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Step back in time

Isle of Wight Culture & Heritage

A historical Island

The Isle of Wight is steeped in history. From the Royals to the Romans, from fossils to architectural wonders, you can travel back in time and soak up the past.

Queen Victoria made her family home here at Osborne House in East Cowes. Our royal resident inspired thousands of visitors who have marvelled at the Island’s spectacular landscapes and ancient history.

Carisbrooke Castle sits on a hill overlooking Newport, the Island’s county town, and was home to Charles I days before his execution. Historic churches and stunning architecture abound in every part of the Island, from Brading’s medieval town hall to Quarr Abbey, a working monastery and home of the Islands Benedictine monks, where 12th century ruins mingle with the imposing towers of its more modern successor.

During the Victorian era the Island was frequented by the cream of British society, with Poet laureate Alfred Lord Tennyson and pioneering photographer Julia Margaret Cameron taking up residence in Freshwater, along with visits from eminent figures such as Karl Marx and Charles Dickens. Today Julia Margaret Cameron’s work can be seen at Dimbola Lodge museum.

Brading Roman Villa showcases one of the finest selections of Roman mosaics in Europe in their award-winning visitor centre.

The Island’s spectacular coastline bears the marks made by even earlier visitors, making the Island a popular destination for fossil hunters.

Explore the Isle of Wight’s military past from ancient conquests to castles and forts and learn about the PLUTO pipeline used to provided fuel to the allies following the D-Day landing.


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