The Gulf Stream creates a subtropical microclimate in the Isles of Scilly, making it a paradise for plants and wildlife.
The exotic archipelago is 28 miles off the tip of Cornwall and its outlying islands are pristine sanctuaries inhabited only by seals, puffins and indigenous species including the Scilly Bee and St Martin’s Ant.
Plant-life is extraordinary and Saga passengers can enjoy a guided tour of Tresco Abbey Garden, known as ‘Kew with the roof off’ because many of its collection of 20,000 plants grow nowhere else in Britain, unless in a greenhouse.
The Saga Active Explorer holiday is offered as a four, five or six-night break with options to fly from Exeter or Land’s End. Guests stay on the largest island, St Mary’s, at the 25-bedroom waterfront Atlantic Hotel.
St Mary’s has 10 miles of pristine beaches to discover and there is plenty of opportunity to hire a bike or go horse-riding to further enjoy the scenery.
Look out for the rare Royal fern and Southern marsh orchid on a walking tour of Lower Moor Nature Reserve which has been developed to help sustain vulnerable wildlife and protect the isles’ precious ecosystem from climate change.
Explore the uninhabited outer isles to look for colonies of seals and birdlife. These islands remain steeped in legends and many have fascinating names including Great Arthur, Hangman’s Island, Hunter’s Lump and Great Cheese Rock.
Guests will also have the chance to catch water taxis to St Martin's and St Agnes. St Martin’s has an untamed coastline which features cliffs on the north side and many magnificent beaches to the south. St Agnes, with a population of 72, is just one mile across with paths around its deeply indented coastline providing a succession of beautiful views.
Four nights from £599, five nights from £819 and six nights from £919 departing Exeter Airport August 12 and October 16, or Land’s End Airport on August 12, September 24 and October 16.
Price includes return flights and transfers, half-board accommodation, up to four excursions dependent on length of holiday, porterage, tour manager, welcome drink, travel insurance and cancellation cover.
For details call free on 0800 414 8986 or visit saga.co.uk/holidays
Editors: Saga Holidays is winner of nine British Travel Awards including Best Wildlife and Nature Holiday Operator.