Following the sun to find a perfect sunset is one of the most popular pastimes on the Isle of Wight, as we are regularly treated to nature’s stunning display as the sun sets in the west. Here are some of our top places to enjoy a spectacular Island sunset and mesmerising sky…

Headon Warren sunset

Headon Warren

Home to a Bronze Age burial mound, blazing purple heather and stunning views out across The Needles and towards Hurst Point, it is easy to see why Headon Warren, managed by the National Trust, is a popular spot to watch the sun go down. Take a picnic and sit on top of the old Hatherwood Battery for a view that money simply can’t buy.

Find the Google maps link for Headon Warren here.

People on the chairlift whilst the sun is setting

Alum Bay

You can get to Alum Bay either by chairlift from The Needles Landmark Attraction, or you can walk down several flights of wooden steps, so this location isn’t recommended for those with mobility issues. If you can make it down, you’ll be treated to an iconic Island location, with The Needles in front of you and the coloured sands of Alum Bay in the cliffs behind you. Be sure to check the tides and operational times of the chair lift before visiting. 

Find the Google maps link for Alum Bay here.

Yarmouth Pier at sunset

Yarmouth Pier

This beautifully restored Grade II listed pier, dating from 1876, is the perfect spot to watch the boats go by on the water of The Solent, but is also a great place to stop and wait for gorgeous skies of orange, red and pink. Part of Yarmouth Town Conservation Area, it is looked after by Yarmouth Harbour Commission and there is a small toll to enter - we promise the view is worth it!

Find the Google maps link for Yarmouth Pier here.

Couple enjoying the sunset whilst sat at Totland Bay

Totland Bay & Colwell Bay

One of the last spots to watch the sun before it dips below the horizon is the promenade that links Colwell and Totland Bay. Park at Colwell and walk west towards Totland with the sun ahead of you, and you will be gifted with a blazing sky the whole way. Stop at the end and grab a drink or a bite to eat at The Waterfront in Totland where you can watch the sky from the panoramic windows before heading back along the cliff top for a different perspective.

Find the Google maps link for Totland Bay here.

Find the Google maps link for Colwell Bay here.

Gurnard at sunset


If you find yourself on the north of the Island, you’ll notice that Gurnard is a very popular spot to watch the sunset, with good reason too. Sit on the green and let the skies do their magic as the wooden beach huts, sailors and kayakers become silhouettes against a fiery sky. To watch it a bit longer, head up the hill to The Woodvale pub where the elevated position adds a few precious minutes.

Find the Google maps link for Gurnard here.

Sunset at Ventnor seafront

Ventnor & Steephill Cove

Take a walk along Ventnor Esplanade as the sun begins to set creates dramatic silhouettes of the ‘Back of the Wight’ coastline as it stretches out west. Follow the promenade and you’ll wander along the cliff path through Flowersbrook and into Steephill Cove which is a really pretty, and usually quiet, spot to watch the sunset. 

Find the Google maps link for Ventnor here.

Find the Google maps link for Steephill Cove here.

Compton Bay at sunset

Compton Bay

Catch an earlier sunset at Compton Bay before it disappears further west to Totland. Take a drive along the famous Military Road heading west and you really will feel like you are chasing the sun. You can enjoy the miles of golden sands that stretch from Brook Bay to Compton. Dogs are allowed the full stretch of the beach in the winter time, and you might even catch the National Trust van serving up a warming cuppa whilst you wait for the sun to go down.

Find the Google maps link for Compton Bay here.

Bembridge at sunset

Bembridge Harbour

Although in the east of the Island, Bembridge still gets treated to some pretty special sunsets as well as sunrises. A great place to watch is at The Duver, as sand dunes and heathland open out towards the harbour, where the moored yachts look beautiful against a backlit sky. Take a picnic and sit amongst the dunes, or walk around the harbour to see what wildlife you can spot as the dusk sets in.

Find the Google maps link for Bembridge Harbour here.

Ryde at sunset

Appley Beach 

Pure golden sand for miles, Appley beach in Ryde is a well-trodden spot for families and dog walks of an evening. Known as the ‘Garden Walk’, this flat route is perfect for buggies and wheelchair users. You can’t miss the dramatic Appley Tower which is nearly 150 years old and is due to reopen in 2024 as an Art Gallery after extensive restoration works. 

Find the Google maps link for Appley beach here.

Sunset at Culver Down

Culver Down

The view on top of Culver Down is worth it no matter what the sky is doing, but on a blazing sunset evening, it’s truly glorious. Watch the sun blaze across the sky from Bembridge and Whitecliff Bay and then as it continues it’s journey across Sandown and towards Ventnor before dipping below the horizon in the west. 

Find the Google maps link for Culver Down here.