Majestic sea cliffs and sweeping beaches; the quiet solitude of ancient woodlands; an ever changing patchwork of worked fields; the timeless and enduring presence of the downs: intricate inlets of tranquil creeks; long distance views from the coastal heath and downland; winding paths; shutes and hollow ways in the countryside; Chines and steps down cliffs to miles of beaches; all make the landscape a perfect place for birdwatching.
The Isle of Wight has a wide variety of habitats, all having their influence on the type of birds seen.
There are chalk, sand and clay cliffs; shores of sand, shingle mud and rock; fresh and saltwater marshes; tidal rivers and creeks; mixed farmland; deciduous and coniferous woods, copse and large areas of chalk downland.
The main kind of habitat inadequately represented is fresh water, of which there are only several ponds.
The dominant feature of the Island is the ridge of chalk downs running west to east, from the Needles to Culver Cliff, with another group in the south around Ventnor.
There are numerous copses and thickets, plus mixed plantations above Brook and Brighstone.
Some of the regular species are Nightjar, Woodcocks, Long-eared Owl, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker & Firecrest.
The two ends of this ridge of chalk form high cliffs which are populated, especially on and near the Needles, by various seabirds.
Some of their nesting ledges can be seen from the cliff-top, but care is needed.
In the case of several interesting species - Fulmar, Cormorant, Shag, Lesser and Great Black-backed Gulls, Guillemot and Razorbill - these cliffs mark the eastern limit of breeding (or at least of regular breeding) along the south coast of Britain.
Freshwater Bay, a short break in the chalk near the western end, is sometimes resorted to for shelter from severe weather.
Cormorants, Shags & Gulls all can be seen.
The Island's three main rivers all drain to the north - the Medina in the centre, and the two others, both confusingly named the Yar, at either end (Newtown really only a creek).
The estuaries of the two Yars can offer a wide variety of visiting species (mainly ducks and waders) and a few nesters, but much of Brading Marsh (a reclaimed part of the former estuary of the eastern Yar) is private.
At the Medina estuary you will find many species of waders & oystercatchers, swans & ducks.
The area most likely to be worth a visit at any season of the year is that around Newtown River and Marsh, on the Island's Northwest coast.
The nesting species include Shelduck, Oystercatcher and Black-headed Gull and occasionally Sandwich and Common Terns.
Also often present during the summer are numbers of non-breeding waders, including Grey plover, Dunlin, Knot and Black-tailed Godwit.
At other times there is a wider variety of species, mainly ducks in winter and waders in the migration seasons.
St Catherines Point, at the southern extremity of the Island, attracts considerable notice, largely on account of the birds which can be found resting there, usually after migrating during an overcast night.
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The Royal is recognised as the Island's largest premier hotel. Originally built as a coaching house in 1832, the main hotel is nestled into exotic south facing gardens overlooking Ventnor's stunning coastline.
On arrival you'll find yourself in...
Camping & Caravan Site
5 Star and David Bellamy Gold award Family run Holiday Park situated within an area of outstanding natural beauty. Perfect base for walkers and cyclists. Access to glorious coves and beaches within minutes. An ideal location for any pursuit
Show / Display
A stunning spectacle of Oriental themed light, sound and colour will mark the coming of the Chinese New Year at Robin Hill during next February’s school half term holiday.
We are passionate about bringing you the best quality holiday accommodation to meet your every requirement.
The Ventnor Fringe is a unique celebration of the arts, showcasing emerging and established talent across every creative discipline.
Join us for a right royal day at Queen Victoria's favourite home by the sea. Spectacular equestrian displays, the magnificent parade of the Redcoats, and royal walkabouts bring alive the days of the Empire.
Close to the beach, surrounded by National Trust land & in the middle of the AONB, Brook House is a beautiful and peaceful location for a lovely self-catering holiday cottage.
This independent music festival is situated on beautiful farmland close to the famous West Wight Heritage Coast and is renowned as the Isle of Wight's friendliest festival.
The fairies invite you to join in their fantastical fairy fling, with all things magical on offer for would be fairies and their friends.
East Cowes Beach is a quiet shingle and sand beach with fantastic views across West Cowes and its marina, and also out across the Solent.
High Street, NEWPORT
The 2016 Isle of Wight Walking Festival runs from 30 April to 15 May, and features a packed programme of walks and walking-related events, from walking with alpacas to speed dating walks.
The fortnight features an incredibly diverse range of...
Freshwater Bay is one of the most picturesque beaches in West Wight and lies just to the South of the town of Freshwater.
Show / Display
Chain-mailed and adrenalin-fuelled, massed ranks of armoured knights meet head on. Feel the heat of the battle as four teams fight with clubs and shields in this contest of skill and strength.
Tensions will rise, alliances will be made and...
Castle / Fort
A Tudor Castle in a beautiful seaside town.
The beaches at Ryde lie on the north east coast of the Isle of Wight and offer miles and miles of sandy shores.
Show / Display
Now in its 15th Year, the famous Isle of Wight, Charity Classic Car event promises to be the biggest and best ever. Vehicles from all over the UK and mainland Europe will be attending this unique two-day show on the 17th & 18th September 2016.
Tourist Information Centres
The Tourist Information Point for Shanklin and the South of the Isle of Wight is located at Vernon Cottage Gift Shop, stocking a range of leaflets and guides containing useful information to help you during your stay on the Isle of Wight.
Rookley Country Park is perfect for active families, groups and couples looking for an indulgent escape. The park is both pet friendly and bike friendly; please contact us for further details.
Fancy the chance of sharing a bed with Charles I? Well, not exactly snuggling down with the king - but if you stay in this second floor apartment across the courtyard from where Charles was imprisoned at Carisbrooke Castle.
"Cycle along flat roads and the revetment to Shanklin Esplanade, passing two of the hotels that Charles Darwin stayed in while writing 'On the Origin of Species' in 1859.