Diary of a day ... around Yarmouth

Cheeky stop for home made pastries and cake and a freshly brewed barista coffee at PO41 coffee house, opposite The George Hotel, formerly a stunning 17th Century townhouse located on the edge of the Solent waters next to Yarmouth Castle.

A gentle stroll to Fort Victoria Country Park. Head West past Yarmouth Harbour over the Yar bridge then take a right on the road bend and follow the footpath along the coast. Allow around 30 minutes for this 1.3 mile walk but don't forget to stop and have a skim on the pretty pebble beach.

Investigate the hidden history of the Isle of Wight at the Sunken Secrets Archaeology Discovery Centre and exhibition. Newly re-opened and run by Time Taxi the exhibition is children and dog friendly. Keep an eye out for hands on kids activities and workshops run throughout the year by Archaeologist owner Katie Cambridge, both inside and outside and in the surrounding forest too!

Enjoy a woodland walk through the Country Park which stretches down to the sea, and take in some spectacular Solent views. On a low tide investigate rock pools and the flotsam and jetsam of felled trees on the shore with the historic landmarks of Hurst Castle and Fort Albert within sight.

Head back to town over the bridge then cross the road inland and follow the path along the River Yar past Yarmouth Sailing Club, the green and long term car park. Turn left at the gate at Yarmouth Mill by the creek towards your lunch destination.

Lunch at Off the Rails café and restaurant located in what was once Yarmouth Railway Station. The heritage styling gives nods to classic rail travel evoking memories of days gone by and overlooks reed beds and marshes and their array of British wildlife.

Hire some bikes from Wight Cycle Hire, just behind the café, and pedal along the Yar Estuary cycle path towards Freshwater. Flat and wide through woodland and past marshes this is a lovely gentle bike ride for all ages and only a few miles there and back.

Walk back into Yarmouth to explore a 16th Century Castle! Yarmouth Castle is part of English Heritage and the last of Henry VIII's coastal defences, located right next to the Harbour, of course! Open from 10 – 4pm daily there is also a visitors shop selling local produce and experts on hand to help you find out more about this incredible piece of English history.

Grab a fresh tasty snack from Yarmouth Deli then take a stroll along the pier, the longest remaining wooden pier of its type in the UK! Have a chat with the fishermen often found at the end to see what they are catching and get some local tips, or just enjoy the incredible sea views.

Head back to Yarmouth for a spot of shopping at one of the many independent boutiques and galleries lining the square and surrounding streets. Our favourite is Blue by the Sea selling handpicked clothes and gifts alongside local fine art.

For such a small classic harbour town Yarmouth is filled with many different places to eat. The Kings Head and The Bugle pubs offer classic menus or try On the Rocks which serves meals on hot volcanic rocks. For fine dining with sea views head to The George Hotel.

Local's tips
1. Every Thursday make a trip to Wightwood Pizza selling handmade speciality wood fired pizzas from their vintage French van. Located next to Yarmouth School and the long stay car park, open from 5pm – 8pm. 

2. Now in its 20th year the Old Gaffers Festival takes place from 2nd to 4th June in Yarmouth with free entertainment, stalls, classic car display and funfair amongst other things.

3. Take a boat trip to the famous Isle of Wight landmark 'The Needles' or have a go at sea fishing with Black Rock Charters found between the Harbour and RNLI shop.

4. For some indulgent time out book a therapy or treatment at The Island Wellness Spa in the West Bay Club just a few minutes drive or 20 minute walk out of Yarmouth towards Totland.

5. On Saturday 15th April the Yarmouth Carnival Committee’s annual Duck Race will be started from Yarmouth Sailing Club right next to the bridge and tea and cakes will be sold in the club before the race starts. One of the many annual local events held in Yarmouth!

Marianne & Spike

12 April 2017

By Marianne Su-Yin in The locals' blogs