News - Newsletter – ‘Let’s Travel’
The Cream of Jersey
During early October 34 Group Organisers and their partners travelled to Jersey to participate in our annual familiarisation trip. This years trip was arranged in conjunction with Destination Specialists and Flybe.
The 4 day, 3 night break included accommodation at the Norfolk Lodge Hotel plus a wide variety of excursions aimed at giving GTO’s a ‘taster’ of what the island has to offer for groups.
Destination Specialists, our tour handler on Jersey, pulled out all the stops to give our group a trip to remember and made an excellent job of the arrangements, paying attention to every little detail.
Upon arrival in Jersey, our guests were met at the airport by a Destinations Specialists representative who co-ordinated everything for the party’s coach transfer to the Hotel. A warm welcome awaited everybody at the Norfolk Lodge where guests were greeted with tea and biscuits whilst checking in.
After settling in to our accommodation, we enjoyed an evening drinks reception at which a formal welcome was made by Margaret Devoy of Destination Specialists and Airedale’s Managing Director Glen Hopkinson. We enjoyed a delicious 4 course meal and later mixed and mingled in the bar where there was music for dancing.
The next morning, after a hearty breakfast, we set out on our first excursion. We began with a tour of the West of the island driving past St Aubins Bay, St Brelades Bay, Corbiere Lighthouse and St Ouens Bay. The views were spectacular and everybody marvelled at the turquoise sea which looked more like a scene from the Mediterranean rather than the British Isles. During our tour our knowledgeable tour drivers gave us an engaging commentary all about the island and its history.
Later we visited Jersey Goldsmiths where we had an informative talk about diamonds and the opportunity to view gems with the critical eye of a professional. Afterwards we enjoyed a light lunch and had a little time to browse the jewellers gift shop.
In the early evening, having had a little free time to freshen up back at the hotel, we travelled to St Clement for an evening dinner at the Hotel Ambassadeur. Enroute we visited Jersey’s harbour and Condor Ferries Fast Ferry to view the vessels facilities. At the Hotel Ambassadeur we received a welcome drinks reception before a lovely 4 course meal. Later there was the opportunity to take a look around the hotel and learn more about its facilities for groups.
Saturday morning welcomed us with glorious sunshine and temperatures in the mid-twenties, it felt just like summer! After another superb breakfast we headed out for our morning excursion to Jersey War Tunnels where we were issued with ‘Identity Cards’ and had free time to explore the tunnels and learn more about the Channel Island’s occupation during World War II.
After our visit we travelled to the Legacy Hampshire Hotel where we enjoyed a buffet lunch. The hotel management also showed any interested GTO’s around the hotel.
In the afternoon our coach took us into the centre of St Helier where everybody had some free time to explore the town at their own pace. St Helier has a number of Museums, including the Maritime Museum and Jersey Museum. The town itself had a very cosmopolitan atmosphere with lots of cafe bars for alfresco dining and plenty of boutiques, gift shops and well known high street brands for keen shoppers.
Saturday night, our final night, rounded off our trip perfectly. We travelled to the ‘Living Legend’ Complex for a gala night hosted by Jersey Tourism which included a drinks reception, private screening of ‘The Jersey Experience’ and a wonderful Gala Dinner in the ‘Sunken Manor’. ‘Living Legend’ is a complex of various attractions including mini-golf, go-karting, shopping, restaurants, award-winning gardens and ‘The Jersey Experience’ a recorded show which tells the story of Jersey through many of the island’s historic events.
Our final morning on Jersey included a scenic drive to the East of the Island visiting the Harbour of Gorey which boasts breathtaking views. Later we returned to the Norfolk Lodge for a light lunch and then our coach transfer to the Airport.
Our trip left us in no doubt that Jersey is a fabulous destination for a group holiday offering history, stunning scenery and above all great hospitality, not only from those associated with the travel trade but also the citizens of this wonderful island.