The Isle of Wight is the perfect place to visit if you are without a car, with easy train links from London, Brighton, Bristol and other major cities. Once you’re on the Island take advantage of our fantastic bus service, and take the time to appreciate the miles of unspoilt natural beauty the Island has to offer.
We’ve all been driving in the car and pointing out of the window when we’ve seen a kestrel hovering over the road or stopping to take a picture on a walk of a beautiful butterfly. During the autumn months, the Island is bursting with colour and the skies are filled with the sounds of Ospreys. Its the perfect time to take things more slowly with your vehicle, but what else can you see and hear on the Isle of Wight for your car-free travels…
Take the scenic route
Although Isle of Wight buses run regularly, sometimes it doesn’t take to long to walk to your destination. Take advantage of the Isle of Wight’s small size and close proximity of towns, often connected by flat walking and cycle tracks. You’ll find that Newport, Cowes and East Cowes are all relatively close, with a pleasant walk along the River Medina. You’ll find the same for Shanklin, Sandown and Ventnor, which are all connected by coastal trails along the beach and clifftops.
If you are out on foot, then the good folks over at National Trust have even put together a range of brilliant downloadable walks for you. Simply click your chosen walk and you will get a detailed map plus information on what to look out for, be it rare species of birds, a red squirrel or even the possibility of a seal. You will also find lots of images so you can make sure you are in the right place and not getting lost!
Find the full list of downloadable walks here: https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/lists/walking-on-the-isle-of-wight
Get on your bike!
We’ve already mentioned the miles of walking and cycling routes on the Isle of Wight, well did you know that we have more than 500 miles of them! All are mostly flat, thanks to following the path of old railway lines around the Island.
Lonely Planet recognised the Isle of Wight as number one in the world for cycling saying “The Isle of Wight is a cycling paradise that is home to some of the UK’s most varied terrain: lush velvet hills rolling into the sea, narrow lanes through tidy hedgerows, deep and mysterious green gullies, and the island’s most striking feature, the ridge of white chalk cliffs stretching across its breadth.”
Haven’t got your own wheels? There are plenty of opportunities to hire bicycles on the Isle of Wight including Red Squirrel Electric Bikes (Newport), Wight Cycle Hire (Yarmouth), TAV Cycles (Ryde), Route Fifty7 (Shanklin)
Bus rides not for the faint-hearted…
Buses are a convenient way of getting around and run regularly around the Isle of Wight, but there’s also a whole host of other routes that at some points could be considered more ‘thrill-ride’ than a sight-seeing tour.
Southern Vectis’ ‘Breezer’ open-top buses run throughout the year, giving unparalleled and often unique views of the Isle of Wights landmarks and views. Are you brave enough to sit atop this double-decker as it rumbles along with sheer-cliff faces?
To help celebrate World Car Free Day (Sunday 22nd September), Southern Vectis will be offering half-price travel in-and-around the Island for those using mobile ticketing apps. Part of Southern Vectis’s commitment to helping more people use sustainable transport on the Isle of Wight, World Car Free Day is an initiative aimed at easing congestion, as well as improving air quality by promoting mass transit, cycling and walking.
The Isle of Wight is a perfect spot to visit if you are without a car. With contemporary, light and airy apartments located in Shanklin on the Islands southern coast, Vectis Holiday Homes provides self-catering accomodation for the discerning traveller. Enquire online now for your next autumn break or weekend getaway.