What the North Wight has to offer:
The North of the Isle of Wight is home to the County Town of Newport, with the Medina River running through it towards the Solent dividing East Cowes and West Cowes. To the West are the villages of Shalfleet and Newtown Creek with a stunning Nature Reserve; to the East are Wootton Bridge and Quarr Abbey.
Osborne House and Carisbrooke Castle are both with English Heritage, shrouded in their history and surrounded by beautiful grounds, definitely worth a visit. Quarr Abbey, further down the coast from Osborne, is a spectacular working Monastery with tea rooms. The Roman Villa in Brading often has educational classes in the café. Newtown is one of the oldest towns in the UK, situated near a nature reserve, a lovely place to walk and enjoy the wildlife.
Best known as the world's premier yachting centre, Cowes is the Island's main port. Yachtsmen from all over the world participate in the season's prestigious sailing events, the best known being Cowes Week, held annually at the beginning of August. Shopping in the narrow pedestrianised High Street is a delight, with some excellent shops, many catering for the yachting fraternity. The town also has an array of fashionable clothing shops, gift shops, delicatessens, cafes, restaurants and lively pubs.
The Nature Reserve at Newtown is the beautiful home to many species of wild fowl. In land Parkhurst Forest offers acres to walk dogs and children, with squirrel trails and woodland for picnics and adventure games.
The Festival and The Bestival
The Isle of Wight has played host to these two increasingly popular music festivals. The Festival is held in early June just outside Newport and has been going since the 60's. The Bestival is held in September at the Robin Hill adventure park and every year announces a different fancy dress theme which everyone throws themselves into. Popular with families, both attract some of the great new and old musical acts and the Island's atmosphere is electric over these festival times.
Places to eat
This part of the Island holds some of the best restaurants and pubs. Cowes being a place of destination for many yachtsmen offers a wide range of cuisine of which Lugleys with its sea frontage is popular. There is also a Lugleys in Newport and Olivio's in Newport and Ryde offing delicious menus. Pier View pub in Cowes serves the best hamburgers, the Sportsman Rest in Porchfield is very popular too with families and is close to good walks