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Award-winning travel writer
Amanda Statham

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Isle of Wight

Our verdict:

Walking the coastal path from Ventnor to secret Steephill Coe is a highlight whenever we visit this family-friendly island, rolling down meadows dotted with daisies and rock-pooling along the way. From dinosaur museums and ice cream parlours to fossil hunting and adventure parks, there’s more than enough to keep kids occupied for weeks. And the 30-minute ferry journey is always an exciting start to the holiday.

Recommended company: Classic Cottages

Classic Cottages says

A family holiday on the Isle of Wight ticks all the boxes – an exciting journey on the ferry, safe and sandy beaches, rock pools, wide open spaces, lush countryside, pretty ports, rural villages, indoor and outdoor family attractions, sailing and other water sports.

  • easy to reach
  • lots to see and do
  • wide choice of cottages

The Isle of Wight plays host to events, carnivals and festivals all year round and the island is one of Europe’s richest places for dinosaur remains – fossil hunting is a must.

Explore by car or, better still, discover the island on its many cycle routes and walking trails.

We have our own office on the Isle of Wight so our team is on site to ensure we have the best properties and great service too, once you’re on the island.

We have hand-picked more than 150 places to stay with rural, village and waterfront locations ranging in size from one to six bedrooms – from contemporary barn conversions and sleek apartments to traditional thatched cottages. There’s even a houseboat in Bembridge Harbour.

Locations include Shanklin, Bembridge, Ventnor, Cowes, Seaview, Ryde, East Cowes, St Helens and Yarmouth.

For example, this two-bedroom Georgian cottage in Ryde has a charming garden and central location. In Ventor, 6 St Josephs is well set up for families with younger children whilst Primrose Cottage in St Helens is in easy walking distance of the beach, a children’s playground, shops and the village pub.

Barton Lodge is located just moments from Queen Victoria’s Osborne House near East Cowes, sleeping six in great comfort. For larger parties, and located on the same estate, Barton Manor Farmhouse is a four-bedroom gem, oozing character and style plus access to a private beach. In Seaview, we love Sea Whispers for its contemporary, open-plan living and fabulous views across the Solent.

Many of our properties are dog-friendly and some are available for a short break as well as longer holidays. Frequent daily ferry crossings are available year-round from Southampton, Portsmouth and Lymington – we can arrange your very crossings at a discounted rate. You can travel from London to the Isle of Wight in less than four hours.

Check out our full range of family cottages on the Isle of Wight.

Note: All the travel companies featured on this site are personally recommended by our editors. Companies pay us a flat annual fee; we don’t get any additional payments if you click on their sites or make a booking. Those fees pay for the upkeep of our site, so we can keep it current and reliable. See more about how we work.