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Isle of Wight 'ideal for walking'

Posted 7 December 2012
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Isle of Wight 'ideal for walking'
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While some people will see the winter as a time to put on crampons and take on some challenging winter climbs, others will wish to enjoy some crisp and refreshing days out somewhere with a bit less altitude, where thermal clothes may be needed, but not an ice axe.

The Isle of Wight may be one good place to go walking, without major hills and enjoying longer daylight hours than most of the country due to its southerly position.

More importantly, the walking is extremely attractive there, both on the coast and inland, according to property manager at the National Trust for the Isle of Wight Tony Tutton.

He said: "One of the most popular and spectacular walks on the island starts from Freshwater Bay and rises up to the top of Tennyson Down where you can enjoy panoramic views across the island and over the Solent to the mainland. No wonder the poet laureate Lord Alfred Tennyson loved this spot."

Mr Tutton also noted the Needles as a fine place to walk around the coast, while inland locations he recommended included the Mottistone Estate, which surrounds the National Trust property around Mottistone Manor's gardens.

The National Trust's extensive land ownership on the island - including 17 miles of coastline and ten per cent of the whole land area - also includes the Ventnor Downs, where people can climb and enjoy some extensive views from the uplands. Among these are the highest spot on the island, the top of St Boniface Down. Walkers working their way through the tick-list of England's county tops will, of course, come here anyway.

Walkers seeking coastal enjoyment may have much to look forward to. The government is currently holding a public consultation on the issue of whether the Isle of Wight will be included in the English Coastal Path.

Although the legislation in the Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009 does not mean the island is automatically set to be included as it has no physical connection to the mainland, groups like the Ramblers are keen that the qualities of the Wight Coastline are included.ADNFCR-2803-ID-801502597-ADNFCR