Officially named as the sunniest place in the British Isles, the Channel Islands are a small group of islands sitting just off the coast of Normandy in the English Channel and an ideal destination for a short break over the summer.
Guernsey is a great launch pad for exploring the smaller Channel Islands of Herm and Sark, offering a great alternative ‘island-hopping’ summer holiday experience while not having to stray too far away from home. Whether for the whole family, couples or groups or friends there are plenty of festivals and events to keep everyone occupied.
Here is a selection of the best.
21 May 2016
The British SandAce Championships is Guernsey’s biggest motorcycle and car race. Sand Racing has been taking place in Guernsey since before WWII and this annual event brings hundreds of top solo riders and sidecar teams from all over the country to compete for the championship title. Racing starts at 1.30pm.
The Mermaid Tavern Real Ale and Cider Festival, Herm Island
7-12 June 2016
Festival at the Mermaid Tavern on Herm Island, featuring over 60 ales, ciders and some European Craft Lagers. Live music will be played in the Mermaid Courtyard on most evenings during the festival, and there will also be a wine and champagne bar.
Sark Sheep Racing Weekend
15-17 July 2016
This annual, wacky weekend is a highlight for islanders and visitors, just a ferry ride from Guernsey. As well as sheep racing, the festival features a variety of stalls, a children’s play area, a fancy dress parade and a ‘Baa’ for the race losers to enjoy a consolation drink. Live music and celebrations continue late into the evenings.
Harbour Carnival, St Peter Port, Guernsey
22 July 2016
A fun-filled, family, fundraising event, on the St Peter Port’s harbour, which includes mini & corporate duck races, dingy races and a man-powered flight, culminating with a spectacular firework display. There’s also plenty of children’s entertainment and food stalls.
Torteval Scarecrow Festival
30-31 July 2016
Hundreds of scarecrows will pop up in the Guernsey parish of Torteval over this popular weekend for the annual Scarecrow Festival. Creative scarecrows of all shapes and sizes will line the roads, fields and gardens of the stunning area in south west Guernsey and families are invited to follow the Scarecrow Trail through the country lanes. The trail takes about an hour and a half to walk and walkers are provided with guides so they can tick off the scarecrows as they go along. In the past these have ranged from Jesus and his disciples to a vicar, Michael Jackson, astronauts, groups of fishermen and whole choirs!
28 August 2016
Those looking for perhaps one of the most picturesque marathons in the UK still have time to sign up to the Guernsey marathon on 28 August. The course circumnavigates the entire island starting and finishing in St. Peter Port. Twenty miles of the course has coastal views, which are interspersed with inner island lanes and green valleys. Sign up at: www.guernseymarathon.gg
26 June, 24 July, 14 August 2016
Summer Sundays are all about food in Guernsey, when St. Peter Port’s seafront is closed to traffic for a series of Sundays to host various tasty events and activities. Cooking demonstrations, displays and food tastings run alongside market stalls, encouraging locals and visitors to experience Guernsey’s kitchen.
Guernsey International Food Festival
23 September – 2 October 2016
Back for a second year, the two week festival showcases the very best of island food, celebrating the quality and variety of local produce. There will be special promotions in restaurants and cocktail bars, as well as live cooking demonstrations, cook offs, chef masterclasses, gastronomic tours and gala dinners.
Over the first weekend, The Big Guernsey Market (24th-25th September) will be the festival focal point in the capital of St Peter Port featuring stalls from local producers and chefs, such as Haut Maison fruit liqueurs, Fresh Guernsey Herbs, and Torteval Cheese made from the Guernsey Dairy.
The final weekend will see the Guernsey Beer & Cider Festival (30th September – 2nd October) with local beers and ciders from producers including Rocquette Cider, made from apples grown on the family farm in the heart of the island, and White Rock Brewery, Guernsey’s first micro-brewery offering locally brewed cask ale and craft beer made from local ingredients.
In the lap of luxury, in the heart of Guernsey
The Duke of Richmond Hotel is located on the site of Guernsey’s oldest hotel. This award-winning hotel is ideally situated in the centre of St Peter Port, on the edge of Cambridge Park, with stunning views of the sea and the neighbouring Channel Islands. Just a short walk from the main town centre, makes it the perfect location to explore Guernsey’s historic sites and natural beauty.
The Duke of Richmond is one of 17 hotels in the family-run, award-winning Red Carnation Hotel Collection. This modern luxury hotel has exquisite décor and a wealth of facilities, the perfect location for your special event or wedding celebration. From fine dining to first class conference facilities, The Duke of Richmond Hotel’s welcoming hospitality allows you to feel at home whatever the occasion.
The Leopard Bar and Restaurant is a welcoming venue for fine dining at any time of day, from a hearty breakfast to mid-morning coffee with friends, a relaxed lunch to leisurely afternoon tea, lively evening drinks to multiple course evening feasts or intimate romantic suppers. Watching Chef’s perform behind the glass walled kitchen which allows for a truly unique dining experience.