Isles of Scilly - 2023
When our passports expired in 2018 we decided that overseas travel no longer held its attraction, so we did not renew them and sought new places to visit within the UK. The Scilly Isles caught our eye as they were not too far away, relatively easy to reach and, best of all, being located in the far south west likely to give us some pleasant weather. A visit to our travel agent revealed: there are only eight hotels across all the islands, and they are mostly booked well in advance, and the best means of getting there is by helicopter, which is very expensive.
We were lucky enough to find the last available room in one of the best hotels on Saint Mary's, albeit at an eye-watering price (£350 per night), and a similarly pricey fifteen minute helicopter transfer from Penzance (£598 for two returns), where we spent a pleasant week during early May 2023.
The Isles of Scilly
Of all the British Isles, the Isles of Scilly are the most blessed. They have the most sunshine in the UK, are a haven for wildlife, and offer a feast of sandy beaches and rugged cliffs for the visitor to explore. They lie 28 miles west of Land's End with a total land mass of just over six square miles, and comprise over a hundred islands, only five of which are inhabited: Saint Mary's (the largest), Tresco, Saint Martin's. Bryer and Saint Agnes They are part of the Duchy of Cornwall, except for Tresco which is privately owned and administered,
We stayed at The Tregarthen Hotel overlooking Hugh Town's quay, with wonderful views of the harbour and handy for boarding boat trips and finding restaurants.
Our tour boat
On our first morning we took a ferry to Tresco, a twenty minute ferry ride north of St Mary's, where we explored the Abbey and its beautiful gardens. Half way round it began to rain, which continued for the rest of the walk, so be beat a hasty retreat to the cafe for some coffee and cake, plus some souvenir cushon covers which now grace our lounge.
Tresco Garden entrance
Day two we took a wild life boat trip to see the seals, which bask everywhere in the sunshine
Hugh Town china
On The Quay restaurant - auto waiter on the right
On our final morning it was foggy, so we had to wait at the heliport to fly us back to Penzance. However, we met a couple of lovely ladies who were sharing our flight, who kept us entertained.
A wonderful break in the Isles of Scilly.