St Peter Port, Guernsey, UK cruise holidays

St Peter Port is a capital complete with its own castle where jumbled rows of pastel-coloured houses, churches, pubs and tea rooms stand on steep slopes above the fishing boats in its lively natural harbour. Year-round bunting and tradition await in and around ‘Town’, as the 19,000 or so locals call it. Guernsey got rich through smuggling and privateering back in the 19th century. Now, this low-tax mini money magnet remains a bolthole for offshore banking (visit the villas of Millionaires’ Quarter on a quick taxi tour of the island – it’s only nine miles long by three miles wide). In a place where Victor ‘Les Mis, Hunchback’ Hugo lived and Napolean failed to conquer, you’ll find surprising tales and treasures to intrigue you today, historian or not, in the saintly named port with the wicked reputation.

Top sights and attractions

Candie Gardens

Welcome to the enchanting island of Guernsey, where natural beauty and historical charm come together to create a truly unforgettable experience. Among the top sights and attractions that await you on your cruise to Guernsey, Candie Gardens stand out as a true gem. Nestled in the heart of St Peter Port, these stunning gardens offer a tranquil oasis filled with vibrant flowers, lush greenery and breathtaking views of the harbour. Take a leisurely stroll along winding paths, discover hidden sculptures or simply relax on one of the many benches scattered throughout this picturesque haven.

Victoria Tower

Another must-visit attraction is Victoria Tower, an iconic landmark perched atop Le Val des Terres. This historic tower offers panoramic vistas that stretch across the island and beyond. As you ascend its spiral staircase, you'll be transported back in time while learning about Guernsey's fascinating history through informative displays. Once at the top, be prepared to be captivated by sweeping views that showcase Guernsey's rugged coastline and rolling hills.

Shell Beach

For those seeking sun-soaked shores and pristine sands on your cruise to Guernsey, Shell Beach is just the ticket. Located on Herm Island a short boat ride away from Guernsey's main island, this idyllic beach boasts crystal-clear turquoise waters and soft golden sands. Whether you choose to bask in the sun or explore the surrounding rock pools teeming with marine life, Shell Beach promises an unforgettable day of relaxation and natural beauty.

Things to do in St Peter Port

Visit Castle Cornet

One of the many gems to discover on this charming island in the English Channel is Castle Cornet. A historic fortress standing on its own rocky outcrop in St Peter Port harbour, its walls hold the secrets of 800 years. Inside, immerse yourself in its rich history at four museums and discover breathtaking views of the surrounding sea from the lovely gardens. Get there in time to see the noonday gun fired by gunners in 19th-century costume.

Explore Hauteville House

For literature enthusiasts, the elegant Hauteville House is an absolute must-see on cruises to Guernsey. This enchanting residence was home to renowned French author and poet Victor Hugo and served as his creative sanctuary for 15 years during his exile from France. Step into his world and be inspired by the unique decor and personal touches that reflect his extraordinary imagination.

Visit the Little Chapel

All of Guernsey’s treasures have a story to tell and Brother Déodat’s Little Chapel has three, for what you see today is actually the third construction. The first Little Chapel was criticised and demolished and the second had a doorway too small for the large Bishop of Portsmouth to fit through.


Despite its modest size (9ft long by 4.5ft wide), this intricately designed chapel is covered in stunning mosaics (made from broken china, seashells and pebbles) that make a big impression. It's a testament to human creativity, determination and artistic devotion, offering visitors a serene space for reflection.

Food and drink

Guernsey’s location in the English Channel means that it is influenced by both French and British cooking styles, resulting in a unique and flavoursome culinary scene. There’s a wealth of fish and chip shops, beach kiosks and cafés alongside thriving local restaurants. One of the most famous dishes in Guernsey is Guernsey gâche, a sweet bread that is traditionally served at Christmas. Other popular local specialities include Guernsey bean jar, a hearty stew made with beans and vegetables; and ormer, a type of shellfish that is found in the island's waters. In addition to these traditional dishes, there are endless seafood dishes and international favourites such as pizza and curry houses. Quirky pub names such as The Pickled Pig and The Wicked Wolf attract inquisitive visitors, perhaps for a cold pint of crisp Roquette Cider made from locally sourced apples. Why not take a tour at Randalls of Guernsey to see how they make their own gin, vodka and beers.

Shopping in Guernsey

The Old Quarter of St Peter Port – a few minutes southwest of High Street on foot – is especially good for antiquing and souvenirs in the many interesting boutiques and jewellery shops. Head to the Commercial Arcade and Mill Street for arty shops and designer-wear. There is also shopping at North Quay and at some of the beaches like Vazon. Serious shoppers should start and finish at St Peter Port, where you can indulge in the vibrant atmosphere of the island's capital, at an array of shops lining its picturesque streets. From high-end fashion brands to local artisans showcasing their craft, there is something for everyone's taste and style. Coastal villages like St Sampson or Cobo Bay have unique seaside-inspired souvenirs and beachwear essentials. Special items produced on Guernsey include local pottery – plates, pots, mugs – jewellery, woollen Guernsey jumpers and candles. Guernsey cider cake could be a nice nibble to take home too.

Culture and history of Guernsey

Guernsey's culture is a beautiful tapestry woven with influences from its Celtic, Norman and British heritage. From the moment you set foot on this picturesque island, you will be greeted by warm hospitality and a sense of community that is deeply rooted in its history. Guernsey’s got something for everyone – captivating gardens, historic landmarks, breathtaking beaches, hidden coves, contemporary art galleries and delicious cuisine.


Explore the charming streets and houses adorned with vibrant floral displays. Immerse yourself in the local festivals and events that celebrate Guernsey's cultural diversity, such as the annual Liberation Day commemorating the end of German occupation during World War II.


There’s history, literature and spiritual solace here. Uncover tales of pirates, smugglers and wartime heroism as you wander through ancient fortifications and museums that bring history to life. Steeped in stories and traditions that have shaped its unique identity, Guernsey has unique charm that will leave you inspired and captivated.

Port facilities

St Peter Port is more than just a place where your ship will dock on your Guernsey coastal cruise: it's a vibrant hub of activity and exploration. From here, you can embark on thrilling excursions to discover the island's rich history, stunning landscapes and charming coastal villages. Your ship will berth at state-of-the-art terminal at Albert Pier, a conveniently short walk to the centre of town. If you’ve booked a shore excursion, you’ll find transport waiting very close to the pier. There's a small visitor information centre where visitors can find maps and ask questions. Even if you’ve visited Guernsey before, it’s an island with something new to see and discover, and all within easy reach.

Frequently asked questions about St Peter Port, Guernsey

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