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2
introductory to moderate

Traveller Rating

 

Activities
  • self guided walk
Accommodation
  • 7 nights in hotels and guesthouses
Meals
  • 6 Breakfasts

8 Days£760GBP

Overview

Trip Code: WOW

Trip highlights


  • Circumnavigating the beautiful Isle of Wight
  • Visiting Queen Victoria's Osborne House
  • Palmerston Forts
  • The Needles
  • Newtown the old 'Rotten Borough' and Old Yarmouth Town

Circumnavigating the island on The Isle of Wight Coastal Path is a fulfilling achievement for a week of walking. Almost half the island has been designated as an area of outstanding natural beauty. The Coastal Footpath is a circular long-distance footpath of 67 miles (107 km) following public footpaths and minor lanes, with some sections along roads. It should be noted that the path does not follow the coastline all the way, but also diverts inland for long sections. There are lots of attractions to break down the actual walking days, including a visit to the holiday home of Queen Victoria, Osborne House. Many other buildings from around this time still exist including Wippingham Church, the thatched church at Freshwater Bay, the famous seaside resorts such as Ventnor, Shanklin and Sandown and the great Palmerston fortresses, built at a time when French invasion was again feared. You will see several such features every day. Beyond this are much older towns such as Yarmouth and Newtown, which have their own interesting histories. However, the island is much more than that, it is a place of great natural beauty with glittering sea-views across the Solent and English Channel, the white cliffs and sea-stacks around The Needles, Tennyson Down, and miles of beaches. The Isle of Wight is a popular holiday destination, but especially out of 'High Season' you can see very few other walkers.

Countries:

England

Starting Point:

Ryde

Finishing Point:

Ryde


Itinerary

Ideally, take the train to Portsmouth and then the ferry or hovercraft over to the island. Ryde is a busy seaside town, take your time to explore and maybe try traditional fish 'n' chips on the promenade. Accommodation: Ryde - we use a couple of 3 star standard hotels here in the streets behind the esplanade. One is a quiet small hotel with a small bar, the other a popular town hotel with a big bar and restaurant. All rooms ensuite.

Meals:  Nil

Today is a straight forward walking day with no big hills, but with the attractions of Quarr Abbey, Osborne House and Cowes. The Coast Path is for the most part a misnomer today, you are walking quite a way inland for much of the time as there is not a path following the coast more directly on this section, just tantalising glimpses of the sea in places and of the Spinnaker Tower at Portsmouth beyond the Solent. It is a day to get into the swing of the walking and spend time visiting some of the attractions, especially Osborne House. Accommodation: Cowes -we use the Best Western Holmewood Hotel situated on the sea front. (Please ask for details if you wish to upgrade to a sea view room).

Meals:  B

Today’s walk spends some time walking close to the sea and dallies around the old estuary area near Newtown which used to be the busiest town on the island, now a nature reserve. The woodland section above Yarmouth is also very pretty with nice coastal views. There are some potentially muddy sections as you pass various sections of clay. There is a final promenade walk into Yarmouth town which has a bit of history connected with seafaring exploits and the castle. Accommodation: Yarmouth - The Bugle Inn is a charming 16th century inn situated in the heart of Yarmouths market square and only a stone's throw from the sea & harbour.

Meals:  Nil

This is a great walk with some fantastic views eventually over much of the island from Tennyson Down, if the weather is good, but also with a whole host of attractions. Today is the day to visit the Needles Park, view the famous sea-stacks and the military batteries, also the site of Britain's Rocket testing from the 1950s. Freshwater Bay is also quite a pretty place with its thatched church. Although the walking distance is not fundamentally great, you can spend much time visiting various sites enroute easily doubling the time spent walking. Accommodation: Freshwater Bay - We use Buttercup House which is a large informal family home offering B&B, or Stroud House which is a Grade II listed building.

Meals:  B

Today is what the Coastal Path is all about, a steady cliff top walk into Chale which connects you to the south east of the island. An undulating route with no big hills, just some short steep sections as you negotiate ‘Chines’ the little inlets caused by streams cutting through the clays to the sea, followed by muddy sections around the inlet. Care is needed throughout the day, cliffs are undercut and the coastline recedes every year. Today it is you and the sea and a totally different perspective. Chale Bay was at one time known as the Bay of Death; sixty ships were lost here between 1746 and 1808. Nearby are the Wealdon Beds which have yielded fossilised remains of dinosaurs. As the day draws on you approach St. Catherine's Down with its mediaeval light house. Accommodation: Chale - The Wight Mouse Inn, is peacefully located.

Meals:  B

Another day of beautiful coastal, or near coastal walking, after a long dalliance with the downs around St.Catherine’s Point, the most southerly tip of the island. After bypassing Niton, you arrive at three of the main resorts, Ventnor, Shanklin and then Sandown for your penultimate evening. On the way, apart from the odd ice cream enjoy the tiny seaside village of Steephill Cove and ancient Bouldnor Church. Accommodation: Sandown - We use a number of different accommodation in this busy town.

Meals:  B

A last flirtation with the downs as you walk over Culver Down with excellent views back to Shanklin and also onto Bembridge and Portsmouth, you then descend to Bembridge and its attractive harbour, before regaining the coast and some pretty beaches through Seaview before returning to Ryde, via a long seaside walk. There are some optional beachside sections which could be muddy. Why not celebrate your circumnavigation with a lovely meal.

Meals:  B

After breakfast make your way to the pier to catch your return ferry to the mainland.

Meals:  B


Inclusions

  • 6 breakfasts
  • 6 nights accommodation in B&Bs / Inns with ensuite facilities where available
  • 1 night in an Inn on a room ly basis
  • 6 luggage transfers
  • Information pack including notes and OS map (1 pack per room booked)
  • Emergency contact

  • Lunches, dinners & beverages
  • Travel to and from Ryde
  • Transfers required during the walk
  • Entrance Fees
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal expenses such as laundry and phone calls

Suitability

introductory to moderate

2

This trip involve walking between 5 - 7 hours per day. You will need a good level of fitness and be in good health.


Departure dates

Daily from 2 Apr to 20 Oct (except 20 to 25 June & 3 to 12 Aug)

Notes

DN1
Blackout Periods: Cowes Week from 3 to 14 Aug & Isle of Wight Festival from 20 - 25 Jun

Total Priceper person from

£760GBP

Options & Supplements*
  • Single SupplementGBP£230
*Prices listed are per person

Trip reviews


Why travel with us

Personal Experience

We've been walking and cycling the planet for over four decades and are passionate about delivering exceptional service. Combined, we’ve travelled to virtually every corner of Europe, and are eager to share the many benefits of travelling on foot or by bike.

Great Value & Quality

Our well priced trips offer great value for money. Included in your package are comprehensive route notes, maps & guide books along with bag transfers and locally run accommodation. We take the stress out of organising your holiday.

Self-Guided Specialists

We have have been operating active self guided holidays for over 45 years. We handle all the necessary logistics so that you can relax and explore your destination at your own pace. Many of our tours depart daily, giving you even greater flexibility.