Jersey, Channel Island
Jersey is the largest of the five Channel Islands and is well known
for its beautiful countryside and pristine beaches. The island which is 45 sq miles with 44 miles of
coastline can be easily explored by foot, car, cycle or bus.
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One of the best ways to get to know Jersey is cycling and walking. The island
seems to be designed for cyclists and walkers. The Green lanes which were introduced to provide safety
are an intricate network of 50 miles of country lanes where walkers, cyclists and horse riders are given priority
over cars. Hence the speed limit on the Green Lanes is 15mph. The green lane links the beaches, places of
attraction and is a useful guide for first timers travelling in Jersey.
The beaches are never too far away in Jersey. St. Aubin’s Bay, a popular stretch
of sandy beach starts from St. Helier Harbour to St. Aubin’s Harbour. The waters in St. Aubin’s Bay are also a hot
spot for water skiers and windsurfers. It is also a fact that the sandy beach in St. Aubins’ Bay is ideal for
building sand castle. The other beaches in Jersey include Beauport, an area of secluded and protected coves, ideal
for sunbathers wanting to get away from the crowds. For surf enthusiast, the Atlantic waves
from St Ouen’s Bay are provide one of the best surfing experience.
Besides enjoying popular beach activities like water skiing, jet ski and fun boat rides, walking along the beach
against the golden ray of the sun as it sets in the horizon is both breathtaking and serene.
The Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust is a major landmark in Jersey. Founded
more than 50 years ago by naturalist Gerald Durrell, the conservation trust is famed for its work in saving and
breeding endangered species. The Trust is located in an area of landscaped parklands and water gardens. Among the
endangered species are a gorilla family of five lead by a silverback called Ya Kwanza, three generations of
Sumatran Orang Utans and a Madagascan gentle lemur community. The animals
live in large open spaces with environment created to be as close to their natural habitat. Some of the endangered
species like the Mauritius Kestrel have been successfully conserved and bred and will be returned to Mauritius to
re establish a new community of Kestrel. The Conservation Trust is opened throughout the year except on Christmas
Day. The different types of admission charges and the fees collected are used to aid the ongoing conservation both
effort locally and internationally.
Elizabeth Castle build during the 1500s is a historical monument in Jersey. The
castle was built on an islet in St. Aubins’ Bay and for over 300 years, it has been used for military purpose.
Inside the castle are three permanent exhibitions, War and Peace, Granite and Gunpowder and the Jersey Militia. The
castle is open daily in summer and access to the castle by the amphibious ferry adds a novel start to the
Jersey War Tunnel formerly known as The
Höhlgangsanlage 8 (Ho8) was built by
the Germans as their defence against the Allied
forces when they occupied Jersey during World War Two. The tunnel was built by forced labours and the terrible conditions and
suffering of the slave labourers are portray in a sculpture entitled ‘Silence’, currently standing on the grounds
of the tunnel. The displays in the galleries tell the story of
evacuation, deportation, captivity and siege, to eventual liberation of
For lovers of Sea Shells, the Shell Garden is a
paradise. Imagine a garden filled with stunning display of dolphins, doves, sea horses, mermaids all made from
shells. Started by Colin Soudain in 1957, shells are continuously added to the largest shell garden in the world.
The combination of colourful flowers as they dance to the backdrop of the beautiful sea shells makes the Shell
Garden a delight to be in. There is even a shop selling handmade shell craft.
Mont Orgueil Castle is one of the best preserved castles on the island. The
dramatic castle which was built in 13th century, towers over the Gorey. There are many things to see in the castle. At
the end of each winding stairs are displays depicting the practices and lifestyle of the medieval
inhabitants. From witchcraft to more than 50 exhibits, Mont Orgueil Castle is definitely the place to
appreciate the history of Jersey. Beside exhibits, the castle provides an excellent setting for re-enactment
of Jersey’s medieval history. The Living History team and the spectacular eagle flying demonstration are some
of the performances that can be enjoyed at Mont Orgueil. The castle opens daily from 18 March to 2 November.
The capital of Jersey, St.Helier is a great place for try the local delights and
shopping. The pedestrian only street is lined with shops selling a variety of goods. As the taxes in Jersey are low
and there is no VAT, you can be sure to find some value for money bargains. Jersey foods is also renowned, the
island is famous for its variety of new potatoes, Jersey Royals and Jersey Black butter, a traditional delicacy made out from cider apples should not be missed.
English is the official language spoken in
Jersey though Jèrriais, a Norman language very similar to French is spoken by a minority group of people. Pound Sterling is the common
currency used and Euros are accepted in certain shops. There is only one major international airport that connects
flights from UK and Europe. The weather in Jersey average about 19°C in summer
to about 9°C in winter.