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United Kingdom - Isles of Scilly

From the minute you board the boat or plane to get here, you'll know you're on an adventure, heading for somewhere very, very special. The closer you get, you'll seek glimpses on the horizon of the low-lying islands amid a turquoise sea. Some fringed by rocks, others by white sandy beaches but all bathed in a light of vibrant intensity. You have begun a journey to another world – a simpler, kinder, and more innocent place to be.

Some visitors crave the deep sense of tradition here, immersing themselves in history and myth. Others come to walk, to cycle, to sail, or to enjoy the heightened creativity of island life through painting, photography or crafts. Many love to lose themselves in the sights and scents of the sub-tropical plants and flowers that give Scilly its distinctive landscape; and others savor the flavor of fresh seafood in beachside cafes and local ales at a traditional pub. Everyone loves to hop from island to island by boat experiencing many natural wonders – puffins, seals, dolphins and a multitude of rare, and migrating birds.

All this, plus life's simple pleasures; from beachcombing barefoot on deserted beaches, collecting shells and picnicking on the sand, to watching the sunset and gazing at the stars.

Above all, Scilly gives you to the space and freedom to do everything – or next to nothing. Magical, peaceful and unforgettable; Scilly will leave you longing to return.

In 1975 the islands were designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The designation covers the entire archipelago, including the uninhabited islands and rocks, and is the smallest such area in the UK.

Tourism accounts for 85% of the islands' income, due to their special environment, favorable summer climate, relaxed culture, efficient co-ordination of tourism providers and good transport links by sea and air to the mainland. The majority of visitors stay on St Mary's, which has a concentration of holiday accommodation and other amenities.

Of the other inhabited islands, Tresco is run as a timeshare resort, and is consequently the most obviously tourist-oriented. Bryher and St Martin's are more unspoilt, although each has a hotel and other accommodation. St Agnes has no hotel and is the least-developed of the inhabited islands.

Tourism is highly seasonal due to its reliance on outdoor recreation. However, the tourist season benefits from an extended period of business in October when many birdwatchers ('birders') arrive.

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The Isles of Scilly, like nowhere else in England. The islands, located off the coast of Cornwall, has the mildest climate on the UK. Gardens with mediterranean and sub-tropical plants, swimming with seals, riding horses along the beach, or just watch the sunset... islands for you to treasure. - Courtesy of

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Courtesy of Diving/Snorkeling Scilly Seal Snorkeling

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Travel Information  Travel Information

St. Mary's is the only island with a significant road network. The island also has taxis and a community bus service. On St Mary's, you can hire electric powered golf cart type buggies for use on the island's metalled road network.

Air access to the islands is via St. Mary's Airport. Fixed-wing aircraft services, operated by Isles of Scilly Skybus.

By sea, the Isles of Scilly Steamship Company provides a passenger and cargo service from Penzance to St Mary's. The other islands are linked to St. Mary's by a network of inter-island launches.

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History: It is likely that the islands were much larger at one time, and perhaps joined together into one island named Ennor. Sea level rise flooded the central plain around 400–500 AD, forming the current fifty-five islands and islets. The word Ennor is a contraction of En Noer (Moer, mutated to Noer), meaning the 'great island'.

English-Speaking?: YES

Weather: The Isles of Scilly have one of the mildest and warmest climates in the United Kingdom. The average annual temperature is 11.8 C (53.2 F).

Winters are among the warmest in the country due to the moderating effects of the ocean. Summers are not as warm as on the mainland. They are also one of the sunniest areas with on average 7-8 hours per day (July).

Currency: British Pounds

Tours Tours

St Mary's Boatmen's Association

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Dining  Restaurants and Dining

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Accommodations  Hotel and Accommodations

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