Part of the charm of the Isle of Wight is that stepping onto the island feels like stepping back in time. Not only is the island home to miles of unspoiled countryside and coastline, but it's also packed with historical attractions. One of the most special attractions on the island is Bembridge Windmill, also known as Knowle Mill. Lying in Bembridge, on the Easternmost tip of the Isle of Wight, there's no shortage of excellent hotels and guesthouses close to the mill.
An Historical Relic
Bembridge Windmill is a true relic, dating back to 1700. The mill isn't just part of the island's history, it's also cemented into English culture, being included in a famous painting by J.W.M. Turner in 1795.
The four-storey tower mill is the Isle of Wight's only surviving windmill and is now open to the public in the summer months, thanks to the National Trust. Visitors can climb the tower and learn how the mechanics of a windmill really work. There's free parking and a kiosk serving ice cream, hot drinks and even souvenirs.
Pretty Bembridge and St. Helens
The village at Bembridge is one of the prettiest locations on the island. With a small inlet, the village provides access for boats, and so houses a small and pretty harbour. Visitors by water can enjoy the gentle stroll around the water's edge to the village. As well as a few eateries and pubs, the village is flanked by a stunning and quiet beach, which offers panoramic views out to the English Channel in one direction, and to the Solent in the other. From this peaceful spot, you can also enjoy views of Portsmouth's Spinnaker Tower.
There are a number of fine hotels on the Isle of Wight, with a handful in Bembridge itself. The Pilot Boat Inn and Mulberry Cottage B&B provide friendly accommodation, close to the waterfront. Guests can learn about the many fine walking trails in the area from their hotel staff.
A short walk up the hill on the northern side of the water will take visitors to St. Helens, a small, picturesque and quintessentially English village with a small shop and good-sized village green.