Sunday 23 February dawned as a reasonably bright, but windy day, and very much spur of the moment, I decided a trip to the Isle of Wight was in order, as you do!

A drive to Southsea, near Portsmouth, and we caught the Hovertravel hovercraft to Ryde on the Isle of Wight.  I’d never been on a commercial hovercraft before and this is the only commercial hovercraft service remaining in operation in the world.  The only previous experience of hovercraft I had had was on a very much smaller ‘hobby-hovercraft‘ such as the type that were raced at some point.  The crossing takes ‘less than 10 minutes’, so saved travelling time, and I would recommend it to anyone heading to the island.

Whilst on the island we managed to visit each of the nine railway stations that were in operation on that day …

Ryde Pier
Ryde Esplanade
Ryde St John’s Road
Brading
Sandown
Lake
Shanklin
Wroxall
Ventnor

The tenth station on the island at Smallbrook Junction only operates when the Isle of Wight Steam Railway, which has its terminus close by, is running.  Smallbrook Junction, and the heritage line, will be a good excuse to make another trip to the island at some point in the future.

Cooper also got to stretch his legs with a walk from Lake to Sandown stations, along the beach which he loved, and from Ryde Pier to Ryde Esplanade.

Back on the mainland we also took in Portsmouth Harbour and Portsmouth and Southsea stations before driving home.

All in all, a good day.

 

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