Guide to the Isle of Wight

From truly stunning coastlines awash with dramatic white chalk ridges to some of the most unique attractions and fantastic eateries in the whole of the UK, the Isle of Wight situated just off England’s south coast makes for an inspiring holiday destination.

A 7 day ITINERARY for the Isle of Wight

There are so many things to experience on a trip to the Isle of Wight that seven days may not be enough, however we have compiled the best of the best to ensure you make the most of your holiday.

Admire the chalky cliffs

For an iconic and truly unforgettable day out, take a journey to the world famous Needles chairlift waiting to transport you over the Isle of Wight’s stunning white chalky cliffs at Alum Bay, needles rocks, Trinity Lighthouse, turquoise waters and coloured sands – the perfect opportunity to explore the natural beauty of the area. A trip to this remarkable location at the South Western most tip of the Isle of Wight also provides a whole host of family-friendly attractions including glass making demonstrations in Alum Bay Glass, Pier House Shopping Emporium, sweet making demonstrations in the Sweet Manufactory, watch a film in the 4D cinema or play like a Victorian on the wide range of family rides, as well as giving you the chance to make your own unique coloured sand souvenir. After a day of exploring stop by Marconi’s Tea Rooms for a well-earned coffee and cake.

Steephill Cove

The Isle of Wight is brimming with some of the most beautiful shore lines and beaches in the UK but if you are looking for somewhere different to spend your day, then a trip to the picturesque beach and Victorian seaside town at Steephill Cove is a must. Arguably the prettiest place on the island Steephill Cove is an unspoilt fishing cove with a safe, sandy beach, nestled between rocky cliffs and smugglers’ coves. The fact that there is no road access to the island makes it a noise and pollution free beach, a truly serene place to spend your day soaking up the sunshine. Although you are far far away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life you are never too far away from a delicious bite to eat! The Cove’s resident fishermen provide mouth-watering fresh crab and lobster, bought ashore daily and placed onto your plate at the Cove’s wonderful Boathouse Restaurant and the Crab Shed – both perfect venues to enjoy seafood caught straight from the sea you can see from your window. The Crab Shed is particularly known for its crab pasties!

A Dino day out

For an exciting family day out taking a visit to Blackgang Chine, Britain’s oldest theme park, will certainly not disappoint. This unique attraction allows its visitors to step into ‘the land of imagination’ and embark in an enchanting experience like no other. The Blackgang Chine is filled with an eclectic mix of attractions, magical theme worlds and exciting rides, from fighting pirates on-board your own ship or becoming a fairy princess in your own castle, to discovering life size moving dinosaurs in the ‘Restricted Area 5’, there is something to let every little imagination run wild. This excellent attraction doesn’t just appeal to the little ones, being set in beautiful gardens overlooking the stunning south coast of the Isle of Wight provides the most spectacular panoramic views, be sure to take your camera!

A day out in Ryde

If travelling either as a family or a couple, a day at the Isle of Wight’s largest town – Ryde, makes for a fantastic day out. Ryde is often referred to as ‘The Gateway to the Island’ due to its prominent position along the seafront. This beautiful seaside town boasts vast expanses of sandy beaches along with a great selection of boutique shops, cafes, restaurants, museums and galleries splashed along its beach front esplanade providing a wealth of things to see and do for people of all ages. A whole day can easily spent in Ryde due to its abundance of attractions, from ice rinks and bowling alleys to canoe lakes and museums you will certainly be spoilt for choice! The town’s collection of late night bars and clubs means the fun doesn’t stop when the sun goes down either. Ryde not only offers a delightful day at the sea, but it is also home to the last remaining hovercraft passenger service in Britain allowing you to head out and explore the surrounding areas and islands in a truly unique manor.

Victorian escape

No British holiday is complete without the compulsory cream tea! And whilst on holiday who says you can’t make your cream tea your breakfast. Head out to Freshwater, a delightful picturesque village of Victorian heritage in West Isle of Wight for a delicious cream and jam laden morning treat in The Freshwater Bay Café (one of the oldest beach cafes) before heading out to explore the stunning natural beauty of the area. Freshwater Bay is easily recognised by its chalk cliffs and the imposing ‘Stag’ and ‘Mermaid’ rocks that sit by the edge of the coast and are a magnet for visitors and photographers. Freshwater Bay consists of a fantastic pebble beach which is covered in a mixture of grey flint and chalk pebbles, there is sand below the water mark and a rock ledge is also revealed at low tide providing some great rock pooling opportunities! If you are feeling extra adventurous then why not try your hand at some water sports whilst there or simply embark in a journey through the caves – once used by smugglers.

A day at the aquarium

Fort Victoria Marine Aquarium makes for an intriguing and educational visit for the whole family. Built into a series of arches which once housed huge cannons guarding the Solent, the Aquarium concentrates mainly on the native fish and invertebrate life found around the Isle of Wight. The Aquarium allows visitors to come face to face with many of the amazing creatures found both in the seas around the Island and tropical reefs. From graceful seahorses to tropical clown fish you will be sure to catch a glimpse of them all at this fantastic family attraction. A whole day can be pleasantly spent here as the venue also houses a maritime heritage exhibition, planetarium, model railway and an intriguing attraction – Sunken Secrets, giving you the opportunity to explore famous shipwrecks and submerged landscapes.

Top five beaches

  • St Helen’s Beach
  • Yaverland Beach
  • Whitecliff Bay
  • Brighstone Bay
  • Freshwater Bay

Not one for the faint hearted

Whilst on holiday it is imperative to indulge in a wonderful hearty meal, at The Bargeman’s Rest located in Newport you can do just that! This large riverside pub offers a vast range of ales and traditional pub meals with entertainment on certain nights of the week and it is perfectly placed allowing you to enjoy your meal with a delightful water view. After filling your stomach take a short walk down Quay Street to embark in an evening of ghosts and ghouls. The Isle of Wight is regarded by paranormal experts as one of the ‘spookiest places’ in the UK, which has led to it being christened ‘Ghost Island’. The island embraces this title and boasts a variety of ghost walks guided by knowledgeable hosts through its historical towns and villages which bring the spine-chilling history to life!

Top five walks

  • Yar Estuary Walk
  • Alverstone Walk
  • Stenbury Trail
  • Hamstead Trail
  • Niton to Sandown

A story of the heritage coast

The Isle of Wight has a distinct variety of rich landscapes, which hold some of the most fascinating and truly magical history.

Isle of Wight holidays

Feeling inspired? The beautiful Isle of Wight landscapes are waiting!

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