Famed for its sun-soaked beaches and family-friendly attractions, the Isle of Wight lies just off the south coast of England. It’s ringed by Victorian seaside towns and has been nicknamed “England in Miniature” due to the incredible variety of landscapes it encompasses.
Things to do in Isle of Wight
Whether you want to journey back in time on the island’s steam railway or experience its natural wonders, the Isle of Wight is the perfect destination for an English seaside holiday.
Ride the Isle of Wight Steam Railway. Get a taste of the island’s pre-war railway experience on this popular tourist route that connects Smallbrook Junction and Wootton stations. Pulled by an original steam locomotive, it passes through the small village of Havenstreet, which is home to the Isle of Wight Steam Railway Museum.
Spend a day at Tapnell Farm Park. Located near Yarmouth, this farm-themed amusement park features family-friendly rides, children’s play areas and a petting zoo. Get up close to friendly marsupials in the Wallaby Walkabout and scale the Straw Bale Mountain before soaking up the amazing views from the Swiss-inspired Cow Restaurant & Bar.
Photograph The Needles. At the Isle of Wight’s far western end are three dramatic chalk stacks that rise 30 metres above the English Channel. Explore the two gun batteries and the experimental rocket testing station that overlook The Needles or gain a different perspective during a boat cruise through Alum Bay.
Visit the oldest amusement park in the United Kingdom. Blackgang Chine first opened in the 1840s near the Isle of Wight’s southern tip and features several themed areas that include the Fairy Village, Cowboy Town and the Underwater Kingdom. Ride the Cliffhanger roller coaster or spin in the Pirate Barrels before stepping through the monster-like Mouth of Hell.
Ferries, catamarans and hovercrafts connect the Isle of Wight with Portsmouth, Lymington and Southampton on the English mainland. Buses are the main means of getting around the island, with a single railway line connecting from Ryde to Shanklin. Both bicycles and cars can be rented on the island.