While thousands of families flocking to the sandy shores of Bournemouth, Great Yarmouth or the rocky sands of Brighton, the transport enthusiasts among you would do better than to take your UK holiday on the Isle of Wight. This green island may be compact, but it has a wide and cultured history of water and rail transportation.
Whether you’re a fervent train spotter who’s dying to examine the extensive steam rail collection or you have a passion for the intimate intricacies of the mechanics behind the great lords of the ocean, the Isle of Wight is the go-to place for transport enthusiasts.
If you’re interested in taking a trip back into a bygone time, head to the Isle of Wight steam railway. The elaborate craftsmanship of the Victorian era railways may be forgotten to most, however this is not so at the Isle of Wight steam railway. The careful restoration of the gems of the Victorian railways began over 40 years ago in the early 1970s, as the railway celebrated its 40th anniversary last year.
Take a trip through the beautiful island and sample the natural delights of the countryside, or the lively seaside towns. Head to the museum to soak up the incredible history of the steam railroad or step inside the workshop where the magic is created.
Feel free to ask questions and educate yourself on one of the most popular transport antiquities.
Classic Boat Museum
If your heart belongs to sea and the amazing ships that float upon it, take a trip to Newport Harbour where you will find yourself awestruck by the Classic Boat Museum. Witness their extraordinary collection of classic boats dating back to the 19th century and find yourself immersed in the colourful history of the old war boats, or the machinery that helped navigate them over unfriendly enemy waters.
Featuring an extensive collection of power boats, sailing boats and rowing boats, there is plenty here to satisfy your curiosity. As well as the physical collection of boats, there is also a photographic collection, featuring many boats that have long since been destroyed.
With low prices and so much to see, there’s no excuse not to visit this wonderfully preserved museum, and with Newport Beach nearby, you can take your whole family and later enjoy the beach where many of these boats once set sail.
For transport enthusiasts everywhere, the Isle of Wight is the best place to go for seeing the history of the more unconventional British transportation. For the best weather, plan your trip between April and September and make it a family vacation you’ll never forget.