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Sunday, 29 May 2005

Isle of Wight : the quick bank holiday review.

OK, so I found myself giving the Isle of Wight a spin over the whitsun for a mini camping holiday. Well what an amazing feast of talking points, some of which will need more detailed discussion, however the rough overview is as follows:-

  • Alum Bay: Over-rated, hard to get to if its windy and the chairlift is out of action. The chair lift base station on the beach makes a lousy photo shoot for the Needles. 5/10
  • The Needles: couldn't find the road the 42 bus takes to them, so couldn't even get close. 5/10
  • WightLink Ferry: Very rude staff at Lymington, still that's New Forest monkeys for you, not IOW. Between themselves they would find it hard to organise that annual pissup in the local brewery. "Just bring your reservation number, don't need a ticket, do need a ticket, come onto boat without ticket, now with ticket...." ah forget it!
  • General coastline scenery, amazing....9/10
  • Road direction signs: sporadic at best, you need the map, and the ability to read writing on the road at speed, as most direction signs are missing at major junctions here.
  • Commerical Radio : plummets to the depths that GWR group is still trying to find.
  • Newport = ChavTown, customer service in shops not selling kitch bling, 0/10
  • Osborne House : Well worth the visit, 9/10, amazing house and grounds.
  • East Cowes : Ferry terminal and little else.
  • Adgestone campsite, good staff, very near to golf club with ents in the evening, so getting to sleep when "Slade-esque" or any other wannabies are playing is hard.
  • Ryde and its Pier: Yeah I liked this place, very unique especially the pier itself which is comprised of three piers placed against each other, the promonade (open to cars as well), the tramway (long since closed) and the railway.
All in all the IOW does deserve another visit. It's got some strange customs which we found out at breakneck speed. Also being able to to circumvent the entire island in around an hour head f**ks you slightly. Apart from some desperate types in Newport people are very friendly. I think that if you take time to stop and look at each tourist opportunity on individual merits, its actually very good!

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