Places of Interest | The Royal Esplanade

Places of Interest

Osborne House. English Heritage

"It is impossible to imagine a prettier spot" said Queen Victoria of Osborne House, her palatial holiday home on the Isle of Wight. Visit Victoria and Albert's private apartments, their bathing beach and children's play-cottage for an intimate glimpse of royal family life. Then stroll through the garden terraces where the stunning views across the Solent reminded Prince Albert of the Bay of Naples.

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Carisbrooke Castle. English Heritage.

The quintessential romantic castle, Carisbrooke is at the very heart of the Isle of Wight's history. An Elizabethan artillery fortress, a king's prison and a royal summer residence, here you'll find loveable donkeys, a fascinating museum and an Edwardian garden. Experience hundreds of years of history with our entertaining events, and be a knight or princess for a day within the high castle walls.

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Isle of Wight Beaches

Isle of Wight beaches are recognised as being some of the best in Europe.

With 57 miles of varied coastline the Island yields a fantastic array of beaches, which were awarded a combined total of 17 Blue Flag and Seaside Awards in 2014.

With miles of award winning sand and shingle beaches, rugged cliffs, hidden coves and clear waters, a trip to the beach is an essential part of any visit to the Island.

Compton Bay appears in the Telegraph's 'Britain's 20 Best Beaches' and The Mountain Warehouse Best UK Beach lists for it's rural and unspoilt stretch of coastline with breathtaking scenery, amazing surf and fossilised dinosaur footprints - now that's something to get excited about!

Click on the link below to read all about our fabulous beaches and find the one best for you!

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Tapnell Farm Park

Tapnell Farm is a former dairy farm, turned all-weather attraction, surrounded by the beautiful landscapes of the Isle of Wight. It is one of most popular things to do on the Isle of Wight, and a great family day out whatever the weather!

Meet the Animals in the Farmyard Barn, and get up close and personal with some of Tapnell’s cutest and smallest residents. Wander round the Wallaby Walkabout with their mob of tame wallabies, and admire the marvellous meerkats as they stand guard. Venture out into The Paddock and enjoy the views in the company of the friendly sheep and their other farmyard chums.

Run wild in the Straw Bale Adventure Zone, race round the pedal go-kart track, zoom along the zip-wires and scale the straw bale pyramid. Tackle the 3-storey soft play zone in the Play Barn, battle the climbing wall, and create a masterpiece on the giant chalkboards, or head outside for a bounce on the amazing Jumping Pillows.

When the sun is shining you can spend hours exploring the whole park, and with so much to do inside on wet days, they are one of the best rainy day ideas on the Isle of Wight!

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Dinosaur Isle

Dinosaur Isle is an all-year-round facility, combining entertainment, education and enjoyment. Displays use clever lighting, artwork, sound, smells and animatronic technology to create an exciting experience. As well as the displays, there is a working laboratory on view, and a room set aside for learning sessions. Full disabled access is available, and the facility has a large shop. Browns cafeteria is immediately next door to the site. They are located next to the sandy beach at Sandown, within a short distance of the excellent geological exposures at Yaverland.

Dinosaur Isle is Britain's first purpose built dinosaur museum and visitor attraction. The Island's diverse geology contains a wealth of fossils that tell us much about the past and gives clues to the effects of possible future environmental changes. Starting about 126 million years ago the rocks record the best exposures of dinosaur material in Europe. Progressively younger rocks record a variety of animals that were living on the land, in the rivers, and those that flew above lakes and lived in the seas. Plants are also well recorded on the Island. These remains show that for much of the time we were once a lot warmer and further from the sea. The youngest fossils are those from the more recent cold climates of the Ice-Ages.

This story is displayed in the museum's galleries for you to learn and enjoy. Dinosaur Isle is sited next to some of the oldest rocks on the Island - they also run amazing guided fossil walks - why not sign up to one and join them.

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The Needles Landmark attraction

The Needles, at the South Western tip of the Isle of Wight is truly breath-taking and thousands of people visit each year to explore and discover this wonderful natural landscape, including the famous Needles Rocks& Trinity Lighthouse– the Isle of Wight’s most famous landmark. You can also take the Needles chairlift and be transported from the cliff-top above Alum Bay down to the beach below in order to grab a bird’s eye view of the multi-coloured sand cliffs of Alum Bay.

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Ventnor Botanic Gardens

"Basking in the microclimate of The Undercliff, Ventnor Botanic Garden on the Isle of Wight is one of the great gardens of Britain. The subtropical and exotic plant collection is unrivalled; plants that should be found in protected glasshouses thrive and naturalise out of doors. Our garden is an immersive landscape, transporting the visitor to experience Mediterranean regions from around the world. Our plants grow in association with each other as in the wild. We hope you enjoy this unique and wonderful garden”.

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The Isle of Wight Steam Railway

A visit to the award winning Isle of Wight Steam Railway will engage, inspire and excite you... The sight of powerful majestic steam engines, the charm of quiet rural stations, and the friendliness of traditionally uniformed staff, will leave you with some enduring memories of a special day out. Take a ride behind one of our vintage steam locomotives for a special journey back in time. Breathe in the evocative smells of a real steam railway, settle back in beautifully restored Victorian and Edwardian carriages and enjoy a unique view of some of the Island’s unspoilt countryside.

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