7 minutes on foot.
Totland bay is within 7 minutes walk from the Hermitage and has an old promenade and a cafe selling icecreams and afternoon teas.
20 minutes on foot.
By walking along the sea wall from Totland Bay you will reach Colwell Bay which is a sandy beach also with a small cafe.
Local Places to Visit
The Needles and Alum Bay
30 minutes on foot, 5 minutes by car or bus.
The Needles are 'just around the corner' from The Hermitage. A brisk walk over Headon Warren will give you the view shown in the photo. The attractions include glass blowing, coloured sands, a chair lift down to the beach and boat trips around the Needles.
From the Needles you can walk over Tennyson Down to the Tennyson Monument and on to Freshwater Bay - if you are feeling energetic. The Needles Old Battery at the end of the headland is 10 minutes walk or 2 minutes bus ride further on.
10 minutes by car or bus.
The port of Yarmouth was the first Island settlement to be granted a royal town charter in 1135. The town was sacked by the French in 1377 and 1524 and King Henry VIII built Yarmouth Castle as a coastal defence in 1547. The unique 700ft long timber pier dating from 1876 is now a Grade II listed building and 552 deck planks record the names of those who helped fund its restoration in the 1990s. Yarmouth Harbour has berthing and on-shore facilities for visiting yachtsmen. The Yar Estuary attracts walkers and bird watchers and there is a cycle way to Freshwater along the route of the former railway line. There are some interesting shops, cafes, restaurants and traditional pubs.
Newtown Nature Reserve
20 minutes by car.
Newtown is an ancient town on the north west coast of the Island. It is now a shadow of its former self being a hamlet with only the Old Town Hall remaining. It was formerly known as Francheville and was previously the Island's capital. It is on a inlet known as Newtown Creek and the surrounding area is a national nature reserve which is mostly owned by the National Trust. There are yacht moorings in the creek, but this is limited to preserve the harbour's unspoilt nature.
10 minutes by car,
30 minutes walk.
Victorian Freshwater has the air of a town, but is actually only a village. An 18 hole golf course is situated on the downs above Freshwater Bay, there are plenty of shops and West Wight Sports Centre has a public indoor swimming pool.
Farringford Hotel was once the home of poet laureate Alfred Lord Tennyson and is set in 30 acres of beautiful mature gardens. Non residents may enjoy evening dining and are also welcome to use the 9 hole golf course.
Pioneer Victorian photographer, Julia Margaret Cameron, lived at Dimbola Lodge at Freshwater Bay, which is now a photographic museum. The bay has a small beach and a large car park and is the ideal starting point for cliff-top walks, such as the Tennyson Trail to the Needles, with breathtaking views of the Channel and Solent. Inland from the bay is Afton Marsh Nature Trail.
10 minutes by car,
35 minutes walk.
Built on the north shore of the Isle of Wight to guard the Solent, the remains of Fort Victoria now house a Marine Aquarium, a Sea Bed Archaeology Exhibition, a Planetarium and a Model Railway. The surrounding Country Park offers seashore and woodland walks and the site is one of the best vantage points for watching the yachts and ships on the Solent.