Back to Southampton - Day 2: The Isle of Wight and Cowes Week!

Tuesday 11th August 2016

Today, we had set plans to go from Hythe to Southampton and then back to the Isle of Wight to watch Cowes Week! I have been to Cowes Week but this must have been when I was about six years old. I don't remember any of it so I was very excited to go and see it all.

We headed off at 9:00 and got the Hythe ferry over to Southampton. A lovely 20-minute boat journey. After getting to Southampton, we then awaited the arrival of the Red Funnel car ferry back in the other direction again to the Island. It was brilliant to get this huge ferry. I've been on it plenty times before but not for a couple of years. We grabbed a table on the second deck and remained there for about 10 minutes while we had something to drink and eat for breakfast. For the remaining hour, we went and stood on the very top deck in the sun and watched the ocean go by. We could see Hythe Marina, Calshot beach and then a while later, the Isle of Wight which began to come into view. Along the way, I spotted dozens of beautiful sailing yachts and fantastic power yachts enjoying the sun on the Solent. Although we have ourselves a fantastic 32-foot Sealine, I still felt envy towards the owners and crew aboard these lovely large yachts. Not only are they beautiful boats but they are able to enjoy them at sea - something I've always wanted to do but never really had the opportunity to.

While crossing the Solent to Cowes, on the Red Funnel, two beautiful yachts came alongside and decided to play around in each other's wash and the wash of our car ferry. One was a Fairline Squadron and another was a Sealine T50, both large flybridge yachts. They slowly caught up with the ferry and as they came alongside, they both put the throttles down and sped off on the plane. It was fantastic to watch as it's something I find really interesting. The crew on both boats waved as they passed and we all waved back.

Not too long after, we arrived in East Cowes. We walked a mile or so and got onto the chain ferry that crossed the river and took us to West Cowes where we could walk around the island and head to the waterfront to watch the sailing yachts move about before and after their races. As well as seeing hundreds of sailing yachts, there were many boats under power too. Loads of Sealine's, Sunseekers and a couple of Fairline's. They were fantastic to see and luckily, I had a large lens on my Canon DSLR camera so I was able to get some close shots.

Overall, an absolutely fantastic day. I enjoyed every second of it and of corse, it was very lovely to spend time with family as well. Seeing all these boats at sea makes me want to take Bandit out there much more. I'm sure we'll make time to do it at some point. Whether we stick the nose out at the Wash at Kings Lynn or head further around the UK doing some coast-hopping for a month or so.

Hythe Pier and ferry
Sealine T50 - Lady Louise
Hot on our tail!
Sealine T60 - Victoria from London
Having some fun on the Solent
Sealine T50 - Lady Louise from Southampton
Putting the throttles down!
Up close with Victoria. Cheers!
Up close with Lady Louise
Give em some gas!
Looking over at the Isle of Wight
Southampton refinery

A brilliant little Fairline Carrera - Dundeal
Three large blue tugs
Ashlett Creek
Harbour Master rib
Southampton power station. No longer in action.
Calshot and their RNLI base and coastguard tower

Calshot coastguard tower and RNLI base
Fairline Phantom 38 - Hot Property
Up on the plane
Fairline Phantom 38 - Hot Property
Getting closer to Cowes. The ferry starts manoeuvring through the huge number of sailing boats
Beautiful little sailing boat crossing the Solent
Looking over at West Cowes
Sailing boats participating in Cowes Week
The Harbour Master boat
More sailing boats participating in Cowes Week and the Committee Vessel
Another lovely Fairline on the Solent heading towards Cowes
The lovely Galeta
Looking over Cowes and the marina
More Cowes Week sail boats
Sunseeker Portofino 40 - Betsea
Sunseeker Portofino 40 - Betsea
Moored up
Sunseeker Portofino 31
Sunseeker Portofino 31
Sunseeker Portofino 31
Another beautiful Sunseeker - Shamu
The Red Funnel entering East Cowes
Prestige 550 - Holby Madison Two
A beautiful boat leaving Cowes - Maverick
Fairline Targa 34
Fairline Targa 34
SeaRay 440 - Different Drummer
The brilliant Rum Jungle moored up at Cowes

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