Our guide to Holiday in Ryde
If you are looking for a sandy beach for your holiday then Ryde is the place for you. The beach here is so sandy that the ferry terminal had to be stationed out on Ryde Pier. There is sand, sea and the sights on the Solent to keep the whole family entertained.
If you fancy, you could opt for the other side of the pier, along the Esplanade to the Quay Road car park that is right next to the Ryde Marina. From here you can watch the hovercrafts come and go or go down onto the sands and enjoy a paddle. This is a lovely beach for children as the water is fairly shallow. Just the other side of the marina is North Walk. There is on-street ticketed parking here and easy access onto a beautiful wide sandy beach. This is a fantastic promenade with lots of seats, a wall to lean on and a view to die for.
Places to visit in Ryde
Right as the furthest end of North Walk is Appley Park, home of AppleyTower. If you face the sea, the view could be Tahiti or The West Indies: shady woodland, sandy beach, old monument and blue sea, what more could you want?
While in Appley Park how about working up an appetite with a bit of tree climbing? At Goodleaf Tree Climbing you can, literally, learn the ropes! If you have children this is the place they will talk about forever. Restrictions are from age 8 but are they ok with under 8’s so long as an adult climbs with them. This truly is an activity for the whole family and certainly pretty unique into the bargain.
If you prefer something a little less physical you will enjoy a visit to Quarr Abbey. Situated just outside the main town is the very tranquil abbey where the Benedictine monks brew their own ale and serve it alongside a whole range of home-produce at their on-site licenced tea room. Quarr Abbey is also home to an art gallery displaying the works of many local artists. Inside, the church is a cool calm place to pause and delight in the tranquillity.
Things to do in Ryde
Heading towards the countryside of Ryde, you come across Haven Falconry and the Isle of Wight Steam Railway within a stone’s throw of each other both being situated on Havenstreet. A charming old style green sign hangs on the fence surrounding the free railway car park. Walk along the short tarmac path to the station and be transported – pardon the pun – back into the age of steam.
Enjoy a trip in one of the lovingly restored carriages, visit the souvenir shop and have a snack in the refreshment rooms where free wi-fi is also available. Because these two attractions are so close, they conveniently offer a combined ticket so do make sure to enquire of this when you visit.
The falconry is home to a mix of birds including falcons, hawks, eagles, vultures, owls, caracara and white doves. They have a variety of ways for you to interact with the birds with a Hawk Walk being one. This will take a couple of hours and allows you to handle and fly the hawks – with an expert on hand of course. Alternatively you might prefer the Birds of Prey Experience or be a would-be Harry Potter with the Owl Encounter.
While in Havenstreet, a great stop for stoking the boiler is The White Hart. A lovely stone built pub which offers good traditional food and beer. There is a beer garden so you can enjoy those warm summer evenings over an excellent pint or really indulge yourself with one of their superb home cooked meals. Alternatively, and especially if you have smaller children with you, take yourself to the Esplanade where you will find Blaze. Wood fired pizza is the house special but they do cater for other tastes including breakfasts. Definitely family friendly with excellent sized meals and incredible value for money.