Life on St Martin's ... there is plenty of nothing to do
It might seem to the uninitiated that a holiday on a small island could be limited in its opportunity for things to do but there is plenty to keep you occupied. Don't panic though if you really do want to do nothing at all there is plenty of space and peace and quiet to just relax on the beautiful and uncrowded island of St Martin's.
Scuba diving or snorkelling with the seals is available from the Dive School (there is a large colony of grey seal living out at the Eastern Isles). If you'd rather stay on the water rather than in it, you can hire kayaks and stand up paddleboards from St. Martin's Watersports on Par beach. Just 5 minutes walk from the holiday cottages we have a fantastic all-weather tennis court with balls and racquets supplied. Cricket is played regularly during the summer on Pool Green.
A leisurely walk around the cliff paths of St Martin's is a delight and you may stumble across one of the many ancient burial chambers that lie hidden among the rocks and bracken. A quiet afternoon can be spent fishing from the rocks around the island, while the children enjoy catching crabs off the end of the quay.
A truly special UK beach holiday is what you can expect when you visit. St Martin's beaches are wonderful with fine white sand and clear blue water. Par Beach made it into the 'Rough Guide's' list of UK top 10 beaches. On the leeward side of the island there are 'the flats' where you can walk for miles when the tide goes out exploring endless rock pools where small fish, sea anemones and baby crabs hide among the weed. On the windward side, beaches and cliffs are more dramatic and the colour of the sea is amazing. The beaches are uncrowded and unpolluted. Nothing could be better for a family holiday.
If the weather should take a turn for the worse, the Island Hall is well equipped with soft play, badminton and other sports equipment which is available for a small fee. There is a Reading Room with books and board games which you can use for a donation towards the upkeep of the hall.
In the summer months there are daily boat trips from St Martin's to the other Scilly Islands or you can take a trip around the Eastern Isles to see the seals and the bird life. You can always arrange a private boat trip to follow the twice weekly gig races and support the St Martin's rowers, in the gigs Dolphin, Galatea and Dauntless.
In October, many bird watchers visit St Martin's to see the rare birds that visit during the autumn migration. For keen bird watchers there are regular walks with an expert to seek out rare and interesting birds. In early spring there is a walking festival.
A visit to St Martin's Vineyard for a tour and tasting is ideal for a sunny afternoon. St Martin's has two galleries showing the work of local Scilly artists and crafts people including our local jeweler Fay Page and don't forget to visit our very own flower farm.
St Martins also has an community observatory, COSMOS, which runs a programme of events making the most of the low levels of light pollution found on Scilly.