One of the star attractions of the Isle of Wight is the 67-mile coastal path that encircles the island. It attracts walkers, hikers, and runners the world over! Much of this well-signposted path runs atop the cliffs (‘downs’), affording wonderful coastal views as you wind through spectacular grasslands. For runners, the route varies in difficulty, ranging from sections that are flat with easier footing to steep, challenging sections with more uneven footing. The Tourism Council has put together a wonderful guide to the Coastal Path, dividing it into six sections, with excellent maps, information, & directions.
Easiest Sections of Coastal Path for Running
Ryde to Seaview. ~2.5 miles, Sandown-Ryde Section, ferry terminal to marker 6. Fairly level. Combine with waterfront path for a nice loop!
Ryde to Fishbourne. ~2.8 miles, Ryde-Cowes Section, markers 1-4. Quarr Abbey a highlight, well-made paths and pretty area/golf-course.
Sandown to Shanklin. ~2.5 miles, Niton-Sandown Section, markers 9-8 . Combine with waterfront path for a nice loop!
Colwell to Totland. ~1.5 miles, Yarmouth-Brighstone Section, markers 3-4. Very scenic!
Cowes to Gurnard. ~2 miles, Cowes-Yarmouth Section, markers 1-3 . Combine with waterfront path for a nice loop!
Scenic But More Challenging Sections for Running
Bembridge to Sandown ~4.4 miles, Sandown-Ryde Section, markers 1-4. Hilly at times, narrow in places, uneven in places.
Blackgang Chine to Freshwater Bay. ~11 miles, Brighstone-Niton/Yarmouth-Brighstone Sections. Some difficult terrain, all unmade paths, but spectacular.
Freshwater Bay to Alum Bay. ~3.5 miles, Yarmouth-Brighstone Section, markers 8-7. Steep, grassy hills with outstanding views. This is also part of the Tennyson Trail.
Alum Bay to Totland. ~2.4 miles, Yarmouth-Brighstone Section, markers 7-4. Over Headon Warren. Very uneven and steep in places.
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