SPECTACULAR SCENERY ON ENCHANTING ISLAND BREAK
Contact: Rail fares, visit www.east coast.co.uk
Travelodge, visit www.travelodge. co.uk
Condor Ferries, visit www.condor ferries.co.uk
This Friday Mexican night at The Black Bull, Burton Pidsea, Two...View details
Indulge with our delicious range of specially selected Mexican dishes available from 5pm to 8:30pm this Friday 21st June. Traditional evening menu also available.
Terms: Terms: Friday the 21st June only, from 5pm to 8:30pm. Offer includes two main Mexican courses. Minimum 2 people dining.
Contact: 01964 770402
Valid until: Saturday, June 22 2013
The Apollo Hotel, visit www.apollo jersey.com or call 01534 725441
Adrian McLeay visits Jersey
W ith the festive season just a few short weeks away, now is an ideal time to recharge the batteries before all the madness begins.
The Channel Island of Jersey is a perfect location for a pre-Christmas break. A warmer climate – at least three degrees higher than chilly Yorkshire – plus spectacular scenery, culinary delights and, most importantly perhaps, tax-free shopping.
Jersey flights are suspended from local airports until the spring but it is still possible to visit this enchanting island. There are plenty of local attractions open during the winter months including La Fête dé Noué, Jersey's very own Christmas festival.
It is easy to make the journey part of the holiday. Condor Ferries offer sailings each day from Portsmouth and, less frequently, a faster crossing from Poole.
Trains from Hull connect to high-speed East Coast services from Doncaster to London. For an extra special treat, upgrade to First Class and receive complimentary meals, drinks and newspapers served at your seat.
There are numerous onward services from London terminals to the port of your choice.
Due to the timings of the ferry services, you will need to stay overnight in Portsmouth or Poole. There are several budget hotel options to choose from.
Then, the following day, you can enjoy the relaxing and peaceful passage to Jersey. I was surprised how reasonable the prices for meals and refreshments are. The quality of the food on board is excellent, too.
A highlight of the sailing is a visit to the duty-free shop. As the Channel Islands are not part of the EU, travellers benefit from an array of bargains, saving a fortune on UK prices.
St Helier, Jersey's capital, is relatively compact and easy to navigate on foot. I stayed at the conveniently located Apollo Hotel, just a few minutes' walk to all the shops and attractions.
This three-star hotel has the facilities, quality of food and services more in keeping with a four-star establishment. The hotel boasts two swimming pools, several bars and two restaurants.
With rooms available from £49 a night, this hotel offers excellent value and the staff are wonderful, too.
On your first morning in Jersey, take a stroll through St Helier and explore. Many of the streets are pedestrianised, allowing visitors to amble along and soak up the atmosphere.
St Helier provides the usual array of UK high street chains along with local independent shops. You can walk around Central Market in Halkett Street and enjoy a hot beverage for 40p at Bloomers bakery. Their Cornish pasties are delicious and thoroughly recommended.
Other recommended eateries include Bruno's French Patisserie in York Street and Hectors Fish and Chips on the corner of York Street and Dumaresq Street. Call in to Corkscrew Jersey in York Street for a range of wines and spirits, many of them locally produced.
December heralds the return of the annual Christmas event, La Fête dé Noué. The name comes from the local Jersey Norman-French language, Jerriais and translates as The Christmas Festival.
There are numerous events throughout the island including Christmas markets, guided walks, ice skating and a Christmas parade.
The ideal time to visit will be the weekend of December 7 to 9 when the majority of the events are being held. For more details, download the La Fête dé Noué programme at www.jersey.com/christmas
Car hire is relatively cheap in Jersey. Hertz will deliver your car to your hotel and you can leave it at the ferry terminal at the end of your holiday.
Jersey also has a frequent bus service departing from Liberation Station, which reaches most parts of the island. Day tickets cost £6.50.
Outside of St Helier, there is a wealth of things to do and see.
Mont Orgueil Castle in Gorey, Corbierre Lighthouse and Elizabeth Castle are all worth a visit. You could also take a walk along Rozel Bay and call in at The Hungry Man café kiosk and try one of their scrumptious burgers.
A must is the Durrell Wildlife Park where you will discover many endangered species in carefully recreated habitats. Don't miss the gorillas – a baby was born on September 27 and she is a delight to watch.