Down on the Duver

Walking trail

A short but varied coastal walk exploring St Helens Duver, a sandy spit of land on the eastern tip of the Island, rich in wildlife and history.

Spring wildflowers bloom by St Helens lagoon, besides the Duver


St Helens Duver 'Down On The Duver' Trail Map


Down On The Duver Elevation Profile


St Helens Duver National Trust car park, grid ref: SZ637892, what3words: ///shine.ranked.automatic.


Leave the National Trust car park by following the hedge to the left of the interpretation panel and parking meter (for non National Trust members) and go on up the sandy path by the green dog bin. Cross the grass and go on over the road, aiming for the boats in Bembridge Harbour. Bembridge Fort is on the skyline.

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Parched summer grasses on St Helens Duver used to be manicured fairways


Turn right at the water’s edge then follow the raised Causeway path between the lagoons and around buildings to Mill Quay. Take the first tarmac road on the right by Mill House. Go up the hill to the top, passing caravans on both sides.

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Quiet Bembridge harbour water with St Helens Duver on the far side


Bear right along the bottom edge of St Helens Green, claimed to be one of the largest village greens in England. Bear right again at the end, then carry straight on into Duver Road when the main road swings sharply left at a bend.

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A plaque commemorating Sophie Dawes' birthplace on the wall of a St Helens house


Just before some traffic lights, turn right onto a path by an interpretation panel (signed R88 to the Duver) which leads past St Helens Common. This is the Gaggen Path, which gets its name from press gangs which used to hide here and then gag their victims. Go down the path to the end.

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An open view over St Helens Common to the sea before the trees come into leaf


Upon reaching the Duver by a wooden bridge, follow the path behind the interpretation panel round to the left and meander along to the Old Golf club building. Bear left behind the club house to meet the access road, then briefly left and right to reach the sea beside St Helens Old Church, where there are picnic benches.

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Formerly the golf clubhouse, the Old Club House on St Helens Duver is now a holiday cottage


Follow the sea wall to the right. Take the first gap to the right after a long line of beach huts made from old railway carriages (just after number 28) and turn inland through the dunes. Bear right by the National Trust omega sign and return to the car park by steps.

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The tower is now all that remains of St Helens Old Church


St Helens Duver National Trust car park, grid ref: SZ637892, what3words: ///shine.ranked.automatic.

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Down on the Duver


This is a:
  • Circular walk
  • Gates=0
  • Kissing gates=0
  • Stiles=0
  • Steps=8
  • Bridges=3
The total ascent is 115ft (35m). Some paths are very uneven, especially on the descent through St Helens Common and across the causeway. The paths can be muddy after heavy rain, so please take care.
Dogs are always welcome, but please keep them on a lead around wildlife and livestock, and take any dog waste home with you.
Down on the Duver

Contact us

Down on the Duver

How to get here

National Trust car park, St Helens Duver, Isle of Wight. Nearest postcode PO33 1XY, what3words: ///shine.ranked.automatic.
By road

½ mile (800m) off the B3330 Seaview to Bembridge road, east of St Helens Green. 5 miles (8km) south-west from Ryde on A3055 and B3330. 4½ miles (7.2km) north-west of Sandown on the A3055 and B3330.

By foot
This trail meets the Isle of Wight coastal path between St Helens Duver and Seagrove Bay.
By ferry

Fishbourne-Portsmouth (Wightlink) 7 miles (11km) (0871 376 1000); East Cowes-Southampton (Red Funnel) 11 miles (17.7km) (0844 844 9988). Bembridge Harbour has moorings for private boats.

By bus

Hourly Southern Vectis No. 8 service from Newport and Ryde (01983 827000). Alight at St Helens village green on B3330. The Duver is a ½ mile (800m) walk down the Duver Road or the path beside St Helens Common.

By bicycle

'Round the Island' National Cycle Network regional route 67 passes ½ mile (800m) from the start of the trail.

Down on the Duver

Facilities and access

  • Pay and display car park (free for National Trust members)
  • Seasonal toilets next to café on St Helens Duver seafront
  • Picnic area at St Helens Old Church
  • Pub and shops can be found in St Helens village
  • Dogs are welcome, please keep on a lead around wildlife