La Rousse Tower to St Sampson's Harbour
Macs Adventure Verified partner Explorers Choice
2.7km - Make sure you take the path on the right where the path splitsPhoto: Laura Paterson, Macs Adventure
A bus ride takes you from the town through the rural heart of the island to the low lying northern rocky coastline. The coast path leads you past sandy bays & rocky outcrops interspersed with narrow tarmac lanes before entering the urban environment of the harbour side. 70% coastal path, 30% tarmac lanes/minor roads.
Start your day with a short bus journey heading through rural Guernsey and travelling to the La Rousse headland and the rocky coastline of the north coast. Following the coast path for most of today, you will pass sandy bays and rocky outcrops interspersed with quiet tarmac lanes lined with pretty flower-covered cottages. Enjoy wide-open views of the coast and beautiful bays such as L'Ancresse. The final stretch passes the bustling shipyard of St Sampson harbour, before you take the bus back to St Peter Port.
There are several lovely viewpoints over picturesque bays today. We strongly recommend taking a picnic lunch to sit and enjoy al-fresco!
Track typesShow elevation profile
You will pass through a golf course today. Be aware of any stray balls and make sure you do not stray from the path in the line of golfers!
Tips and hints
Points of Interest
One of fifteen loop-holed defence towers originally built in the 19th century to defend the island against the threat of a French invasion. It has been fully restored and features replica cannons - a fascinating place to explore before you start your walk!
You pass by several lovely bays today but L'Ancresse is one of the most beautiful with it's sandy beaches and clear turquoise water. The bay has a gentle slope, making it ideal for paddling but always make sure you pay attention to any warnings about conditions.
Originally the Castle of St Michael, the ruins of Vale Castle date back to the 15th century and offer spectacular views of Herm and Jethou. During the 2nd World War, the German occupying forces fortified the castle, the remains of whicn can still be seen today. It is just a short de-tour off the path if you wish to explore Vale Castle.
Food & Drink:
There are plenty of small beach cafes and kiosks along the route today serving small hot snacks such as toasties, sandwiches and ice-creams! However, a very nice option is to pick up a picnic lunch from the shops in St Peter's Port before you get the bus to sit and enjoy overlooking one of the sandy coves.
There are toilet facilties available at the beach kiosks along the way.
Bus number 32 will drop you off on La Route du Picquerel at the bus stop for La Rousse - Please ensure you check the timetable in advance of your walk today on https://www.buses.gg/. If you want to visit the tower, turn left and walk to La Rousse Tower at the top of the headland before returning to the point the bus dropped you off to start your walk.
0.00 km – START at the La Rousse bus stop, facing the sea. Cross over the road, and TURN RIGHT on the coast path, and continue round the headland, towards the church tower in the distance and with the road on your right-hand side.
1.20 km – BEAR LEFT on the coast path when you reach the junction with the tarmac road, with the church spire on your right and a carpark and café/kiosk on your left. Continue on the coast path, passing through a small car park with a playground and a golf course to your right. Be careful of stray golf balls!
2.50 km – Reach a tarmac road (Mont Cuet Road) with a cafe/kiosk on your left. TURN LEFT onto the tarmac road.
2.60 km – Almost immediately, TURN RIGHT onto a short tarmac driveway, and follow it round as it bears right and becomes gravel.
2.70 km – Where the path splits, and next to a house on your left, BEAR RIGHT on to a narrow grassy path which passes through gorse bushes. (See picture). You will now be walking along the left hand side of the golf course (be careful for more stray balls!). Continue past the golf club house on the left until you reach a car park and minor road.
3.10 km – Cross over the car park/minor road and TURN RIGHT onto the coast path, now passing L’Ancresse Bay on your left hand side. Pass by another kiosk and a carpark. Continue on the coast path, passing the 16th century L’Ancresse loop-hole tower on your right hand side. Continue on the coast path until you reach a tarmac path.
4.10 km – TURN LEFT slightly uphill on the tarmac path, heading towards another tower. With the tower on your left and houses on the right, on the far-side of the links, continue on the sandy path through the links, passing more houses on your left.
4.40 km – Reach a junction with a tarmac path (Bunker Hill) and continue STRAIGHT AHEAD on to the coast path. Ignore all turn-offs to the right and left.
4.80 km – Reach another junction with a small tarmac path (Rue La Fontanelle) and continue STRAIGHT AHEAD on the coast path.
5.00 km – Reach a T-junction right in front of the water, with a sign on your left warning against walking through a firing range. TURN RIGHT on the coast path, pass a derelict building on your right hand side, and again ignore all turn-offs to the right, continue on the coast path close to reach Fort Doyle.
5.70 km – At Fort Doyle, TURN RIGHT onto a gravel road in front of a white house, and almost immediately TURN LEFT on to Ruette Tranquille Link Path, which is signposted by a green and white sign. You will follow this path for much of the rest of the walk, so remember to keep an eye out for the signposts.
5.90 km – Where the path splits in front of Beaucette Marina, BEAR RIGHT and follow the path round to the other side of the marina, with the marina on your left hand side.
6.10 km – TURN RIGHT at junction at the other side of the marina, and then almost immediately TURN LEFT onto Ruette Tranquille. Walk down the lane between large greenhouses on the right and houses on the left.
6.40 km – TURN LEFT down Rue des Chapelles towards the coast, in front of a small Ruette Tranquille green signpost with a white bike on it. Continue to follow this lane through pretty houses.
6.70 km – TURN LEFT onto a tarmac lane called Miellette Lane, again marked by a green signpost with a bike on it), and continue to a car park at the beach. Continue to follow the tarmac lane, as it bears round to the right, and then meanders through more pretty houses.
7.30 km – TURN LEFT onto a minor road with another green bike signpost pointing left and a sign for Rue des Houges de Noirmont behind you.
7.40 km – Just before the main road, TURN LEFT along Les Croutes (with another green bike signpost).
7.50 km – Continue STRAIGHT AHEAD on Les Croutes at the next junction, towards the coast.
7.70 km – TURN RIGHT on to a gravel drive and continue on the coast path, with views of islands on your left, until you reach a car park.
8.20 km – BEAR RIGHT through the car park on to the coast path and follow it around the bay (Bordeaux Harbour), heading towards the ruined castle on the other side. CAUTION – you will walk on the road for a short section as you pass the seawall and should be careful to keep an eye on traffic.
8.80 km – At the end of the seawall, continue STRAIGHT AHEAD on the sandy coast path, and through a car park, before heading slightly uphill, passing the ruined castle (Vale Castle) on your right. Come out on to Castle Road and continue straight, passing the shipyard and St Sampson Harbour on your left.
10.20 km – Reach the main road (The Bridge) and TURN LEFT where you will find “The Bridge” bus stop 100m down on your left. Enjoy some refreshments at one of the nearby cafes or take bus 11, 12 or 91 back to St Peter Port.
Good waterproof walking boots or shoes are recommended, although you do not cover any particular tough terrain today. Make sure to bring plenty of water as the sun shines strongly by the coast.
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