The Isle of Wight, my favourite pace

The Isle of Wight, my favourite pace

The Isle of Wight is one of those places that feels like it's been in a time warp. A patchy one. Or perhaps one which kept misfiring. The sense of the 'not quite 21st century' isn't an accurate description of the whole place. Bits of it are, apparently, super trendy, (I've not found those bits yet), most of it is about 10 years slower than the mainland, and some of it is frankly a bit like the mainland was in the 60's - and if you're lucky, with the same wallpaper thrown in too.

In particular, it's less space.  It's 380 square km, which means a population density of 366 people per km2.  How marvellous! Only 140,000 or so people live there permanently. That means less cars, less busy, less people so therefore less shops, less roads, less traffic, less everything. Let's compare that to the London Metropolitan Region (comprises a total area of 8,382 square kilometres and has a population of 13,709,000, which is a population density of 1,510 inhabitants per km2.

Having said that, it is England's largest island. And it's 6km from the mainland separated by a body of water called the Solent. Some notable folk have enjoyed the islands delights over the years. Queen Victoria had a holiday home on the island, Jeremy Irons, was born in Cowes, Bear Grylls, the adventurer, writer, and television presenter was 4 when his family moved to the island. It's also hosted the Richardson Brothers and the Kray Twins in the maximum-security HM Prison Isle of Wight.

The fields are rolling, the cliffs are steep, the views long and the grass green. Tennyson Down is all of those things together, and I've spent many happy hours on its brow looking south, bathing in the sunset and solitude - thank goodness that the average British person isn't known for their love of climbing hills. 

Perhaps that gives you a flavor of the place? 

 

Forest bathing anyone?

Forest bathing anyone?

Unicorn Trails!

Unicorn Trails!

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