Top 10 Things to Discover in St Peter Port

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Top 10 Things to Discover in St Peter Port

Post by GD on Mon 26 Nov 2012, 7:10 pm

Shopping on St Peter Port’s buzzing high street, stuffing yourself with seafood and losing yourself in the town’s main attractions are all fantastic ways for visiting cruise passengers and day trippers to spend a day in St Peter Port. But if you’re interested in going a little off the beaten track and finding out about lesser-known quirks that make Guernsey’s biggest town such a colourful place, read our top 10 things to discover in St Peter Port:

1) Explore the oldest building in town

26 Cornet Street is thought to be the oldest intact building in St Peter Port. In its 200 years it has been used as a residence for the wealthy, a shop in the Victorian era and at one point even ended up as a slum! Now owned by the National Trust, it has been restored and returned to its use as a Victorian parlour and is run by volunteers in period costume.

2) Walk the coastal path

A little known fact is that there is plenty of natural beauty to enjoy just a short walk away from St Peter Port. Head south to La Vallette and you’ll find a walking path buried into the cliffside that takes you along the coast and past some interesting sights including Soldiers Bay and Clarence Battery, a fort built in 1780. During springtime, walk a little bit further to Bluebell Wood and you’ll be rewarded with a carpet of bluebells.

3) Post your postcards in a very different post box

All post boxes in Guernsey are blue except for one post box in St Peter Port’s Union Street which is painted in its original red dating from 1853. It’s also the oldest surviving cast-iron pillar box still in daily use in the British Isles.

4) Spot ancient town border stones

Six stones referred to as Les Barrieres de la Ville were erected in 1700 to mark the position of the original gates of the town, when St Peter Port was a walled town. One of these is located in Le Pollet [which is said to be lucky if you touch it], keep an eye out for the others.

5) Browse boutique shops and coffee shops

For the best hidden boutique shops, head over to the Old Quarter where there a treasure trove of shops selling antiques, paintings, vintage clothing and quirky coffee shops to be uncovered. You’ll know you’re in the right place when you see the Carnaby Street-style welcome sign at the foot of Mill Street.

6) Shiver at haunted spots

St Peter Port has lots of restless spirits haunting its cobbled streets. Cliff Street has some of the oldest houses in St Peter Port and is home to La Bęte De La Tour, a large black dog with bright red eyes and heavy chains that prowls the streets. Another haunted area is said to be Tower Hill where many dozens of people accused of heresy and witchcraft were burnt at the stake during the 16th and 17th century Calvinist period. Superstitions about ghosts and ghouls were obviously believed by many as “magic marks” can be seen around Town a clear set of which are on the door of a house on Cliff Street and are said to ward off evil spirits.

7) Drink in a record breaking pub

The Albion Pub is in the Guinness Book of World Records for being the closest pub to a church in the British Isles due to the proximity of a gargoyle on the North East wing of the Town church.

8) Enjoy the locals’ favourite view

After enjoying a seafood lunch at one of St Peter Port’s great restaurants, check out the favoured spot by locals for watching the harbour where colourful traditional fishing boats bring in their catch. The dedicated viewing bay is located next to the Model Yacht Pond on Castle Emplacement and makes a nice resting point for some impromptu boat watching on the way to Castle Cornet.

9) Visit a national hero’s home

The double-fronted grey house (now Boots Chemist) located where Smith Street meets the High Street was home to Sir Isaac Brock, one of Guernsey’s most famous heroes. He fought the war of 1812 on the side of Canada and is considered a National Hero there.

10) Climb a tower with a view

The strange tower dominating the St Peter Port skyline is Victoria Tower which was built on the site of the former L’Hyvreuse windmill and previously that of a menhir. The inscribed panel in French at its base commemorates Queen Victoria’s first visit to Guernsey in 1846. The tower is open to visitors but first they must collect the key from the Guernsey Museum and Art Gallery in Candie Road.

......THE BOSS......

"Always be yourself because the people who mind don't matter, and the people who matter don't mind"


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Re: Top 10 Things to Discover in St Peter Port

Post by Spirit on Fri 30 Nov 2012, 4:46 pm

1. My house, just up the road is over 220 years old.

"The further the spiritual evolution of mankind advances, the more certain it seems to me that the path to genuine religiosity does not lie through the fear of life, and the fear of death, and blind faith, but through striving after rational knowledge."

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