With over half the Island designated an Area of Outstanding Natural beauty, 60 miles of Heritage Coastline and over 50 miles of footpaths covering un-spoilt countryside – walking around the Isle of Wight suddenly makes a lot of sense.
This year, coinciding with the 14th Isle of Wight Walking festival (5th to 20th), there are four walks taking place that aim to walk round the whole Island. These walks are not for the faint hearted but equally, there is a walk for all capabilities with some walks taking place over a number of days to allow anyone to complete the challenge.
Round the Island Non Stop Walk – Saturday 19th May .
OK – this one is a killer but what a sense of achievement for those who complete the 72 mile coastal path walk in just 24 hours. Any confident walkers with the stamina to crack it need to pre- book.
Cross Wight Stick Walk – Saturday 5th May toMonday 7th May
A walk for organised by the Isle of Wight Branch of RP(Retinitis Pigmentosa) Fighting Blindness this walk criss-crosses the Island rather than going around it and is suitable for those with sight disabilities. It crosses from Cowes to Ventnor on Saturday, Alum Bay to Carisbrooke Castle on Sunday and Carisbrooke Castle to Bembridge on Monday. This walk asks for sponsorship or donation to RP Fighting Blindness.
The Beaches, Bars and Blisters Walks – Saturday 5th to Sunday 6th May or Friday 18th to Sunday 20th May.
An alternative to tackling walking round the Island in one go, here you can do it over two days (5th May: Ventnor to Shalfleet, 38 miles and 6th May: Shalfleet to Ventnor , 39 miles) or three days (18th May: West Cowes to Freshwater Bay, 28 miles; 19th May: Freshwater Bay to Ventnor, 22 miles and 20th May: Ventnor to West Cowes, 27 miles) with local author David Yates.
Walk the Wight – Sunday 13th May
Now in its 21st year, this is the Island’s flagship walking event, raising money through sponsorship for the Island’s Earl Mountbatten Hospice. Last year in excess of 12,000 walkers joined in the event and raised over £340,000 for patient care. The view of thousands of people traversing the Island is not to be missed and the feeling of camaraderie enjoyed while participating is part of the events ongoing success.