Food Editor Kirsty Spence, partner Ross, and children Ava, nine, and Jem, eight, found the world was their oyster on the largest Channel Island.
Jersey, with its turquoise waters and fab food scene, is so easy to get to, you don’t even need your passport, but it still feels like a proper getaway.
A one-hour flight from London, the island might only be nine miles wide, but it has activities for the whole family – and you’re never more than 10 minutes from the sea.
BAYS FOR DAYS
Overlooking St Ouen’s bay, Les Ormes Resort’s white-stone cottage has a hot tub with uninterrupted sea views.
Indoors are two doubles, kids’ bunks, three bathrooms and an open living/kitchen area.
There are lodgings for all budgets around the resort, from £899 for three nights in a poolside apartment sleeping six (Lesormesjersey.co.uk).
The benefit of our coastal cottage is that the beach is on the doorstep, keeping our kids busy for hours.
To rock-pool like a pro, book a sesh with Trudie of Jersey Walk Adventures, who can show you where to spot crabs, starfish and 240 seaweed types (Jerseywalkadventures.co.uk).
We even found an oyster! Celebrate at El Tico Beach Cantina, where crab linguine, £17.95, and local Stinky Bay IPA, £3.95, is a match made in sundowner heaven (Elticojersey.com).
JUMP TO IT
Guests at Les Ormes can access tennis courts, a pool and free sessions at Jump Jersey, an indoor trampoline park with Total-Wipeout-style obstacles.
Bounce till you drop (literally), then drive just five minutes to Le Braye cafe, where ice cream arrives piled with marshmallows and sprinkles – even the tub is edible, £3.95 (Lebraye.com).
Got a taste for adventure? With three levels of treetop courses, Valley Adventure Centre is great for the fam.
You’re safely clipped in, but that may not stop your knees shaking as you traverse rope ladders and nets, before ziplining back to earth.
The Powerfan Drop – a simulated freefall – is a real thrill if you’re brave enough to step off the 12m-high platform.
Tickets cost £28.50 for adults, £25.50 for kids (Valleyadventure.je).
Once your stomach’s settled, head to St Brelade’s olde-worlde Portelet Inn to refuel on classics like fish pie, £14.95, and bangers and mash, £6.95 for kids (Randalls-jersey.co.uk).
Just 14 miles from the French coast, it’s no surprise Jersey has a certain je ne sais quoi – and on a clear day you can spot France from the imposing Mont Orgueil Castle, which overlooks Gorey harbour.
Lose yourself (but hopefully not the kids) in its medieval maze of tunnels, towers and dungeons.
Entry costs £13.95 for adults, £9.05 for kids (Jerseyheritage.org). For more monkeying around, swing by Jersey Zoo to check in on its newest arrival, a baby black lion tamarin, as well as orangutans and giant tortoises.
Entry costs £18 for adults, £14 for kids (Durrell.org).
While the zoo might not boast the “big five”, don’t leave without ticking off the island’s own big four – Jersey royal potatoes, oysters, lobster and ice cream!
Moorings Hotel & Restaurant on Gorey Pier has them all – we loved the smørrebrød (open sandwiches) overspilling with prawns and locally smoked salmon, £9.50, and Jersey royals slathered in butter and mint, £6 (Themooringshotel.com).
A little excess baggage on the journey home never hurt anyone…
Fly to Jersey from London from £59 return with Ba.com.
Plan your trip with Visit Jersey (Jersey.com).