53 photogenic reasons to fall in love with the Isles of Scilly

I’m suffering from the post- Isles of Scilly holiday blues today. It’s a real thing; I checked and other people are suffering too.

I’m missing that fresh, salty smell of the sea and icy blue waters where bright boats bob about. I’m missing the flamboyant flowers that line the wonky roads and decorate the windows of cute little cottages. I miss eating Cornish ice creams in the sunshine and drinking cold beers at sunset. I miss the slow pace of life and the way everyone knows each other.

Most of all, I miss the sparkly white beaches and the incredibly blue sea.

There are lots of other things I’m missing. 53 to be precise and each of these things make up another reason why I fell in love with the Isles of Scilly.

The Flight

Flying to the Isles of Scilly is incredible as you pass over Newquay and Land’s End. You can also catch the ferry but I recommend flying for these amazing views.

Flying to the Scilly Isles over Newquay on the Skybus

The Beaches

Just take a minute to appreciate these beaches. It’s hard to believe they’re in the UK and not the Caribbean, isn’t it?

The Travel Hack on Bryher Island

White sand on The Scilly Isles

Isles of Scilly | Bryher UK

Isles of Scilly | Bryher Island on The Travel Hack

Isles of Scilly | Tresco

 

The crystal clear water

It might be flipping freezing but it’s so clear!

Clear water on the Scilly Isles

Bryher Island

Isles of Scilly | St Agnes

The Boats

Hopping around the islands is SO easy because they’re are so many boats and they’re really affordable. If you’re short on time, I really recommend taking a full-day boat trip that gives you a few hours on 3-4 islands. We went with Calypso and it was brilliant.

Isles of Scilly | Driving a boat

Isles of Scilly | Calypso boat tour

The food

We had super fresh-seafood and afternoon tea everywhere we went. It doesn’t get much more British than that. There were also pints of tea (yes, a pint of tea!) served with cookies as big as your face, epic breakfasts to set you up for the day and one particularly incredible beef wellington enjoyed with a view out to sea.

Full English Breakfast at Tregarthens

Beef Wellington

Dinner at Tregarthen's

Pint of tea and a giant cookie

Meals with a view

No matter where you go, you can always find a decent view to go with your dinner. I’m sure food tastes better when you’ve got a sea view.

Views from Fraggle Rock Bar, Bryher Island

Eggs benadict

Views from The Atlantic Inn, St Mary's

The walks

The number one thing to do on the Isles of Scilly is to go for long, leisurely walks. There are countless walking paths and you can guarantee there will be a few cafes and pubs along the way. After all, refreshments are the most important part of any walk.

St Agnes, UK

Walking tracks on St Agnes | The Scilly Isles

Bryher Island on The Travel Hack

St Martin's Island

St Agnes

 

Tresco Abbey Gardens

Abbey Gardens on Tresco island is a 17-acre sub-tropical garden. The Isles of Scilly very rarely have any frost and this gorgeous environment allows plants to thrive which would normally die in the UK. The grounds were established in the 19th century and they’re beautiful. Tresco is also low on predators so you’ll see lots of unusual animals – we even spotted a red squirrel.

Isles of Scilly | Tresco palm trees

Isles of Scilly | Abbey Gardens

Isles of Scilly | Tresco gardens

Isles of Scilly | birds on Tresco

Isles of Scilly | Statues in Abbey Gardens

Getting close to nature

You can’t beat a bit of time getting all ‘at one with nature’ and appreciating things like bugs, animals, plants and views.

Bumble Bee on the Scilly Isles

 

Vineyard

There’s a vineyard on St Martin’s. Do I need to say any more?

St Martin's Island Vineyard

Isles of Scilly | Wine

Atlantic Rock Cornwall

 

Places to stay

For such small islands there are so many places to stay. You can choose from luxury hotels, mid-range hotels, camping in a field (a very lovely field, I might add) and self-catered cottages. We stayed at Tregarthen’s and loved it.

Tregarthen's Isles of Scilly

Isles of Scilly | Bryher

Isles of Scilly | Bryher island

The Atlantic pub, Isles of Scilly

Hidden Bays

Get off the beaten path and you’re sure to stumble upon a few hidden bays around the islands.

 

Hidden Bays on St Agnes | The Scilly Isles

Fire on the beach on St Agnes | The Scilly Isles

 

The local chippy

This is the fish and chip shop on St Martin’s. I don’t know about yours, but my local chippy doesn’t look like this!

Unfortunately it was closed when we visited but we were told by many (many!) people that the fish and chips here are amazing.

 

Fish and chip shop of St. Martin's Island

 

The Sunsets

Ahhh, pass me a glass of wine and I could sit and watch that sunset every night all summer.

Isles of Scilly - Sunset from Tregarthen's

Sunset on the Isles of Scilly

 

It’s baby-friendly

Anywhere that gets the thumbs up from George gets the thumbs up from us. The slow pace of life suits babies perfectly. And let’s not forget that the sea air sends them right to sleep. Double thumbs up.

The Tiny Travel Hack

Afternoon tea on the Scilly Isles

The Travel Hack and The Tiny Travel Hack

Breakfast at Tregarthens

It’s beautiful even when it rains

This is still the UK so you’ve got to expect a little rain. Thankfully, the Isles of Scilly are still gorgeous when it rains. Everyone retreats to the pubs and cafes and there’s a jolly British atmosphere as everyone pretends they don’t care it’s raining.

Rainy day on the Scilly Isles

Rainy say on the Isles of Scilly

 

Honesty Stalls

Everywhere you go on the Isles of Scilly you’ll see honesty stalls outside people’s homes. They sell everything from veggies grown in their own garden, homemade jams, second-hand books and DVDs, handmade crafts, eggs or even fresh flowers picked from the garden.

Honesty stalls on the Isles of Scilly

Rope Swing!

Who doesn’t love a good rope swing!? Spotted on Bryher.

Rope swing on Bryher Island

 

Water sports

You can get all adventurous and try things like kite surfing and scuba diving. You can even go snorkelling with seals – although you need to book this a long way in advance which I sadly discovered the hard way.

Kite surfing on the Scilly Isles

 

Ice cream

Real Cornish ice cream. Enough said.

Cornish Icecream

 

Cornish Pasties

Let’s not forget that Cornish pasties are simply delicious and when you’re so close to Cornwall, you can get a good pasty!

Cornish pasty

 

What do you think? In love yet…?

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53 photogenic reasons to visit The Isles of Scilly - in the UK!

TheTravelHack

Monica is the founder and editor of The Travel Hack. She began the blog in 2009 when she left the UK to travel around Asia and Australia for two years. She's now a professional blogger and has travelled around the world in search of stylish adventure travel. Monica has recently had a baby and is now determined to prove that travelling with a baby is possible!

SHOWHIDE Comments (14)
  1. *sob* I miss the Isles of Scilly so so much! I went last year and stayed at my great-great grandfather’s old pub on Tresco, The New Inn. It was magical. I really REALLY miss those sunsets!

    C x | Lux Life

  2. I’m slowly ticking of the islands around our coast but I’ve never explored this far south. Wow, the Scilly Islands look gorgeous!
    I love they they look British but not, and those beaches look beautiful.
    My heart always sends me north: look what I’m missing out on!
    Lovely post 🙂

  3. It’s all so familiar. I agree – I’m missing it too! 🙂 And I can’t believe you found that darn golden pheasant! I search far and wide for that darn thing and missed it! 🙂 Absolutely stunning photos Monica – makes me wanna get cracking with editing mine and getting them up soon! 🙂

    – Yaya

  4. Monica, I have a confession to make. It took me until your ‘Beaches’ section to actually realise this was a UK trip!… I thought it may have been a typo and you meant Sicily ;). I should have known better. Can’t believe i’ve never even heard of this beautiful place. Your write up and stunning photos (especially the food related ones) have sold it. Sometimes we’re so quick to hop on a long haul flight, we miss what’s right in front of our noses. Great post.

    Gabby

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