Sunday 4th April 2010
We spent the long weekend on the Isle of Wight. On Sunday we walked along the coast from Shanklin to Bembridge. It was a beautiful sunny day. We started by walking along the cliff path, but part of it was closed so we dropped down to the beach. We saw lots of boats out sailing, some beach huts with silly names, and an interactive xylophone fence which plays “Oh I Do Like To Be Beside the Seaside” if you tap the blocks in the right order.
After passing Sandown we were eventually able to get back up to the cliff top again, from which the views were stunning. The rock is soft, and the coastal erosion is somewhat scary. There were several places where the path felt really precarious, and below the path you could see huge chunks of land which had fallen away.
We reached Culver Cliff which features a fort and the Yarborough Monument, and stopped to have lunch at the Culver Inn. They have some VERY angry signs on their door about toilets being for customers only. “Enough’s enough!” they shout. “If you think that toilets should be available free of charge, contact the National Trust!” Luckily the food was good, so it was worth stopping there.
After lunch we continued along the cliff path. At the point where we passed the Bembridge Boarding Campus, the path became even muddier than a really muddy thing. I had to hold onto the wire fence to stop myself from falling over. It was really hard going, and I’m sure it was this part of the path that caused my legs to ache a lot afterwards. Further along, part of the official coastal path was closed due to a landslide so we had to take a detour along the road.
We eventually reached Bembridge Point, where we stopped for a drink before catching a bus back to Sandown. The original plan had been to continue walking to Brading to catch the train, but we were knackered.
All in all, a wonderful day.