Thursday, 7 April 2011


The island of Sark was once been described as “the last bastion of feudalism in the Western world”, having had a 450-year-old feudal system. The system began when Elizabeth I granted the island’s feudal lord, or Seigneur, the right to run the island as a “royal fief”. Recent attempts to modernise the system were overturned by the Supreme Court, however this was challenged in the European Court of Human Rights, and the island now has universal suffrage. This peaceful, car-free island is mainly dependent on tourism, and makes a lovely escape from the clamour of the modern world.

Herm is the smallest island in the archipelago that can be visited by the public, although not the smallest inhabited island. Like Sark, it is blissfully car-free, but unlike Sark the island even goes so far as to ban bicycles. However, the locals are allowed to use tractors. Herm is 3 miles from the coast of Guernsey and measures just a mile and a half by half a mile, so a visitor would have to be supremely lazy to want to drive around the island! There are a number of accommodation options for anyone wanting to stay overnight.

Map of Sark.

Map of Herm.

File:La Coupee - panoramio.jpg
La Coupee. Photo by Jan Hazevoet, via Wikimedia Commons

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