The Channel Island of Guernsey is ideal for adventurous souls. This small island has a beautiful, rugged coastline with hidden coves, cliffs, forts that are hundreds of years old and miles upon miles of hiking. The Guernsey Coastline makes up some of the most varied coastline you’ll find anywhere in Britain.
There are hiking routes all over the island from short easy walks to longer scrambles. Better still, there are kiosks throughout so that you can perk up with a hot drink, ice cream, fresh crab sandwich or gâche (a local speciality a bit like a fruit loaf). Whether you plan on spending the week, weekend or just a day, see below for some of the best hikes in Guernsey.
How to get to Guernsey from the UK
The easiest way of getting to Guernsey is by ferry. This way you don’t have to deal with luggage restrictions or worry about where you’re going to park your car at the airport.
Plus, ferry rides themselves tend to be far more comfortable than plane journeys. You can get up and walk about, do some shopping, enjoy a greater range of food and get some fresh air out on deck!
Condor Ferries sail between Guernsey and Poole twice a day.
When to go
Guernsey is a great destination whatever time of the year you visit. The island tends to be quieter in the autumn, as peak season is dying down, and spring before its started.
If you visit Guernsey during the spring you’ll see the cliff tops come alive with wildflowers. In autumn, the Tennerfest Food Festival (Oct & Nov) means you can get some great deals on food. Perfect after you’ve tried some of these hikes in Guernsey!
St Peter Port to Portelet
This is the longest and hardest walk on this list of hikes in Guernsey but it’s well worth doing!
You’ll begin in the heart of the island’s capital: St Peter Port where your Condor Ferry arrives. From here you’ll pass bathing pools, climb up to the Clarence Battery and have incredible views of Guernsey’s neighbouring islands.
In the Spring you’ll discover Bluebell Woods, have many an opportunity to feast on gȃche and discover German watch towers.
The whole hike will take about 13.5 hours so it’s best done split over a weekend. There are plenty of campsites on the island of Guernsey to choose from. Or, if you prefer somewhere a bit more luxurious, take a look at the options below.
Rousse to Pembroke
The northern side of the island has been left largely untouched. On this hike you’ll discover even more of Guernsey’s wild beauty, and learn about its history too.
This Guernsey hike begins at Rousse Tower, which was one of the 15 loophole towers built to protect against possible invasion by the French at the end of the 18th century.
From here you’ll come to Grand Harve and Vale Pond. At this point you’ll see evidence of the fact that Guernsey was once two islands, parted by a saltwater channel.
As you continue you’ll discover more historical structures such as Les Fouaillages, and Le Varde Passage Tomb.
This hike takes around 1 – 1.5 hours to complete
Starting and ending in Bordeaux Harbour, this 1.5-2 hour hike takes you on a circular route past harbours and islets.
You’ll begin at the Bordeaux kiosk where, on a clear day, you can see the neighbouring Islands of Herm, Sark and Alderney and sometimes even France!
On this hike you’ll pass by an old quarry, an ancient castle, the islet of Homment Paradis and a wildlife breeding area before ending at Vale Mill.
The footsteps of Victor Hugo
Do you love Les Miserables? Then you’ll want to seek out this hike in Guernsey!
This easy walk around St Peter Port takes you past some of Victor Hugo’s favourite places. He spent 15 years here in exile from 1855 and much of his work was inspired by the island of Guernsey.
This one hour walk takes you to Victoria Tower, where Hugo would meet with his lover, Juliette Drouet, in secret; along the promenade on the seafront; to Havelet Bay and Castle Cornet. At the end of the walk you’ll be outside Hugo’s house which has been turned into a museum.
Adventures in Alderney
If you’re staying in Guernsey for a long weekend or week then make time to catch a ferry to Alderney. Just a short ride away from Guernsey, Alderney is home to even more beautiful beaches, bird hides and fortifications from the war.
This 2 hour walk takes you along some of Alderney’s best coastal paths with awesome views.
It begins at the visitors’ centre and heads down towards the harbour. Your first stop is Braye Beach which is flanked by Fort Albert and Fort Grosnez. From here you’ll pass by the Birette Head and later come to Corblets Beach which is popular with surfers, before finishing up with plenty of forts.
Where to stay in Guernsey
If you’re planning to stay in Guernsey for longer than a day, here are some accommodation options.