Visiting the Isle of Wight England
Heading to the Needles
Where is the Isle of Wight?
The Isle of wight is a small island that sits in the middle of, about halfway across, the south coast of England.
As locals on the Isle of Wight call England the North Island perhaps we English should reciprocate and call Wight our South Island?
However the Isle of Wight is part of England and very English.
The currency is the same as England and the language is English however the island’s location gives it a more distant feel.
The Isle of Wight sits close to England
About the Isle of Wight
The Isle of Wight is classed as part of the county of Hampshire.
It is separated from mainland Britain by a deep strait known as the Solent.
Newport is the capital and administrative centre of the Island.
Politically the island and mainland Britain are the same. Westminster rules the Isle of Wight as it rules England
At the last census in 2010 the population of the Isle of Wight was around 140,500.
The climate is similar to the rest of southern England but it can be windy at times.
Today’s Isle of Wight weather forecast for the coming week
On the buses
Although our coach holiday included some trips around the island we also travelled around on local buses.
The main bus station is in the island’s capital Newport.
Some buses operate a circular loop service which gives good access around this small island.
A bonus for us was our free retired persons bus passes were valid on the Isle of Wight. We were able to hop on a bus, visit a place, and then hop on again to go to the next resort, village or town.
How we got there
We opted for a seven-day package coach holiday.
The price included our coach journey to the island, a ferry crossing, travel to our hotel in Sandown, accommodation at the hotel, including breakfast and an evening meal; also included were a couple of coach trips around the island.
It was a long day travelling to this island
We set off around 7am and were not in our hotel until after 5pm even though we made good time.
The ferry crossing is a little over an hour but that depends on the weather. Ferry timings can add time on your journey; we were lucky as we arrived early and took an earlier than scheduled ferry.
The package price was pretty good but the hotel was tired and in need of refurbishment. These coach holidays often use such hotels.
We enjoyed our holiday but plan to return to the Isle of Wight as independent travellers. That may cost a little more but will be even more enjoyable.
One of our day trips was to the NeedlesClick thumbnail to view full-size
- Cross the Solent on a Red Funnel car ferry sailing out of Southampton arriving at Cowes
- Cross over from Portsmouth to Ryde by hydrofoil
- Via Wightlink Ferry for vehicles and foot passengers with a choice of three routes between Portsmouth to Fishbourne, Portsmouth Harbour to Ryde Pier and Lymington to Yarmouth
- Fly from various U.K. airports to the Isle of Wight
- Sail your own vessel or fly your own small plane to this island
Godshill model villageClick thumbnail to view full-size
Morning trip to Godshill
Our first organized trip was Monday but the weather was grey and it was drizzling. We expected to be disappointed but were not.
Godshill is a charming if somewhat touristy village.
There is a long road and a path with a variety of shops and cafes.
The shops have a great range of goods.
The model village
The model village has a large gift shop attached.
We thought the model village would not be anything special but we were wrong.
It was a fascinating place with a lot of detail. There were tiny models of people in this village and they are moved around by staff daily.
The tiny trees and shrubs are exceptionally well maintained.
There is even a model of the model village and its surroundings on display.
It is a pay to enter attraction but is not expensive.
There are reductions for family tickets, children and seniors plus if you keep your ticket you can visit again during your Isle of Wight stay.
Godshill church and old thatch roofed cottages
The final attraction here is by way of a steep path and some steps. It is the village church and its nearby thatch roofed cottages.
The area is very pretty and well worth the steep walk up.
Godshill church and thatch roofed cottagesClick thumbnail to view full-size
What we loved
- Ryde on the north east coast of the island. It is a large coastal town with plenty on offer. It would be a great place to stay
- Ventnor in the south of the island, another seaside resort but a quirky one. I loved this place.
- Godshill as detailed above
- The Needles. We loved the journey to the Needles and the sight of the Needles but were not so keen on the attached visitor centre which was very commercial
- The theatre at Shanklin where we took in a show
- Yaverland near Sandown which has a long stretch of beach and some good coastal walks. This is also a good area for fossil hunting and a dinosaur centre
First Isle of Wight festival 1969
Here are just a few other attractions
More Isle of Wight
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Isle of Wight tourist information
- Visit Isle of Wight - Official Isle of Wight Tourism & Tourist Information Site
Planning on visiting the Isle of Wight?...Click here to get information on Attractions, Events, Accommodation and lots more from the official Isle of Wight tourist information site!
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2018 Ethel Smith