It’s just under a month to go to the annual Classic Buses Beer and Walks Weekend, this year it is being held on the weekend of 12 and 13 October. The weekend is free with no charge for travel, but the event is funded through the sale of programmes which offer discount vouchers (over £60) for use in the venues. You can buy a programme from the official website https://iwbeerandbuses.co.uk/programme.php or any of participating pubs.
Over the weekend around 100 Classic buses connect towns, villages and participating pubs, hotels and restaurants. The buses mostly run from a central point The Quay in Newport with an interchange at Ryde.
From Newport, buses travel:
north to Cowes and East Cowes
west to Yarmouth, Freshwater and Alum Bay
south west to Calbourne, Hulverstone, Brighstone and Shorwell
south to Chale, Niton and Ventnor
south east to Shanklin
north east to Wootton and Ryde
From Ryde, buses travel:
South east to Seaview, Bembridge, Brading and on to Sandown and Shanklin
You can find a map of all 15 routes on the official website
There are around 100 hostelries participating this year. Whilst the theme of the weekend is Real Ales with some venues offering over 20 different ales, all the pubs and restaurants offer their normal full range of drinks and food, so it really doesn’t matter if you are not a real ale drinker.
The Isle of Wight is a beautiful destination for walking and the combination of beer, buses and walking works just perfectly! There is a large programme of general, accessible and historical walks on the Beer and Buses website https://iwbeerandbuses.co.uk/walks-general.php , and our website FireflyIOW.com also has a good selection of walks around the Island https://www.fireflyiow.com/walking .
Last year they estimated around 17,000 passengers travelled around on the buses, of which 43% were visitors to the Island and 52% were Isle of Wight residents. It’s a weekend for everyone: locals, tourists, families, children, real ale drinkers, bus enthusiasts and groups of friends that just want to have a lot of fun riding around on buses and drinking beer ….. or gin (we fit in the last category!)