Which one of these Isle of Wight beaches is right for you?

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There are many good reasons why thousands of people flock to the Isle of Wight every year. This pretty island off the south coast of England is, in fact, the jewel of the crown of the south coast. The Isle of Wight offers some of the finest seascapes in the UK because of its mild climate and gorgeous beaches. Here is our list of the best Isle of Wight beaches which stand out for their beauty.

best Isle of Wight beaches

 

The best Isle of Wight beaches

If you’re seeking a Mediterranean feel on your UK holiday, this diamond-shaped island has 25 beaches. They are perfect for everything from bathing to surfing. Below is a list of the best beaches on the Isle of Wight and the reasons why they are so popular.

beaches Isle of Wight

Which of these Isle of Wight beaches is right for you?

 

The finest Isle of Wight beaches

 

1. Appley Beach

best beaches Isle of Wight: Appley Beach is also one of the best beaches on the Isle of Wight because it has a long flat promenade. This beach is often quieter than nearby Ryde and has some shady spots under big trees and a range of facilities nearby. One of the highlights of Appley Beach is also Appley Tower – a gothic country house from the 19th century.

It is not hard to find a reason to fall in love with Appley Beach. This wide sandy beach, situated east of Ryde, has warm sands and clear blue waters. It is only a 25-minute walk from Ryde Pier and the town centre. It offers gorgeous views of Portsmouth and the Spinnaker Tower.

Appley Beach is one of the most popular Isle of Wight beaches because it is one of the finest beaches in the UK. This family-friendly beach is a playground for beachgoers because it has a gentle incline. Appley Beach is perfect for swimming, kite flying and paddling in the sea.

Isle of Wight beaches: Appley Beach is one of the most popular Isle of Wight beaches because it is one of the finest beaches in the UK. This family-friendly beach is a playground for beachgoers because it has a gentle incline and gorgeous views. Apple Beach is perfect for swimming, kite flying and paddling in the sea.

When the tide goes out, it leaves plenty of space for games and sunbathing.

 

Appley Beach is also one of the most popular Isle of Wight beaches because it has a long flat promenade – it is perfect for pushing a buggy or a wheelchair. It is often quieter than nearby Ryde and has some shady spots under big trees and a range of facilities nearby. One of the highlights of this beach is also Appley Tower – a gothic country house from the 19th century.

GOOD TO KNOW:

Appley Beach has plenty of cafes, toilets and even a lifeguard during the peak times. There is a large pay and display car park nearby.

 

2. Osborne Beach, Isle of Wight

best beaches Isle of Wight: Osborne Beach is one of the best Isle of Wight beaches because it was once a place of relaxation for the royal family. Yes, that is right, Osborn Beach was once Queen Victoria’s beach -one of the most famous queens in the UK used to come here with Prince Albert and their children.

Osborne Beach may be high on your bucket list when on the Isle of Wight. Maybe it is because this sandy beach is a secluded bay. And maybe it is because it is a royal beach. You are right to think that Osborne Beach gets its name from the nearby Osborne House.

 

Osborne Beach gets its name from the nearby Osborne House.

Osborne House, one of the top attractions on the island

 

FUN FACT:

Did you know that Osborne House was once the former residence of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert on the island?

 

Osborne Beach is one of the best Isle of Wight beaches because it was once Queen Victoria’s beach. One of the most famous queens in the United Kingdom used to come to this beach with Prince Albert and their nine children. You can even see her bathing machine, which she used to prove it.

Isle of Wight beaches: Osborne Beach is one of the best Isle of Wight beaches because it was once Queen Victoria’s beach. Moreover, this beach is a perfect place for a picnic and a paddle and offers beautiful views of Portsmouth. Osborne Beach has calm waters and is ideal for swimming, building sandcastles and enjoying views of the passing yachts.

Osborne Beach was once a place of relaxation for the royal family.

 

Osborne Beach is also one of the best Isle of Wight beaches because it is a perfect place for a picnic and a paddle. Moreover, Osborne Beach offers beautiful views of Portsmouth across the water. This sandy beach with calm waters is ideal for swimming, building sandcastles and enjoying views of the passing yachts.

GOOD TO KNOW:

If you want to visit Osborne Beach, buy a ticket to the house and the grounds at Osborne House. Visiting the Osborne House is well worth a visit because this country home is one of the top attractions on the island. Maybe you do not know, Osborne House is now an English Heritage site. You can visit it for free if you are a member.

If you want to access Osborne Beach, catch the shuttle bus. Alternatively, take a scenic Valley walk. It will take you about 20 minutes to get there. There is a beach café open every day serving snacks and refreshments. You will also find changing rooms and a toilet here. You should know that dogs are allowed on the beach and in formal gardens.

 

3. Sandown Beach

best beaches Isle of Wight: Sandown Beach is one of the best beaches on the Isle of Wight because this beautiful beach offers a classic British seaside experience. It has a traditional pier with arcade games and bowling and a long promenade, which is wheelchair friendly.

Did you know the east coast has some of the best beaches? In fact, Sandown Beach is one of the most popular spots in the area. This wide beach, with miles of gold sand, has excellent water quality. What’s more, this award-winning beach is popular between families and surfers. It is because it has clean waters and a sandy seabed.

Sandown Beach is one of the best beaches on the Isle of Wight because this beautiful beach offers a classic British seaside experience. It has a traditional pier with arcade games and bowling and a long promenade, which is wheelchair friendly. There are plenty of places to eat and shop. You can even hire deckchairs and sun loungers.

best beaches Isle of Wight: Sandown Beach is also famous because it won Beach of the Year in the BBC Countryfile Magazine Awards 2019. Its golden sands are perfect for sandcastles, and there are plenty of options to get on the water. Because of that, Sandown Beach is one of the best beaches on the Isle of Wight.

Moreover, Sandown Beach is also famous because it won Beach of the Year in the BBC Countryfile Magazine Awards 2019. Its golden sands are perfect for sandcastles, and there are plenty of options to get on the water. Because of that, Sandown Beach is one of the best beaches on the Isle of Wight.

 

GOOD TO KNOW:

Sandown Beach has only a few car parking spaces on the seafront, but there are also car parks where you can park. Public toilets are also available here. It is also possible to hire beach wheelchairs on Sandown Beach.

There is a dog restriction on the beach between the 1st of May and the 30th of September. Do not forget to visit the nearby Dinosaur Isle Museum if you are after fossils.

 

4. Shanklin Beach

Isle of Wight beaches: Shanklin Beach is one of the most popular Isle of Wight beaches because it is sandy, over a mile long and has a gently sloping shore perfect for swimming. What's more, this coastal resort is a throwback to typical ‘’bucket and spade’’ holidays. Shanklin Beach also has a traditional seafront promenade.

We also recommend you visit Shanklin Beach, which you can find only a short drive from Sandown. Shanklin Beach is, together with Sandown Beach, one of the most popular Isle of Wight beaches.

Shanklin beach

Shanklin Beach is sandy, over a mile long and has a gently sloping shore that is perfect for swimming. This coastal resort is a throwback to typical ‘’bucket and spade’’ holidays. It has a traditional seafront promenade which overlooks the sandy beach. There are also beach huts where you can hire paddleboards or kayaks, a row of restaurants and cafes, souvenir shops and indoor play areas.

Shanklin Beach

Afterwards, visit Shanklin Chine – it is the island’s oldest attraction. Mother Nature carved this beautiful tree-lined gorge thousands of years ago. It has a beautiful landscape, lush vegetation, and a waterfall, and is well worth a visit.

 

GOOD TO KNOW:

If possible, visit Shanklin Beach during the low tide so you will have plenty of space for building sandcastles. There is plenty of room, even during the summer. But if the beach is too busy, go to the nearby Lake Beach.

Similarly, like the other famous beaches on the island, Shanklin Beach does not allow dogs between the 1st of May and the 30th of September. Shanklin Beach has toilets on both ends of the beach. There is one big pay and display car park on the seafront and one smaller one.

 

5. Ventnor Beach

If you have time to visit one more beach when exploring the south, make sure it is Ventnor Beach. Ventnor is one of the most popular Victorian resorts, loved by locals and visitors. But this pretty beach is more than just buckets and spades.

Ventnor Beach is one of the best Isle of Wight beaches because this traditional seafront resort has a unique microclimate. You are quite right to think that Ventnor Beach, with sub-tropical species, has more sunny days and fewer frost. It is because it is on the southern side of the island.

Moreover, shingle and sand Ventnor Beach, overlooked by a promenade, is ideal for swimming, boating and fishing. When you look closely, you can see that the locals converted some former Victorian bathing machines into vintage beach huts. These bathing machines used to hide swimmers from the crowds onshore. Only a short walk away are cafes and ice cream shops where you can grab a snack during your visit.

GOOD TO KNOW:

There is a dog restriction on Ventnor Beach between May and the end of September. You can use pay and display parking if you arrive by car.

 

The best Isle of Wight beaches for views

 

6. Alum Bay

best Isle of Wight beaches: Alum Bay is one of the best beaches on the Isle of Wight because it is one of the most scenic destinations on the island. Moreover, Alum Bay has multi colour sand cliffs and crystal clear waters. Alum Bay is also one of the best Isle of Wight beaches you can take a boat trip to see the famous Needles and Lighthouse from this beach.

No trip to the Isle of Wight would be complete without visiting Alum Bay on the west of the island. As you probably know, Alum Bay is one of the best Isle of Wight beaches because it offers views of the iconic Needles and a lighthouse. What’s more, this gorgeous beach has multicoloured sands, 21 different sand shades, to be exact.

Alum bay: Alum Bay, with multi colour sand cliffs, has crystal clear waters. They are perfect for swimmers and paddling. You can also take a boat trip to see the famous Needles and Lighthouse from this beach.

But these are not the only reasons Alum Bay is one of the most scenic destinations on the Isle of Wight. Alum Bay has crystal clear waters. They are perfect for swimmers and paddling. You can also take a boat trip to see the famous Needles and Lighthouse from this beach. You can access it via the steep steps or ride the chairlift in style.

Alum Bay is also a famous beach among fossil hunters because you can find many fossils on its surface (especially on the southern side of the bay).

Alum Bay has a large car park at Needles Park. Alternatively, you can visit Alum Bay on the No 7 bus. It runs every 30 minutes from Newport.

 

GOOD TO KNOW:

Alum Bay has a large car park at Needles Park. Alternatively, you can visit Alum Bay on the No 7 bus. It runs every 30 minutes from Newport. The car park is free if you come here in the low season. From the 1st of April until the 5th of November, you pay £6 for a car or £10 for a camper van.

Alum Bay has various attractions and numerous souvenir shops. There are also catering facilities, so you will not be hungry when exploring this part of the island. Do not forget to walk to the Needles Old Battery and New Battery. They also offer beautiful views of the Needles. You can also learn more about rocket testing and wartime defence.

best beaches Isle of Wight: One of the reasons why Alum Bay is one of the best beaches on the Isle of Wight is that this beach is home to the most famous attractions on the island. After exploring Alum Bay, walk to the Needles Old Battery and New Battery because they offer beautiful views of the Needles. Also, you can learn more about rocket testing and wartime defence.

The Needles Old Battey and New Battery offer gorgeous views of the Needles.

 

7. Freshwater Bay

Freshwater Bay: Did you know Freshwater Bay on the West Wight is one of the most stunning parts of the island? The West Wight is famous for fields, unspoiled landscapes and miles of breathtaking coastline. You can find here Freshwater Bay nestled under the towering chalk cliffs.

Did you know that the West Wight is one of the most stunning parts of the island? The West Wight is famous for fields, unspoiled landscapes and miles of breathtaking coastline. You can find here Freshwater Bay nestled under the towering chalk cliffs.

 

Why do we recommend you visit Freshwater Bay?

Freshwater Bay is one of the best Isle of Wight beaches because it is one of the most beautiful island’s beaches. This stone and shingle beach has two impressive rock stacks at the eastern end. It even has secret coves, which you can access during the low tide.

best Isle of Wight beaches: Freshwater Bay is one of the best Isle of Wight beaches because it is one of the most beautiful island’s beaches. This stone and shingle beach has two impressive rock stacks at the eastern end. It even has secret coves, which you can access during the low tide.

It has deep water – perfect for swimming and water sports, such as kayaking and paddleboarding. During the low tide, you can explore a strip of sand and rock pools. Find the caves in the chalk cliffs – smugglers once used them. If possible, explore them with a local guide because they can become cut off by the tide.

GOOD TO KNOW:

Freshwater Bay has a good size pay and display car park over the road from the beach. You can find toilets, a beachside bar or buy ice cream here. You can visit Freshwater Beach with a dog only between October and April.

 

8. Cowes Beach Isle of Wight

best Isle of Wight beaches: Cowes Beach is perfect for relaxing and watching sailing competitions, such as the famous Cowes Week. Because of that, Cowes Beach is one of the best Isle of Wight beaches. Apart from that, Cowes Beach is safe for swimming and hunting for shells, sea glass and seeing the passing ships and the lights of Southampton in the evening.

Cowes Beach may not be the largest beach on the island, but it is the Mecca for all things associated with sailing. You are quite right to think that this pebble beach is one of the best spots to watch the ships entering the harbour and sailing events.

Sailing competitions, such as the famous “Cowes Week”, are one of the main reasons why everyone flocks here. Around 750 boats race around the island in a one-day yacht race, making it one of the largest sailing regattas of its kind in the world. Cowes Beach is perfect for relaxing and watching this popular sailing event. Because of that, Cowes Beach on the north of the island is one of the best Isle of Wight beaches.

Apart from that, Cowes Beach is safe for swimming. It is a perfect place for hunting for shells, sea glass and seeing the passing ships and the lights of Southampton in the evening.

GOOD TO KNOW:

You can find the public toilets near the parking along the seafront. This beach also has a dog restriction on the beach placed between the 1st of May and the 30th of September.

 

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9. Colwell Bay Isle of Wight

If you find yourself on the island’s west side, go to Colwell Bay between the towns of Totland and Yarmouth. Maybe you do not know, but Cliff’s End (next to Colwell Bay) is the closest point of the island to the British mainland. You can even spot Hurst Castle at the end of the peninsula.

Colwell Bay is one of the best Isle of Wight beaches because it is one of the cleanest parts of the coast on the island. What’s more, Colwell Bay is well worth a visit in the early evening because it is one of the best places to watch sunsets.

Once here, take a dip in the clear waters, which are ideal for swimming and water sports. It has gently sloping sand and a shingle beach – perfect for families with kids. Do not forget to bring your snorkel mask and look for marine life. Colwell Bay has a row of brightly decorated beach huts, a restaurant and a long promenade behind the beach.

 

10. Ryde Beach

Ryde Beach is also a famous beach between tourists and locals because only a short walk from here is the UK’s oldest pier. It is also the second-longest seaside pier in the country. It is half a mile long and is the first promenade pier still used today by car drivers to reach Wightlink’s port.

While Appley Beach gets all the credit for being one of the best Isle of Wight beaches in the North East, Ryde Beach is also worth a visit. It is because Ryde Beach has gold sand and is ideal for swimming and sunbathing.

This beach is also perfect if you want to sit and watch the boats and cruises from Portsmouth. It is also a great place to visit to spot a hovercraft. There is even a Peter Pan Funfair amusement park for the little ones, and the main town is just a short walk away.

Did you know that the Isle of Wight hovercraft is the last remaining commercial hovercraft service in the world? A hovercraft operates a regular timetable. It transports passengers to nearby Portsmouth from the beach next to Ryde Beach.

FUN FACT:

Did you know that the Isle of Wight hovercraft is the last remaining commercial hovercraft service in the world? A hovercraft operates a regular timetable. It transports passengers to nearby Portsmouth from the beach next to Ryde Beach.

 

best beaches Isle of Wight: Ryde Beach is one of the best beaches on the Isle of Wight because only a short walk from here is the UK’s oldest pier. This pier is also the second-longest seaside pier in the country. It is half a mile long and is the first promenade pier still used today by car drivers to reach Wightlink’s port.

Ryde Beach is also a famous beach between tourists and locals because only a short walk from here is the UK’s oldest pier. It is also the second-longest seaside pier in the country. It is half a mile long and is the first promenade pier still used today by car drivers to reach Wightlink’s port.

 

GOOD TO KNOW:

When the tide comes in, there is not as much space for sunbathing and beach fun. Street parking is only a short walk away.

 

11. Bembridge Beach Isle of Wight

best Isle of Wight beaches: Bembridge Beach is one of the best Isle of Wight Beaches because it is one of the best spots for sailing and is dog friendly. Bembridge Beach is great for kayaking, sailing and kitesurfing and has multiple boating clubs in the nearby town. There are three beaches to choose from: Bembridge Point, Under Tyne and Forelands.

It is also worth checking out Bembridge Beach on the east coast. This stunning beach has pebbles until low tide when it reveals a strip of sand. Bembridge Beach is one of the best Isle of Wight beaches because it is one of the best spots for sailing.

There are three beaches to choose from: Bembridge Point, Under Tyne to the north of the lifeboat station and Forelands, curved around the island’s most easterly point. Bembridge Point runs to the harbour’s edge and has a large sandbank at low tide. Forelands is a popular place because of the rock pools. When the tide is out, kids can explore them and look for crabs, shrimp and brittle stars. Under Tyne is an ideal place to go for a swim.

GOOD TO KNOW:

Bembridge Beach is dog friendly all year round. It has toilets and shops and cafes nearby. Bembridge Beach is great for kayaking, sailing and kitesurfing and has multiple boating clubs in the nearby town.

 

The best Isle of Wight beaches for fossil hunters

As you probably know, it is possible to find dinosaur fossils on every continent on Earth. In the UK, most of them were discovered on coastal sites, such as the Jurassic Coast in southern England.

Isle of Wight beaches: Dinosaurs also roamed on the Isle of Wight - around 125 million years ago. In fact, the Isle of Wight is one of the richest sources of dinosaur remains in Europe. Because of that, the Isle of Wight beaches are perfect for fossil hunters.

But dinosaurs also roamed on the Isle of Wight – around 125 million years ago. In fact, the Isle of Wight is one of the richest sources of dinosaur remains in Europe. Because of that, the Isle of Wight beaches are perfect for fossil hunters. Let’s have a look at which Isle of Wight beaches are the best for fossil hunting.

 

12. Compton Bay Isle of Wight

best Isle of Wight beaches: If there is one bay you should not miss on the island, it is Compton Bay. Compton Bay is one of the best Isle of Wight beaches because it is one of the best beaches to see dinosaur footprints.

Unspoilt Compton Bay, located between Freshwater Bay and Brook.

 

If there is one bay you should not miss on the island, it is Compton Bay. This large sandy beach with reddish sand and sandstone cliffs was once the locals’ secret. Today Compton Bay is one of the best Isle of Wight beaches because it is one of the best beaches to see dinosaur footprints.

 

How to find dinosaur footprints at Compton Bay?

Do it right, and visit the beach at the low tide – this is when you can spot the three-toed dinosaur footprints at Hanover Point. Check Met Office Website for the tide times and plan your visit accordingly.

 

Where to find dinosaur footprints at Compton Bay?

best Isle of Wight beaches: This large sandy beach with reddish sand and sandstone cliffs was once the locals' secret. Today Compton Bay is one of the best Isle of Wight beaches because it is popular among fossil hunters. It is because Compton Bay is one of the best beaches to see dinosaur footprints.

Finding the large dinosaur footprints at Compton Bay on the Isle of Wight is rather easy. Park at Compton Bay car park and walk towards the wooden steps to the beach. Once on the beach, turn left and walk along the shore. After 2 – 3 minutes, you will spot a large rock area on the sand. Once you reach it, start exploring. Some look like footprints, but others are more eroded, and their shape is not great.

The footprints are easy to spot – stone casts are around 40 – 60 cm across. They rise about 20 cm above the sand. They are often covered in seaweed and are visible only at low tide. Also, do not forget this is the National Trust site, and you cannot remove any large footprints.

Isle of Wight beaches: The conditions for preservation on Compton Bay were perfect here. Because of that, Compton Bay has some of the richest deposits of dinosaur fossils and is one of the best Isle of Wight beaches. Visit the beach at the low tide – this is when you can spot the three-toed dinosaur footprints at Hanover Point.

The conditions for preservation on this beach were perfect here. Because of that, Compton Bay has some of the richest deposits of dinosaur fossils.

 

There is also another place where you can spot footprints. This dinosaur trackway is in a red clay bed further into the sea. It is about 150 metres out from the cliff at Hanover Point. You can see it only when the tide is at its lowest.

Other things to do

But the dinosaur footprints are not the only reason to visit Compton Bay on the Isle of Wight. This gorgeous beach with beautiful views of the cliffs is perfect for swimming and water sports. If the waves are big, Compton Bay is perfect for surfing. Small waves are ideal for bodyboarding. Compton Bay is also popular with windsurfers and kite surfers.

GOOD TO KNOW:

Compton Bay has a large pay-and-display National Trust Car park at Hanover Point. There are not many facilities, but you can find the toilets here. Take a picnic with you because there is not much here, only an ice cream van during summer and the winter month at the weekend. There is also a dog restriction at Compton Bay between May and September.

 

13. Brook Beach

Brook Beach, next to Compton Bay, is also one of the best Isle of Wight beaches for fossil hunters because you can spot the dinosaur footprints at low tide here. But that is not all – this unspoiled beach with golden sands and pebbles also has fossilised trees.

If lucky, you can even find fossils at the back of the beach between the pebbles. But be careful when you get closer to the cliffs, especially after the rain.

However, Brook Beach offers more than just fossil hunting. It is a perfect beach for kite surfing and windsurfing. This beach is also good for swimming, but do not forget to bring some water shoes because some places are rocky.

GOOD TO KOW:

Brook Beach is dog-friendly year-round. There is a pay-and-display National Car Park service (free for members). There are no additional facilities at this beach.

 

14. Yaverland Beach

If there is one more beach you should not miss when exploring this island, it is Yaverland Beach. This pretty beach on the east coast meets Sandown’s main beach. But it is a complete contrast to its classic neighbour. Yaverland Beach is similar to those on the west side of the island. You can find it between Sandown and the Culver Down cliffs.

What makes Yaverland Beach one of the best Isle of Wight beaches is that this beach, with soft gold sand and shallow waters, is ideal for fossil hunting. Yes, that is right, Yaverland Beach is famous for several types of fossils, which you can find here.

Dinosaur bones and footprints, reptiles and fish and plant remains are from a period when this beach was once a lake. However, you will need the right conditions to have any luck. The best time to find something is after heavy rain, winter and spring high tides.

TIP:

Book a guided tour with someone who has some knowledge of fossil hunting. Alternatively, search the cliff face where you can find dinosaur bones, but be careful around the cliffs as they could collapse. Don’t forget to check the tideline, where you can spot fragments of bone in the shingle.

Other than that, Yaverland Beach is famous for swimming for children and families and water sports fans. Visit the beach at low tide – otherwise, there is only a small stretch of sand.

GOOD TO KNOW:

Yaverland Beach is one of the few beaches on the island where you can bring dogs during the summer. There is a beach shop, a café and also public toilets.

 

Now you know what are the best beaches on the Isle of Wight!

Have you been to the Isle of Wight in England? Did we miss anything? Please let us know in the comments below. If you like our post, save it to Pinterest.

best beaches Isle of Wight

Pin the best Isle of Wight beaches for later!

 

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