Ramblers Walking Holidays

The Joys of Jersey: Part One - John Pike

Blog post   •   Aug 17, 2012 15:56 BST

Jersey  12 – 19 May, 2012

Since discovering Ramblers Worldwide Holidays, I have been lucky enough to undertake a number of superb walks in wonderful destinations including Italy, Poland and also my own country’s Cotswold Way.

All have been brilliantly led and managed – and amazingly good value for an old chap like me on a pension. This year I decided to book three more walking holidays – the first being to Jersey, where I had never been before.

After an easy journey from Gatwick Airport to Jersey International Airport I found my Ramblers Worldwide Holidays contact at the airport and my transport to The Uplands Hotel in St. Helier.

Slowly our group of intrepid walkers began to get to know each other and as usual it emerged what a fascinating group of people we were – all with interesting stories to tell about our lives and all still with plans and dreams for our futures.

The first day saw us walking to the truly sophisticated and beautiful St. Brelade’s Bay, then on to the Corbiere Headland, then following the old railway line route to St. Aubin’s Harbour. A highlight of the day for me, as a resident of Nottingham, was finding the grave of a number of members of the Boot family, who started and expanded the Boots chain of chemists from a base in Nottingham.

Another day saw another fascinating find: the La Hougue Bie Museum, the site of a Neolithic burial chamber covered by a significant mound of earth. It was still possible to crawl down into the chamber, which is reputed to be one of the best-preserved chambers of its type in Europe.

The area was also a place where the German Occupiers of Jersey built a look-out facility during World War II. Fortunately their occupation did not appear to have caused any harm to the historical site or the old church perched on top of the mound.

From the museum, which sold the cheapest but amongst the best coffee in Jersey, we set off and walked alongside the reservoir at Queens Valley to finish our walk at Mont Orguell Castle. I was beginning to recognise, with some delight, that our leader had arranged each of our walks so that we could all enjoy morning afternoon coffee breaks with cakes.

During the walks I had some challenging discussions with a lady from Scotland about the relationship between the Scots and the English but no matter our differences of opinion we finished our week in Jersey as firm friends.

There was also a man who supported a football team other than Arsenal – I think it was called Carlisle United – but again we spent much time each day enjoying talking about football, life and rock and roll.

I think for me, that as on all my previous trips with Ramblers Worldwide Holidays, listening, talking and laughing with members of the group was in many ways as interesting and as much fun as the walk itself.