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Sark Octopus

Isle of Sark

Guernsey’s small sister isle of Sark was a place that captivated Victor Hugo during his exile; he described it as “a sort of fairy castle, full of wonders”. The isle provided much of the inspiration behind his poetry collection Les Chansons des rues et des bois (1865), and elements of Toilers of the Sea, his love letter to his adopted island home.

“I shall go... spend some days on Sark to make notes for a future novel.”

Les Autelets

The imposing, towering rock formations that are strongly linked with the “two twin Douvres”, inspiring the crisis in Toilers of the Sea. It was here Hugo imagined the ship Durande trapped and wrecked on a foggy afternoon - a chain of events leading to a titanic battle between man and octopus.

Hugo’s Cave

During a visit to Sark in June 1857, Hugo witnessed an octopus pursue his son Charles as he bathed in "Hugo's" cave. The event is often considered to be the influence behind Gilliat’s famous fight with the octopus in Toilers of the Sea.

Today, the cave forms part of most adventure tours of this "crown jewel" of the Channel.

Time Travel

Having changed very little since the days of Hugo's frequent visits, a trip to the isle of Sark feels like taking a step back in time.

Sark Today Open Gallery