Mottistone meander: south to the sea

Walking trail

Explore the delightful farmed countryside stretching south from Mottistone Gardens to the coastal cliffs at Sudmoor Point. Enjoy splendid sea views and the chance to encounter rare wildlife.

A wheat field with Compton Bay and the white cliffs of Tennyson Down behind


Map route for a Mottistone meander south to the sea walk


South To The Sea Elevation Profile


Mottistone Gardens National Trust car park, grid ref: SZ405838, what3words: ///economies.pine.poses.


Take the path down the steps from the car park towards the entrance to Mottistone Gardens. Cross the road, enter the churchyard by the lych gate. Leave by the south gate, turn right into Ridget Lane and follow it for 80yds (75m).

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The herbaceous border at Mottistone Gardens


Turn right along the track signposted BS74 towards Mottistone Manor Farm, but take the stile on the left just before the farm yard to continue along BS74. When the track opens out just after a pond, bear left and follow the boundary keeping the trees to the left.

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Mottistone Manor Farmhouse, a National Trust holiday cottage


Turn right at the T-junction where a hedgerow crosses. Bear left before the trees, keeping the wood and a small stream on the right. At the end of the wood, the path bears right over a plank bridge and stile. Follow the meandering path across the meadow. Cross the stile at the end of the field by a fingerpost and turn left through a farm gate onto the Military Road.

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A Yellow Hammer bird


Turn right at this road and walk along the right-hand verge. Just after passing two cottages, cross the road and go over a stile opposite onto a permissive path. The path crosses a wooden footbridge then follows the field edge with hedges on the left to reach a stile almost in the corner of the field. Cross the stile and the next field, keeping close to the fence on the left until reaching the cliffs.

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Cliff erosion at Mottistone forms an ideal habitat for the Glanville fritillary


Turn left onto the coast path. Follow the cliff-top path, passing through a kissing gate near an eroded section of cliff with a few steps on the far side, and continue onwards.

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A view over the crumbling cliffs and bay from the Mottistone area to St Catherine's


At the sign marked “Public Footpath” go through the kissing gate on the left and follow the field edge with the fence on the left to the field corner. Go through another kissing gate then cross the busy Military Road to join the byway BS100. This is a hedge-lined farm track which leads straight back to Mottistone. At the top of this track bear right and then left past the church to reach the road and the entrance to the car park.

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The lovely Mottistone parish church with its lych gate


Mottistone Gardens National Trust car park, grid ref: SZ405838, what3words: ///economies.pine.poses.

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Mottistone meander: south to the sea


This is a:
  • Circular walk
  • Gates=3
  • Kissing gates=3
  • Stiles=5
  • Steps=22
  • Bridges=2
Take care crossing roads, and avoid the crumbling cliff edge. Paths can be muddy in wet seasons.
Dogs are always welcome, but please keep them on a lead around wildlife and livestock, and take any dog waste home with you. There is a dog bin in the car park.
For those wanting a longer walk, this route can be combined with the other downloadable Mottistone trail ('A Mottistone Meander - Climb to the Common') to make a 6.3 mile (10km) figure-of-eight walk, starting from the car park. 
Mottistone meander: south to the sea

Contact us

Mottistone meander: south to the sea

How to get here

Mottistone Gardens National Trust car park, Mottistone, Isle of Wight. Nearest postcode is PO30 4ED, what3words: ///economies.pine.poses.
By road

Mottistone lies on the B3399, between Brighstone and Brook. Mottistone Gardens car park is to the west of the property.

By foot

Mottistone lies approximately 1 mile (1.5km) north of the Isle of Wight Coast Path. The Isle of Wight coastal path is followed between points 5 and 6 on the map.

By ferry

Yarmouth-Lymington 7 miles (11km), Fishbourne-Portsmouth 14 miles (22km) (Wightlink tel: 0871 3761000); East Cowes-Southampton 15 miles (24km) (Red Funnel tel: 0844 8449988).

By bus

Southern Vectis (tel: 01983 827000) No. 12 service from Newport to Totland passes by Mottistone Gardens. Alight at the green. Mainly 2-hourly.


By bicycle

'Round the Island' Sustrans regional route 67 passes along the B3399 through Mottistone.


Mottistone meander: south to the sea

Facilities and access

  • When open, Mottistone Gardens (free to National Trust members) has refreshments and toilets