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South West Isle of Wight this spring


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I must be feeling better because I am looking at a week on the Isle of Wight in April, before Easter and the school holidays. It is very close to where we live, so should be an easy vacation. We can drive to Lymington in 2 hours and take a ferry from there to the Isle of Wight. Ferries run every hour and the ride is 40 minutes. Other ferries run from Portsmouth. We would take our car on the ferry (although from what I read you can do a trip there without a car).

The island is small and its main industry is tourism. I don't imagine the weather will be much different than here in Dorset, but we are having an early spring this year, so maybe April will be good. There is a coast path that runs around the island and I am looking at public transportation options to see if we could walk one way, then take a bus/train back to the start.

Classic Cottages has a lot of nice looking vacation rentals and there are many on AirBnb too.

Anyone have any advice on where to stay, good agencies, what to do there? I am looking for an easy week with some walking and some exploring.


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I booked an apartment for a week from Classic Cottages in between Bonchurch and Ventnor on the south-east coast. It has a large terrace with sea views. And I bought a guidebook, walking guides and a hiking map. From the apartment we can walk (downhill) to a coastal promenade and into Ventnor, or walk up to the downs where there are walking trails. This area has an “Undercliff” like we have here in Lyme Regis (near where I live) formed by cliff landslides hundreds/thousands of years ago. These are forested areas near the coast.

Classic Cottages has vacation rentals in the southwest and has a lot on the Isle of Wight, plus an office there.


This is the Google street view of the apartment.

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The ferry to the Isle of Wight is expensive. Cars can go from Lymington (east of Christchurch) to Yarmouth on the north west side (40 minutes) or Portsmouth to Fishbourne on the north east side (45 minutes). The prices are similar. Around £200 return for a refundable ticket, less for non-refundable. We got a 25% discount from Classic Cottages, so it was a bit better.


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A friend saw a documentary about Osborne House, the holiday home of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, near Cowes. They open for summer the day we arrive.

From the website:
"It is impossible to imagine a prettier spot" said Queen Victoria of Osborne House, her palatial holiday home on the Isle of Wight. Visit Victoria and Albert's private apartments, their bathing beach and children's play-cottage for an intimate glimpse of royal family life. Then stroll through the garden terraces where the stunning views across the Solent reminded Prince Albert of the Bay of Naples.

Ha! We will see about that but it doesn’t seem likely.


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I did a walking tour on the Isle of Wight for a week many years ago (I will be returning in September this year). On our day off I visited Osbourne house which was lovely. The most memorable part was her bathing machine (which might be in a separate area from the house).

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