Alderney is the most northern, inhabitant island in the Channel Islands. It is the perfect place to take a trip away from the hustle and bustle and enjoy a slow paced, tranquil way of life.
Teaming with history, Alderney is not short on things to do between visiting forts and lighthouses, not to mention the incredible wildlife and stunning beaches around the island.
If you are planning to spend 48 hours in Alderney then we have the perfect 2 day Alderney itinerary for you to follow when you go.
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Complete 2 day Alderney Itinerary - 48 Hours in Alderney
This guide contains a fully detailed itinerary to two days in Alderney, the main sights of which are listed below. This article goes into more detail on each of these activities later on in the post.
- Alderney Museum
- St Annes Church
- The Bell Tower
- Tourgis Batteries
- Fort Clonque
- Roman Fort
- Gannets at Les Etacs
- Boat Tour
- Bat and Hedgehog Tour
When Should You Visit Alderney?
The best time to visit Alderney is definitely during the warm Spring and Summer months of May through to September. As Winter comes to an end, the days in Alderney get longer and the strength of the sun gets stronger and stronger. At the height of the Summer season, you can expect the temperatures on the island to consistently sit above 20 degrees Celcius, sometimes reaching as high as 30 degrees Celcius.
The best months to visit the island are definitely either May, June and September, as this way you can avoid the crowds of the UK school holidays, which are usually around July and August. The peak season in Alderney runs right through the summer months and we would advise you book way ahead in advance as there is very limited flight tickets due to the size of the plane.
Are Two Days in Alderney Enough?
As with any location, we would always recommend spending as long as you can in one location to maximise your experience of the country. The longer you spend in Alderney, the more you will grow to appreciate the discrete and beautiful cultural quirks that the island has, with friendly locals, stunning secret locations and fascinating history.
With that being said, if you can only manage a flying visit, two days are definitely long enough to see all of the best sights that Alderney has to offer. This itinerary will take you around our favourite sights and activities and will give you a good impression of what life on the island is really like.
In this guide, we will be going on the basis that you have a car, that way we can fit in more sights. If you don’t have a car then feel free to remove what you wish.
What Should You Not Miss in Alderney?
Of all the incredible and unforgettable sights and activities that Alderney has to offer, there are a few that have truly stood out to us during our time on the island. The first thing that you cannot miss out on is the nature in Alderney. Make sure you head in to speak with the team at Alderney Wildlife Trust for more information.
There is a 10 mile coastal walk around the island, which will allow you to see more of the stunning beaches around the island. This walk has been broken down into 9 sections that you can do at your own leisure.
The other thing that cannot be missed when you visit Alderney is the unbelievable number of historical sights and stories that that island has to show off. We have never been anywhere in the world where there is so much history concentrated into such a small area of land. Tour the forts, walk the WWII bunkers and hear the stories of old on the cobbled streets of Alderney.
Day 1 – Visit the Historical Sights
Breakfast in St Anne
Visit Alderney and Alderney Wildlife Trust
Before you get stuck into your day, we would recommend popping into the Visit Alderney Visitor Information Centre (VIC) to find out what activities are on during your stay.
The Alderney Wildlife Trust is just next door. Here you will be able to book onto a number of experiences that you can read in more detail below.
Alderney Museum is packed with local history for you to learn about the island, from prehistoric times right up until today. It was built in 1970 and the building used to be the island’s school before being transformed into an award-winning museum. There are presentations and displays at the museum for your information.
We particularly found the Evacuee room interesting as there is an area where you can listen to stories from those who were evacuated from the island during WWII.
The museum is open Monday to Friday: 10am – 12noon & 2.30pm-4.30pm, and Saturday & Sunday: 10am – 12noon.
Admission: adults £3, children Free
St Annes Church
St Anne’s Church sits in the heart of St Anne, just off of Victoria Street and was built in 1850. This beautiful building is acknowledged as one of the finest Victorian buildings in the Channel Islands.
The original intention of the build of the church was to serve as a garrison church for the military who were stationed here during the mid 19th century when the island was being fortified against invasion. It would also serve as a Parish church for the island.
Today it is often referred to as the Cathedral of the Channel Islands due to the large size of it.
During WWII, the Germans took over the church and used it as a general store. A machine gun was mounted and there is still grafitti evident of the church walls from the Germans.
St Annes Church is the only church in the Channel Islands with 12 bells.
The Bell Tower
The Bell Tower in St Annes Church is very special. Originally, there were only six bells and these were removed by the Germans during the second world war. Four of them were sent to Cherbourg where they were to be melted down and used for munitions.
They survived this and were found years later and brought back to St Annes Church to be reunited with the remaining two bells. There are now 12 bells in the church, the only church in the Channel Islands to have this many.
They are rung regularly by local volunteers for events.
There is a lot more to bell ringing than you may think and during our trip to Alderney, we were invited in to try it. If you are interested, you can find out more at the Visitor Information Centre.
Lunch at Cantina No. 6
Cantina No. 6 looks out over Braye Beach and serves a selection of delicious tapas. This is your warning that the portions are big and very filling for tapas so keep that in mind if you are planning to eat out tonight.
They also serve burritos which are delicious and also very generous in size.
Cantina No. 6 is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as takeaway. There is a small balcony downstairs where you can sit and enjoy a drink outside.
Open 10.00-14.30 and 18.00-21.00 everyday apart from being closed on a Sunday and Monday.
Fort Tourgis was built in the 1800’s as one of the largest Victorian forts in Alderney. This building looks over the sea as it was built to defend the island. Much of it is overgrown and on the floors below, you can peak inside. We wouldn’t advise going inside due to the rotting floors and unstable ceilings. Fort Tourgis is massive and completley abandoned.
Explore the old tunnels at the Tourgis Batteries and learn how these Victorian fortifications were taken over by the German’s during the Second World War. The tunnels are always free to enter however it would be advisable to bring a head torch as it is very dark. Keep an eye out for random holes in the ground as well.
Fort Clonque is another impressive fort on the western coast of Alderney. It was built during the Victorian era to protect the island from the French.
The fort is inaccessible at high tide and there is a causeway to walk out to it at low tide. It sits surrounded by rocks and waves out at sea and is a great place to catch a look at some wildlife.
Fort Clonque is a very picturesque fort and can actually be booked as accommodation to stay in. It sleeps up to 13 people, imagine sleeping with the sound of waves surrounding you!
Alderney’s Roman Fort
Alderney’s Roman Fort was built during the 4th century to defend the nearby Roman settlement and the anchorage in Longis Bay harbour. This fort is the first evidence of any military construction built on Alderney and has remained the best preserved small Roman fort in the UK.
Alderney’s Roman Fort has been reused over the years by Tudors, British soldiers and German soldiers during the second world war. The site now welcomes visitors to learn about the history from their information room and storyboards on site. You can visit this attraction daily from 10am to 4.30pm.
Dinner at the Blonde Hedgehog
The Blonde Hedgehog is one of the most luxurious experiences we have ever had. The food quality was just next level. Situated in the cobbled streets of St Anne, this Victorian building is extremely aesthetic.
We can recommend the ricotta gnocchi and the chocolate overload waffles, you will leave here with very content bellies!
Day 2 – Explore the Nature in Alderney
View the Gannets at Les Etacs
During mid-February until the end of September thousands of gannets flock to the rock of Les Etacs rock, situated 350m from the coastline. There is estimated to be around 6,000 pairs of gannets here. Head to the south-west side of the island and look out to the Les Etacs rock for the gannets, the view and sounds are just incredible.
To get a better view of the gannets, bring your binoculars or make use of the telescope on-site to get a closer view of the colony.
You can also get a view of these incredible birds in more detail by checking out the gannet cam!
Lunch at Mel’s Tearoom
Mel’s Tearoom is the perfect place to stop and grab a bit to eat if you are in a hurry. They also offer take away if you are unable to sit in.
We enjoyed a falafel wrap from Mel’s Tearoom and I hear they also have delicious cakes.
Open 10.00-16.00 daily except from Wednesday and Sunday.
Boat Tour with Alderney Wildlife Trust
Alderney Wildlife Trust are a conservation charity set up in Alderney to protect the wildlife and environment and educate locals and visitors about the importance of looking after them.
They are also passionate about connecting people to the nature that surrounds them.
Alderney Wildlife Trust host boat tours during the summer months (weather dependable) around the coast of Alderney. On these trips you can expect a closer look at the gannets on Gannet Rock and you may even be lucky enough to see puffins and seals.
For more information on booking a boat tour for yourself, get in touch with the Alderney Wildlife Trust.
Dinner at the Georgian House
The Georgian House is located in the heart of St Anne on Victoria Street. Upon entering, you will feel like you are entering into a pub. When you go upstairs you will find yourself dining in a gorgeous open plan conservatory with beautiful views of the sun setting over the roofs outside.
The portions in here are massive. We can highly recommend the black bean burger. It comes on it’s own so you can choose a side. We ordered a side of french fries and a side of triple cooked chips and we couldn’t finish either of them. We have also heard the sharing desert platter is incredible too but of course, we were too full to taste it for ourselves.
The restaurant is open 12.00-14.00 and 18.00-21.00 Monday- Saturday. Lunch only on Sunday.
Bat and Hedgehog Tour
The Alderney Wildlife Trust offer an evening tour taking you on a walk to find the local bats and hedgehogs. You will meet at their shop on Victoria Street and you will be given bat detectors that pick up frequencies that are inaudible to humans.
You will also be on the look out for the Blonde Hedgehog. This is a hedgehog that is unique to Alderney and it is estimate that around 60% of the hedgehogs on the island are blonde. Look out for their little pink nose!
Before You Leave for Alderney
Before you leave on your trip to the beautiful island of Alderney, there are a number of things you will need to organise to ensure a smooth and stress-free trip. These include what to pack, where to stay and what is the best travel insurance for Alderney.
How to Get to Alderney
Given that Alderney is an island, you really have two choices of transport for getting there: plane or boat. Both of these transport methods are available from Guernsey.
Fly to Alderney
Flights to Alderney leave 2-3 times a day from Guernsey. The duration of the flight is around 20 minutes and due to the low number of passengers generally travelling to Alderney, the plane is very small, seating around 10 passengers.
Ferry to Alderney
During the summer months, there is a second option to get to Alderney and that is by boat. Currently, the boats are only leaving from Guernsey due to the restrictions to travel with France. The ferry options are The Little Ferry Company and Lady Maris II.
How to get around Alderney
Depending on what you want to do when you are in Alderney, will depend how you get around.
Due to the size of the island, it is possible to walk around, especially if the weather treats you well.
Another option would be to hire a bike or even an electric bike from Cycle and Surf. A push bike costs £14 per day for an adult and £10 per day for a junior bike. Electric bikes are £26 per day.
If you want to explore Alderney more in depth, we would highly recommend hiring a car. This allowed us a lot more freedom and flexibility. You can hire from Braye Hire Cars for either £38 or £35 per day depending on how many days you are hiring for, all inclusive of fuel.
What to Pack for Alderney
What you need to pack for Alderneyy will rely highly on when you make your trip to the Channel Islands. During the Spring and Autumn months, temperatures and weather patterns vary wildly between beautiful sunny skies and storming gales.
The temperatures generally vary from 10 oC to 25 oC during these months, with a mixture between cold, northerly winds and warmer southerlies. There is a small amount of rain, with maybe 1 in 7 days receiving rainfall, which makes it perfect for days out exploring the beautiful island.
During the Summer months in Alderney, temperatures tend to range from 20oC to 30oC, with some days topping 35oC. Summer days in Alderney are perfect for the beach, with many locals and travellers alike sending their day soaking up the sun and playing in the sea. When it comes to toiletries, we recommend that you don’t forget to pack sunscreen. The sun in Alderney can be strong, especially in the summer months.
If you need more inspiration on what to pack for your trip, check out our full packing guides for all-weather conditions over here.
Given the beautiful sights and scenery that you will see in Alderney, we highly recommend packing a good camera for your trip. If you want to read more about the cameras we use and why we love them, check out the link below.
What is the Best Travel Insurance for Alderney
Regardless of what type of trip you are heading on, one thing that is essential for everybody is a good travel insurance. Accidents can happen anywhere and at anytime and unexpected hospital bills will ruin a holiday. Remove the stress from your next adventure and get covered for the worst.
World Nomads Travel Insurance provides budget reliable travel insurance that will keep you covered for any level of adventure.
Where to Stay in Alderney
When it comes to accommodation on Alderney, you are simply spoiled for choice with a huge range of hotels, B&Bs and even campsites to choose from. No matter what your preferred level of luxury is, there is the perfect place for you.
Luxury – The top place to stay when you visit Alderney has to be the Blonde Hedgehog. The attention to detail is impecable, not to mention the beautiful interior and friendly staff that make your stay so comfortable. To top it off, the food is fantastic.
Mid-range – Spend your time on Alderney in true luxury, overlooking the beach at the Braye Beach Hotel. It’s hard to beat those stunning views over the white sandy beach.
Budget – Being a small island, there isn’t much in the way of budget, however there are cheaper options. One of these is the Georgian House. Located on the high street, the Georgian House is in a central location with a restaurant and bar one site.
Camping – If you are up for a more adventurous stay on Alderney, Saye Beach Campsite offers a secluded camping experience behind the sand dunes, just a stone’s throw away for the beach. You can hire a tent at Saye Beach Campsite or bring your own. Visit their website for a full price list of tents and campsites.
So there you have it, the perfect 2 day Alderney itinerary. This is just some of the many great things to do in Alderney, and we would recommend that you give them a go if you have the time.
If you enjoyed your trip to Alderney, let us know what your favourite sight on this amazing island was in the comments section below. We love chatting you guys about this kind of thing, so let’s share our top experiences with everyone else! What beach was your favourite? Did you try any of the walks? Where was your favourite restaurant?!
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