The Solent

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WorldNorth AtlanticNorth SeaUnited KingdomEnglandThe Solent
The Solent
50°49.05′N, 01°16.81′W Chart icon.png
The Solent with the Isle of Wight

The Solent is a stretch of sea separating the Isle of Wight from the mainland of England. It runs through and greatly affects the character of the South Hampshire region, which consists of Greater Portsmouth, Greater Southampton and the Isle of Wight.

Hampshire's Solent is a great centre for yachting and is renowned as one of the most expensive waters to cross by ferry in the world. It is sheltered by the Isle of Wight and has a very complex tidal pattern, which has greatly benefited Southampton's success as a port. Portsmouth lies on its shores. Spithead, an area off Gilkicker Point near Gosport, is renowned as the place where the Royal Navy is reviewed by the monarch of the day.


2045 - Outer Approaches to The Solent


Give local weather conditions or refer to another page (a region or island group) that covers these conditions.

Sources for Weather forecasts:


Also see Cruiser's Nets

Submit details of local radio Nets.


List popular passages/routes, timing, etc.



Provide any navigation notes especially any dangers or peculiar local conditions here.


Anchoring is by far the cheapest option on the solent. It's a great place to potter about but not very cheap!

From west to east on the mainland the main places you can stop overnight are:

  • Hurst castle: Either use the open anchorage with a fairly strong tidal current alongside the beach or get inside the spit, keeping to starboard when entering as the spit really sticks out, where there is a small pool on the port between the entrance and the pontoon. When anchoring, keep clear of the main channel, anchoring fore and aft makes room for more visitors.
  • Lymington river: The town quay is lovely, but very busy in the summer! Work out the plan of attack in advance as it's quite tight. Don't worry if you get in trouble though, an afternoon sitting in the pub watching the harbourmasters sort out pickles has convinced us that they are due for sainthoods. Very calm and efficient.
  • Beaulieu river: There's a nice little anchorage on either edge of the reach leading up to Needs Oar Point. There's nothing about apart from birds and other anchored boats so more of a stop over than an exploring type place but very quiet and peaceful.
  • Buckler's hard: Expensive but incredibly well kept and pretty. The ice cream is good and the harbourmasters can be a little gruff but are on the whole quite efficient. If you are launching a trailer sailer watch out for the sudden shelf on the slip which is rather large. (It's roughly in line with the hand rail on the floating pontoon).
  • Owers lake: Not the best view as it is right under the chimney at fawley power station. It is usually deserted, apart from the birds. You can get ashore at most heights of tide.
  • Ashlet creek: You can get in here if you have about 4ft draft, but keep a good eye out on the buoys. You will dry out overnight.
  • Marchwood S.C. at the top of Southampton water: Near the container port, the sailing club has a set of pontoons and are very welcoming to visiting yachts (in the off season anyway).
  • Netley abbey: It is really pretty here although not the most comfortable anchorage due to the traffic. Anchor near the sailing club, apparently there's lots of fun things to do if you row ashore including steam railways, walks, and of course the visit to the abbey and grounds.

Anyone want to add anything about these?

  • Porchester castle:
  • Langstone harbour:
  • Pilsey Island:
  • Birdham:

Yacht Repairs and Services

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Marine Stores

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Fuel, Water, & Electricity

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Things to do Ashore


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Grocery & Supply Stores





Motorbike & Car Rentals

Garbage Disposal



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Contact details of "Cruiser's Friends" that can be contacted for local information or assistance.


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See United Kingdom.


We welcome users' contributions to the Wiki. Please click on Comments to view other users' comments, add your own personal experiences or recommend any changes to this page following your visit.

Verified by

Date of member's last visit to The Solent and this page's details validated:

  • Compiled from research (pilot books, internet, etc.) --Istioploos 21:30, 26 February 2016 (GMT)

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Names: Lighthouse, Haiqu

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