Thursday 12 November 2009

A couple of jolly reviews of the Isle of Wight

We think the Isle of Wight is so great we live here.  Don't just take our word for it though.  We keep falling over reviews of the Island singing it's praises on various blogs.

A review of a short break coming over on Red Funnel - whose car ferry docks an iPhone's throw from the Wightstay offices - have a look at the A Modern Mother blog.

If you're more interested in walking, why not check Gareth's Walk and Travel Blog?  He recounts a great bank holiday weekend in the West Wight.  Good food, great views and wonderful fresh air.

What more could you ask for from a Staycation?!

Tuesday 27 October 2009

The Isle of Wight rakes in tourism awards!

Wightstay offer their huge congratulations to businesses and events on the Isle of Wight, following their success at the Tourism South East ExSELlence Awards 2009!

The awards ceremony took place at the Wentworth Club in Surrey, and the Isle of Wight was without a doubt the winner, with nominations in nearly every category!!

The results are as follows...

Silver Award Winners

Tourism Event of the Year - Isle of Wight Walking Festival
Best Tourism Experience Award - Seaview Wildlife Encounter
Caravan/Holiday Park of the Year - Old Mill Holiday Park
Self Catering Holiday of the Year - Mersley Farm

Highly Commended Award Winners

Access for All - Sunny Bay Apartments
Caravan/Holiday Park of the Year - The Orchards Holiday Park
Flavour of the South East - The Garlic Farm
Sustainable Tourism Award - Bedford Lodge

Proof positive that the Isle of Wight is tops when it comes to places to visit in the UK - and for places to stay on the Isle of Wight, take a look at the rest of the Wightstay - with hotels, bed and breakfasts, camping, touring and holiday parks, great attractions, the Isle of Wight really is the best place to visit - especially this half term!

Monday 26 October 2009

Catch the tail-end of an indian summer on the Isle of Wight this half-term

Occasionally the Isle of Wight feels just like the rest of the UK, but on so many days it feels genuinely special.

This morning was one of those days, despite the clocks having done their thing on Sunday.  First day of half-term and walking to the office was warm enough without a jacket - it's shirt-sleeves for us!  We have a light wind, very little cloud and beautiful sun.

Given the weather, we just couldn't resist a couple of photos on the way in to the office.  Here's the view across Cowes Harbour:

With the Solent pretty much flat calm and the Red Funnel boats coming and going.

Here's the view up-river, past the Cowes Ferry (or Floating Bridge), the listed Hammerhead crane, towards UKSA:

If you're still thinking about taking the kids somewhere this week then you might be able to pick up a last minute deal on self-catering from our friends at Wight Farm Holidays.  Or maybe one of the hotels on Wightstay, such as Luccumbe Manor Country House Hotel or Melville Hall Hotel would suit your needs better?

Not only is the weather good, but the sea is still warm enough to enjoy a bracing dip from one of the Blue-Flag approved beaches on the south coast.  Sandown, Shanklin and Ventnor all hold the Blue Flag for cleanliness - that's three out of a total of only 40 beaches across the whole of the south and south-west England which reach the Blue Flag standard.  All of the Island's beaches are also currently testing above the higher recommended water quality standards, as well as getting 10/10 from us for the stunning views from them!

If you have any photos of the Island's beaches you'd like to share, do mail them in to us here at Wightstay and we'll be sure to show the best ones in a future post!

Friday 23 October 2009

Another busy weekend on the Isle of Wight, OR Something for the kids to do over half-term!

It' such a busy weekend on the Isle of Wight I'm not sure I know where to begin!

There's Isle of Wight Walking Festival Weekend - I said about that a couple of days ago - and of course on Saturday there is the Friendship Walk supporting Breast Cancer Awareness Month - expect to see a whole host of people dressed up at the Western Yar on Saturday 24 October. This four mile walk around the estuary offers a wealth of heritage and wildlife sights and ends in a pink party with tea and cake, so remember to bring your party hats and pink outfits. Wightlink are also offering mainland participants free foot passenger travel from Lymington to Yarmouth making it the perfect event to invite all your family and friends along to. day, as we try to turn the entire place into the Isle of Pink!

There are plenty of Isle of Pink events taking place over the half-term holidays too! Pink fundraising activities will be taking place at Havenstreet Steam Railway during their wizard week, Blackgang Chine will become Pinkgang Chine as everyone is invited to dress up in pink witches and wizards outifts to take part in ther fancy dress competition and pink tresaure hunt on 29th Ocotober and Isle of Wight Zoo at Sandown will be holding a pink Halloween event on saturday 31st October. All the money raised from the Isle of Pink will help Breast Cancer Campaign get a step closer to beating breast cancer!

This weekend also see the V-Bay Festival - and if you haven't heard of it before, let me explain!

Dubbed the hippest resort, Ventnor is a vibrant place, filled with cultural history, great bars, stunning coastal views - I could go on, but the best way to find out is to visit yourself!

The V-Bay Festival hass been called the finale to a great Isle of Wight summer - and they're right! WIth so much going on, the town is filled with sights and sounds - from the Speakeasy Night with cabaret, jazz, casino and cocktails, a celebration of 50 years of Motown, pirate fancy dress parties, real ale festival and seafood festival, fun for kids and adults!

So much going on this week-end and through into half term week! The Island is a great place to visit for a week-end or even the whole week - so stop the kids getting bored this half-term and bring them to the Isle of Wight - with so many great hotels, guesthouses and B&B's, camping and touring sites to choose from, WightStay is the best place to look for your fun on the Isle of Wight!

Wednesday 21 October 2009

Isle of Wight Walking Festival Weekend!

It may be not be the tropical sunshine of the summer, but the Isle of Wight is still a great place to visit at this time of year - and with plenty to do (especially with the schools half-term coming up), make the Isle of Wight your place to stay this weekend and beyond.

More later this week about what to do over half term, but first this weekend!

You can join in with the special Weekend Isle of Wight Walking Festival - an extra event to the already massive 16 day festival Isle of Wight Walking Festival (the largest of its kind in Europe), it is an opportunity to take part in all sorts of walks - wild food walks, twilight walks, friendship walks (part of Breast Cancer Awareness Month), Nordic Walk, a treasure hunt - and of course, at this time of year - spooky ghost walks!

Come to the Isle of Wight this weekend and find somewhere to stay with WightStay. We have just what you're looking for, be it a hotel in Shanklin, a bed and breakfast in Freshwater, and farmhouse cottage in Newchurch, WightStay is the best place to start your search!

Thursday 15 October 2009

The Isle of Wight on the BBC Inside Out South!

Just a quick one - if you don't live in the southern region, then you may have missed the brilliant Inside Out South programme from the BBC. This weeks' feature included an report from Ben Southall, the man who landed what was billed the best job in the world, by looking after a tropical island off the coast of Australia. He visited the Isle of Wight with a camera crew to get a taste of what his job could cover - and left amazed by the amount that this small island off the south coast of Britain can offer - especially weather wise!

You can see what Ben thinks of the Isle of Wight by clicking here - Ben's piece on the Island starts approximately 20 minutes in and is available on the BBC iplayer until at least 19th Ocotber... He may think he has the best job in the world - but compared to living here, that's nothing!

Ben was particularly taken by Vintage Vacations - take a look at what they have to offer, maybe you fancy being part of the frontier spirit!

If that isn't your cup of tea (or plate of beans!) then have a look at some of the camping and touring parks on the Isle of Wight, our lovely hotels in Newport, Sandown and Freshwater, our self catering farmhouse cottages and chalets - all here on WightStay - the guide to the Isle of Wight!

Wednesday 14 October 2009

Come and see the Isle of Wight in all its Autumn Glory

It is definitely Autumn now on the Island - the pretty kind though - the sun is still shining, the air is brisk - step outside and take deep lungfuls of fresh air - sea air, if you are right by the coast!

It is a photographers paradise here - country lanes where the leaves are turning golden, clear pathways across rolling hills with views to the mainland, or away across the English Channel, beaches where the waves roll in against the cliffs, shooting spray high and wide...

Now is an ideal time to visit the Isle of Wight, and at WightStay, we have all kinds of accommodation to tempt you to stay on the Isle of Wight. Have a look at our new list of camping and touring sites on the Isle of Wight, our hotels in Sandown and Freshwater, and our self catering cottages and chalets - farm and country holidays to suit you! One great example is Gurnard Pines, set within 55 acres of woodland and just a short stroll from the beach, it is a beautiful place to stay - and you'll see exactly what I mean about Autumn colours there.

Many of our hotels, B&B's and self catering locations also carry special offers - give them a call, or check out the website to see who has the best deals!

photo courtesy of the Isle of Wight Bus Museum

This Sunday on the Isle of Wight sees the Vintage Bus Museum in Newport open their (big) garage doors for their Annual Autumn Running Day. Vintage buses of all description will be running to a special timetable, as well as a Grand Vintage Display at the museum itself - ideal for touring the Isle of Wight and seeing this beautiful Island - just don't forget to bring a camera!

Two Bristol K Buses will celebrate their 70th anniversary by running on the Island. Photo courtesy of Grahame Bowler.

Friday 9 October 2009

Go Yellow Day for the EarlMountbatten Hospice with Netguides and WightStay

What a day! The WightStay team have been out and about with our tame gorilla collecting money for the Earl Mountbatten Hospice on Go Yellow Day.

Take a look at the photos, as people queued to get on to the Red Funnel car ferry from East Cowes, they were treated to the sight of our gorilla and his handlers giving away bananas - nearly 500 of them!

Those waiting dug deep and put money in the collection tins, which filled very quickly!

With lots of great monkey music blasting out from our speakers, we hope that everyone had fun - the smiles on the faces of children in particular was brilliant.

We can't thank enough Lynn and Sandra at That's Service Party Shop for helping us out with the gorilla suit and Darren, Alexa and the team at Red Funnel for letting us take over the car park, and collect money for this great charity.

And of course - a huge thank you to everyone who gave so generously!

If you weren't on the Island, then you missed out on your free banana - why not take a look at WightStay and our selection of great hotels on the Isle of Wight, our list of lovely self catering cottages and apartments on the Isle of Wight, or our bed and breakfast choices, or the camping and touring sites on the Isle of Wight!

Once again, thank you to everyone who gave money - we hope you enjoyed the bananas!

Thursday 8 October 2009

One day left to Go Yellow Day

Thursday and the sun is shining bright on the Isle of Wight!

Here at WightStay, we're getting ready for tomorrow - Go Yellow Day is taking place tomorrow - people across the Isle of Wight are getting ready to take part in all sorts of yellow related tom-foolery, all in aid of the Earl Mountbatten Hospice!

Now, we're a bit concerned that the boss may go ape, but we're not afraid to use some gorilla tatics, as we go bananas and monkey around...

Enough puns - on Go Yellow Day, the normally very quiet and serious team at WightStay and Netguides will be donning their favourite gorilla suit courtesy of the very kind people at That's Service Party Shop and giving away bananas - supplied by Manor Farm Produce, whilst collecting money for the Earl Mountbatten Hospice, who need every penny to continue their great work in providing the Islands' centre of excellence in caring for people with life-shortening illnesses - and their families and carers.

So, if you see us in the car park at Red Funnel car ferry terminal at East Cowes (thank you Red Funnel for letting us do this!), acting like the 'Jungle VIP', then stop and give some money to this great cause - we look forward to seeing you! And at some point the team from the Hospice and Isle of Wight Radio will be making an appearance to help out! Don't worry - pictures to follow...

As for business as normal - if you are coming to the Island for a short break, maybe a self catering cottage holiday on the Isle of Wight, a weekend stay at a hotel in Sandown, or self-catering apartment in Freshwater, then look no further than WightStay!

Monday 5 October 2009

The Isle of Wight - or Pink - or Red - and now even Yellow!

Autumn on the Isle of Wight is all about the colours - the sky goes from bright blue to a range of dramatic shades; the leaves on the trees take on their autumn hues - from green to red, to yellow, to brown; the scarves come out around the necks of schoolchildren, dazzling in their array of colours...

All very poetic - but the Isle of Wight itself? We know that it is National RED Squirrel week, and there are plenty of opportunities to see these cute and increasingly rare creatures; and that this month the Isle of Wight aims to become the Isle of PINK to help raise awareness and support for the Breast Cancer Campaign; but did you know that this Friday it is Go YELLOW Day here on the Isle of Wight?

Go Yellow Day is in support of the Earl Mounbatten Hospice - and anybody who has come to visit the Isle of Wight during the Isle of Wight Festival or Bestival will have seen the Earl Mountbatten Hospice collecting money by selling huge sunflowers (now the must-have addition for any festival-goer of style and taste)

Across the Island, people are wearing yellow, selling yellow cakes, even climbing the equivalent height of Mount Everest - all to support the Island's only hospice which needs every penny of support it can generate to provide hospice care to the patients with life-limiting conditions and their families on the Isle of Wight.

If you are coming to the Isle of Wight this week, perhaps you might like to take part in the fun and raise money for this worthwhile cause!

Come and stay at one of our many hotels on the Isle of Wight, our camping and touring sites on the Isle of Wight, or our bed and breakfasts in Shanklin, Sandown, Freshwater, Cowes - everywhere on the Isle of Wight!

What are WightStay doing on Go Yellow Day? I'll let you know later in the week!
(Notice I resisted the urge to mis-spell the Isle of Wight to Isle of WHITE...)

Friday 2 October 2009

National Red Squirrel Week on the Isle of Wight

What a beautiful day on the Isle of Wight! The sun is shining, people are still walking around in shorts and t-shirts - Indian summer? No - on Isle of Wight the summer just lasts longer!

This month, the name is changing to the Isle of Pink - but this week coming on the Isle of Wight is a chance to see something that very few places in the UK can boast... The Island is a desingated grey squirrel free area - we only have the red squirrel here and this week is the Wildlife Trusts' National Red Squirrel Week.

If you are interested in the red squirrel - perhaps you've never seen one - then visit the Isle of Wight this week! The red squirrel is the only squirrel native to the UK - contact Helen Butler who runs the Wight Squirrel Project to book on one of her walks, or take part in the workshop which shows you how to spot the signs of these shy creatures - and you may even see one yourself! Give her a call on 01983 611003 or email .

If you need somewhere to stay whilst out spotting squirrels, then WightStay is here to help - we have many hotels, camping sites, guesthouses and bed and breakfasts to choose from Shanklin to Totland, Ryde to Ventnor and all points between!

Come and see these rare and beuatiful creatures, whose numbers have been declining on the UK mainland for many years, but thrive on the Isle of Wight - we look forward to seeing you soon!

Thursday 1 October 2009

Visit the Isle of Wight - or even the Isle of Pink!

Pinch, punch first of the month! October has rolled around on the Isle of Wight, the air has the clean crisp feeling to it, and the sun is still shining!

There is plenty to do on the Isle of Wight - or this month as it is known - the Isle of Pink!

The Guildhall in Newport turns pink with the help of the people from Happy Daze!

As part of the Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the Island will see a series of events to raise awareness and funds for the campaign. This month, the aim is to raise £40 000 for the Breast Cancer Campaign on the Isle of Wight and £3.5 million nationally, and there will be many opportunities to do it - so if you want to help out, visit the Isle of Wight (I mean Pink!) and join in the many fun events - or even organise your own Pink event!

If you visit the Botanic Gardens in Ventnor, you can place a pink ribbon around a tree - or at the Isle of Wight Zoo in Sandown you can celebrate Halloween in style - as long as your style is Pink! More details to come over the next few days and weeks...

With plenty of places to stay on the Isle of Wight, you won't be short of great hotels in Sandown, camping in the countryside or self catering cottages in Freshwater.

The sea's still lovely and warm after a great summer and the beaches are deserted. What are you waiting for?

Come and stay on the Isle of Wight - and paint the town PINK!

Thursday 24 September 2009

The Isle of Wight - for all your cycling, sweetcorn and wine needs...

Happy Arthur's Day! (Guinness drinkers will know what I mean!)

What a beautiful day it is on the Isle of Wight - the sun is shining, and it's heading to be a lovely 21 degrees! Today is not a day to be stuck in the office, I should be out enjoying the weather - plenty of rides to enjoy today as the Isle of Wight Cycling Festival continues, especially the Chale Pub Trail - let's see what I can do to get out of work early today...

Where does the week go? I'm not too fussed though, I can see the end of the working week in the distance - which means it's time to start kicking back and relaxing on the Isle of Wight!

Although looking at our events diary for this week and weekend, I'm going to have to pick and choose where I relax...

The Isle of Wight Cycling Festival is reaches it's climax this weekend with many events taking place. On Saturday, the Great Island Challenge is on - teams learn to crew a yacht and take it around the Isle of Wight, and then if that wasn't enough, they then cycle around the Island!

The Hills Killer Challenge is on Sunday - take your pick of 3 Hills, 7 Hills or the massive 14 Hills challenge - not one for the faint-hearted! Sunday also sees the Recycle The Island event - with two routes to choose from, it's an ideal way to support the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance service.

Along with a variety of other cycle related events, it brings this year's Isle of Wight Cycling Festival to a close - but that isn't all on the Isle of Wight this weekend!

As part of British Food Fortnight, Arreton Barns are holding their annual Sweetcorn Fayre, including an attempt at the record for the world's largest sweetcorn fritter! Alongside other sweetcorn recipes and a host of food stuffs, including local ales (I know where I'm off to this weekend!), the Sweetcorn Fayre will also be holding the Farmer Jacks' Sausage competition to decide the Isle of Wights' best sausage... It all happens this weekend at Arreton Barns!

The Isle of Wight Steam Railway are holding their annual Wine Festival this weekend too - whether you have a nose for fine wine, or just enjoy the grape, then this is for you - wines from around the world and closer to home are on offer - all set in the ambience of a genuine steam railway station!

WightStay is the ideal way to search for your place to stay on the Isle of Wight - with many great hotels, bed and breakfasts, camping or caravan sites - stop to take a look at what we have to offer - and start enjoying your holiday on the Isle of Wight!

Now then, which first, sweetcorn or sausages, the beer or wine?

pictures courtesy of Isle of Wight Council

Wednesday 23 September 2009

Catch up on the Isle of Wight Cycling Festival with WightStay

Mid-week on the Isle of Wight and the Isle of Wight Cycling Festival is on track to be a huge success as year after year more people come to the Isle of Wight to take part in 9 days of cycling fun!

So far this week there have been plenty of routes on offer, and some of the most popular rides have been for charity - the Pedal 4 Parkinsons and Cycle The Wight for the British Heart Foundation, raising money and awareness for these two organisations. Of course, the hilarious Sink Or Swim also took place on Sunday - we'll have pictures of that soon, but in the meantime this is last years' winner...

The fun doesn't end there – over the next few days there are story telling rides, a picnic on wheels, a dinosaur ride and for those that really prefer their routes to have a more liquid angle, there is a pub trail to follow too!
This weekend is the finale, with the Hills Killer Challenge and the ReCyle The Island route, raising money and awareness for the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance – more on that later this week.
And cycling isn't all the Island has to offer either – more news on a wine tasting festival and a huge bowls tournament in our next blog!
So, if you're looking to take part in these events and need somewhere to stay on the Isle of Wight, then look no further than our own guide - with plenty of lovely hotels, bed and breakfasts, self catering or camping and touring park, WightStay has it covered!
With plenty to offer, the Isle of Wight is the ideal place to take that end of summer break!

Friday 18 September 2009

Isle of Wight Businesses Shortlisted in Tourism Awards!

Great news for the Isle of Wight as Island business have been shortlisted for top awards - and at WightStay, we are all about celebrating good news!

"A wide range of Island businesses have been shortlisted for this year's prestigious Tourism ExSEllence Awards.
The awards recognise excellence, quality and innovation achieved over the last 18 months and categories cover all sectors of the industry, from bed and breakfasts to large exclusive hotels and visitor attractions.
Island businesses shortlisted include: Sunny Bay Apartments, Shanklin (Access for All Tourism Award), Seaview Wildlife Encounter, Seaview (Best Tourism Experience), Old Mill Holiday Park, St Helens (Caravan/Holiday Park of the Year), The Orchards Holiday Park, Newbridge (Caravan/Holiday Park of the Year), The Garlic Farm, Newchurch (Flavour of the South East and Self Catering Holiday of the Year), IW Walking Festival (Tourism Event of the Year), and Bedford Lodge, Shanklin (Sustainable Tourism Award).
The winners will be announced and the awards presented at a glittering gala dinner to be hosted at the exclusive Wentworth Club, Surrey, on Thursday, October 22."

Courtesy of the Isle of Wight County Press

WightStay offer their congratulations to all the business shortlisted, proving once again that the Isle of Wight is a top destination for holidays in the UK!

Thursday 17 September 2009

Isle of Wight Cycling Festival 2009 starts this weekend - or On Yer Bike mate!

The popular Isle of Wight Cycling Festival is upon us once again - 8 days of cycle related activities for the fit, enthusiastic - or if you're like me - someone who quite likes a gentle ride taking in the scenery!

This years' cycling festival is bigger and better than ever, with a host of different events to take part in - including the popular (or should I say infamous!) Sink Or Swim event - pedal across the river Medina without sinking - it can be done...

With many different routes available, the Isle of Wight Cycling Festival is a great opportunity to get out and enjoy some of the last of the summer sun on the Isle of Wight. Try the gentle family cycle to the launch event on Saturday, which takes in the cycle path between Cowes and Newport... Or really go for it on the last day of the cycling festival, in the 3 Hills, 7 Hills or even 14 Hills Killer challenge, a test of endurance and strength for anybody brave enough!

With a whole week of events in between, the Isle of Wight Cycling Festival has something for everybody, and gives you the chance to take in some of the stunning views the Isle of Wight has to offer.

Looking for somewhere to stay on the Island? Do you need a hotel in Sandown, a B&B in Newport or a campsite in Freshwater? Take a look at some of the accommodation on the Isle of Wight on our pages, and enjoy the Isle of Wight Cycling Festival 2009!

Some of the slightly more fit members of our team will let you know how they are getting on next week - I better get going, I have a puncture to fix!

Wednesday 16 September 2009

International Charity Classic Car show rolls onto the Isle of Wight

If you're into classic cars, then this weekend on the Isle of Wight is just for you! Classic cars of all shapes and sizes will be on display - a unique collection, hand-picked by organiser Vic Gallucci.

You can see these cars in two locations - on Saturday they will be at Newport Town Quay between 11am and 5.30pm (and just up the Quay is the launch of the Isle of Wight Cycling Festival - more about that later!). On Sunday, these beautiful cars will be on show at Ryde Esplanade's North Walk, between 11am and 5.30pm - and all in the name of charity - proceeds from the two events will be going towards the Barely Born appeal (a charity supporting a new Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at St Mary's Hospital on the Isle of Wight), and the Earl Mountbatten Hospice, providing care for terminally ill patients and their families on the Isle of Wight.

The International Charity Classic Car show is in its 8th year and over 800 cars will be on display, classic cars, retro cars, custom cars and motorbikes, cars from films, and in the 50th anniversary year of the Mini, there will be plenty of those around the Isle of Wight as well!

People from across the UK and Europe will be exhibiting their treasured and rare cars on the Isle of Wight - so come along and make a weekend of it! Stay in one of our many hotels on the Isle of Wight, B&B's and touring or camping sites on the Isle of Wight - just have a look on our pages to find your place to stay.

Monday 14 September 2009

Bestival + Kids = fun!

This year has been a new experience for me - Rob Da Bank's Bestival, with two small kids. We were initially a bit apprehensive about taking two under three years to such a big event, but it was great; with a really family-friendly atmosphere. Although the site at Robin Hill is big it's not over-crowded, so unless you choose to dive into the melee in front of the main stage it's reasonably easy to keep an eye on little ones. Bestival-goers were very considerate and gave me a wide berth when I had a baby carrier on my back, which was really good.

The larger of our girls said she had an amazing time at the 'big party at the theme park' with lots of running around and dancing. The great thing about the location is that she could use the play attractions within Robin Hill, as well as everything else that had been laid on, including a specific kids area. The wide variety of rides and stalls really added to her enjoyment of the event.

With the beaches so close we were able to escape from the Bestival. We had a packed lunch on the beach at Colwell Bay on Sunday. Autumn on the Island's beaches is lovely as there's plenty of space. The sun's also not nearly as strong, so there's much less worry about sunburn. The tail end of the summer also means lovely warm sea, which the kids love for paddling and swimming on the safe, clean beach.

After our daughters enjoying the Bestival so much we are hoping to be able to go in 2010, although it'll be a tough choice between the Isle of Wight Festival in June and the Bestival in September. Maybe we'll take the kids to both!

What to do this weekend? Visit the Isle of Wight!

Another Bestival weekend over! And what a weekend - a good time had by all on Wightstay - and the weather held out too! I had a brilliant time, surrounded by great friends, with some fantastic music - roll on next year, that's all I can say! Check out another of our team's take on Bestival with kids in the next post...

Autumn on the Isle of Wight still has lots to offer. This weekend is no exception. Four big events are taking place this weekend on the Isle of Wight, and you can be part of them. Just work out where to stay on the Isle of Wight, and come over with your bike for the Isle of Wight Cycling festival.

Watch and cheer the entrants to the Wight Challenge - the charity team event raising money for the Wessex Heartbeat appeal. Come and see the International Classic Car Show with sites in Newport and Ryde. More details to follow...

Visit the Isle of Wight and see what you're missing! Have a look at our pages for places to stay on the Isle of Wight.

Friday 11 September 2009

Another great weekend ahead for the Isle of Wight (or 50 000 people can't be wrong!)

It's a bright and brisk day on the Isle of Wight today - and people travelling across the Solent to get to the Bestival for a weekend of fun and madness are certainly in the mood (we can hear them on the ferry from the WightStay office!)
Your holiday on the Isle of Wight starts as soon as you get on the ferry, or the hovercraft - but of course there are other ways to get across the short stretch of water...
Many people sail their own boats to one of the many beautiful harbours on the Isle of Wight - and this weekend is no exception. Cowes is busy with the  Little Britain Challenge Cup, four days of racing organised by - and for - the construction industry. Not only a series of races in the Solent, the onshore activities are equally renowned - cocktail parties and dinner functions - with 3000 competitors, Little Britain is the second biggest regatta in the UK (Cowes Week itself is the largest!)
There is, of course, a serious side to the Little Britain Challenge Cup - over the years they have raised more than £1 million for sailing charities - last year alone, they raised £110 000! Mind you, even when they're raising the money, they are definitely having fun...
It's another busy weekend ahead - looking for somewhere to stay on the Isle of Wight? Then have a look at the accommodation pages on WightStay, listing lots of caravan sites, camping sites, self catering, B+B's and hotels on the Isle of Wight.
Whatever you're up to this weekend, have fun!

Wednesday 9 September 2009

Bestival 2009

You can almost taste the excitement in the air here on the Isle of Wight and in the WightStay office! It's the one thing everyone is talking about right now - Bestival 2009 is nearly upon us, and with only one more sleep until it opens at Robin Hill Country Park, everyone is rushing around sorting out their fancy dress costume (amongst many things, Bestival is famous for it's crazy themes - and this years' is no exception - Space)

WightStay is pleased that Bestival curator Rob Da Bank has managed to include so many great bands this year, and as the last big music festival of the season, now is the time to really let your hair down in style - and it's a great opportunity to go star spotting (no pun intended) with Radio 1 broadcasting from the site, and lots of famous people making their way down to this incredibly popular event.

Here at WightStay, we're working out exactly which of the many bands on different stages we're going to catch! Top bands Massive Attack and Kraftwerk are making appearance, Lily Allen will be there, as well as rising star Little Boots! There is a great selection local bands playing too including Hugo Frusslinky. Me, I'm definitely going to see Seasick Steve (I missed him last time he played Bestival, no chance of that this year!)

But where to stay on the Isle of Wight? Do we camp out under the stars, or do we look for somewhere with slightly more creature comforts? Plenty of choices are on the WightStay website right now, so take a look at the site, and with great transport links to Robin Hill Country Park, you can enjoy everything Bestival has to offer! Now, I know I put my moon boots down somewhere...

WightStay - the original holiday guide to the Isle of Wight since 1996

WightStay - the original holiday guide to the Isle of Wight since 1996 - is in the process of undergoing a facelift - and we can barely contain our excitement! So we're here to keep you up-to-date with a few of the changes to site...

WightStay is different - we won't just bombard you with pictures of where you can sleep on the Isle of Wight - we want to help you enjoy your stay on our Island - make the most of your holiday on the Isle of Wight and see why we love it!

The Isle of Wight is the perfect place to visit - if you like cycling, walking, sailing, flying, paragliding, steam trains and steam boats or just sitting on a beach - then the Island is for you.

Perhaps you're coming for the Isle of Wight Festival, the Bestival, Cowes Week, the Garlic Festival, the Walking Festival or the Cycling Festival, any of our wonderful carnivals including the UK's oldest carnival in Ryde...

Or you want to enjoy the perfect family fun holiday with trips to our theme parks at Blackgang Chine or Robin Hill, attractions such as the Dinosaur Museum, Dinosaur Farm, the Needles Pleasure Park, and then take the kids out to one of the many family friendly places to eat on the Island...

Maybe you want to get away from it all with long walks on the Island (much of the Isle of Wight is designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest), or enjoy an intimate meal in one our many restaurants, pubs or hotels... ***breaking news - The Hambrough in Ventnor has just been voted as one of the top 50 places to eat in the UK according to the Good Food Guide 2010 - congratulations from all at WightStay to Chef Patron Robert Thompson!***

The Isle of Wight has so much to offer the visitor - and WightStay is the best place to start looking - keep visiting here to see how WightStay is developing, working to bring you much more useful information to help you make the most of the Isle of Wight!