We stayed at Warner’s Bembridge Coast Hotel for our few days on the Isle of Wight. After our wet day in Yarmouth we visited some of the photographic sites around the island including The Needles.
I had found an excellent blog that listed sites to visit on the island – “Photography locations on the Isle of Wight”. Also used in our planning was this website which not only listed locations but placed them on a map of the island.
Day 3: Wednesday 30th March 2022 – Bembridge Windmill
The windmill is a National Trust site and we passed signs to out on our way to the hotel.
The windmill was only a short distance away from Bembridge and we found parking in a layby close-by. Then it was only a short walk along the lane before we turned left past some houses and headed towards the windmill. Once there found the gate open and the small visitor’s hut closed up. Strangely for an NT site the grass around the windmill was well over our ankles.
As we were wandering around a guy came out and told us that it was closed. He was part of a team doing lots of upgrades and maintenance work. The gate should have been locked and we had to leave…
Day 3: Wednesday 30th March 2022 – St. Catherine’s Oratory
The next photographic spot that we headed for was St. Catherine’s Oratory. This is nicknamed as the Pepperpot. The recommended parking place was luckily quite obvious from the directions. Then we headed over the road opposite, up a steep bank and then over a sty.
We could see St. Catherine’s Oratory in the distance and we set off walking up the rolling hills up to get closer ( and a large modern mast.)
At the top we had some magnificent views.
The Oratory was a medieval lighthouse built as a penance where the original oratory stood.
On another crest of the hills there were other modern aerials that were being maintained.
Rather than just leave when we back at the car park, instead we carried on walking. We followed the path until we came to a cliff. From this viewpoint we could see the sea and below us a small amusement park.
Day 3: Wednesday 30th March 2022 – Needles Park
Next stop for us was The Needles. The car park was not very full and we walked down to the Needles Park amusement park. In the large café there, the Marconi cafe, we bought ourselves lunch. Then it was time to ride down to the Alum Bay on the chairlift.
As we rode down I could see that there were no boats tied up on the small jetty. Unfortunately this was so too early in the season and there were no boats to take us on a trip to see The Needles. On my previous visit I had enjoyed the boat trip out to close to The Needles.
Walking along the pebbled beach we looked up at all the wonderful colours on the cliff above us.
Here is a view of The Needles from the beach.
Day 3: Wednesday 30th March 2022 – The Battery
As parking is impossible at the end of The Needles and we weren’t sure of how regular the buses were going to be, we decided to walk to the Battery.
It is a long walk from the amusement park to the National Trust site.
There was little or no traffic (or buses!) so we could enjoy the walk, taking in all the views. Here is Alum bay.
Once at The Battery we descended down the spiral staircase and went to the search light opening.
The café in the National Trust buildings were still open and we went up for some cups of tea and scones.
From the battery we walked the hill behind, past the coastguard station, and went to have a look at the rocket testing sites.
Day 3: Wednesday 30th March 2022 – The Marconi monument
Before we left the car park I walked down to the Marconi monument that is just above the amusement park. This celebrates the first permeant wireless station in the world and the sending of the first paid from telegram from the station originally there.
Day 3: Wednesday 30th March 2022 – Pill box
On our drives around the island on the the previous days we had past this Bembridge World War II pillbox. This time past I took the opportunity and stopped to have a closer look.
On our last full day on the Isle of Wight we had a gentle walk to Bembridge Harbour and then had a restful day recovering from all the walking we had done at The Needles.
On the downside of our stay on the island we later tested positive for Covid and spent the next 10 days at home in isolation and feeling pretty ill. Now nearly 10 months later I’m finally happy to write about our time on the island.