Grab your gaiters and walking boots this spring for our biggest annual festival: Walk Scilly, 3rd - 12th April 2019.
The Isles of Scilly are made for walking and the 2019 festival is bigger than ever before: 40 walks across 9 islands in 10 days – and all of them designed to showcase to our visitors the very best islands’ wonderful unspoilt beauty, stunning scenery and superb wildlife.
Each walk is led by expert guides or local islanders, who will bring the treasures and hidden gems of each island to life. And the programme is designed so that you can visit each of the nine featured islands on a different day – giving you the opportunity to see the entire archipelago.
This year there will be a total of six fantastic rambles taking place around Tresco, with a further five on neighbouring Bryher.
New for 2019 is an Insider’s Guide to the Abbey Garden (Friday 5th April). If gardening is your gift or plants are your passion, then this will be a real treat for you. Join the expert gardeners who work every day at the world famous Tresco Abbey Garden as they guide you through the 18 acres of exotic plants and trees from Africa, Asia and Oceania. Discover, close up, the 20,000 plants that thrive here and quiz the master horticulturalists on the gardening techniques that enable these plants to flourish.
Also new this year, join celebrated forager and author, Rachel Lambert and discover the diversity of Tresco’s mouth-watering wild food flavours through this hands-on Island Forage and Tasters walk (Tuesday 9th April). You’ll be introduced to the identification, taste and culinary potential of many wild foods growing on Tresco before heading to the Flying Boat Bar & Bistro for a some wild gourmet tasters prepared by head chef, Jack Stephens.
Also taking place on Tresco is the ever-popular Will Wagstaff’s Wildlife Walk of Tresco (Thursday 4th April). Discover the waterfowl and flora around Great Pool and Abbey Pool in the morning, and after stopping for lunch near New Grimsby, you’ll head across the island encountering a variety of flora and fauna in this little explored part of the island.
Take a stroll through Scilly’s answer to the Med with George Teideman’s Mediterranean Stroll (Sunday 7th April). Start in the morning with a gentle walk from New Grimsby through “Dolphin Town” to Old Grimsby before walking south towards Pentle Bay and explore the ruined Blockhouse and beautiful landscapes on route. After a break for lunch, the walk continues on to the world famous Tresco Abbey Garden for a leisurely guided stroll along the terraces before returning to New Grimsby where you began.
Discover the length and breadth of Tresco the day-long Tresco Top to Toe walk with Tom Matthews. This will be a relatively pacey walk – but with plenty of stops to enjoy the views. It will cover the stunning, rugged north including the historic King Charles’ and Cromwell’s Castles and, if conditions allow, the natural phenomenon that is Piper’s Hole, as well as the Blockhouse and Tresco Abbey. Tom is quick to point out he’s no historian, but he’s a great guide and loves Tresco – so much so that he works on the island - so you can expect a fun day that’ll also shed light on what it’s like to live and work on Scilly.
On Wednesday 10th April, enjoy live music at St Nicholas’ Church, Tresco where the modern ladies’ choir from Cornwall, inTune, will sing a wide range of songs from their repertoire at this short, informal concert.
On neighbouring Bryher there are many more walks to enjoy, just a short boat hop across the channel.
New for 2019 is fisherman Mark Pender’s entertaining insight into life on Bryher, or join local Seabird Ecologist Vickie Heaney to discover the Shearwaters of Shipman Head. There’s also the chance to join islander Chris Potterton on his Bryher Top to Toe walk, or Graham Eggins from Hillside Farm for a walk through the fields of his traditional working island farm.
You can also enjoy a spot of foraging Bryher style with Rachel Lambert before the fruits of your labour are served up by Hell Bay hotel Head Chef Richard Kearsley.
Elsewhere across the islands, a whole range of fantastic walks are just a boat journey away. The brand new Observatory on St. Martin’s opens just in time for this year’s Walk Scilly bringing a new dimension to the popular starry skies walks. The sunrise stroll returns to St. Mary’s as does a sensory amble around St. Agnes introducing island sounds and experiences.
Families with children will be able to enjoy a special Easter walk and egg hunt with mini-quests and a picnic lunch at the Garrison. They’ll also be able to turn bat detective using their very own bat detector kit and enjoy one of three wildlife sea safaris.
All this, plus old favourites such as uninhabited island adventures, food foraging forays, farm walks, wildlife discovery tours, beachcombing, top-to-toe rambles across the inhabited islands and an insiders’ stroll around Tresco Abbey Garden.
Isles of Scilly Travel are also offering 10% off travel, which must be booked by calling 01736 334220 quoting WALK2019.
So pull on your boots, and get out and enjoy Scilly's incredibly beautiful natural environment this April. View the whole programme at the Visit Isles of Scilly website and book accommodation on Tresco by clicking the button below.
Supported by The European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development: Europe investing in Rural Areas
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