Sailing Holidays in the UK: IOW Anchorages

1,883 views  |   February 24th, 2021 

There has never been a better time to explore our wonderful coast and a UK Sailing Holiday is the perfect way to do it. The Isle of Wight offers some beautiful spots to anchor, so don’t overlook these hidden gems.


Colwell Bay

Home of The Hut, a renowned restaurant (you’ll need to book well ahead) with moorings. (You will need to check on size/draft restrictions)  They will even come out and pick you up in their dinghy. The site is fairly exposed but a gorgeous stop for wild swimming in fair weather.  More Details

Yarmouth Harbour

We used to think of the anchorage outside as the cheap seats for when you couldn’t get into Yarmouth. That was until we enjoyed the amazing sunset from a mooring buoy just outside the harbour wall. The harbour master team are really accommodating if you fancy going ashore. be sure to Check out Salty’s! (btw… if anyone can explain to me why so many venues in the IOW end the evening with dancing on the tables I’d love to know !!) More Info about Yarmouth Harbour


Newtown Creek

This National Trust anchorage is a wildlife haven – well sheltered and protected from the worst of most weathers.  The holding is good if you wish to anchor and private spots can be found for lifting keelboats. Because of its outstanding view, it does fill up, so don’t expect to rock up in the evening and be assured a spot. If you have a dingy you can get ashore and hike to the New Inn in Shalfleet. Worth getting up at dawn here to enjoy the birdlife. (and if you’re a member of the NT remember to pack your membership card) Find Out more about Newtown Creek

Folly Inn & Newport

Go Past Cowes, down the Medina and you will come to The Folly Inn. Not strictly an anchorage but with pontoons in the middle of the river opposite the pub and a lovely taxi to pick you up and return you it is worth a visit.  Great for lunch, but also for a great, fun evening out. You’ll probably witness more dancing on tables here!  The Folly

Keep going further the River Medina and you will reach Newport. You may be surprised to know that Newport (and not Cowes) is actually the capital of the Isle of Wight. With depths of  2.5m at springs and 1.8m at neaps you need to be very cautious and may prefer Island Harbour Marina to the north of Newport which is a fully locked haven.

Osborne Bay

Whilst this is fairly sheltered, you will just have to enjoy the views of the majestic Osborne House because you can’t get ashore from here. If you do plan to swim off the boat we would recommend tethering yourself or streaming a long line with a fender – the tides here can be very strong. A very popular spot in the summer months.

Wootton Creek

Lovely sheltered spot, but very shallow. if you want to drop your anchor here you will need to be able to take the ground. Nice pub, a few shops, fuel, and a balti house. All about Wootton Creek

Bembridge Harbour

With Bembridge, only accessible a few hours on either side of high tide for many boats the harbour master manages a visitors pontoon which can accommodate most vessels regardless of tides. Anchoring is not permitted within the harbour with the exception of Catamarans, and bilge keelers are allowed to dry out on the sandy beach just inside the harbour in front of Bembridge Sailing Club. This will involve anchoring fore and aft if staying a while. Bembridge is a proper old fashioned village and a bit of a walk but its charm makes it worthwhile. Excellent swimming from the sandy beach and some great walks. Details

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Posted by: First Class Sailing


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