Seaside Bloggers: Chasing Wight

Sea marker with text "nothing feels better than the sea air rushing past"

Today’s post comes from a little closer to home. Right at home in fact, as Tom is now blogging away on his own little corner of the internet. I’m so in love with our little seaside town, I’m happy to have the excuse to share it from another perspective.

1) Tell me about your slice of coast and why you love it.

Being island dwellers, we’ve got a lot of coast around us. Cowes may not have the long sandy beaches of Sandown, or the rugged cliffs and coves of the south of the Wight, but our part of the coast is still pretty special. I love how the the sights from our stretch of coast are ever changing and always full of interest.

We’re a mecca for sailing, the waters of the Solent an irresistible lure for yachty types from around the world; but we also have regular visits from the imposing cruise and cargo ships, wending their way to Southampton. Every time I look, something different is there…what’s not to love?!

2) What’s your favourite thing to do by the sea?

My favourite thing to do by the sea has to be the same as my favourite thing to do anywhere: run! I’m not much of a swimmer, and canoeing/kayaking requires more upper body strength than I possess, but to run by the sea is a really special thing. Whether pushing against a headwind or propelled by a tail wind, nothing feels better than the sea air rushing past as I stride along.

The (currently) undeveloped seafront between Cowes and Gurnard is my most regular run, at its best with waves splashing over the side or the sun just dipping below the horizon and putting on a light show. We’re blessed with fantastic coastal running here though, with coastal downland providing challenging terrain and terrific views.

Segulls on East Cowes breakwater

3) If you had a little sailing boat, where would you go?

I think I’m a homebody, I wouldn’t want to venture too far! First I’d find someone who could keep me from drowning in the open waters; I’ve never sailed despite living in Cowes for seven years now! Then, I’d get them to take me on a coastal tour of the west of Great Britain.

We’d start in the magical land of Cornwall, visiting the secluded coves and steep valleys, before heading north to the Pembrokeshire coast, so rugged and ancient. I know these places well, but am always happy to visit again. We’d finish our trip with the islands and Scotland though, they look so beautiful and are certainly top of need to visit places.

View over St Catherines from a bench

Scotland is pretty close to the top of my list too! Though I suspect we’re more likely to travel overland than by boat.

If you have a slice of sea you’d like to share, please get in touch!

Photos by Tom Pratt.

Seaside Bloggers: Foof & Faff

Foofandfaff beach with the text "know the view from every point"

Elise is from West Scotland: a place undoubtedly among the most beautiful in the world. She is moving to the city today; I’m so glad she stopped by to write about her love of this spot before she moves.

1) Tell me about your slice of coast and why you love it.

I live on the south west coast of Scotland, in an average town full of tourists in the summer and familiar faces every other time. I love it here because it’s where I grew up. Actually I grew up about twenty miles down the coast, but I’ve lived here most of my adult life and it feels like home to me. Familiar.

I know how long it takes to walk one end of the beach to the other, I know what the view is like from every point of that stretch, I know how long each path leading towards and away from the sea takes to run, and I know how much my legs will hurt after every trip. It’s always worth it though. I mean, we have a huge old fishing boat docked at one end and a castle at the other – local history built right in!

A night out at the pub usually ends in a trip to the park and a run around on the beach, and even in the worst weather you’d find a person or two down there walking their dogs or running or photographing the waves.

Looking down at feet at the beach

2) What’s your favourite thing to do by the sea?

Ooh this is tough… It’s a toss up between walking along the promenade with my friend, talking the whole way, or when the sun heats up just enough (a rare thing in Scotland!) to walk along the sea, knee deep in water. It’s shallow for quite a long way out so it’s the perfect place to keep cool. Having said that, this past winter my Cub Scout group did a beach clean in the most horrific weather and we had a blast, so there’s no shortage of things to do here!

3) If you had a little sailing boat, where would you go?
Can I have a big sailing boat to go across the water to visit my best friend when she moves to Ireland later this year? We can see the Emerald Isle on a clear day but waving over won’t be the same…

People walking in the water at the beach

I love those beaches where you can wade out on the hard dimply sand for miles without your dress getting wet! It sounds very peaceful.

If you have a slice of sea you’d like to share, please get in touch!

Photos by Elise

Seaside Bloggers: That Adventurer

Hunstanton beach with text "Go for a long walk, rain or shine"

Today’s guest blogger, Hannah, shares her corner of Norfolk. Her beautiful pictures had me searching the map, and enjoying the placenames (Metheringham, Swaffham, King’s Lynn). Hannah is off adventuring in South America at the moment, so it was all the sweeter to read of her love for her local Norfolk beach.

1) Tell me about your slice of coast and why you love it.
My little piece of the coast is Hunstanton in North Norfolk. I’ve always loved the sea and dreamed of living by it, and last November that came true when we upped sticks and moved to the sea. Hunstanton’s beaches don’t always get the recognition they deserve, but that just means you won’t find hoards of people like you do in Bournemouth or Cornwall.

Old Hunstanton beach is the best. It’s usually deserted, save for a few kite surfers, its dog friendly all year round, and it stretches for miles and miles! Oh, and we get the best sun sets around!

2) What’s your favourite thing to do by the sea?
My favourite thing to do by the sea is to pull on my wellies, put the leads on my two dogs Cosmo and Mable and go for a long, long walk rain or shine. I like to watch them jump about in the sea whilst I scan the beach for any washed up starfish, crabs or other sea life.

Sometimes walks in the rain are even better. I rather like getting drenched and then coming back home to a hot shower, pyjamas and a hot chocolate.

Beach huts

3) If you had a little sailing boat, where would you go?
If I had a little sailing boat I’d travel north, towards Scotland (and hope there were no storms!). I’ve never seen much of Scotland but its wildness always looks beautiful in photos and I’d love to see it for myself. For somewhere warmer I’d have to take my boat to Brazil. I’m in Brazil at the moment and the coast is stunning and my little sailing boat would get me to those hard to reach bays and beaches.

Kites at sunset

I don’t want to wish the summer away, but getting drenched on a rainy beach before heading home for hot chocolate sounds like heaven.

If you have a slice of sea you’d like to share, please get in touch!

Photos by Hannah K

Seaside Bloggers: MYcreative

That ability to still your soul

I’m excited to share a little corner of Italian coast with you this morning. Tom and I cycled through this beautiful city on our way to Ljubljana years ago and fell in love with its steep twisting streets.

So, reading about Michelle’s move to Trieste, her thoughts all accompanied by beautiful photos, has been an absolute treat. MY Creative is a lovely peek in to this coastal city. Here’s Michelle to tell us more.

1) Tell me about your slice of coast and why you love it.

I live in Trieste in the North East of Italy. Before my husband got his job here I had never even heard of the place. It might be considered unusual moving somewhere you haven’t ever been but something I had done before when I moved to England. All I knew (after looking on the map) was it was Italy, was very close to the borders of Slovenia and Croatia and was on the sea. After about 8 months of being here it is a beautiful change to the rush of London (people by the sea are just calmer, no?) and I am definitely growing to love this place.

I grew up by the sea (in Cape Town) and I suppose that creates in you that weird sort of love for the ocean while at the same time also not really appreciating it. This time around I am definitely going to make the most of it.

I love that I can see a (tiny) sliver of ocean from our window and I think the ocean makes you appreciate how small you, and your problems, are. Plus it has that ability to still your soul. I’m not much of a meditator but staring out to sea and down into the depths (the water here is really clear) is the kind of meditation that I can definitely manage.

I also love how changeable the ocean is. It has mood swings like me!

Marcola trieste walking miramare MYcreative

2) What’s your favourite thing to do by the sea?

I’ve never been an impressive swimmer so although a dip in the ocean is lovely I mostly just enjoy a decent walk alongside, sitting and reading a book and occasionally looking up and realising how tiny I really am.

Since we have only been here over the winter so far seaside activities have mostly involved just walking down to the waterfront, going for walks along the promenade, appreciating how water makes sunset’s just that much more spectacular, and watching all the sea life (jelly fish, little fish and more recently biiig fish).

I did take my first dip in the ocean recently though and with summer here I am planning to take a couple more. I actually quite like that they don’t have the sandy beaches here because there is a sudden drop and then you are basically in a giant pool! Plus it is so much warmer than the water in Cape Town.

3) If you had a little sailing boat, where would you go?

Ooh, so hard. I have never been to Greece and been thinking about a Greek Island holiday. It seems a bit of a weird thing to crave when you live by the sea but I suppose we still live in a town.

People sitting by the sea

That deep pool for swimming sounds a pretty perfect way to enjoy the summer. I’m still working up the courage for my first chilly dip this season. No excuse to put it off any longer!

If you have a slice of sea you’d like to share, please get in touch!

Pictures by Michelle Young

Seaside Bloggers: collaborating

Holding an iPhone up to take a photo

I’m writing this to you now, but I’d far rather sit over a cup of tea and tell you all about it. The instant connection of talking face to face is hard to recreate through a screen. But, I love sharing my corner of the world and hearing about yours. Whether it’s a good read, or an average day, it’s those little connections across the miles that add to the joy of writing.

Blogging is a distillation of what’s important to us, and a chance to share those passions. If you’ve been here a while, you’ll know I’m a seaside dweller through and through.  I love the summer holiday colours (bright plastic buckets, raspberry sauce on a Mr Whippy) as much as the moody winter storms (seaweed churning under roiling depths, wind whipping your hair).

Boats at sunrise

I know I’m not alone in this.  With 217,490 miles of coastline on this little blue planet, a lot of people must be seaside dwellers; or close enough to run away to the edge of the land when the moment calls for a few lungfuls of that salty air.  I’d like to share some of those moments- give a glimpse of different slices of sea, and hear from those who love it.

A few of my favourite bloggers are busy writing for my new Seaside Bloggers guest series.  If you have a favourite coastal spot, from whichever corner of the big blue expanse, I’d love to hear about it. Do send me an email. I can’t wait to share some different coastal perspectives!

Looking out to see at the Royal Yacht Squadron, Isle of Wight