Out and About on the Isle of Wight
Separated from the mainland by The Solent, The Isle of Wight is one of the best UK holiday destinations with plenty to do and see for everyone, gorgeous scenery and steeped in history!
Part of the rich history is Osborne House - built between 1845 and 1851, this was the grand residence seaside home of Queen Victoria. Discover the Royal family life with stunning interiors and views across the Solent from the private beach. There is also Carisbrooke Castle based in the centre of the Island - Newport. Famous for its donkeys and as a royal prison to Charles I and now the location of the stunning new Edwardian-style Princess Beatrice Garden. other impressive buildings include Quarr Abbey - based in Ryde with Royal connections - a monastery, home to a small group of Benedictine monks who strive to dedicate their lives to the glory of God. The Island is also home to some of UK's National Trust attractions including Bembridge Windmill - the only surviving windmill on the Island, The Needles Old and New Battery - providing memorabilia from World War II and exhibitions about the secret rocket testing carried out in the 50's and 60's. Of course whilst you are visiting these landmarks then you can't not stop at The Needles Park itself - the world famous three distintive stacks of chalk that rise out of the sea, with the coloured sands and chairlift to view it all.
For the children there are plenty of adventures to be had at places like Blackgang Chine where imaginations can run wild inmagical theme worlds with exciting rides - Robin Hill Country Park filled with rides, falconry, adventure play within it's 88 acres of beautiful woodland - Tapnell Farm an all-weather attraction with ranges of animal experience and indoor and outdoor play barns. Another Isle of Wight attraction is Dinosaur Isle - the building designed in the shape of a giant pterosaur, one of the many museums explaining why the Isle of Wight is one of the richest areas for dinosaur discoveries in Europe.
If you are a lover of animals then there are plenty of amazing attractions to visit around the Island. Amazon World Zoo Park home to the Island's largest collection of exotic animals including anteaters, toucans, parrots, penguins, meerkats and much more! Butterfly World - see hundreds of different butterlies flying freely in a natural environment. Isle of Wight Zoo is the famous seaside attraction home to tigers, white lions and lemurs. Monkey and Owl Haven award winning attraction where you can meet the monkeys, birds of prey, and reptiles.
If all of the above is not enough to tempt you then you have plenty more to see which are all unique to the Isle of Wight. Arretton Barns is the Island's largest arts and crafts centre. Godshill Model Village showing recreations of local buildings along with a collection of conifers and shrubs. Ventnor Botanic Garden located in the unique microclimate of Ventnor undercliff with an impressive collection of over 6,000 species or rare tropical plants and trees from around the world. The Garlic Farm home of UK garlic, delicious products from garlic chutneys to garlic beer and ice cream in our taste experience before you buy. Isle of Wight Steam Railway award winning railway with restored carriages discovering idyllic views of the Island's countryside. Sandown Pier built in the 1880's, popular family attraction including mini golf, dodgems, amusements and cafe's. For a fun family night out then try Isle of Wight Speedway - 15 action packed, entertaining motorbike racing with no breaks or gears!
After all of the fun packed attractions to visit, there are equal amount of great places to eat and drink to enjoy a chilled out evening to finish the day. The Island is famed for its local produce so there are pleny of places to choose from. Restuarnts and Cafe Bars from the group of Inns The Fishbourne in Ryde and The Boathouse in Seaview serving real ales alongside award winning food. The Breeze situated at the picturesue Island Harbour Marina serving fresh home cooked meals at reasonable prices. The Bargeman's Rest in the heart of Newport, plenty of choice of meals to enjoy whilst you take in the live music.The Crab & Lobster Inn serving locally sourced seafood and Island reared meats. The Primrose Cafe located in Newport is a perfect little cafe serving hot and cold food and drinks. There are plenty of other high quality restuarants, pubs and cafe's around the Island.
Other places of interest that are definatley worth visiting are Isle of Wight Distillery home to Island inspired spirits including gin, vodka and rum - becoming world known! If you love Ice Cream then look no further than Crave based in Ventnor - different choices of flavours each day where you can try before you buy! Rosemary Vinyard includes tours around the vines and winery. Briddlesford Farm including the Bluebells Cafe, local products at the on site shop and educational farm tours.