The Isle of Wight Garlic Festival, Newchurch (August)
The Isle of Wight Garlic Festival is the Island’s biggest summer show. With food, music, a funfair, entertainment, animals and all-things garlicky, it’s a wonderful day out for all the family.
Ever since the Second World War, the Isle of Wight has had a special connection with garlic. Each year, this humble but pungent bulb is honoured with its own festival which really draws the crowds for two days of great fun and entertainment. It’s worth coming just to see The Lamb National (the sheep look hilarious in their racing jackets), and to go home with a jar of Vampire’s Delight just in case you find yourself in the Twilight Zone.The Foodie Travel Guide
- Taste garlic
- Meet Island producers
- Listen to live bands
- Watch the Lamb National
Visit The Island’s Festival For Foodies
To find out about how garlic first came to be grown on the Isle of Wight, take a trip out to The Garlic Farm which is now the UK’s largest producer (they even export to the French). It’s been such a success story for the Island that it’s resulted in the annual Isle of Wight Garlic Festival each summer, a unique event in Britain’s foodie calendar. Set against a beautiful backdrop of rolling green hills and farmland, it’s located just outside Newchurch.
Taste All Things Garlic
For Foodie Travellers, there are huge garlic and food marquees to explore and cooking demonstrations from top island chefs. Garlic-lovers can indulge in garlic fudge, ice cream, popcorn, biscuits, scones, sweetcorn, mushrooms, beer and much more. Island food producers are also present with their delicious wares. After you’ve tasted your way through everything that’s on offer, relax on a straw bale in the big beer tent in anticipation of the entertainment or, if you’re still hungry, partake in a delicious cream tea in the tea tent.
Watch the Lamb National
On the main stage, there’s live music from Island bands and in the arena, the talented animals show off their tricks which is where the Lamb National, a festival favourite, comes in. Hot on their hooves are the Wight Wizards Dog Display team which always entertain and delight with impressive dog agility shows. There are Garlic Games and a few child-friendly surprises too.
- Tickets are only available on the gate and there is free parking
- You are not allowed to bring your own alcohol to the festival
- Visit Winchester in December and you’ll find products from the Isle of Wight Garlic Farm on sale at Winchester Christmas Market
The apple, fig and garlic chutney is a delicious addition to a cheese sandwich or traditional Ploughman’s lunch.
WHERE TO STAY ON THE ISLE OF WIGHT
Ventnor, Isle of Wight
The Hambrough offers boutique rooms overlooking the sea, a short walk from Ventnor beach.
Rooms from £108 a night.
Yarmouth, Isle of Wight
In the heart of Yarmouth, the George is an elegant 17th-century town house.
Rooms from £125 a night.
They say that well-behaved dogs like me are very welcome as long as I’m kept on a lead and you clean up after me. Please take me to watch the Wight Wizards in action.