Things to see and do at The Needles Old Battery and New Battery

A cartoon showing the announcement of the Armistice of the First World War (1914 to 1918)

In the words of one visitor, 'We came for the views but discovered so much more'. Famous for its views of The Needles rocks, there is so much more to discover at The Needles Old Battery and New Battery.

View finding

You can get a great view of The Needles rocks from the end of the Parade Ground where there is also a wheelchair accessible viewing platform. But for an even closer view, go deep through the downs and head along the underground tunnel beneath the perimeter fence.

For a different view of The Needles, visit the viewpoint near the former rocket test site. This is part of The Headland so there is no charge but there are several steps down to it.

From old to new

Follow the path from the Old Battery to the New Battery and discover the part played by the site in Britain's 'race for space'. 

Black Arrow ready for testing

Into the space age at The Needles New Battery

The Needles New Battery is a small site, further up the headland from the Old Battery. It tells the fascinating story of British space rockets which were secretly tested here between the 1950s and 70s.

Fun for families

The Needles Old Battery is a great place for families both inside and out. With its mixture of ruins and restored buildings, displays and models there's lots for children to explore and do. Combine your visit to The Needles Old Battery and New Battery with a short stroll on the downs or a more bracing cliff-top hike to the Tennyson Monument.

At the Old Battery, see if you can find Major Mindup and his gunners who are hidden around the Battery. Or try 'Major Snap's Photographic Challenge' as you go round the site.

Little girl looking out over the Needles from the Search Light at the Old Battery

Family fun at the Needles Old Battery

There are lots of ways for little visitors to make even more of their visit. They could dress up as a solider, find the secret tunnel, search for the hidden gunners and find out what it was like to live through the Second World War.

Linger longer

Treat yourself to a holiday or short break in one of our three cottages on the headland. Each is named after a ship that was wrecked on The Needles rocks.

The exterior of the coastguard holiday cottages, Isle of Wight

Stay on the Needles Headland

Relax in our holiday cottages, complete with sea views over Alum Bay. They can accommodate up to five people, perfect for breaks with family and friends.