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Wander the Isle of Wight

Thu 20 Feb 2014

Wander the Isle of Wight

With the recent storms that have been lashing the UK, it's only natural that you should be hoping for a good summer with plenty of long tantalisingly-warm days spent frolicking in fields and forests. The Isle of Wight is both one of the most beautiful spots on the British Isles, and one of the most sun-drenched, thanks to its southerly position. Whether you're picturing yourself traversing wild moors or picturesque little villages, where all the houses have thatched roofs, the Isle of Wight has it all.

Of course, it is easy to turn up and set out on your own, but if you're particularly keen to get into the walking culture, consider timing your visit to the island with the Isle of Wight Walking Festival, which takes place in spring and autumn. The largest event of its kind, you're sure to meet plenty of avid wanderers who are just as keen on exploring the local charms as you are. From May 3rd onwards, there will be a series of community events that range from fossil hunting to a three-day beach tour. There is the opportunity to visit picturesque Ventnor, traverse the Tennyson Trail and pick up some stunning photos of the island's wildest coastal areas.

If you're unable to time your visit with this stellar event, never fear - there are plenty of other opportunities to go for a ramble with people who share the same interest. The Isle of Wight Ramblers organise regular walks both long and short, perfect for those who prefer to walk in a group. These are often based at local pubs, meaning you have a crisp pint of ale to look forward to on the way back. The majority of venues used offer facilities for muddy boots. Be sure to check the Isle of Wight Ramblers website for details of where to meet and what time.

In spite of all this, sometimes you just can't beat a solitary walk. If you've decided to set out on your own entirely, the round-the-isle challenge offers spectacular views aplenty and you'll give yourself something to boast about at parties - along with an uncountable number of blisters.  If you're walking with the family or just prefer a route that can be achieved in a day or an afternoon, there are plenty of options. The Tennyson Trail is a delightful 15-mile stretch that incorporates many of the famous poet's favourite spots on the isle, as well as the monument dedicated to him. It starts from Carisbrooke Castle and goes all the way to the Needles, but if that's too far, there are plenty of opportunities to loop round without going back on yourself.

It's also wise to be aware of the island's tremendous dinosaur heritage. Many fine fossils have been dug up here, and there are walks organised around the most common locations. Go along to one of these fossil hunts and see what you can dig up.

Whatever you decide to do, the Isle of Wight is an incredible place to take a walk.ADNFCR-3083-ID-801695854-ADNFCR

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Southampton <> West Cowes, Isle of Wight

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