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Isle of Wight Walking Festival 2011

Isle of Wight Walking Festival logo 2011 The Isle of Wight Walking Festival has won yet another award. This time, it scooped a SILVER in the Beautiful South Awards for Excellence 2010, in the category Tourism Best Event.

Now in its thirteenth year the festival promises 16 days of activities with over 300 walks to choose from. The Island has an acclaimed reputation as one of the best area’s in the UK for walking pursuits and there is something for all ages and abilities. You won’t be disappointed and a warm welcome is extended to regular and new walkers.


Over half of the Island is recognised as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. With 60 miles of dramatic and breathtaking Heritage Coastline, unspoilt countryside and over 500 miles of well-maintained and signposted footpaths; the Island has long been a source of inspiration. Follow in the footsteps of the Poet Laureate, Alfred Lord Tennyson along the 12 mile Tennyson Trail in the West Wight, or take a stroll in the stunning gardens of Osborne House, Queen Victoria’s much-loved and enchanting residence at East Cowes.



Over half of the Island is recognised as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty

Internationally Acclaimed

The Walking Festival is a truly International event with walkers descending on the Island from all corners of the Globe. 

In excess of 24,500 walkers took to the Island’s footpaths and bridleways, with many walkers making return trips to the festival and some taking part up to nine times! 

Isle of Wight Walking Festival Launch

With Seaview Wildlife Encounter - Saturday 7th May


An unusual and exciting start to the 13th Isle of Wight Walking Festival, there will be two guided walks around the Park, the first from 9.45 to 11.45am, finishing with the official launch of the Walking Festival by Seaview Wildlife Encounter’s own celebrity "Dippy the Penguin" at 12.00 midday.  The second guided walk starts at 1.45pm


Fancy dress is optional, but all children are encouraged to dress up as penguins, and will be judged after the second guided walk finishing at approximately 4.00pm


To add to the festivities, there will be musical entertainment, face painting for children, and a special Walking Festival quiz trail (which will run for the duration of the Walking Festival).  Entry to the Park for the launch day only, will be at a discounted rate of £5 per person. 


For full details of the launch please check our websites www.isleofwightwalkingfestival.co.uk or www.seaviewwildlife.com


Round the Island Walks 2011

Round the Island Walk non-stop 72 miles in 24 hours

Do you have the stamina to walk non-stop round the 72-mile coastal path in 24 hours? Admire the Island’s spectacular coastal scenery on this strenuous walk led by our experts Martin, Chris and Alan. Numbers are limited and prior booking is essential, and only those deemed capable by the walks
leader will be permitted to join the group. No walker may join if they have not booked, paid and registered.

Date for your diary: Saturday 7 May.
Contact Martin after 5pm on 07510 510163.

Eye Love Sight


New for 2011 is a sponsored walk especially for partiallysighted and blind participants. Proceeds will go to the Eye Love Sight Appeal which supports a research project at Southampton Hospital. The appeal aims to make sighted people aware that whilst they are enjoying beautiful views such as those on the Island’s coastal path, there are some people who are unable to experience this. Participants will be accompanied by sighted guides and can walk
the whole path, or just some sections. 

Date for your diary: Saturday 7 - 13 May.
Contact Colin McArthur on 01983 406661.

Saturday 7 May - Whitecliff Bay to Seaview, approx 6 miles
Sunday 8 May - Seaview to Gurnard, approx 12 miles
Monday 9 May - Gurnard to Hamstead, approx 13 miles
Tuesday 10 May - Hamstead to Freshwater, approx 12 miles
Weds 11 May - Freshwater Bay to Chale, approx 12 miles
Thursday 12 May - Chale to Ventnor, approx 8 miles
Friday 13 May - Ventnor to Whitecliff Bay, approx 8 miles

The Beaches, Bars and Blisters Walks

As an alternative to tackling the path in one go, you could do it either over two days (14 and 15 May) or three days (20 to 22 May), both with David Yates, Island author of
Beaches, Bars and Blisters.
Contact him on 07718 685936 or 01983 834006.

Saturday 14 May - Ventnor to Porchfield , 36 miles
Sunday 15 May - Porchfield to Ventnor , 36 miles
Friday 20 May - Ventnor to West Cowes, 26 miles
Saturday 21 May - Cowes to Freshwater Bay, 27 miles
Sunday 22 May - Freshwater Bay to Ventnor, 19 miles

Walk the Wight

The Hospice Walk the Wight - Sunday 15 May

A long-distance sponsored walk organised by the Island’s Earl Mountbatten Hospice.
Starting from Bembridge between 6.30am and 8.15am or from Carisbrooke between
9.30 am and noon. On the ‘hilly’ walk across the Island there is a choice of three distances:

26.5 miles – Bembridge to Needles Park (7-10 hours)
12.5 miles – Bembridge to Carisbrooke (3-5 hours)
14 miles – Carisbrooke to Needles Park (4-7 hours)

The Hospice Flat Walk the Wight

Start: 9.30am-11.30am
8.5 miles – Sandown High School to Thompsons Trees, Arreton Valley
Cost: Free to register until 1 May 2011. Advanced registrations compulsory.
For more details contact www.iwhospice.org/WTW

Over half of the Island is recognised as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty


Walk alone? No longer! Join our renowned Speed Dating Walk

Speed Dating Walk

We currently boast three perfect matches resulting in three weddings (possibly another on the way!) The walk gives you the chance to meet the perfect person or just have a lot of fun with like-minded people whilst enjoying the picturesque setting of Luccombe Bay, Shanklin.


Our first Speed Dating wedding was now five years ago, when Eric & Phillipa met on the walk, and moved to France two days after the wedding. Eric called us earlier in the year to say how together they pursued a dream and set up a smallholding with sheep, pigs, geese, and chickens for meat and eggs. Turning a rough 2 acres of ground into pasture and vegetable patch was a hard challenge and took effort, but it all started on that first Island walk! They continue to share their love of walking in France. Eric and Philipa raise their glasses to the organisers of the very first Island Speed Dating Walk.



Selection of walks in programme

Dawn Chorus Magic

Twilight Adventures


Explorer Walks

Food Walks

National Trust Walks

Red Squirrel Walk

Meditation Walk

Singing Walk

Tea Party Walk

Health Walks

Pub Walks

Dinosaur Walks

Join the Ramblers

Geocaching Walks

Heritage Trails

Series of Ghost Walks

 ……….. to name but a few


Childrens Walks

With children in mind, every year we expand our series of children’s walks with the hope of encouraging parents to get their children walking at a young age.  It is a great pastime and a physical activity which is essential to a child’s development and growth.  The earlier exercise is introduced into your child’s life, the greater the chance they will carry this pattern into adulthood. 


Below is a range of children’s walks on offer:-

Princess walk


Tiger Trail

Tiny Tots or Toddlers Tea Party

Twilight Adventures

Singing Walk

………… to name but a few


Website Competitions 

This year, we have six fantastic competition prizes on offer from our generous sponsors of the event:-


Competition 1

Wight Outdoors Goody Bag

Hi-Tec Boots

· BridgeDale Comfort Trekker Socks

· Gelert Ascent Walking Poles
· OS OL29 Landranger IOW Map with Aqua Tech

· S-Biner Hanging Storage
· Merino Wool Buff


Competition 2

Wight Walks Holiday

Wight Walks are offering a 6 night self led walking holiday for one person or 4 nights for 2 people, which could be taken any time of the year (subject to availability) and on any of their Island Walks. The value of this at 2010 prices would be approximately £500.00. (Car ferry crossings are not included in the prize)



Competition 3

Step by Step Walking Holidays

Win an Autumn weekend break at the Hambledon Hotel, in Shanklin - a double / twin room for 2 people on a bed and breakfast basis.  This prize isi not transferable and does not include the ferry fare. To be taken during the Autumn Walking Weekend 21 - 24 October 2011.



Competition 4

Win a Break with Isle of Wight Campervans

Choose from either a Monday - Friday or Friday - Monday break, with the Isle of Wight VW Campervans. A fantastic retro experience not to be miss and will include everything from kettle to cake!

The original vans have much character of their own and will include a hamper of Isle of Wight products to start off your holiday. They are equipped with everything you need during your holiday including cooker, fridge, sink, double bed and two pop top bunks suitable for children. All fresh linen and towels are included.


Competition 5

Win ViewRanger Software

Win Softwear plus GB National OS 50K maps


Competition 6

Win Hi-Tec Walking Boots

Hi-Tec proudly joined forces with the National Trust to launch this brand new family of walking boots, inspired by nature and developed specifically with their environmental impact in mind.


Hi-Tec Walking Boots



All competitions can be entered by logging onto the Isle of Wight Walking Festival website www.isleofwightwalkingfestival.co.uk  


Radio Competitions


Isle of Wight Radio have run a competition, using four pairs of the Hi-Tec Walking Boots which were part of our sponsorship deal.  In five days the Radio Station encountered 4800 hits for the competition. Winners have been announced.


Isle of Wight County Press organised a competition for a pair of Walking boots, and currently The Coast and Breeze Radio Stations will be organising competitions.



Walking Festival Programme

Make a note of forthcoming walking events In our effort to be “Green” we have had printed fewer programmes this year, and have made the programme available from our website so you can select your preference of walks and print only pages which you require. Please click here to download a copy of the programme.




Sponsor logosIsle of Wight Council:

Red Funnel 





Rights of Way

Walking the way to health initiative

National Trust
Seaview Wildlife Encounter

Country Walking
Isle of Wight County Press
Ramblers Association
Natural England

English Heritage
Hi-Tec Island 2000

Step by Step Walking Holidays

Wight Outdoors 

Wight Walks


Isle of Wight Campers

Isle of Wight Radio

Southern Vectis



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