The Guernsey Information Centre
This is one of the most useful tourist information centres I've ever come across. The range of freebie maps and leaflets pretty much preclude having to purchase anything. There's the general map of the island which is complete with all the main attractions highlighted along with all the roadways and the bus routes. There's a walker's map with all the footpaths, major and minor. There's leaflets for the historically-inclined, brochures for the beach bums and for the environmentally conscious there's the green guide.
Here you'll find the island's bus timetables, ferry and boat trip information, assistance with accommodation, advice on things to do and an event booking service. The building is a free WiFi zone and there's also a computer terminal for public use.
In addition to the freebies there's the usual postcards and souvenirs for sale and even a reasonably-priced Bureau de Change.
The office is located on the seafront, about 200 metres to your left as you leave the ferry terminal, and its opening hours vary according to the time of year. In summer it is open Monday to Saturday 9 am to 5 pm Mon to Sat and 9 am to 1 pm Sundays. The excellent website has all the further info you need, as well as PDF links to many of the maps and brochures - Guernsey Info Centre
Not being a boatie I don't know what the system is regarding "Customs" (Duanes) procedures elsewhere in the world but here for visiting sailors it seems to be just a matter of filling in the forms and putting them in this box.
I would assume there are spot checks on arriving craft but otherwise there didn't seem to be much oficialdom around the harbour and marina. In fact there's probably more stringent checks on people arriving in the UK from Guernsey as the Bailwick is not part of the EU.
Exactly What It Says On The Label!
"The Independent Bailiwick"
Saint Peter was one of the Biblical twelve apostles of Christ. Recruited from being a fisherman to become "a fisher of men" he is the patron saint of, amongst others, fishermen, net weavers and shipwrights and so is an appropriate figure for the Channel Island of Guernsey's main town and harbour to be named after.
Despite being closer to France than to England the Channel Islands are administratively what is termed "British Crown Dependencies" which means that whilst loosely allianced with the UK they are not actually part of, nor governed by, Britain.
The States (or Bailiwick as it is often referred to because it is governed by a Bailiff) of Guernsey comprise the main island and the islands of Sark, Alderney and Herm. Guernsey is self-governing and prints it own currency and stamps. It is not part of the EU but does conform to the European Community customs regulations and seems to be able to cherry pick the bits of EU legislation that are advantageous to its islands.
"Port St Peter Itself"
Guernsey has a unique culture and and its bustling capital of St Peter Port blends the best of both British and French lifestyles and whilst English is the main language the local dialect is a pleasant patois where French and English terms are freely mixed according to the emphasis required.
Thus you have things like the very English-style pub, pictured, which is called "The Thomas de la Rue" whilst just down the road, past Boots the Chemist and Burtons Menswear, is the Boulangerie Victor Hugo with its colouful display of glazed tartines and pains des campagnes.
"And Other Aspects Of Dual Culture!"
For a small town St Peter Port seems quite wealthy but because of low taxation is not an expensive place to visit. Very little is cheap, cheap but rather quality things are affordable - a good restaurant meal will cost half what you would expect to pay on either of the mainlands whilst chic apparell is effectively tax-free.
This latter makes my second favourite pastime a positive pleasure!
St. Peter Port
The rocky Channel Islands spread across 75 square miles of open sea off the Brittany and Normandy coasts. The main islands, Jersey and Guernsey as well as three smaller islands Alderney, Sark and Herm are populated. The rest are tiny uninhabited islets and crags.
Guernsey itself it a small island, there are buses that go around the island and it takes about an hour and a half. St Peter Port is located on the east side of the island. You can stroll around town and the shopping area. There are plently of photo opportunities with their unique architecture and scenery.
Both British pound Sterling and Channel Island pound are accepted. However, If you purchase goods with big British pound bills, make sure you get the change back in British pound. I believe the Channel Island pounds are not accepted anywhere else except the Channel Islands.
Some of the ATMs tell you that their machine only dispends Guernsey Currency.
View from the ocean with the Castle Cornet and the lighthouse in the foreground
Typical street scene.