Talbot Valley Circular

Cycle Tour 3

10.6 miles
Moderate
298 m
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1) Vistas Beach Café

2) Crabby Jacks

3) Fort Hommet Headland

Victorian fortification built to defend against the French and added to in 1942 by the occupying German forces.

4) Fort Hommet Gun Casemate

Restored gun site, as operational in 1943-45 with full interpretation of Fort Hommet Headland.

5) Fauxquets Valley

Fauxquets is a beautiful, peaceful inland valley in the heart of Guernsey.

6) Talbot Valley

Take a relaxing walk around the valley and its surrounding countryside in order to recharge your batteries and take in the picturesque views.

7) The Ron Short Walk

The Ron Short Walk has opened up rural vistas above the Talbot Valley that would otherwise be unseen and inaccessible.

8) The Little Chapel

The Little Chapel is possibly the smallest chapel in the world.

9) Martyn Guille Gold & Silver Workshop

Gold and Silver Workshop

10) German Underground Hospital

The largest construction in the Channel Islands at 7,000 square metres, the underground hospital was hewn out of solid rock by slave workers who had been captured by German forces

11) The Guet

The Guet afford a spectacular view over Cobo Bay and beyond.

12) Hotel Fleur du Jardin

Rolling terrain with occasional steep hills

This route forms a loop around the beautiful Talbot Valley and Fauxquets Valley, taking the rider up on to the hills surrounding these valleys and also passing through them.

From the start the rider is soon progressing along easy quiet country lanes, but after crossing the Kings Mills road a stiff climb has to be made to get above Fauxquets Valley. The rewards for your labours are spectacular views across the farmlands and wooded areas of the island and a glorious panorama of the west coast. From here there is a steep drop – take care if unfamiliar with your cycle – down to Fauxquets Valley, once part of the public highway but now reserved for gentler means of transport. The peace of this little valley track is a welcome break from the hubbub of the world.

The ride up Talbot Valley allows a stop at the Ron Short Walk before reaching one of Guernsey’s water mills, Moulin des Niots, renovated by the Germans during the Occupation. The climb from here will defy all but the very experienced rider, but once
on the top again the route progresses by way of narrow country lanes to the drop into Vauxbelets Valley where the Little Chapel nestles. One of the smallest churches in the world, The Little Chapel is decorated inside and out with shells and pieces of pottery, was the life’s work of one of the Roman Catholic brothers from the nearby college. Also here is Martyn Guille Gold & Silversmiths and Guernsey Clockmakers.

A further up and down stretch will lead down a tree-lined valley to the German Underground Hospital, one of a series of tunnels constructed in the favourable rock formation of the island. Only a short stretch away is St Andrew’s Parish Church, St André de la Pomeraye, standing on the western slope of a small tributary to Talbot Valley, and marking the start of the route across this valley and then up to its northern lip. The views from this side of the valley take on a different aspect but are no less breathtaking whatever the season of the year. On your way along this part look out for the three stone seats of the feudal court set in the wall. These cour du fief may be seen in many parts of the island and it is here that officials of the ancient fief court would sit in the open air to deliberate upon a variety of local country matters.

The route returns easily to the start rolling gently downhill to St Matthew’s Church in the graveyard of which may be found the memorial of John le Tocq, Guernsey’s top “highwheeler” cyclist between 1885 & 1890. It was while practising for the 1890 Channel Island Championships that he had an accident and died from his injuries at the age of 29. Nearby is the pine woodland area of Le Guet surrounding a coastal battery with an elevated position over the west coast with a view to Fort Hommet on the peninsula to the north of Vazon.

A visit to the fort will reveal one of Guernsey’s three true Martello Towers within the ruins of a coastal fortification that has a German appendage. So rich is this route in sites of interest that an adequate allowance of time is recommended.

More Routes

Top of the Island

Central Circular

Three Churches