Thursday, 28 April 2011


The little estuary town of Yarmouth is situated on the west side of the Isle of Wight, at the mouth of the River Yar. There is a ferry linking it to Lymington, a crossing of half an hour. For many years the town was protected by Yarmouth Castle, which was built by Henry VIII in 1547. Activities here centre around yachting and fishing, while during the summer there is an old paddle steamer called the Waverley, which takes tourists on trips round the island. There is a disused railway track which has been turned into a delightful walk from Yarmouth towards Freshwater, with wildlife viewing opportunities which include the possibility of seeing red squirrels.

In 1908 the sea off Yarmouth was the scene of a naval tragedy when a steamer called St Paul sank HMS Gladiator, which took just 20 minutes to reach the seabed. The tragedy took place during a snowstorm and resulted in 30 deaths and many more injured. The vessel was eventually righted using cables anchored to the shore, and the anchor points are still visible on the footpath between Yarmouth and Fort Victoria, the remains of which form the focal point of Fort Victoria Country Park. Attractions at the Fort include a planetarium, a maritime heritage exhibition and a marine aquarium.

For events on the island, see here.

Map of the area.

Yarmouth Quayphoto © 2009 Steve Parkes | more info (via: Wylio)

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