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The Isle of Wight is very good, you know. Michelle and I have just spent 4 days on the island, staying right next to Shanklin beach. We timed it to perfection. Not only was the temperature never below 34 degrees, but Cowes Week was in full flow. Well done us.
We’d booked the outgoing ferry at 10am. Plenty of time to get up and ready, we thought. Then the tickets came through – we had to be at the port 45 minutes before sailing, which managed to hit the rush hour quite beautifully. Our plan of a hearty meal at a greasy spoon went straight out the window, and we arrived in the nick of time. After a short delay while an escaped dog was chased around the ferry, we set sail.
One of the reasons we chose the Isle of Wight was because Michelle’s brother runs a hotel over there. Very nice it is too – not that we got to stay in it, of course. It was full to the brim. So, we landed ourselves next door at The Lincoln Hotel, a family-run bed and breakfast. Lovely it was too – the owner’s wife was a little too chatty, and our room was a glorified shoebox, but otherwise very pleasant.
Isle of Wight is in a time warp. And I mean that in the nicest possible way. Everyone’s friendly, for a start. One night we decided we should turn in, and left the hotel bar. As we passed the rest of the guests, every single one of them turned round, smiled and said goodnight. You don’t get that around here.
The 3 days we spent there was a mix of beach, sleep and walking, with a nightly smattering of restaurant meals. We visited Cowes twice, firstly to marvel at the boats and buy some sunglasses, and the second time to take in the famed Cowes Fireworks. Very good they were too, although the local decided it wasn’t a patch of previous years. It’s all relative, I suppose.
We also took in a walk through Shanklin Chine, which is basically a walk through woods, down to the beach. The decription doesn’t do it justice though – it really was a beautiful walk, full of trees and rivers and wildlife.
For the final night we dined in splendour at restaurant up the road with Michelle’s brother Matt and his fiance Sarah, who we’d been badgering constantly for help since we’d arrived. It was a very enjoyable night.
So, that’s the Isle of Wight done then.