Walks And Walking – Hampshire Walks Isle of Wight Ryde Pier to Bembridge Lifeboat Walking Route
This walking route was created out of an idea to walk as much of the east side of the island as possible and experience the wide variety of countryside walks that the Isle of Wight has to offer. I left home early whilst the rest of the family drove down with the aim being we get to our house at the same time; me by train, ferry and walking, them by car and ferry alone.
I had planned to walk about 18 miles so wasn’t too sure how much to pack in my rucksack as the weather was really good for walking. Opting for walking shorts I had my waterproof jacket and gaiters in the pack with a spare pair of trainers in case my walking boots rubbed… fortunately they lasted the whole 9 hours of continuous wear. That’s the quality and durability of The North Face Jannu II for you!
So, disembarking from the passenger ferry (which was late as usual) I walked the length of the pier to see an old familiar face of Ryde seafront. I lived on the island when I was growing up some 20 years ago and nothing has changed. At the end of the pier I turned right to cross the road and walk up the steep slope of Union Street to join the High Street and continue walking straight ahead and now slightly more uphill before passing the church on my left and then turning left down St. John’s Road to pass the train station and then turning right in to High Street, then in to Cross Street, turning right in to Slade Road and passed the wooden gate to turn left onto the bridleway and The Nunwell Trail to Smallbrook.
Following the rail lines to a road I turned right over the bridge and passed the orchard to a stile and the Nunwell Trail Ashey Road signpost.
Gaiters on! I was now entering the countryside so didn’t want to get bitten or stung I put my gaiters on to turn left over the stile and then right to follow the yellow and green waymaker. Turning right at Smallbrook Stadium entrance and then left on to the road to the Nunwell Trail public bridleway R35 to Harding Shute on the left of a wide gravel path which then bent right and then left through a gate to cross the rail track, to another gate and right down the wide grassy path through a gate to keep right and passing a wood on my right to a gate and in to open meadows keeping left ignoring the first stile to the next gate and then straight ahead to a small clearing and entrance to another wood to turn left and on to a sign for Harding Shute on the WightGreenLine.
Here I turned right and on to the road by the pond where I saw a white peacock to continue along before turning right at West Lane and then left passed a sign for Nunwell House as the road now climbs steadily up to the Nunwell WightGreenLine signpost to turn right and on to the Nunwell Trail public bridleway to Brading Down Road. Continuing uphill to a crossing of paths I then turned left downhill to then take the right hand fork to climb steeply up in to Kelly’s Copse and a gate where the path now bends to the right and meets another gate to join the road where I turned left on to the car park and viewpoint for Brading Down.
Following the first signpost public bridleway B42 to a walk the downland to a gravel path and then a sharp right downhill to a gate and then straight down to reach the road at the vineyard to cross over and then go left down Sheep Lane and then turn right to a signpost on my left public footpath B47 to the Roman Villa. Walking strangely up to the ultra modern buildings the remains of the villa can be seen so I crossed passed the fencing to the bottom left hand corner of the field and then steeply down to the road and then right to the junction to turn right to go down to the traffic lights to cross straight over Yarbridge Cross to turn right over the railway bridge to a signpost for Brading Yardbridge GreenWightLine.
Following the steps down to the railway line to then cross the line at gates to walk along the platform at Brading Station and the view of Bembridge Fort clearly on my right hand side. Walking out of the station and in to the residential area I turned right by the signpost public footpath B1 and then turned right at the signpost public footpath B36 through gates to cross the rail line and through a kissing gate signposted Brading Marshes WightGreen Line and on to the River Yar where I turned left to follow the river to a bridge on my right and on to the Yar River Trail and through a kissing gate at the RSPB Brading Marshes Nature Reserve sign.
Keeping right at the next turn I entered Gander Down and walked up to the message board and bench with panoramic views down the valley of the River Yar and Bembridge. Turning left I walked downhill to join the treeline around the edge of the field towards the road and then turned left at the kissing gate to exit gander Down to the turn left and then right up Culver Down Road to Bembridge Fort.
After the long steep climb I took a short video showing the splendid views of Bembridge Fort, Sandown, St Helens and Bembridge before continuing along the road turning left at the signpost public footpath BB29 to Peacock Hill and Hillway by the kissing gate to then head quite steeply downhill with Whitecliff Bay now in view on my right hand side. I then turned right to join a track by the waymaker turning left at the stile to a gate across fields to the road with the footpath parallel on my right. I then turned right downhill passed Longlands Farm and then turned left at the sign post public footpath BB23 Centurian’s Lane Brading and back in to the RSPB Brading Marshes Nature Reserve.
I then entered Centurian’s Copse and along Centurian’s Lane keeping on the public footpath BB20 Bembridge to rejoin the Yar River Trail passing the Centurian’s Hill Earthworks on my right and following the path as it bends to the right to then leave the copse and on to a wide grassy path with a great view of Bembridge Fort on my right.
The path then bends to the right by a bench and tree to then leave the marshes at the next gate and it was now a very clear pathway all the way up to Bembridge Windmill. Crossing the runway at Bembridge Airport and seeing a few planes take off and land was quite exciting as I steadily climbed up towards the Windmill which was now in clear view.Once I reached the Windmill I turned left to walk down the road passed the Village Inn pub on my right turning right down Dennett Road to a signpost public footpath BB9 to Forelands Road where I then turned right to walk along to the Windmill Inn where I then turned left and walked all the way down to the Bembridge Lifeboat Station.
This was the end of my walk for today and I covered a good 18 miles taking me just over 5 hours.
More photos from todays walk can be seen here: Ryde Walking Route To Bembridge Lifeboat
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