Navigational tips and beauty spots around the south-west coast of the Isle of Wight.
Just east of Watcombe Bay is Freshwater Bay, whose western edge is marked by Fort Redoubt, a Palmerston fort surrounded by a dry moat. It’s now a private dwelling. There are rocks either side of the entrance, which used to be a favourite smugglers’ haunt, but the narrow entrance was widened with dynamite to allow for the escape of the full rigged ship Carl in 1916. To the east of Freshwater there are two rocks, Stag Rock, closest to the Bay, and Mermaid Rock. Mermaid Rock calved herself off the cliff behind in 1969, but Freshwater’s main natural feature is no more. Just visible above the water between Stag and Mermaid Rocks are two chalk platforms that used for form the base of Arch Rock, which collapsed on 25 October 1992.