I recently spent a week on the Isle of Wight.  I was there for the Isle of Wight Festival which you can read about in an article I wrote for Disability Horizons.

I had 2 days before the festival to have a look around the island, and in this post I’ll tell you about what I got up to.

Thorness Bay Holiday Park

I stayed in a wheelchair friendly static caravan at Thorness Bay Holiday Park. The caravan was pretty good and met all of our basic needs. There were 2 bedrooms, a bathroom with a roll in shower, a living room, and a kitchen area with a cooker, fridge, and the sink.

A wheelchair accessible static caravan with a ramp along the side leading up to the front door

 

The accessible room had 2 single beds pushed together which were raised off the floor a bit. We had to raise the bed up a bit more with some bricks we found outside because it wasn’t high enough to get the hoist underneath.

The accessible bedroom in the static caravan which contains a bed raised off the floor by large bricks
The accessible room in the static caravan

 

There wasn’t a lot of room around the bed either but it was manageable. It would be better if there was just one single bed in the room but hey ho.

The bathroom of the static caravan with a rol in shower

 

 

Thorness Bay Holiday Park is located on the north coast of the Isle of Wight with nice views over the Solent and the surrounding countryside. The park is on a woodland hillside and there is a footpath leading to a beach nearby.

Unfortunately I couldn’t get very far on this beach due to sand and wheels being bitter enemies. But I did see the sea nonetheless.

Also in the holiday park they have a swimming pool, outdoor football pitch, play area, and a restaurant which serves decent food. There is also a fish and chip shop but the fryer wasn’t working that week.

Places I went

Fort Victoria Country Park

Fort Victoria was an old fort built in the 1850s to protect the Solent. The Royal Engineers were housed there for a while and it was also used as a gun battery during the war. It was in use until 1962 when part of it was demolished but some of it still remains.

A Cannon at Fort Victoria facing out to the Solent.
A Cannon at Fort Victoria

 

In part of the fort building there is a museum of maritime archaeology, a reptilarium, and a planetarium.

The archaeology museum was interesting but it was only a relatively small museum. There was an exhibition which talked about the different shipwrecks that were found in the Solent and about the process of excavating them. Access was pretty decent in here as well.

On the roof of Fort Victoria, a long thin building with low brick walls on the either side
On the roof of Fort Victoria

 

The reptilarium was also quite small and had a number of lizards, terrapins, and snakes in containers to look at. It wasn’t the most exciting animal place I’ve ever seen.

I tried to have a wander around the country Park through a wooded area but I didn’t get very far. I followed a very bumpy path which only went a short distance into the forest before turning round towards where I started again. There probably were other trails that I wasn’t aware of.

Looking out to the calm waters of the Solent with grass in the foreground

Monkey Haven

this is a monkey rescue centre with lots of different monkeys and even some non-monkeys like birds of prey and meerkats.

A young man in a powerchair is smiling at the camera and a lady holds an owl on her gloved hand next to him

When I went here it was raining so I spent most of the time trying to dash undercover when it started to throw it down.

A monkey in a cage is holding onto the bars

 

But in the dry periods it was quite nice to watch the creatures swinging about and I saw some of the keepers feeding them too.

Again this place wasn’t the biggest and I only spent about 2 or 3 hours here. But it’s quite a nice place to spend a while.

I also wanted to visit the National Poo Museum (Yes, it does exist!), but disappointingly it wasn’t open at the time. I want to go there just so I write on trip advisor saying “it was full of shit, and it was good.”

The Isle of Wight is a nice place and there are a lot of other things to do that I didn’t have time to see. I would like to go back sometime to have a proper look around and definitely check out the Poo Museum!

Have you ever been to the Isle of Wight? Let me know about your experiences in the comments below.

 

 

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