Newtown Harbour National Nature Reserve



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The Newtown Harbour NNR is on the northern coast of the Isle of Wight, and comprises areas of estuary and foreshore with extensive mudflats and saltmarsh, with adjacent meadows and woodland. A quiet backwater with a bustling medieval past, Newtown Harbour is now bursting with wildlife and the only NNR on the Isle of Wight. Here you can enjoy flower-rich hay meadows grazed by Hebridean sheep, wander through ancient woodlands with red squirrels and rare butterflies, and look out over saltmarsh and harbour, which is alive with birds in spring and winter. Over 200 species of birds have been recorded on the island due to its proximity to mainland Europe and migration routes. There’s a wide range of habitats from muddy creeks to ancient woodlands, and Newtown Harbour is one of the best places for bird spotting. Ospreys are frequent migrating visitors, and black-tailed godwits arrive from Iceland to spend the winter here.

Newtown Harbour National Nature Reserve


About the area

Discover Isle of Wight

There’s a timeless quality to the Isle of Wight. For many it embodies the spirit and atmosphere of English seaside holidays. Small and intimate – at just 23 miles by 13 miles – it’s a great place to get away from it all. And with its mild climate, long hours of sunshine and colourful architecture, it has something of a continental flavour.

Explore the island’s varied coastline at any time of the year using the well-established Coast Path. Even in the depths of winter, the weather conditions are often favourable for walking. The island has more than 500 miles of public rights of way in all. There are numerous other things to do too. You could plan a week’s itinerary and not set foot on the beach. The island’s history is fascinating and it was long considered as a convenient stepping stone for the French in their plan to invade the UK mainland. Various fortifications – including Fort Victoria, Carisbrooke Castle and Yarmouth Castle – reflect its key strategic role in the defence of our coastline.

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