About St Marys
The administrative centre of the Islands, and the main year-round transport link with the mainland, St Mary’s is the largest of the islands, at two and a half miles by one and three-quarter miles.
Only nine miles of narrow roads link St Mary’s and these offer easy walking and cycling. Off the beaten track, we have many nature trails and coastal paths where you can discover the delights of our woodlands, heaths, wetlands, rocky headlands and sand-dunes thick with marram grasses and wild agapanthus flowers.
You’ll find banks, shops, galleries, workshops, pubs, a museum, a variety of places to eat and a fleet of launches to take you to the other islands or on pleasure cruises.
There are fascinating walks and spectacular views, a megalithic village and a heritage centre, sports facilities and safe bathing beaches.
Getting There and Away
There is a wide range of options on St. Mary's for getting around to the other islands:
ST. MARY'S BOATMENS ASSOCIATION
The Assciation runs a direct service back and forth to each of the main off islands, together with a selection of circular trips to view the seals, seabirds etc. Also offered is a high speed service on the jet boat 'Wizard'.
Contact: (01720) 423999. Website: www.scillyboating.co.uk
INDEPENDANT BOATING SERVICES
SEA SAFARIS. RIB boat trips.
Contact: Mark Groves (01720) 422732 www.scillyonline.co.uk
KINGFISHER, reef fishing, shark fishing, birdwatching.
Contact Alec Hicks 0776 8662229 www.scillyfishing.co.uk
SEA QUEST, glass bottom boat.
Contact: Alfred Hicks (01720) 422511
BLUE HUNTER, boat trips.
Contact: Paul Osborne (01720) 423337
CALYPSO II, boat trips.
Contact: Tim Fortey (01720) 422187 Mob: 07778198454
CRUSADER, boat trips.
Contact: Paul Hicks (01720) 422028 Mob: 07748243122
HALCYON DAZE, sailing trips. Contact Sarah Shave (01720) 422061 www.scillysail.co.uk
FOR THOSE VISITORS STAYING ON THE OFF ISLANDS
BRYHER BOAT SERVICES - "Cyclone and Firethorn"
Contact: David Stedeford: 01720 422886.
ST MARTIN'S BOAT SERVICES - "Lightening, Voyager, Enterprise"
Contact: Terry Perkins: 01720 422814 / 08315 85365.
ST. AGNES BOATING - "Spirit of St.Agnes"
Contact: David Peacock: 01720 422704 / 07836 722359 / 07771 550652.
Things to Do
The Watersports Centre on the Islands offers windsurfing, sailing, kayaking and canoeing, for both beginners and the more practised. Snorkelling and diving is available. Enjoy a wealth of underwater life, swimming with seals, or explore the local shipwrecks. Golf, tennis and squash facilities are available. The local sport is gig racing and races are held weekly throughout the season. Walking is a great way to explore sites of historical interest or wildlife. Alternatively hire a bike or go horse riding for a different island view.
Island Bus and Walking Tours are available. Contact St. Mary's Tourist Information for details: (01720) 422536 or see: www.islandrover.co.uk
Also tours of the local brewery, 'Ales of Scilly', can be booked. Contact: Mark Praeger (01720) 422419.
Bike Hire: St Mary's Bike Hire, The Strand, St Mary's, TR21 0PT.
Contact 0779 663 8506 www.stmarysbikehire.co.uk
Fishing and sailing trips are available and most boat trips are advertised on notice boards on
St. Mary's Quay.
DIVING AND SNORKELLING
Explore the underwater world of the Scillies, charters available for the competent diver: www.divescilly.com or try snorkelling with the seals: Island Sea Safaris
WORKSHOPS & STUDIOS
Abundant Art Galleries and Studios are located on the islands. See the Simply Scilly website for details.
SOUVENIRS & SHOPPING
There is a wide choice on St. Mary's including crafts, food stuff. For clothing try 49 Degrees, Seasalt or Sandpiper for local designs.
Also Isles of Scilly Scented Narcissi for local flowers grown in the open air, handpicked to order and shipped just 28 miles to the mainland - for delivery direct to your door.
The local sport is gig racing, and races are held each week on Wednesdays and Fridays throughout the season. St. Mary's Boatmen's Association provide organised spectator boat for each race: www.scillyboating.co.uk
For more infomation about Cornish pilot gigs see: www.cpga.co.uk, www.pilotgigs.com or www.gigrower.co.uk
Why not enjoy a pampered experience? Penlee Spa offers massage, facials, sauna and more, see: www.penleespa.co.uk