Classic Break at Freshwater Bay
Code: FWCLAPrint page
Choosing the level of your walks
Our easy grading system shows whether a region offer gentle strolls or more challenging routes to help you choose the right holiday for you. Difficulty is measured on many factors such as distance, ascent/descent, terrain, weather and more. There's no magic formula, but from our experience we grade our walks 1 to 5 (where 1 is easy and 5 hard). Our challenger holidays require a high level of fitness and stamina.
Join us at Freshwater Bay for our Classic Break, rich with the traditions of HF Holidays, making it best suited to our long standing guests who have been holidaying with us for years.
During the day, enjoy our usual choice of 3 guided walks. Stretch your legs and appreciate some of Britain's best landscapes.
In the evening relax with like-minded guests during your evening meal, then enjoy a classic mix of evening activities arranged by your leaders. We'll include a great mix of quizzes, games and dancing, rounded off with a traditional party night on the final evening.
Freshwater Bay House boasts a beautiful cliff-top location overlooking the bay. Enjoy dramatic chalk cliffs, sandy beaches, picture-postcard villages and more from this wonderful island gem.
Freshwater Bay House has 48 bedrooms located in the main building and a cottage in the grounds. Many of the rooms have sea views, whilst others overlook the gardens and downs.
These rooms are all ensuite and furnished to a good standard. They include:
These rooms are slightly larger and/or have a better view. They include:
Only an extra £15 per person per night
These rooms truly are the best in the house for extra luxury during your stay. They include:
Only an extra £20 per person per night
Choose Your Room: Our new “Choose Your Room” service is available at our UK country houses, providing the option to choose and confirm a specific room for an extra £30 per room. Supplements to upgrade to 'Better' or 'Best' rooms still apply. The choice of room number must be of the same room type as originally booked and is subject to availability.
At the house
|All holidays at our Country Houses are full board accommodation including evening meal on arrival to breakfast on the day of your departure. All of our Country Houses have a well-stocked bar serving local beers, wine and spirits.
√ Start your day with our extensive breakfast.
Just relax and take it easy, or if you'd like to continue to chat with our guides and fellow guests then why not grab a drink or take part in one of our option evening activities.
All of our bars are stocked with locally sourced drinks so you can really soak up your surroundings.
- The fire procedure is displayed in each room and explained to guests on arrival. Guests requiring assistance with an evacuation are identified at this point and alternative door hangers are issued to help the team members identify them
- Assistance dogs accompanying visually or hearing impaired guests are welcome dogs must be kept on a lead or harness at all times
- Information can be provided in large print
- All team members have received disability awareness training
- Special diets can be catered for and specialist food can be arranged with prior notice
- Hired equipment can be arranged for your stay with prior notice
- Fridges can be supplied for medication with prior notice.
Sunday: Tennyson Down & Alum Bay
Option 1: Over Tennyson Down
Distance: 7 miles
The walk in a nutshell: A fabulous walk over the chalk cliffs of Tennyson Down to the Needles and the Alum Bay; one of England's finest coastal walks.
Don’t miss: The commanding view over the Western Solent from the Tennyson Monument. You'll also discover the once secret rocket testing range, and the area's role in the space race.
Option 2: Headon Warren & Needles
Distance: 8½ miles
The walk in a nutshell: Head to the coast at Totland Bay then soak up glorious sea view as you round the Needles headland and return over Tennyson Down.
Don’t miss: The heather-clad headland of Headon Warren is a real delight, and offers the best views of the Needles.
Option 3: West Wight circuit
Distance: 12 miles
The walk in a nutshell: A circuit of the western tip of the island. We’ll follow the Yar Valley to Yarmouth, then follow the coastal path to Alum Bay, before a glorious finale over Tennyson Down.
Don’t miss: The final section atop the chalk cliffs of Tennyson Down is a fitting conclusion to this splendid walk.
Monday: Godshill & Appuldurcombe
Option 1: Godshill & Appuldurcombe
Distance: 5 miles
The walk in a nutshell: A delightful circuit from the village of Godshill takes us to the Worsley Monument and the ruined shell of Appuldurcombe House.
Don’t miss: There's plenty of time to explore Godshill and admire its quintessential thatched cottages and historic church.
Option 2: Over the Downs
Distance: 8½ miles
The walk in a nutshell: Walk from the charming village of Godshill onto the Stenbury and St Boniface Downs.
Don’t miss: The grand ruins of Appuldurcombe House and its surrounding parkland laid out by ‘Capability’ Brown.
Option 3: Eight Downs Horseshoe
Distance: 10½ miles
The walk in a nutshell: Our 'eight Downs horseshoe' is a grand circuit that takes in the tops of Stenbury Down and St Boniface Down; the highest point on the island.
Don’t miss: Walking atop the Downs is a real delight, with great views across the island, and across the Solent to the mainland.
Tuesday: Shorwell & Carisbrooke Castle
Option 1: To Carisbrooke Castle
Distance: 6½ miles
The walk in a nutshell: Cross the island's central hills from the picturesque village of Shorwell to the impressive castle at Carisbrooke.
Don’t miss: Take time to explore this well-preserved castle. Walk around the walls, and watch the donkeys turn the treadmill to raise water from the well.
Option 2: Shorwell & Carisbrooke
Distance: 9 miles
The walk in a nutshell: Walk from the south coast to to Shorwell village, then continue over the downs to Carisbrooke Castle.
Don’t miss: Explore picturesque Shorwell with its thatched cottages and historic church. There's also plenty of time to visit Carisbrooke Castle.
Option 3: Tennyson Trail
Distance: 12½ miles
The walk in a nutshell: Challenge yourself to this fantastic walk along the spine of the island from Carisbrooke Castle to Freshwater Bay. We’ll cross the hills to Shorwell then pick up the Tennyson Trail which runs along the top of the chalk downs.
Don’t miss: This is one of our most popular walks. After several ups and downs, your celebratory pint at the end of the walk will be well deserved!
Thursday: Walks through the Undercliff
Option 1: Ventnor to Shanklin
Distance: 5½ miles
The walk in a nutshell: Walk through the lush Undercliff. Our walk takes us from Ventnor's Botanic Gardens along the coastal path to Shanklin.
Don’t miss: Discover the Undercliff; a natural sun trap, rich with verdant vegetation, created by a series of landslips over the centuries.
Option 2: Niton to Shanklin
Distance: 8½ miles
The walk in a nutshell: Soak up the sea air and views of the English Channel on a walk through the Undercliff from Niton to Shanklin.
Don’t miss: Stop to explore the Victorian resort of Ventnor midway through the walk, and see the 11th Century St Boniface Church in nearby Bonchurch.
Option 3: Whale Chine to Shanklin
Distance: 11½ miles
The walk in a nutshell: A journey along the length of Undercliff. Starting at Whale Chine we'll round St Catherine's Point before picking up the coastal path through Ventnor to Shanklin.
Don’t miss: The cliff-top section above St Catherine's Point is particularly impressive, with views down to the lighthouse far below.
Friday: The Yar Valley or the Tennyson Trail
Option 1: Yar Valley
Distance: 7 miles
The walk in a nutshell: Walk beside the tidal River Yar to the historic town of Yarmouth with its bustling harbour and Tudor castle. We’ll return on the opposite side of the river back to Freshwater Bay.
Don’t miss: The salt marsh, reedbeds and mud flats of the Yar Estuary are a great place to see wildfowl and waders.
Option 2: The Longstone
Distance: 8½ miles
The walk in a nutshell: Walk atop the Downs from Shorwell to the ancient Longstone and along the Tennyson Trail back to Freshwater Bay.
Don’t miss: The Neolithic Longstone on Mottistone Down; according to legend this 13ft stone was thrown here by a giant!
Option 3: Downland & Coast
Distance: 12½ miles
The walk in a nutshell: Walk over the Downs to the Neolithic Longstone, then descend to coast and follow the coastal path back to Freshwater Bay .
Don’t miss: Enjoy the sweeping views along the island's south-west coast, as you walk over the chalk cliffs of Compton Down.
Discover the Isle of Wight
The Isle of Wight is a delightful haven away from the bustle of the mainland, easily reached by ferry. Broadly diamond shaped, the island is 25 miles long and 15 miles wide. This makes it ideally sized for a week’s walking and exploration.
Freshwater Bay is a small semi-circular cove at the foot of the garden of Freshwater Bay House. There is a pebble beach here, or better sandy beaches approximately 3 miles away at Totland Bay or Colwell Bay. Shops and banks are located in Freshwater village, about 30 minutes’ walk away.
The small harbour town of Yarmouth is located 3 miles north of Freshwater Bay; either a 10 minutes drive, a pleasant 1 hour walk, or reached using the 'Needles Breezer' open-top bus. Yarmouth has a selection of small shops and pubs, and there's always a bustle of activity around the harbour. Yarmouth's Tudor castle is also worth a visit. www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/yarmouth-castle/
Queen Victoria’s island residence, managed by English Heritage, is located near East Cowes at the north of the island. Enjoy the lavish interiors and take time to explore the extensive grounds which slope down to the Solent. Osborne House is about 40 minutes drive from Freshwater Bay. During the main season (May to Sept) we offer an excursion to Osborne on most Wednesdays. www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/osborne/
A fine medieval castle situated near Newport in the heart of the island. The castle's most famous 'resident' was King Charles I, who was imprisoned here after the English Civil War. Walk around the impressive walls and visit the castle's famous well where donkeys are used to raise the water using a large treadmill. The castle is around 20 minutes' drive from freshwater Bay, and can also be reached direct using the number 12 bus. www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/carisbrooke-castle/
Isle of Wight Steam Railway
Step back in time and ride this vintage steam railway from Wootton to Smallbrook Junction. The railway has a particularly historic collection of locomotives and rolling stock, including many wooden 4-wheeled carriages dating from the the 19th Century. The main station is at Havenstreet where you'll also find a museum and the line's workshops. The steam railway is about 45 minutes' drive away, but can also be reached by local bus, via Newport. www.iwsteamrailway.co.uk
This fantasy theme park is a big hit with children of all ages. Attractions include Cowboy village, 'Fantasyland', maze and the giant snakes and ladders. Adults may also enjoy the maritime exhibition and working sawmill. Blackgang is 20 minutes' drive from Freshwater Bay and in Summer can be reached using the 'Island Coaster' bus. www.blackgangchine.com
Ventnor Botanical Gardens
The island's rich climate enables Mediterranean plants to prosper. Enjoy magnificent floral displays and relaxing gardens. Ventnor is 30 minutes' drive from Freshwater Bay and in Summer can be reached using the 'Island Coaster' bus. www.botanic.co.uk
Travel to Freshwater Bay
Our address is: Freshwater Bay House, Freshwater Bay, Isle of Wight PO40 9RB
By ferry & transfer - great value!
We offer a reduced price ferry and transfer ticket - just £22 return for adults and £12 for children. This includes a foot passenger ticket for the Lymington to Yarmouth ferry, plus a connecting transfer to Freshwater Bay.
Our transfers operate every Saturday and Wednesday (Friday and Monday in the low season). These connect with the 1500 or 1600 ferries from Lymington. On departure day the transfer will get you back to Yarmouth in time to catch the 0845 or 1005 ferries to the mainland.
Book your tickets at least 7 days in advance by calling our Reservations team on 0345 470 7558.
The nearest train station is Lymington Pier on the mainland. This is immediately adjacent to the ferry terminal. For train times and general rail enquiries visit www.nationalrail.co.uk or call 03457 484950 (from outside the UK call +44 20 7278 5240).
The Lymington to Yarmouth ferry is the most convenient for Freshwater Bay - see www.wightlink.co.uk
Alternatively the Southampton to East Cowes ferry is often the cheapest option if you want to take your car to the Isle of Wight - see www.redfunnel.co.uk
From Yarmouth turn right out of the ferry terminal onto the A3054 and over the bridge across the River Yar. After 1 mile turn left down Pixley Hill, signposted to Freshwater Bay. At the double roundabout by the Co-op turn left onto the A3055 and follow this road to the seafront at Freshwater Bay. Turn right passing the Albion Hotel on the left. The entrance to Freshwater Bay House is beyond on your left.
Alternatively leave your car on the mainland and travel to the Isle of Wight as a foot passenger. There is a pay and display car park at Lymington Pier - price £8.20 per day.
Travelling from overseas
If you're travelling from Europe the most convenient airport is at Southampton. From Southampton Airport Parkway station (adjacent to the airport terminal) there are regular trains to Lymington Pier - journey time 40 minutes). See www.nationalrail.co.uk for details.
For most guests, travelling to either London Heathrow or London Gatwick airport is the best option. See www.nationalrail.co.uk for onward connections by train to Lymington Pier.
Dates & Prices
We're sorry, there are no dates available for this holiday at the moment. Please check out our other tours and breaks or call our team on 0345 470 8558 to be notified of new dates as soon as they become available.
Prices are per person