Nearest History & Heritage Isle of Wight
Our History and Heritage category brings all Coast Radar’s Isle of Wight listings related to looking for something to do or a place to visit together where they offer some form of historic or heritage based activity.
Finding the best things to see and do on a Isle of Wight day out with your family or friends is easy – simply explore the historic and heritage links below, hit the jump to my location button or use the search bar to plan your next Isle of Wight activity.
- Yarmouth Castle, the last and most sophisticated of Henry VIII’s coastal defences. Displays inside the castle include atmospheric recreations of how the rooms were used in the 16th century, and an exhibition about the many wrecks which occurred in the treacherous stretch of sea which the castle overlooks. Also a magnificent picnic spot, with views over the Solent.
- Osborne House is a popular attraction on the Isle of Wight. Known fondly as Queen Victoria’s palace-by-the-sea this estate has an exquisitely furnished house and terraced gardens with panoramic views leading down to its own private beach on the Solent. The House was built in 1845 for Queen Victoria and Prince Albert as a country retreat. It was Queen Victorias family home where she spent time with Prince Albert and nine children. You can see the family rooms in the royal apartments (including the richly decorated Durbar Room) and the state rooms on a visit as well as the grounds with its walled garden. All the mums will want to see the miniature Swiss Cottage built to teach the royal children household management! In the Summer months, you can visit the Queens private beach and have fun watching the traditional Victorian entertainment. “It is impossible to imagine a prettier spot” Were the words of Queen Victoria after her first visit to Osborne on the Isle of Wight. The house is open from 10am all year round closing an hour earlier than usual in the Winter months and they host many events here. You can get a family or a single ticket and prices start at £15 for an adult with a car of 4 being £57. It is good value as it will entertain the whole family for the day.
- Bembridge Windmill is the only surviving windmill on the island and was built in the 1700s and played a vital role in the local community for two centuries providing work for generations. In the 1880s the arrival of the railway meant cheaper flour was available and from 1897 only cattle feed was made and by 1913, with the local men all signed up in the war, the mill closed. In the late 1950s, the mill was given over the National Trust. The mill is a Grade 1 listed building and an integral part of the island and still has its original machinery in place. You can climb to the top of the mill and figure out how it worked as you wind your way down the four levels and feel the smoothness of the wooden machinery telling the tale of those who worked there. The steps are steep but the view from the top is really worth the climb. Families can enjoy the countryside and have a great day out, although saying that, the mill is very educational with a short film explaining the milling process. Turner was inspired by the countryside around the area and there is a painting by Turner of the mill. Open daily and charges apply.
- The Needles Batteries are on the westerly point of the Isle of Wight and were constructed between 1861-95 for the coastal defence of England. The overlook the Needles, a famous coastal and played a really important part in both world wars. The new Battery has been used more recently to test the Black Knight and Black Arrow space rocket engines and in recent times were given to the National Trust and opened to the public in 1982 giving visitors the most superb views of Dorset, the Solent and Hampshire. While you can drive right up to the Batteries there is also a great open top bus that runs every half hour on a circular trip via Yarmouth, Freshwater Bay, the Needle Pleasure Park and TotLand allowing you to step off at the Battery to see the remains of the rocket site and enjoy a snack and walk to the New Battery before rejoining the bus. Car parking is charged per day and it’s an easy walk to the Old Battery. The Needles Pleasure Park offers everything from ice creams to restaurant facilities and has public toilets.
- Brighstone Shop and Museum is all houses in a neat row of small, traditional, thatched cottages in the village. It sells a variety of goods likes postcards, ad hoc gifts, pottery, tissues, bric a brac and ornaments and National Trust Memberships! The Village Museum is very quaint with exhibits of life during Victorian times in the area and there are some evocative displays to view. The museum and shop are open most days from 10 am to 4 pm (excluding Sundays) and is free to enter.
- Nunwell House is set in five acres of tranquil gardens with a stunning historic view overlooking Natural Parkland, Brading Haven, Bembridge Harbour and across the Solent. The House and Garden are open to visitors for part of the year with groups being welcome throughout the year, although part of the house and grounds is available for exclusive weddings or functions.