17 Free Things To Do In Jersey
The island of Jersey is a great destination for a short break or longer holiday from the UK. Flight times range from 25 minutes (from the south) to an hour (from the north) and the ferry is under 5 hours, including a quick stop in Guernsey. The climate is similar to the UK, the currency is Pounds Sterling, the language English but it has it's own unique culture which is different enough from the UK to make it feel like your 'abroad' without venturing too far. Check our guide to the very best free things to do in Jersey.
Swim In The Sea
Topping our list of free things to do in Jersey is a dip in the sea. A sea swim is a must when you visit the island. The sea temperature is warmest from August onwards, but through the summer the sea is perfectly swimmable. In the winter you probably want to wear a wetsuit, but you'll see early morning sea swimmers all year round and in all weathers. Christmas day sea swims are very poular, with hundreds of people taking the plunge at St Brelade, Greve De Lecq and Gorey. St Brelades Bay is probably the most popular spot for a swim, but be aware in the summer there are alot of boats, ribs and the occasional jet ski so if you are heading out you need to be aware.
Walk On The Dunes
To the South West of the Island, you'll find 'The Dunes' stretching from the coast of St Ouens bay up to the sports field at Les Quennevais. A stroll to the highest point will reward you with fantastic views across to Guenrsey, Sark and Herm, taking in the whole of the west coast from Corbiere Lighthouse in the South to Grosnez Castle in the north. Great for a long dog walk or a sunday afternoon stroll with the family.
Visit Gorey Castle
Gorey Castle (or Mont Orgueil Castle to give it it's proper name) sits above Gorey Harbour. It's a spectacular sight, and while you need to pay to get inside the castle itself, you can wander around the outside and enjoy the views without paying a penny. Head up the path behind the shops at the harbour to take in the full view, and enjoy the backdrop of the Normandy Peninsula in the distance.
Stroll Around The Arboretum
A bit of a hidden Gem, the Arboretum (or Forgotten Forest as it is also known) is located in in the Parish of St Peter and features rare trees and plants from around the world. Park up outside the Arboretum and walk through to Val De Mare Reservoir for fantsastic views out over St Ouens Bay.
Have a beach day
The absolute best thing about a holiday in Jersey is the beaches, and these can be enjoyed absolutely free. St Brelades bay is the most popular and best known beach on the island, and is regularly voted in the top 5 in the British Isles. There is plenty of parking and toilets, as well as an abundance of bars and restaurants all along the promenade. St Brelade is the beach for watersports, with Absolute Adventures and Jono's Watersports offering kayaking, paddle boarding, rib trips and inflatable rides. (charges apply)
Just over the headland (or over the sand at low tide) is Ouaisne Bay (Pronounced 'Way-Nay'). This beach is a much quieter option, though with fewer facilities.
If you prefer small and low key, the most beautiful beach on the island is Beauport Bay, this has no facilities and is quite a steep walk from the car park but is as peaceful as you can get, a real unspoilt Gem. Portelet bay is another great choice for a peaceful day.
On the North, try Plemont Bay, great for dolphin spotting, however this beach is completely inaccessible at high tide. Greve de Lecq further along the coast is a beach that gives you the best of all worlds. Ample parking, toilets, 2 pubs and 2 cafes overlook the beach, but it is much smaller than St Brelade.
Also try Long Beach at Gorey for great castle views, St Aubins Bay for Jet Skiing, and Bonne Nuit Harbour at low tide for a peaceful day out.
Visit Grosnez Castle
The ruins of Grosnez Castle sit on the north west tip of the island. While there's not much to see anymore, the views across to Sark, Guernsey and Herm are stunning. You can park here and walk north to Plemont Bay, walk down the steps to enjoy the waterfall (at low tide). Or walk south from Grosnez towards L'etacq and you'll be able to explore some fascinating German bunkers.
Visit Noirmont Point
At Noirmont you'll find a great collection of German fortification and bunkers. Battery Lothingren is one of the best preserved in the whole of Europe. The installation covers a large area, with maps to show you what's what. The bunker is open only a few days a year (entry charge applies) but you can enjoy most of the historic sights without having to spend a penny.
Take In A Parkrun
Every saturday at 9am at Quennevais Sports Centre, The run goes round Quennevais playing fields and then up and down the railway walk. It's a pretty flat course and the sports centre cafe is open afterwars for refreshments. The run attracts up to 500 participants every week, and while the fastest finishers get around in under 20 minutes, there are plenty of people who walk the course so no matter your ability or level of fitness this is a great way to start the weekend.
Watch The Sunset
You'll want to be over on the west at the end of the day to enjoy the best of the sunset. Corbiere lighthouse is a popular spot, or head along the 5 mile road, and park up in one of the car parks with your fish and chips for a genuine 'money can't buy' experience. Can't wait to see it for real? Check out the Beach Cam from Visit Jersey to get a taste of what to expect.
Watch The Air Show
Every year in September, the Jersey Air show is a free event for everyone to enjoy. You can catch the planes from anywhere along the south coast. Take a deck chair and set yourself anywhere along the promenade of St Aubins Bay or head up to Noirmont for an elevated view of the action.
Walk The Cliff Paths
There are some great walks in Jersey, and you can get right round the island using the network of cliff paths. Our top walk is from Corbiere down to St Brelades and then on to Portelet. At Corbiere, head down the side of the old Highland hotel to join the path, and continue west. The path is well signposted. Carry on and you'll arrive at Beauport Bay. Make sure you head down the path to get a good view of the best beach on the island! Then join the path again towards St Brelades bay, coming down the side of the church. Walk across the beach towards Oauisne (at high tide you'll need to keep on the promenade and head up over the headland).
When you get to Ouaisne, you'll have to look carefully for the path heading up the cliff. It's hard to spot, and you;ll need to clamber over some rocks to get to it. Once you find it the views back over St Brelade are stunning. Alternatively you can head up the road past the Old Smugglers Inn and take a right at the top if you prefer the easier route. Once you get to Portelet you can head down to the beach, take a break at the Portelet Inn or carry on to Noirmont for spectacular views acros the south.re's also a bus stop here which will take you to St Brelades, Corbiere or St Helier via St Aubin.
Liberation Day Parade
Liberation day celebrates Jersey's liberation from the occupying Nazi forces on the 9th May 1945. Festivities are held across the island, culminating in a parade through St Helier which is a great spectacle if you're in town. It has the added bonus of being an extra public holiday for the people of Jersey.
St Catherines Woods
Walking through the woods is a great way to spend a couple of hours. The walk is around 3 km, is relatively easy and suitable for all the family. Youll probably want to take some wellies as it can get very wet. You'll be rewarded with some great views out to sea along the way.
Walk The Railway Walk
The Railway walk runs from Corbiere down to St Aubin and follows the old railway. Before the invention of the motor car the railway took tourists from St Helier through to St Aubins and then up to Corbiere, as well as extending to Gorey in the east. The railway hasn't been there for over 100 years, but the track it followed is a great way to walk or cycle the south and west of the island.
Visit the lighthouse
Corbiere lighthouse, the first concrete lighthouse in the British Isles sits on the south west tip of the island. At low tide you can walk the causeway right up to the lighthouse and there is no better place in Jersey to enjoy the sunset. This is probably the most photographed point in Jersey and a view not to be missed.
Built in St Aubins bay, the castle becomes inaccessible on foot at high tid., Named by Sir Walter Raleigh when he was the Governor of Jersey, the castle also gave refuge to Charles II during the English Civil War. There is an entry fee to get into the 24 acre grounds, but at low tide you can walk up to and around the castle for free.
Stroll Around St Helier
St Helier isn't the best part of the island to find things to do for free, but there's enough here to keep you entertained for a few hours. Visit the Central Market, situated in a lovely building in the centre of town. You can also walk around the old harbour, or take in the Yachts in Elizabeth Marina. Liberation Square is great for people watching, or head up to Fort Regent to take in the views.
Also check out some other (non free) things to do in Jersey and be sure to read through out essential Jersey holiday tools. Travelling to Jersey with a dog? Check out our extensive dog friendly Jersey article for more info. And make sure you hit up these top breakfast spots in Jersey while you're there. Enjoy!
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