Portsmouth Harbour to Hayling Island, Hampshire by Josie Dew

Portsmouth Harbour to Hayling Island, Hampshire by Josie Dew

Josie Dew

Cycling UK Vice President and cycling author, Josie Dew takes us on a easy ride from Portsmouth's Historic Dockyard to the fresh air of Hayling Island.

There is something about the port city and huge naval base of Portsmouth that I always find quite exciting. I was 11 when I first cycled through Portsmouth to catch the ferry to the Isle of Wight en route to Land’s End and I’ve cycled onto dozens of ferries from Portsmouth to France and beyond ever since. Handily, for boat-boffins (or anyone interested in a bit of ship history) Portsmouth’s Historic Dockyard is right at the start of this ride. I know this dockyard well as my husband Gary (a carpenter) has spent much of the past few years helping to conserve the wonders of The Victory. The Spinnaker Tower is right at the start to so if you want a bird’s eye view of the city and Solent and Isle of Wight then this is the place to get elevated. 

Jack and the girls love riding along the seafront of Old Portsmouth and Southsea (fairgrounds, hovercraft, aquarium and fish and chips and ice-cream a-plenty) and out to Eastney on the eastern-most point of Portsea Island. Another highlight for them comes in the form of the Hayling Island passenger ferry that takes people and bikes across the mouth of Langstone Harbour to the ferry point on the western point of Hayling Island.

Then, after a short burst along the road, it’s onto the Hayling Billy Coastal Path (another old railway line that once connected Havant with Hayling Island ). This path is popular with local dog-walkers so watch out it can be mined with dog’s poop in places. Once over Langstone Bridge you’ve landed back on the mainland and it’s up and away to Havant from where you can pick up The Shipwright’s Way to Alice Holt Forest, which is another very fun kettle of fish altogether.

Level of ride 
Beginner cyclist
Type of bike