Living and Working in Guernsey: About Guernsey

Guernsey is one of the most popular places to relocate for those living in the UK or the European mainland. 

The second largest island within the wider Channel Islands, Guernsey is often recognised as a major financial hub that can also provide a relaxed, tranquil atmosphere for residents. 

As part of our wider Living and Working in Guernsey series, we’re examining the island itself and why you might want to consider relocating for work.

Welcome to Guernsey

Guernsey is one of the Channel Islands located in the English Channel between France and the UK.

More specifically, it is 120km off the south coast of England and 50km off the north-west coast of France. With a population of 63,026, a population density of 995 people per square km, and an area of 65 square miles, Guernsey is the second largest Channel Island.

Guernsey consists of ten parishes, including the most populated, St Peter Port, Castel, which is the largest, and Torteval – which is the smallest and least populated. These parishes, along with several neighbourhood islands including Sark, Herm and Alderney form a British Crown Dependency called the Bailiwick of Guernsey.

Although Guernsey is under the protection of the British Crown, it is not part of the UK and is an independent, self-governed island. Instead, Guernsey’s own government, the States of Guernsey (officially known as States of Deliberation) autonomously handles all matters from domestic affairs to taxation – although the British Government is responsible for foreign affairs and defence.

Only 15% of Guernsey is built upon, allowing for a diverse landscape. In the south are green fields, forests, cliffs and stunning sea views. The west is best for beach lovers and surfers, whilst the north has many common areas popular for golf and walking, and the east is home to the urban yet quaint town centre.

Next: Relocating to Guernsey

Discover everything you need to know about relocating to the island.

Life in Guernsey

Guernsey offers a great work-life balance. From sports and leisure, sunset walks, relaxing on the beach, and restaurants, life in Guernsey offers something for everyone.

What’s more, nothing is ever far away, so you can go to work and be home in time to watch the sunset on the beach.

Want to stay active?

Guernsey has 28 miles of cliff paths, bays, woodland and rural lanes for walking, running, cycling and exploring. Water sports are also popular, with surfing, kayaking, coasteering, sailing, windsurfing, and boating on offer.

Guernsey also has a leisure centre, Beau Sejour, with squash courts, tennis courts, a swimming pool, basketball court and volleyball court. The island benefits from health and fitness clubs, two 18-hole golf courses, and football, rugby, cricket, hockey and netball leagues.

For a more relaxing lifestyle, why not try one of Guernsey’s 27 beaches or take a short trip to its Bailiwick sister islands Sark, Herm, and Alderney.

Ready for some culture?

Guernsey has many historic attractions – from prehistoric dolmens to 18th and 19th-century forts to WWII gun batteries. Its cultural attractions include cinemas, theatres, and music concerts.

Guernsey has a thriving food and drink scene. With over 80 restaurants, the island has something to suit everyone’s tastes – from fish and chips to cream teas. There’s also a brewery and cider farm, and Fresh Friday market events are held in the market square every week with lots of lovely local produce on offer.

The island holds multiple regular events and festivals all year round, including Tennerfest food festival, Viaer Marche, Liberation Day festivals, the town carnival, and various outdoor concerts.

Guernsey also has a range of shopping options, from boutique and smaller shops to well-known brands and markets.

Whether your ideal lifestyle involves sports and leisure, history and culture, food and drink, or simply relaxing, Guernsey has everything, and with its safe and friendly environment, it’s easy to see why so many choose to call Guernsey home.

Browse the 'Living and Working in Guernsey' guide

Take a look at the other articles within our 'Living and Working' guide.