10 Great Isle of Wight Beaches

Here is our guide to some of the greatest Isle of Wight beaches, and the reasons why we love them.



  • Compton & Brook – Such favourites and forever will be. Listed as one of the UK's best beaches by The Telegraph and Rough Guides, there is nothing as stunning as Compton Bay at low tide with all the rivers and pools of sun-warmed water to run and splash through.  

  • Appley – great for sunbathing, kiting, and just about everything else really. The sand at Appley Beach is endless when the tide is out, and the imposing figure of the gothic tower watches over the beach. Perfect for a day with the children building sandcastles.

  • Bembridge Beach – lovely sandy beach great for kayaking, sailing and kitesurfing and on the opposite side of the entrance to Bembridge Harbour is the wonderful sand dunes of the Duver at St Helen’s. Well worth a wander.
  • Colwell Bay - the perfect family beach for paddling as when the tide is out the water is super shallow and warm! Colwell Bay opens up to great Solent views back across to the New Forest, and kids can swim, kayak, paddleboard and if they fall in are only ever up to their waist. 

Adventurous & Secret…


  • Chilton Chine – This has steep access down on to the beach but once there it is all sand and Jurassic style coastline. Walk right and you’ll come across some amazing rocks scattered on the beach that are so worn by the sea they look like a dinosaur has just laid down and died leaving his skeleton strewn along the sand.

  • The Sandhard – this tiny beach is often completely overlooked. Hidden behind Yarmouth Harbour, the quickest way to get there is to grab a harbour taxi across the water and walk along the jetty to a lovely little spot with small sand dunes, BBQ and picnic area and pebbled beach directly out onto the Solent.

  • Rocken End – a real gem this beach requires descent by rope and at the bottom comprises tiny shingle and sometimes crashing waves as the waters from the east and west collide at this most southerly point.



  • Sandown & Shanklin – a throwback to the traditional seaside holiday with arcades, stripey deckchairs, ice cream and sandcastles. Sandown Bay still boasts its original pier and amusements, whilst Shanklin Beach can be accessed via its unique chine.

  • Ventnor – vintage charm itself with the esplanade, framing a picturesque beach perfect for flying a kite or lazing in the sun. The original Victorian bathing machines from Ventnor Beach have been converted into quirky beach huts, giving it a real air of seaside nostalgia.

By Boat…


  • Scratchell’s Bay – only accessible by boat this tiny pebble beach sits hidden just the other side of The Needles below towering stacks of chalk cliffs going up to the Needle Old Battery above. With turquoise water that shelves deeply, perfect for swimming, you could be in the med…

  • New territory - the northern shore of the Island from Yarmouth to Newtown (along the Solent side) is a myriad of tiny private bits of beach that were made for exploring and having a good barbie. Best approached by boat and beach anchored, they are also fantastic for collecting driftwood!
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6 July 2018

By Alix Robinson in Articles