The home of yachting, Cowes is famed around the world and in particular the first week of August sees the famous Cowes Week when hundreds of yachts and thousands of sailors arrive to race and party. It is a truly wonderful spectacle and in the past was adorned by the presence of Royal Yacht Britannia.
Cowes sits astride the River Medina at the northern tip of the Island. The main industries apart from tourism are shipbuilding, aircraft components and Radar systems. The entrance to Cowes harbour is dominated by the famous Royal Yacht Squadron, housed in what was the original Cowes Castle. The polished brass cannons that came from William IV yacht Royal Adelaide are still used to start the yacht races and are much admired. Further on from the Squadron is Prince's Green which was given to Cowes by George Stephenson the famous railway engineer. The house where he lived has since been knocked down and is now Grantham Court.
Cowes High Street is now mainly a pedestrian precinct and there are many interesting shops to browse whilst wandering through the narrow streets.
West Cowes is linked to East Cowes by a chain ferry across the River Medina, The High Speed Passenger Ferry Terminal is in West Cowes, and the car ferry is in East cowes.