Herm is unique, a tiny island run benignly by the 40 souls lucky enough to live on it. They keep things blissfully simple: no cars, no TVs, just a magical world of sea and sky, a perfect place to escape the city. A coastal path rings the island; high cliffs rise to the south, sandy beaches laze in the north, cattle graze the hills between. You get fabulous views at every turn – shimmering islands, pristine waters, yachts and ferries zipping about. There’s a beach café, succulent gardens, an ancient church, even a tavern for excellent ales. Kids love it, so do parents, and the self-catering cottages are extremely popular. As for the hotel, it’s a delightful base from which to explore the island. You’ll find open fires, four-course dinners, a tennis court, then a pool in the garden to keep you cool. Spotless bedrooms are scattered about, some in the village’s colour-washed cottages, others with balconies in the hotel. Most come in contemporary style, a few are warmly traditional, all have sunny colours, watery views, padded headboards and sparkling bathrooms. Hard to beat.