6 historical places to visit in Jersey

See a different side to an island where unique history runs deep.

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Here in Jersey, history runs deeper than you might first think. Get to the heart of Jersey’s identity with these off the beaten track glimpses into the island’s unique character. Walk in the footsteps of Ice Age mammoths, discover tombs of island chieftains and stand on the site of dramatic island battles, it’s all here to be discovered.

LA COTTE

Did you know mammoths once roamed the cliffs of Jersey? Find out more about the islands ice age history with Jersey Heritage's self-guided walking guides and you’ll discover sites such as the headland at La Cotte.  This was where Jersey’s earliest Neanderthal inhabitants, made their home when Jersey was still joined by land to the coast of France. Mammoth bones have been found here, suggesting that the cave’s residents hunted their prey by driving them off the cliffs.

 

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NEOLITHIC DOLMENS

Explore the island’s landscape and you may stumble on some of Jersey’s many dolmens - granite slabs and historic passage graves where it’s likely that some of the island’s chieftains were buried. See one of these dolmens at the Railway Walk where it joins the Rue de la Corbière. Known as ‘La Table des Marthesis’ dating back to the early Bronze Age, and used in more recent history as a place where important contracts were signed.

TREASURE ISLAND

Did you know the largest ever Celtic coin hoard was discovered here in Jersey in 2012? You can see some of the gold and silver treasure from this major archeological find on display at La Hougue Bie, a neolithic burial site thought to be one of the ten oldest buildings in the world, older than Stonehenge and the Pyramids and aligned with the equinox.

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THE FISHERMEN’S CHAPEL

Visiting St. Brelade’s beach? Take a walk to its far western tip and next to the Parish Church you’ll see the Chapelle-ès-Pêcheurs or Fishermen’s Chapel, part of which dates back to the 6th century. Spot the remains of ceiling paintings and look closely at the walls - they’re made of limpet shells crushed with boiling water.

JERSEY AND THE HUNDRED YEARS WAR

Jersey’s French and English heritage comes from many years of dispute and battle between the English and French armies. The island’s medieval fortress Mont Orgueil Castle was besieged many times by the French during the Hundred Years’ War and has witnessed over many of the island’s key events - visit for yourself to discover this ancient castle’s gruesome story.
 

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VISIT HISTORIC BATTLE SITES

These days, you’re more likely to see pigeons in St. Helier’s Royal Square with its gold statue of George II, but in times past it was the site for many of the island’s key events including the historic Battle of Jersey between French and English troops where Jersey’s Major Peirson was killed. The square or as it was known - ‘Le Vier Marchi’ or Old Market Place - was also where prisoners were marched to and sentenced or kept in the stocks.

A small island where history runs deep

Dig deeper and discover more about Jersey’s unique character.
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