Things to do
Things to do when staying at Skinners Farm
We would love to give you a guided tour of our farm during your stay at Skinners. You’ll see our beef herd, including calves, collect eggs from our chickens and be able to see the farm machinery. There’s also usually a few kittens around in the summer! Tours are by arrangement to fit in round our working day – please ask us when you arrive so that we can arrange a time.
Food and drink
The Little Gloster is our nearest restaurant and serves quality food all day. Situated on the sea front at the end of Rew Street, it’s about a mile and a half from Skinners. Visit to enjoy quality food and amazing views of the Solent…and perhaps a cocktail or two!
Award winning Bluebells Cafe and Briddlesford Lodge Farm Shop offer some of the finest Isle of Wight produce. Bluebells is open daily and uses local ingredients. You’ll find a voucher in your caravan allowing you a discount in their farm shop.
Award winning, Mojacs Restaurant in Cowes offers fine food and excellent service.
Our favourite local pub, serving delicious food is the Blacksmiths Arms
In neighboring Gurnard we recommend The Portland
Places to visit
Skinners Farm is just one mile from Parkhurst Forest. It is a haven for wildlife including the red squirrel and many species of bird such as garden warbler, nightjar, woodcock, green, great spotted woodpecker and long eared owl. The Isle of Wight is one of the only places where the red squirrel can be found. Red squirrels are smaller and shier than the common grey squirrel found in other parts of the UK. A specially designed squirrel hide in the forest will give you the opportunity to see these lovely animals up close. If you walk or cycle you are very likely to see them scampering through the trees and undergrowth. Parkhurst Forest covers 395 hectares and there are plenty of paths and tracks making it a great place to explore on foot or bike.
Thorness Bay is just over a mile from Skinners Farm. Thorness is a private beach accessed only by track or path. At any time of year you can be guaranteed seclusion. A haven for birds you are encouraged to enjoy this beautiful beach during your stay at Skinners.
The only national nature reserve on the Isle of Wight, Newtown Creek is located approximately 5 miles from Skinners Farm. Rich in hay meadows, ancient woodland and looking over the salt marshes, Newtown also boasts a fascinating medieval history.
The yachting town of Cowes is three miles from Skinners Farm. Home to the world famous ‘Cowes Week’ Yachting Regatta, it offers a mix of restaurants and pubs at any time of year.
West Wight is without doubt the most beautiful part of the Island (in fact we think one of the most beautiful and inspiring parts of the world!). Have a look at this short video to give you a taste of what is available Visit Isle of Wight – West Wight
The Needles and Tennyson Down
No visit to the Isle of Wight is complete without a visit to the iconic Needles – a stack of three rocks and the world famous lighthouse which mark the western most tip of the Island. Take the chair lift to the beach and enjoy the razzmataz of the Needles Park if that’s your thing. But we prefer to avoid the crowds and walk across the Downs from Freshwater, past the historic Tennyson Monument – built in 1897 in honour of the poet who lived nearby – and view the Needles from above. The Needles Battery is a great place for a coffee and overlooks the landmark.
Things to do
Top Gear, 1 Terminus Road, Cowes are located just a minutes walk from the Cowes Red Jet Terminal. Hire your bikes, together with paniers for your luggage and Skinners is a three mile pedal away. Top Gear also have cars available and will deliver to your caravan if you’d prefer.
Wight Cycle Hire are located in Yarmouth, close to the Wightlink terminal and are well stocked with a range of different bikes. Skinners is 10 miles from Yarmouth – if you intend to pedal here when you first arrive, feel free to let us know and we’ll give you advice on the best to route to avoid main roads. There are over 500 miles of tracks and bridleways on the Isle of Wight making it a cyclists paradise.
Find out more here Bicycle Island Please note that if you’re bringing your own bike you will need to use one of the car ferries – The Red Jet does not accept bikes.
There are hundreds of miles of walking routes on the Isle of Wight. Skinners Farm is surrounded by footpaths and Thorness Bay and Parkhurst Forest can both be reached easily on foot. Follow the links to a selection of our favourite walks:
- 10 miles over the Downs taking in Shorwell and Brighstone
- 6.5 miles from Skinners, taking in the beach at Thorness Bay, Porchfiled and Parkhurst Forest
- A tough 8.5 miles up and down the highest climbs on the Isle of Wight from Ventnor and out to Wroxall and back
- Compton Bay – Only 2 miles but along the best beach on the Isle of Wight and back along the cliff top
- 6.5 miles to Garston Down via Bowcombe
- 8 miles in a loop starting and finishing at Chale Green across St Catherines Down and taking in the Hoy Monument and The Pepperpot (St Catherines Oratory).
As the Isle of Wight is surrounded by water, you are never too far from a new beach or stretch of coast to explore and enjoy. Wild swimming is becoming popular on the Island for obvious reasons and there are several open water swim events held on the Isle of Wight every year. Secluded Thorness Bay is a one mile walk away from Skinners. Swimming at high tide in Thorness Bay is recommended.
The Isle of Wight is well know as a surfers paradise with many beaches to choose from. Learn to surf or hire gear with iSurf
Kayaking, paddle boarding, coasteering, mountain boarding, zorbing, climbing…..and more are all available through Isle of Wight Adventure Activities
We highly recommend a visit to West Wight Sports and Community Centre at Freshwater. Indoor swimming, indoor climbing wall, sports hall, cafe, sports taster sessions for the children every school holiday and over 50 fitness classes for adults every week, they also offer very good value 2 week membership deals.
The Isle of Wight was Queen Victoria’s summer home and the spectacular Osborne House can be reached easily by bike or car. Take the iconic floating bridge across the River Medina to East Cowes and it can be found on the outskirts of the town. Carisbrooke Castle is a great place to visit – and see the famous donkeys walking the wheel to bring water from the well.