15 July 2010

A day on the beach in the Isle of Wight

Having heard only glowing reviews, we decided to check out the Isle of Wight. The journey south involved a train from London Waterloo down to Portsmouth, then a ferry across to Ryde. We arrived in Ryde about 9am, and caught a train down the east coast to Shanklin. The trains that run in this area are actually old ex-London Underground stock, complete with wooden interior and a steam-train style whistles - awesome!

Shanklin is a picturesque costal town, with a beautiful beach and authentic old village. Everyone must have been sleeping in, as when we got there at about 10am we had the place to ourselves. We sat down for a nice picnic on the seaside and soaked up the sun.

The rest of the morning was spent wandering along the shore admiring all the brightly coloured beach chairs and huts for hire. The beach itself is beautiful, and even has sand - which is not as common as you might think in England. We visited the 'old village' with its old-English style houses with thatched roofs. We also made a quick stop at 'The Rock Shop' - one of the best candy stores I have ever visited, selling a huge variety of sweets, fudges, biscuits etc. When I came out my bag was significantly heavier!

A short train ride away is the town of Sandown - with picturesque beaches covered in golden sand. The beach is littered with bright umbrellas, loungers, chairs and wind-breaks. We spent most of the afternoon relaxing in our hired beach chairs. One quick note - if you are looking for a party beach, this is definitely not the place. There was more of a family/retired couple feel to the place. Still, it didn't stop the sun shining...

We spent our last hour or so in Ryde, watching the awesome hoverscraft zoom back and forth (youtube vid), and enjoying the last rays of sunshine. The return journey to London was rather uncomfortable - think a layer of sweat, sunscreen and sand covering the entire body.

On the whole, a great way to spend the day. The weather was perfect, friendly people, beautiful beaches... almost reminds me of home.


  1. hi, great to rediscover your blog, thanks for the link ;)

  2. Great post about Isle of wight. I was in Portsmouth for 4 years, but didn't make it to IOW.. Now Im regret.

  3. Looks like a quaint little place, don't tell me you're in Britain but you havn,t visited the best part ye...Scotland?

  4. Hey Ryan, thanks for the comment. I have been to Scotland, absolutely loved it! Check out here: http://www.kiwiscanfly.com/2009/09/scotland-august-09.html

  5. This looks so delicious to just spend a weekend there. Great pictures :)

  6. IOW looks like a good place to escape the madness of London. I'm gonna have to get myself over there for a few days...

  7. Thank you for showing me the COOL part of the Isle of Wight! lol

    Yes, because I've been there...but apparently spent the time on the "wrong" side of the island, doing something that I will regret forever: looking for an open superstore so that my sis-in-law (vegan) and her hubby (muslim) could finally find something good for them to eat!!!
    I know, right?? We drove all the way down from London to do just that! :(
    Well, I guess that's how you learn that not all of your friends are fit to be good travel buddies! haha

    Great post, amazing pictures!!

  8. I used to go there as a kid and thought it was the most exotic place on earth! Oh for the innocence of childhood again :)

  9. My boss used to live there (that is to say, he still does but he's no longer my boss) so I went over fairly often, but missed the opportunity to see around. I was always on work time. Now I know more than I did. :)


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