About 19 minutes from park
Quarr Road, Ryde PO33 4ESVisit Website
When you’re ready for a break from the Isle of Wight seafront, head to Quarr Abbey for a different kind of scenic escape. This monastery nestles on the shoreline, just visible to passengers arriving on the island by boat. It’s well worth a visit whether you’re a keen historian, interested in architecture, or just looking for a day out. One of the island’s most atmospheric spots, Quarr Abbey is a significant example of religious architecture and home to an order of Benedictine monks to this day. The story starts in 1132 when the Cistercian order founded the original abbey and thrived for over four centuries. Henry VIII’s dissolution of monasteries in the sixteenth century meant ancient Quarr Abbey was sold and dismantled. However, you can still explore the ruins of these lost buildings during your visit. The Quarr Abbey of today stands proudly alongside its predecessor. The new structure was rebuilt in the early 1900s by French Benedictine monks, who arrived seeking solace from laws banning religious orders in France.
There are lots of reasons to visit Quarr Abbey. Start with a stroll about the grounds, taking in the ancient ruins and contrasting red-brick architecture of the new abbey from all angles. Afterwards, explore the bookshop and gallery of local art, a great place to pick up a souvenir for someone back home. Be sure to finish your visit with refreshments from the peaceful Quarr Abbey café, which is a perfect place to reflect on the day.
Quarr Abbey is easy to get to, whether you’re arriving on the Isle of Wight by boat or travelling by car from elsewhere on the island. A stone’s throw from Fishbourne car and passenger terminal, you can enjoy a short stroll to the abbey when you come into the dock from Portsmouth.
By car, head towards Quarr Hill in the northeast of the island and follow signs to the abbey. Thanks to its size and structure, the monastery will be hard to miss! You can also take one of the island’s frequent bus services from central Ryde. Just catch the number nine and hop off at the Quarr Abbey stop.
Whilst you wait... just think about being in your swimmers, the sun's out and the smiles are big