-lined valleys to reach the rocky walkway. Closer to the lighthouse, you’ll find rock pools galore filled with the island’s unique sea life. If the walking has worked up an appetite, you can refuel at the Corbière Phare Restaurant, where you’ll find fresh fish, pasta and a selection of dishes made with local ingredients.
St Ouen’s Bay is 3 miles of golden sand that stretches over the west coast of the island, and one of the key places to visit in Jersey. The vast amount of space and unique waves make the bay a glorious tourist attraction, as well as a renowned surfing location with numerous competitions and championships taking place in its waters. There are many different spots of beauty so you’ll be able to find a quiet space of calm, or if you fancy a more buzzing atmosphere, the busy stretch of La Braye has lots of activities going on that you can get involved with.
St Brelade’s Bay is one of Jersey’s most popular beaches and was voted one of TripAdvisor’s top 3 beaches in the UK for 2019. Located on the south-west of the island, its positioning makes it a natural hotspot for sun, with safe waters for swimming and soft sand for sunbathing. During the summer, the sun hits the sand until the late afternoon, where you can then find one of the numerous cafés and diners on the promenade to sit out with a drink and a plate of Jersey’s fresh food.
Plemont Bay is a breath-taking bay on the rugged north-west coast of Jersey. The bay is hidden away between large sea cliffs and is not easily accessible with a long stairway down the cliffside, but the steep descent is worth it. If you plan your visit for low tide, you’ll be able to explore the many rockpools and caves, or when the tide is high, you can wonder along the beautiful coastal paths around the headland either east to Greve de Lecq, or west towards Gronez Castle.
The Jersey Museum and Gallery goes back over 250,000 years to when people first arrived on the island and gives a fascinating insight into the different events that influenced how Jersey is today. At one of the island’s most popular attractions, you will find out how Jersey stayed loyal to Britain, despite being closer to France, as well as finding out about the island’s Ice Age history and meeting Barbu, the resident Neanderthal. Upstairs, for an admission fee, you’ll find seasonal exhibitions and downstairs you’ll find a café serving up coffee and a range of treats to keep hunger at bay.
Pronounced ‘wey-nay’, Ouaisne Bay is a secluded yet popular bay on the south west coast of the island, the little sister of the popular St Brelade’s Bay. The bay has a legendary connection with smuggling, and the pub there is even called The Old Smuggler’s Inn. The soft, sandy shore makes it ideal for families, and the safe swimming waters are great for those wanting to get in the fresh Jersey waters. During low tide, visitors can walk across to St Brelade’s Bay, making the perfect day out exploring two bays in one!
Located in the New North Quay of St Helier, the Maritime Museum is a celebration of the island’s fascinating seafaring history. The museum is also attached to the tapestry museum, where you can see the award-winning Occupation Tapestry which was woven by the islanders to celebrate the 50th year anniversary of the Liberation. Its location on the marina means you can step out to see the historic boats on the water and enjoy views looking over the south-coast waters.
Just because you are on holiday, doesn’t mean you have to blow your budget and spend lots of money. Luckily, there are so many things to do in Jersey for free, and as price is no barrier, you can fit in as many as possible during your stay!
The Medieval Fisherman’s Chapel on St Brelade’s Bay is in the grounds of a beautiful and historic churchyard with amazing views over the south coast.
Inside the chapel you’ll find the remains of paintings dating back to the 14th century, as well as a beautiful frescoed ceiling.
Best time to visit: Any clear day
Best for: History and art lovers
The Elms is a 17th century farm complex at the top of St Peter’s Valley with acres of orchards to be discovered. The orchard is part of the National Trust Initiative to restore and conserve British orchards, along with the wonderful plants and wildlife that comes with it. Find out how the orchard is run by volunteers and gain an insight into what goes behind closed doors to make the apples that you can buy and eat at home!
Best time to visit: Apple season (late July to early November)
Best for: Foodies and families
Red squirrels are the only type of squirrel you’ll find in Jersey, with them being introduced onto the island by local naturists in 1885.
St Catherine’s Woods is a beautiful and quiet spot on the north-east of the island and has a reservoir that was made at the beginning of the German Occupation. At spring time you’ll see an array of flowers to brighten up the woods including the rare yellow archangel, foxgloves and bluebells.
Best time to visit: Spring
Best for: Nature lovers and families
Fort Regent is a 19th century fortification and leisure centre on Mont de la Ville in St Helier.
The Fort has beautiful views looking over Elizabeth Castle and St Helier harbour on the west. The construction of the Fort started in 1809 and was built by local workers and men from the Royal Engineers, often with 800 men on the site at one time! It was named Fort Regent in honour of Prince Regent, the ruling king of Britain at the time and is a beautiful landmark from the island’s past.
Best time to visit: All year round
Best for: Gorgeous views of St Helier and Elizabeth Castle
The Queen’s Valley Reservoir lies on the east of the island near the beautiful coastal town of Gorey.
The reservoir is owned by Jersey Water and is there for the enjoyment of the public. The newest reservoir on the island, it can hold up to 1,193 megalitres of untreated water - which is enough to supply Jersey with water for around 48 days! The full circuit around the reservoir is around 2 miles and is full of delightful fauna and flora, free for all to enjoy.
Best time to visit: Spring, summer and autumn
Best for: Gentle walks and beautiful views
On the south-west of the island, you’ll find Noirmont Point where several fortifications still stand. As well as breath-taking views over Portelet Bay and the island of Guerlain, (also known as Janvrin's Tomb named after a captain who was buried there in the 18th century) you can explore the forts and gun emplacements of Batterie Lothringen, the only naval coastal artillery battery in the island and part of Hitler's infamous Atlantic Wall.
Best time to visit: Any time of year
Best for: History lovers
St Matthew’s Church, also know as the Glass Church, is an Anglican Church in the parish of St Lawrence built in 1840. In 2010, the church got £125,000 funding for restoration after being considered a Site of Special Interest by Jersey Heritage. The church is quiet and unassuming from the outside, yet inside is decorated and furnished with beautiful moulded glass by the artist, René Lalique.
Best time to visit: Any time of year
Best for: Art and Architecture Enthusiasts
Fliquet Bay is on the north-east of the island, just above St Catherine’s Breakwater. On a clear day, it is possible to see France with panoramic views of the north coast. On a clear day, it is possible to see France with panoramic views of the north coast. The mix of sand, pebbles and rock, combined with its sheltered position from the westerly and south-westerly winds make it a fantastic place to sit and enjoy the views.
Best time to visit: Morning
Best for: A quiet beach with fantastic views.
The Jersey Wetlands Centre is placed looking over St Ouen’s Pond. Visitors access the centre through a tunnel that runs through a dune mound and opens up to fantastic views of the reed beds and pond. At the centre, you can find out about the reserve’s wildlife and rich history, safeguarded by the National Trust, as well as view the interesting wildlife right in front of you at La Mare au Seigneur.
Best time to visit: Morning
Best for: Wildlife lovers
Grosnez Castle is a 14th century fortress located in the north-west of the island looking over St Ouen’s Bay. Philippe de Carteret used the castle against the French when they held half of Jersey in the 1460’s, but since the mid-16th century, it has been a ruin. The ruins are open to the public and offer fantastic panoramic views over the other Channel Islands.
Best time to visit: Clear days
Best for: History lovers and adventurers
The island paradise continues into the night with the bright lights of St Helier, the beautiful sunsets and the calm waves brushing up along the shore. Jersey nightlife is a key part of the island’s charm, and once you’ve sampled a night on the island, you’ll be waiting for the sun to go down so you can experience it again.
As the sun goes down, the nightlife in Jersey comes alive with a hostof nightclubs and bars serving up delicious drinks with fabulous views and dancefloors, all topped off with the charming island hospitality.
Project 52 is a discretely hidden Orwellian public lounge and private bar that lies on the cobbled streets of Waterloo Lane in St Helier.
Mimosa is one of the bars located in the beautiful Victorian Liberty Wharf building.
Tamba Bar is a bar with a difference. Based on the glorious waterfront centre at La Rue de L'Etau, Tamba Bar is a unique establishment where you can eat, drink and play!
So Bar is a sophisticated venue in the heart of St Helier’s white collar district, and therefore is a popular drinking hole for the professionals.
Koko is in the heart of St Helier, just off Liberation Square and one of the busiest clubs in St Helier.
Biere Atelier is possibly Jersey’s first micropub and consists of a single room with a few tables and stools for visitors to perch.
There is nothing more comforting than a warm and cosy pub at the end of a crisp autumnal walk, or even just as a safe space where you know you can relax with a drink and feel welcome whatever time of year. Jersey has many pubs across the island as well as in St Helier so there is something for all types of visitors to enjoy.
The Cock and Bottle is a pub in the heart of St Helier on the Royal Square.
Also based in St Helier, the Lamblighter Real Ale Pub lies on Mucaster Street, close to the Jersey Museum and Art Gallery.
The Portelet Inn is a real step-back in time in a unique 16th century building.
Situated in the north-west of the island in the St Mary Parish, the St Mary’s Country Inn is a modern and contemporary take on a traditional country pub.
The Trinity Arms is a stunning pub in the north-east of the island in the parish of Trinity, right in the heart of the countryside making it a classic country pub.
The Old Smugglers Inn is based in the heart of Ouaisne Bay on the south-west of the island. A traditional country pub, named after its history as a base for pirates after smuggling in their goods.
Live music is the perfect way to create a relaxed and friendly atmosphere, whether that’s upbeat and swinging on a Saturday night, or calm and relaxing for a Sunday afternoon. Luckily, there are a few places in Jersey that offer up great live music for any sort of mood.
Prince’s Bar is in Les Havre des Pas on the east of St Helier. The bar is primely located overlooking the sea, with a gorgeous outdoor area to sit out in the fresh air. Every Wednesday night there is a live music night, where the island’s local talents perform. Live bands perform at the weekends, changing it up so they’ll always be something new and exciting to listen to. For visitors wishing to try their hand in performing, there is a karaoke night every bank holiday. Perfect for families, music lovers and wannabe-performers.
Chambers is one of the most popular music venues in St Helier. With superb food, a mezzanine floor and large entertainment stage, the bar has live music on every night of the week, so whenever you pop in, you’ll be entertained! Chambers has recently opened ‘Smoke’, it’s new Asian inspired relaxed-dining menu with options including a selection of meat cooked over a hot Robata charcoal grill. Delicious food accompanied by live music makes for a winning night.
The Blue Note Bar is a unique jazz and blues bar on Broad Street in St Helier. Here, you won’t find any televisions showing the sport, but you’ll find a beautiful Victorian style bar with high quality live jazz and blues music in an informal yet sophisticated setting. With an ever-changing drinks list, a stunning interior, welcoming staff and fantastic original music, what more could you want?
Jersey is known as the warmest place in the British Isles, however, that doesn’t mean the island doesn’t have the odd spot of rain. If you find yourself in Jersey on a rainy day, this won’t stop you from having a good time, as there are lots of things to do in Jersey when it rains!
Not only does Jersey have beautiful beaches, but it also has an abundance of glorious countryside boasting breath-taking views with all sorts of flora and fauna. Across the island, you’ll find hidden paths and bridleways for you to wonder and explore. In the north, there is the beautiful Plemont Bay to discover, and you can walk along the clifftops to the Greve de Lecq for a gorgeous route along the northern cliffs.
Jersey is full of things to do for couples, and whatever sort of adventure you are looking for, you’ll find something to suit you and your loved one whatever time of year. The scenery alone means that simply going outside for some fresh air is a romantic thing to do in Jersey, but there are a few gems that should be on your couple’s tick list.
The Jersey Pearl showroom at St Ouen’s on the west coast of the island is the ideal place to pick up that special gift and treat your other half to something special. At the showroom, you can browse the impressive selection of pearls, find out about how they are sourced and made, and even see for yourself the pieces being created in the workshop. Guided talks will guide you through the secret art of collecting pearls from oysters and open your eyes to the exact precision that goes into creating the timeless pieces.
With Jersey Camper Hire, you can create your own adventures in the freedom of a VW Campervan, fully equipped with everything you need for a comfortable stay. There are three different campsites in Jersey for you to park up for the night, but in the day, the island is your oyster and you can explore the charming island roads to your heart’s content.
The Grand Jersey Hotel and Spa overlooking St Aubin’s Bay has everything you need for a romantic break. Up in the Champagne Lounge, you’ll find high ceilings with historic décor and charm which, in addition to a generous selection of cocktails to choose from, makes the perfect romantic combination. Relax at a cosy table for two and watch the gorgeous St Aubin waters brush against the coastline.
What is more romantic that snuggling up in a fairy-tale tower, built on a rocky outcrop in St Catherine’s Bay? Archirondel Tower was built in 1792 for use as a garrison for soldiers but is now well accommodated to cater for guests looking for a special visit to the island. The tower has all the modern luxuries including central heating, a shower room, and cooking supplies. With the water right on your doorstep and a rooftop terrace overlooking Archirondel Bay, the tower is the perfect place to enjoy a glass of wine whilst watching the sunset at the end of the day.
The Old Court House is a beautiful 17th century pub in the heart of St Aubin’s, overlooking the idyllic harbour. The interior has romantic old-world décor, with modern additions for the ultimate comfort in style. The pub has two bars to choose from, as well as a restaurant area and even rooms if you wish to make a night of it. On the warmer nights, you can sit out on the suntrap terrace and watch the world go by with a hearty pint of ale or a cool glass of wine.
The Ayush Wellness Spa is part of the Hotel de France on St Saviour’s Hill and is the perfect place for relaxation and restoration. The spa not only has an infinity pool, a hydrotherapy pool with a jacuzzi, hot and cold plunge pools, sauna and steam room, but also has a range of authentic Ayurvedic therapies and luxurious spa treatments where you and your significant other can truly relax and unwind.
The Blue Note Bar is the place to go in town for high-quality original music with some of the island’s most talented musicians. In the centre of St Helier, the classic Victorian-style bar will serve up your favourite drinks before you snuggle up into a booth and let the music lead the night from there. Later into the night, you may want to get up and have a dance on the dancefloor. However you choose to enjoy the music, the Blue Note Bar is the place to be.
Corbière Lighthouse is set out on a rocky islet, yet at low tide, you can walk the causeway up to the lighthouse to enjoy a hidden part of the coast that is only accessible at low tide. You’ll find an abundance of rockpools around the beach to explore where you can find creatures such as red anemones, prawns, seaweed and even the rare brittle starfish. Find a comfy spot to sit and watch the sun go down with the glorious shadows reflected on the glistening water.
Jersey has a 48-mile network of green lanes where the speed limit is 15mph, making it ideal for cyclists wishing to explore the island on two wheels. There are many places to hire bicycles on the island with the option of a tandem if that’s what you fancy! Cycling allows you to get off the main roads and allows you to soak in the beautiful Channel Island air.
Le Belle Gourmand is a delicious delicatessen in St Aubin and has a stunning array of sweet and savoury goods – perfect to pick up and take for a romantic picnic at one of the island’s beautiful viewpoints. You can choose to explore the rugged cliffs of the north of the island, or the serene beaches of the south, all topped off with a delicious selection of treats and goodies.
If you’re looking for something unusual and interesting to do in Jersey, look no further as there is something exciting and different to do around each corner. Whether it’s active or relaxing, they’ll be something weird and wonderful out there for you.
When it comes to unusual things to do in Jersey, Bunker yoga is definitely up there. There are an abundance of yoga classes on the island, but one type in particular is a little different. Taking place on a selection of different German fortifications when the weather allows, bunker yoga allows you to practice the art of yoga with the beautiful backdrop of a historical site. Bunker yoga is a great opportunity to reset and balance out your mind and body for a true once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Jersey’s wide-open bays make it ideal for venturing out on a jet ski. There are safe, easy waters for beginners with the option to go out a little further for those with a bit more experience. Jersey’s location as the warmest spot in the British Isles means that jet-skiing is possible most of the year, and winter wetsuits mean that you can still hit the water in the cooler conditions. There is even the option to get a group together and go out on a tour with a qualified instructor who can show you the wonders that lie in Jersey’s waters.
Black butter is one of Jersey’s traditional farm house delicacies, made from cider apples, sugar, lemon, liquorice and spices. The black butter comes in a jar and has a jammy consistency which means it is the perfect accompaniment for toast and pastry to make a delicious breakfast. It also can be used in recipes, both sweet and savoury including terrines, cheesecakes and brownies. If you’re a foody, this is one ingredient you probably haven’t tried before!
Moon walk tours are guided walking tours to the Seymour Tower on a rocky outcrop on the south east of the island at night time. When the sun is down and the stars are out, Jersey transforms. Leaving the lights of the city behind, the trail towards Seymour Tower appears barren but it actually teaming with marine life. Its bare appearance resembles the moon, hence the name!
Sea safaris are the best way to experience the Channel Island waters. Whether you choose to spend a morning or afternoon exploring Les Ecrohous and Les Minquiers or take a day trip out to venture further to discover the neighbouring islands of Sark or Herm, Jersey Sea Safari will have the perfect trip for you. The Sea Safari team regularly replace their boats to ensure their boats are fit with the latest safety equipment and technology so you know you’ll be in safe hands.
It may surprise you to hear that Jersey has one of the largest pods of bottlenose dolphins in the world! These amazing species have been spotted around the whole island. Of course, one of the best ways to improve your chances of spotting them is to hop on a sea safari and venture out into the waters, or if you’re lucky, you may be able to spot them off the coast if you look carefully.
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