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Tickets for the 2018 Walk Scilly have today gone on sale. The much-anticipated walking festival is now in its 12th year and for the first time this year, it has been extended to 11 days and 37 walks. It takes place between 4th and 14th April.

Last year, a great many of the walks were sold out ahead of the festival getting underway, with more being added last minute, so this year, the Islands' Partnership team resolved to broaden the event, particularly as it takes place during the Easter holidays, thanks to an early Easter.

As usual, the Walk Scilly event will showcase the islands’ amazing scenery, wildlife and cultural heritage through a series of rambles, hikes and strolls, with expert local guides bringing the treasures and hidden gems of each island to life. New walks for this year include an energetic hike around the entire coastline of St. Mary’s, and a fast-paced walk on St. Martin’s out to the iconic red and white Daymark, with breathtaking ocean views.

There’s a sunrise stroll to a spiritual spot with a guided meditation, a sensory amble around St. Agnes introducing island sounds and experiences, and a stargazing walk on St. Martin’s, the perfect place to look up into unpolluted darkness and marvel at the Milky Way, planets and stars.

Families with young children will be able to celebrate the delightful story of The Lighthouse Keeper’s Lunch by Ronda Armitage, complete with mini-quests and a picnic lunch. Michael Morpurgo fans can follow in his footsteps across Bryher, finishing at a new mini-Morpurgo exhibition in the island’s red phone box, and walks on St. Mary’s will let families delve into Scilly’s fascinating rockpools and turn bat detective using their very own bat detector kit.

All this, plus old favourites such as uninhabited island adventures, food foraging forays, farm walks, sea safaris, wildlife discovery tours, beachcombing, top-to-toe rambles across all five inhabited islands and an insiders’ stroll around Tresco Abbey Garden.

David Jackson, Executive Director of the Islands' Partnership, says: “There’s no stopping Walk Scilly. It’s our 12th and biggest festival yet, and a fantastic way to kickstart the 2018 season. All of the walks are distinctly Scillonian, but each one shows a different side of island life - and there’s something for everyone this year, young and old.”

There’s also an evening programme including a welcome party at the Mermaid Inn, acoustic folk nights at the Bishop & Wolf, a special evening at the Isles of Scilly Museum and a series of history and wildlife talks.

To book your walks, phone 01720 424036 or email events@visitislesofscilly.com. For the full festival programme and to find out more, go to www.visitislesofscilly.com/walkscilly.