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Tennyson Down Walk

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Invigorating Downland Walk

A 4-mile walk taking around 2 hours (with a quick picnic stop) from Freshwater Bay to the Needles, this is a well used part of the Isle of Wight Coastal Path offering wonderful views of the iconic Needles Rocks, and across to Old Harry Rocks in Dorset on a clear day. You'll pass a 19th century fort, a cold war rocket testing site, and a monument to the Victorian poet laureate Alfred, Lord Tennyson.

The walk can present a few challenges to the less ambulant such as gates and stiles, and long gradual inclines. There are no public toilets on the actual walk, but plenty at either end of it.



School Trip Information Sheet for Tennyson Down Walk
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Fun Factor 60%
Educational 50%


Average rating from past clients: 4 out of 5

Best Suited To

Tennyson Down Walk is best suited for children 7 years and up as well as adults


Tennyson Down Walk is great for all ages, but perhaps a little overwhelming for the very youngest visitors

Tennyson Down Walk FAQs

Here's some of the most frequently-asked questions about school visits to Tennyson Down Walk, posed by teachers and other group leaders

What happens in bad weather?

As well as rain, you also need to consider wind conditions. The walk is very high and exposed especially to southerly and south-westerly winds. Do not attempt the walk in bad weather.

What about toilets?

There are no facilities on the actual walk. There are public toilets at The Needles park as well as in Freshwater Bay, so make sure everyone "goes" before starting the walk, which can take 2+ hours.

What do we need to bring?

The walk is along exposed coast at high level. There are plenty of inclines. The paths are generally through grassland so could be muddy in places after periods of poor weather. Sturdy footwear is a must, along with suitable clothing for the predicted weather conditions throughout the walk. A water bottle is recommended.

Is there a map we can use?

National Trust recommend obtaining an OS Landranger 196 or OS Explorer OL29 map, however the route is well signed and well used, so most of our schools make do with this simple walking map instead - just follow the green/red dotted line

Include Tennyson Down Walk in your next Isle of Wight school trip!

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