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Saturday, 17 January 2009

Town & Villages Guide - Isle of Wight

Click on the links below to take you through to some basic information regarding some of the towns and villages on the Island.

East Cowes


Yarmouth is the oldest town on the Island, It is a busy yacthing area and serves as the docking area for Wightlink's Car Ferry from Lymington. The pier is also a great place to go fishing.
A major landmark in the town centre is Yarmouth Castle, which was built in 1547 and commissioned by Henry VIII. It is now owned by English Heritage. Tourists should make a point of visiting the attractive town square, flanked by the old 18th century town hall.


Freshwater - Isle of Wight

Freshwater really has two seperate area's the town and Freshwater Bay, Freshwater is a small town on the western tip of the Island that has good mixture of shops, cafe's and restaurants.
Freshwater Bay is a small cove that opens onto the channel so takes the brunt of the prevailing winds during the winter but is much calmer during the summer months.
Totland Bay is also only a stones throw away and home to the world famous Needles which is a must see for any visitor.


Ventnor - Isle of Wight

Ventnor is said to be one of the sunniest spots on the Island, often overlooked by it's couterparts Sandown & Shanklin, Ventnor still has a lot to offer. With a long sandy coastline it's a great place to catch some rays. The high street is only a few minutes walk up the hill too, giving you access to shops, restaurants and cafe's. I can also recommend the walk from Ventnor Beach all the way to Bonchurch which is also worth mooching around whilst your there.

Things to do:
Ventnor Botanical Gardens


Shanklin - Isle of Wight

Shanklin is really divided into two sections Shanklin and Shanklin Chine (referred to as Shanklin Old Village)
Shanklin's main town has a plethora of shops, restaurants and cafe's with 2 sections of 'High Street' further up the town is Shanklin Old Village which is aesthetically pleasing with it's thatched cottages and more boutique shops.


Sandown - Isle of Wight

Sandown is a great place for the family, the beach is only a stones throw away from the high street. A lovely sandy beach complimented by Sandown Pier at one end.
Some great places to visit while in Sandown:
Car, Van & Cycle Hire is available from 1st Call Car, Van & Cycle Hire


East Cowes - Isle of Wight

East Cowes is separated from Cowes by the River Medina. East Cowes is best know for its industrial heritage and for the fact that Queen Victoria lived at Osborne House which is not far from the centre of the town. The town is also the destination of Red Funnel's Car ferry from Southampton
The town's industrial heritage is dominated by J.S.White's shipyard.
The floating bride (chain ferry) connects East to West Cowes.
Where to go:


Cowes - Isle of Wight

Cowes is famed around the world for yachting and in particular the first week of August sees the famous Cowes Week when hundreds of yachts and thousands of sailors arrive to race and party.

Cowes sits at the northern tip of the Island on the West side of the River Medina. The entrance to Cowes harbour is dominated by the famous Royal Yacht Squadron, housed in what was the original Cowes Castle.
Cowes High Street is now mainly a pedestrian precinct and there are many interesting shops to browse whilst wandering through the narrow streets.
West Cowes is linked to East Cowes by a chain ferry across the River Medina.
Red Funnel's Red Jet (High Speed) service operates in Cowes and links to Southampton
For up to date sailing information look no further than Cowes Online
Car's, Vans & Cycles can be hired from Top Gear Vehicle Rentals who can be found just off the high street in Cowes


Ryde - Isle of Wight

Known as the gateway to the Island, Along the seafront you will find a putting green, ice rink, tenpin bowling, trampolines and many typical seaside shops arcades and cafes. The promenade stretches along the sea wall to the canoe/boating lake and Appley Gardens. From here you walk through oak woods glimpsing excellent views of the shipping and the three Solent Forts. This leads to Puckpool Park with its tennis courts, bowling green and cafes with a lovely sandy beach nearby.

The main street in Ryde is Union street which is adjacent to the Pier and runs uphill from the sea. A wide variety of local shops, restaurants, cafe's, banks and pubs line the street.

What's going on in Ryde:
LA Bowl - 10 Pin Bowling Alley
Planet Ice - Ice Rink
Ryde Theatre
The Balcony (Nightclub)



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