ISLE OF WIGHT: Beaches You Can’t Miss (Plus Fabulous Hotels!)

In BLOG, ENGLAND, EUROPE, UK, USEFUL GUIDES by Clelia Mattana6 Comments

Reachable in less than three hours from London, the Isle of Wight is a hidden gem on England’s south coast. Despite being an island, it’s exceptionally simple to get to by ferry, with several of the south coast’s ferry ports easily reachable by train.

Why visit the Isle of Wight while exploring England?

There are so many reasons, from the lovely landscape, the cute villages and more, but to me, the beaches are a good reason to go! In this video, you can have a little taste of the many things (and lovely beaches) the Isle of Wight has to offer! Just WOW!

The UK may not instantly come to mind as a destination for great beaches (wait till you read my article about the best beaches in the Uk!), but it’s home to some truly stunning golden sands.

You’ll find several of them on the Isle of Wight! If you’re considering visiting this beautiful island paradise, make sure you don’t miss these spectacular beaches lying on its shores and get ready to find lovely landscapes while driving to reach them: the perfect combination, right?!

So let’s dig into it a bit more!


Where To Stay on the Isle of Wight: Suggestions To Find The Best Self-Catering Cottages!

Although the Isle of Wight can easily be visited in a day (check out the one-day tour from London), you’ll need plenty of time to visit all five of these wonderful beaches and see even more of what this stunning island has to offer. You don’t want to stay in a hotel, but you’d rather have the great experience of renting a Cottage? 

You can rent a lovely self-catering cottage in one of the many great locations across the Isle of Wight, with the coast just minutes away.

Renting a place will make you feel right at home, with the possibility of cooking your own meal and given the size of the Isle of Wight, they are usually quite close to the beaches!

They are usually inspected and awarded quality ratings by Visit England.








On the Isle of Wights south coast, Compton Bay is the beach to head to if you’re looking for activities and adventure.

Boasting golden sands and tall cliff faces, this scenic beach is also rich in fossils, and at low tide, you can see dinosaur footprints imprinted on the rock ledges.

Its location means it experiences high winds and even higher waves, making it a haven for watersport lovers – it’s the perfect spot to go surfing.

The drive there is equally as enjoyable as the beach itself. It’s reached via the Military Road, a spectacular drive through wild scenery, and one of the UK’s best coastal roads – try it at sunset! Do you need some more inspiration for other  Amazing UK Road trips!? Click on the link! 

Hotels & Accommodation near Compton Beach

Suppose you are looking for a place to stay nearby Compton Beach. In that case, you can check out the map below (they don’t show all the places available, but I love this tool, and I use it all the time to have an idea of the distances). Just zoom in and out to see the marks with the hotels, click on them, and you will choose other options if you like!

Pro Tip to Save money on accommodation: I travel for a living, so I have used more times than I can remember, and what I do to save money is to book immediately the best deals (more than one hotel, the ones that have free cancellation) and then decide which one is the best for me at a later stage 😉



A little way west of Compton Bay is Alum Bay, one of the most scenic beaches on the Isle of Wight, situated at the island’s most westerly point. Although the beach is mainly rocky shingle rather than sand, the views are to die for.

All around you, you’re surrounded by multicolored cliffs, while out to sea you’ll be able to see perhaps the island’s most iconic sight: The Needles.

The Needles is a series of chalk stacks towering 30 meters out of the sea and a popular tourist attraction, with an amusement park above the beach. But if it’s simply peace and amazing views you’re after, avoid the crowds and descend the steps to Alum Bay for sheer bliss.

Best Accommodation near Alum Bay and “The Needles”

You can either check the map I placed above, or my recommendations here, based on my lovely Uk Friends who went there, and online reviews are these (in the nearby villages of Totland and Freshwater):

Whitefield : Located in the small village of Totland, it has great reviews and is a lovely play to stay on the Isle of Wight! The atmosphere and location are simply perfect!

Weston Manor : Located in Freshwater, I strongly suggest you click on the link and simply check out the pictures! You’ll immediately understand why it’s one of my two picks for the best places to stay on the Isle of Wight!



Just south of the village of Freshwater, Freshwater Bay is one of the most unique beaches on the Isle of Wight.

Made from a combination of grey flint and chalk pebbles eroded from the surrounding chalk cliffs over time, and with sandy patches, caves, and rock pools exposed at low tide, there is a lot to see at Freshwater Bay. 

Freshwater Bay is ideal for surfing and other watersports. Hire a kayak and you’ll be able to navigate your way around the chalk cliffs, paddling to the nearby small bays of Watcombe and Scratchells.

After you’ve returned to the shore, you can recoup your energy at the Freshwater Bay Café, one of the island’s oldest beach cafes.



Shanklin is one of the Isle of Wight’s most popular seaside resorts, and for good reason. Its long stretch of golden sand backs onto a traditional English seaside promenade.

Walk down to the beach through Shanklin Old Village, a pretty walk through trees and parkland, before a gentle stroll along the sandy beach.

You’ll find a row of cute beach huts, majestic cliffs and, further along, the Fisherman’s Cottage pub, a great spot for a pint.

For some classic British seaside fun, head up to the promenade afterward to play mini-golf, visit the amusement arcade, browse the beach shops and grab an ice cream.



Sandown is Shanklin’s neighboring village and resort, offering another fine sandy beach that appeals to everyone from families to surfers. Miles of golden sands offer the perfect setting for a relaxing stroll.

The beach’s pleasure pier offers even more wonderful views of the sand and sea, as well as an array of activities from mini-golf to dodgems.

After exploring the beach and pier, sit back and relax in one of the deckchairs or sun loungers for hire, or head up to the beachfront and the High Street behind it, where you’ll find a variety of shops to browse as well as several pubs, cafes, and restaurants.


If you’re looking for somewhere different from the usual London sights or Stonehenge while visiting the UK, the Isle of Wight is well worth a trip! Have you ever been there? Leave a comment below!






  1. Hi Celia,
    I have just read your comments/ blog regarding the Isle of Wights best beaches. Whilst these are get beaches, there are some that are far better such as Priory Bay, Seaview, Bembridge, Smugglers Cove. Perhaps if you ever go there again you could try visiting them and see what I mean!
    Regards, Paul R.

    1. Author

      Hi Paul! Thanks a lot for adding these to the list! I really appreciate it when people add some tips or places I might have missed. I will surely try to visit them when I’m back to the lovely Isle of Wight! Thank you 🙂

    1. Author

      Glad you like it, Bahar! The Isle of Whight is always so underrated!

  2. Hello!

    It has been very good article, very complete and detailed, I will include it as a destination for my next vacation, but also one of my wishes is to go to San Lucas in Mexico and explore its beaches on a yacht, do you have any recommendations about this destination? It would be my first time to visit the place and I want to know those tips that are very useful when visiting a new place.


    1. Author

      Hi Raen, I will reply as soon as I’m back from Australia (still under a massive jet lag so It’s very possible that I would give you totally wrong info!) 😀

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