The third-largest of the Channel Islands, Alderney has the remotest feel to it, in spite of being just 8 miles from France. In the height of summer, it's possible to have the island's ruins, forts, windswept coastal footpaths and crashing surf largely to yourself. Even the island capital of St Anne is a convivial yet low-key village.
A strategic naval site, Alderney was fortified with a string of forts during Victorian times to counter the threat posed by the French. Then, with the vast majority of its civilians evacuated either to Guernsey or Britain during WWII, Alderney was heavily militarised by the Nazis and its coastline remains ringed by forts and crumbling fortifications, giving the island a somewhat derelict air.