Today we left extra early to wrestle with the train ticket machine only to find the ticket office manned! The ferry was a few minutes late leaving and as a result, we missed the Ventnor bus by 1 minute (how come IOW buses leave on time?) despite our sprint down the pier. Half an hour later we were on our way with a great view from the front seat of the top deck. It was just over an hour to Ventnor by which time it was 12:30 and time for lunch part 1! And we did have a great view.
We came out of the Landslip and down towards Luccombe which was very pleasant and with some nice looking hotels. A knackering flight of steps took us down to the seafront and a long though flat walk past Shanklin and on to Sandown.
At last we started walking, a long way down to the sea wall but then a really long stretch of this to Bonchurch before we had to start climbing up through woodland to the Landslip. The land originally slipped in 1810 and is still sliding slowly towards the sea. The woodland walking had some very tough uphill sections, but calories were being burned off and it became necessary for lunch part 2. We were passed by a very fit and totally un-sweaty woman who was quite clearly a gym teacher! Several other ladies trailed on behind her, and they were clearly not enjoying the walk as much as she was!
But we still had to get back to Ryde! So we opted for the train, which was about a mile away and because we had to go down the subway we missed the train that had just pulled in by 1 minute! A half-hour wait for the next one and then we were on our way, in the London Underground carriages that were brought into use in 1966 for a truly bucking bronco ride!
And of course, we had just missed a ferry and still being winter service, we had to wait an hour for the next one…….time for a coffee! But we had a really great day out, the weather was wonderful and the walk was so enjoyable. The actual walk was 6 miles, but in the end we clocked up 9. We left Copse Close at 9:00 and arrived home at 7:00.
8. Ventnor to Sandown - or a tale of missed connections.