Cliffs on the Isle Of Wight

Places to Visit on the Isle of Wight

Discover some of the best places to visit on the Isle of Wight. Boasting a mild climate and stunning coastline, you can easily feel as if you’re abroad in this popular UK holiday destination.

With stunning coastal scenery and gorgeous beaches, it’s perfect for a family beach break and traditional seaside fun. There are picturesque coves for quiet escapism too and miles of coastal paths ideal for a walking holiday. However, the pretty countryside, an array of attractions and boutique shopping, means there is something for everyone.

Cowes Marina On The Isle Of Wight


Cowes is a charming town located in the north of the island. It is one of the main ferry ports onto the island and is renowned for its yachting scene. With an old town area, a marina, a high street with speciality shops, plus a good choice of restaurants and bars, it is particularly suited to couples and groups of friends.

The town is particularly lively during Cowes Week in August. During the event there are sailing competitions, as well as plenty of entertainment on land. However, there’s a good social scene year-round in Cowes, with the festive season and New Year’s Eve being a fantastic time to party.

Other activities include fishing, water sports and there’s also a short, pebbly beach. For a dose of history, catch the ferry across the River Medina to the town of East Cowes and visit Osborne, the palatial summer home of Queen Victoria.

Low Tide At Ryde On The Isle Of Wight


Ryde is a festival town and at the end of the summer it hosts the UK’s oldest carnival. Besides this feast for the senses, Ryde is also known for its large stretch of sandy beaches. The tide goes out a long way here, creating plenty of space for beach games, sunbathing and admiring views across the Solent to Portsmouth.

The Esplanade offers a range of leisure facilities such as an indoor/outdoor swimming pool and a boating lake. Meanwhile, Ryde Pier is nearly half a mile long and was used in Victorian times for leisurely strolls. Today, there are boat connections to the mainland from Ryde.

Along with traditional seaside fun, Ryde has a thriving independent shopping scene with an eclectic mix of shops that make for a great shopping trip. There are plenty of places to eat and the dining scene has grown to include something for almost every taste.

Church In Newport On Isle Of Wight


Newport is the principal town and the capital of the Isle of Wight. Located in the middle of the island, at the base of the River Medina, it is well connected. Newport Quay is a short walk from the town centre and is a lovely place for a stroll. It offers yachting facilities and places to visit including the Quay Arts Centre.

Newport is also the main shopping destination on the island. At the heart of this historic town are two elegant Georgian squares which are a lovely place to shop. Add in Newport High Street, a regular farmers’ market, a Saturday market and supermarkets, and you’ll find everything you need.

History-lovers will enjoy the Museum of Island History, the Newport Minster, the Newport Roman Villa and Carisbrooke Castle, where Charles I was imprisoned. Meanwhile, there’s entertainment in the form of a cinema, theatres and bars, plus in June there’s the Isle of Wight Festival.

Sandown Esplanade On Isle Of Wight


Sandown, on the east coast, nestles in a sheltered bay and boasts long stretches of golden, sandy beach. The resort is a winner with families looking for a traditional beach experience filled with building sandcastles and paddling. Plus, the wide promenades give easy access along the seafront.

The main town beach stretches all the way along the Esplanade to Yaverland Beach, one of the island’s best. It is stunning and offers water sports, while the cliffs are a hot spot for fossil-hunting.

There are lots of fun things to do for visitors of all ages. Sandown Pier offers amusements such as arcade games and crazy golf, while Sandham Gardens offers karting and bouncing on nets suspended above the ground.

If you’re feeling energetic take the two-mile walk, along the promenade or the beautiful coastal path, to the neighbouring town of Shanklin. Meanwhile, slightly inland, the Sandown Meadows Nature Reserve is very tranquil and a haven for wildlife.

Beach At Shanklin On The Isle Of Wight


Shanklin is set on sweeping Sandown Bay and is one of the most popular places to visit on the Isle of Wight if you like resort towns. Set against dramatic sandstone cliffs, there is a cliff lift down to the Esplanade (spring to autumn) if you don’t fancy the walk.

Days can be spent enjoying fresh air-filled walks on the beach, watching the world go by from a beach hut or having fun with the kids with buckets and spades. There are shops and cafes along the Esplanade and even more in the town itself. A tourist road train runs between the seafront and the town, including the quaint Old Village where there are thatched buildings, gift shops and tea rooms.

Meanwhile, a walk through the stunning Shanklin Chine feels a million miles away. This lush, wooded ravine with a waterfall and ponds is home to an unusual variety of wild flora and fauna.

Ventnor, Isle of Wight


Ventnor is a traditional seaside resort on the southeast coast of the Isle of Wight. It was once a magnet for Victorians who wished to reap the health benefits of the sea and the microclimate here. Today, the beach, although relatively small, is still popular with holidaymakers and locals alike.

A row of beach huts, converted from Victorian ‘bathing machines’ line the beach, while there are deck chairs to hire too. It’s a delightful spot for sunbathing or a paddle with the kids. With a promenade and a traditional arcade, plus the Victorian Ventnor Park with its bandstand, putting green and an outdoor gymnasium, as well as restaurants serving locally caught seafood, including Ventnor bay crab, there’s an incredible holiday vibe.

Don’t miss Ventnor Botanic Garden which is a sub-tropical paradise. Meanwhile, if you fancy a walk, head to the village of Bonchurch and the heights of Boniface Down where the views are incredible.

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