If you are thinking of travelling to Guernsey in a campervan you may have a few questions before you book. How do you get to Guernsey from the UK? Where can you stay with a campervan, caravan, tent or motorhome? Read on for everything you need to know about vanlife in Guernsey.
Guernsey is part of the British Isles but is not part of the UK. So here are some helpful tips for travelling to Guernsey from the UK.
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Where is Guernsey?
Guernsey is an island in the Channel Islands. Guernsey is the second largest island after Jersey and is located in the English Channel off the coast of Normandy. It is part of the Bailiwick of Guernsey, a British Crown Dependency. The capital is St Peter Port.
Is Guernsey part of the UK?
Guernsey is part of the British Isles, but NOT part of the UK.
The official currency is the pound sterling. Guernsey does have its own currency and you won’t be able to use these back at home in the UK but you can exchange them when you get home or save them for when you return! (and trust me when I say this, you will definitely want to return).
English is the first language in Guernsey but Guernsey has its own language called Guernesiais. It has a real French influence with French street names and places. Road signs are displayed in French and English.
Is Guernsey warmer than the UK?
On average across the year yes – Guernsey has a milder climate than the UK and boasts longer and dryer summers and mild winters.
Do I need a passport to travel to Guernsey from the UK?
As Guernsey is part of the British Isles you just need valid photo ID to travel to Guernsey from the UK.
Travelling to Guernsey in a campervan
If you have followed us for some time you know that we have completely and utterly fallen in love with Guernsey. We are a family of 5 in a VWT5 campervan and love nothing more than a road trip and discovering new places in our converted camper! We travelled to Guernsey from the Staffordshire in the UK, and booked a ferry crossing from Poole to St Peter’s Port with Condor Ferries. This is the quickest crossing at just over 3 hours.
The benefits of travelling by ferry in a campervan, motorhome, caravan or car is you can take all your campervan essentials with you with no luggage restrictions. When you are a family of five in a VWT5 it is great to bring all your belongings with you and not have to worry too much about packing light. Although packing cubes and clever storage hacks help us to live in a small space easily. We also bring Wilf our beloved golden retriever dog with us to Guernsey in a campervan which brings me to the next question….
Can you take a dog to Guernsey?
The answer is yes you can! If you enjoy taking a dog on your camper holidays then Guernsey is definitely possible. There are so many places that are dog friendly and Guernsey beaches that you can take your dog – however do check during the summer months as there are some restrictions on some of the beaches.
If you are visiting from the UK, other Channel Islands and the Isle of Man then you can generally visit without a Pet Passport. (If you are travelling from outside these regions then do check if a pet passport is required)
Travelling to Guernsey by ferry with a dog
We travelled with Condor Ferries from the UK. Dogs are allowed on the ferries but they have to stay in the vehicle during the ferry journey. Visits to the car deck during the journey are normally permitted but you need to be accompanied by staff. We used a crate during our journey for safety – and made sure the water bowl was close by, windows were open slightly and his collar was removed (as advised by Condor Ferries) Also your dog needs to be booked on to the ferry journey at the time of booking.
Where to stay in Guernsey with a campervan
You need to stay in a registered campsite during your visit to Guernsey. These include Les Fauxquets Valley, La Bailloterie, Le Vaugrat or Beaucette Marina, or Le Vaugrat registered campsite for caravans.
While here you can use your motorhome or campervan for touring the Island, you must ensure that the windscreen sticker is attached and you must return to the campsite each night.
We stayed at Les Fauxquets Valley during our stay and absolutely love everything about this campsite. It has everything onsite including a small stocked shop and an outdoor swimming pool. The kids also loved the neighbouring animals in the surrounding paddocks.
Do you need a permit to bring a campervan to Guernsey?
A permit is required to bring a campervan, motorhome or caravan to Guernsey (and Jersey). This must be arranged prior to your visit.
You must obtain two copies of the motorhome/caravan permit (one for you and the other for the ferry operator) and a windscreen sticker from the campsite operator. There is no additional charge for this.
Driving in Guernsey
Driving in Guernsey is not a problem. The driving is on the left! There are a few differences to read up on before you go. Here are a few things to note but do double check before you go.
Driving can be challenging with the narrow winding roads so take your time as some of the signs may not be familiar to you.
Sometimes you need to drive on pavement to let vehicles past. This took a bit of getting used to!
The maximum speed limit is 35mph although in some areas such as in and around the town maximum speed limit is 25mph.
The filter in turn system…. Some junctions have a filter in turn on a sign. At these junctions all directions have equal priority.
Yellow lines painted across the side of the road means no stopping at all. A yellow line across the exit of a minor road means stop and give way to traffic on the major road.
Parking spaces can be a little tight. So do give yourself enough time to find a parking space.
Parking in Guernsey
The majority of public parking in Guernsey is free, however most car parks and on street parking are marked as a ‘disc zone’ meaning that you must use an approved Parking Clock.
These are available to purchase from various places including the Guernsey Information Centre and the Police Station.
Beaches in Guernsey
What we really loved about Guernsey is the people. We made some amazing friends whilst we were visiting last year that we can’t wait to see them again this year.
The beaches in Guernsey are unreal. I would say some of the best beaches we have seen have been in Guernsey and Isles of Scilly. Our favourite beach is Grandes Roques beach – a gorgeous sandy beach in the North-west of the island with pink-hued granite rocks, clear turquoise waters, and backed by grassy sand dunes. Dogs are also allowed on this beach all year round.
Things to do in Guernsey with Kids
There are so many things to see and do on the Islands of Guernsey for families
- The Little Chapel
- Island hopping to Sark
- Island hopping to Herm
- St Peter Port
- La Valette Bathing Pools
- Searching for seagrass at Castle Cornet
Island hopping from Guernsey
One thing you must do when you visit Guernsey is take a boat trip to Sark and Herm! Island hopping is highly recommended and really straightforward.
Herm is just a twenty minute boat ride from St Peter Port and offers incredible beaches with white sands and turquoise waters and water sports aplenty.
Sark is a short boat ride away from St Peter Port and transports you back in time to horse and carriages, no cars, and unpaved roads.
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