The Solent is rightly famed as one of the great sailing grounds in Europe. With the Isle of Wight to the south and the mainland to the north, this is a sheltered patch of water with many interesting towns and anchorages and plenty of wildlife to enjoy. A stop in Cowes on the Isle of Wight is a sailing classic, but so is an early evening cruise up the peaceful Beaulieu River and a night anchored under the stars. There are the Napoleonic era forts, the iconic Needles and huge cargo ships edging their way along the channels. A wonderful place to go sailing.