Island of Seasons
10th January 2019
Found in: Blog -
The search for a better balance between work and life has drawn many to Guernsey. The ideal combination of business expertise and a close connection with nature creates a lifestyle that islanders have grown to love and appreciate.
A greater understanding of the importance of wellness in our lives has highlighted how valuable time outdoors can be for your mental and physical wellbeing. The mental health charity, Mind, promotes how being among nature can improve mood and reduce stress. Research from the University of Exeter has also found that moving to a greener space can give immediate improvements to mental health that continue long after your move.
Spend a year and even longer on Guernsey and you’ll begin to appreciate the benefits of island life and how activities are punctuated by the seasons. Summer beach living gives way to autumn’s festivals and, at a frighteningly fast pace, we find ourselves deep into the heart of winter and at the start of a New Year.
However, the longer nights and cooler days bring with them many new adventures. As the coastline is only ever moments away you’ll find that the beaches, cliffs and coves can provide plenty to keep you occupied. A winter walk along some of the island’s 28 miles of coastal paths, with spectacular views, makes a good starting point to help keep those New Year resolutions. Stroll atop the stunning cliff tops on the island’s south coast and encounter the half buried bunkers and concreate watch towers that inspire you to learn more about the island’s history. A cautious gaze down the cliff edge will reveal the drama of waves crashing against the rocks below. Then, trekking carefully down to the water’s edge, you’ll often find that the beach is your own and you’ll be the first to comb the shore for treasure.
For a more leisurely appreciation of Poseidon’s power, a perfect Saturday brunch can be spent observing the waters of St Peter Port’s Havelet Bay. Time it with a high spring tide and a gusty wind and enjoy the sight of a harbour panorama being washed in the sea’s spray while you lazily sip your cappuccino from one of the seafront cafés or restaurants. Many other cosy retreats can be found across the island where seasonal cuisine is served with welcoming hospitability. The local specialty, the traditional Guernsey Bean Jar, is a perfect winter warmer and delicious served with crusty fresh bread.
Away from the water, the island’s parks and country lanes are ideal for families to spend an afternoon kicking through leaves and hopping over streams. The largest, Saumarez Park, combines a pirate ship equipped playground with gardens, lawns and a busy duck pond. Each of Guernsey’s ten parishes have their own quiet corners which their inhabitants will resolutely declare are the island’s best. Take time to form your own opinion and with an outdoor expedition squeezed in before a Sunday roast, it’ll provide positive entitlement for that extra Yorkshire pudding!
A change in season makes little difference to the broad local sporting calendar. You’ll find that there are leagues and tournaments to take part in and a welcoming community of enthusiasts that will help you hone your skills. Some outdoor activities make the transition inside into Guernsey’s various indoor facilities while others continue in all weathers, the hardiest of which are the beach swimmers who’ll cause you to look twice when spotted striding into the surf on a fresh January morning.
Island living is definitely a unique and special experience that brings with it year round opportunities to build easily a closer relationship with its wonderful and healthy environment.