Cowes. Cowes is one of the Island's major towns, famous for its yachting events.
Cowes Castle, home of the Royal Yacht Squadron. Founded in 1815, this venerable institution, is the premier yacht club of Great Britain, and members ( all 300 of them) are allowed to fly the St George's ensign which gives them free entry to all foreign ports. Only members of the Royal Yacht Squadron and officers of the Royal Navy may land at the sacrosanct landing stage in front of the Castle. Cowes Castle was at the heart of D-Day landing operations during World War II and houses the 21 brass canons fired at the start and finish of races and on special anniversaries.
Portsmouth. This great seafaring town became a city in 1927. It has always been associated with the Royal Navy.
Southsea Castle. Built in 1544 to protect Portsmouth, Southsea Castle is part of the complex defence system still standing in and around the big city, as well as Fareham and Gosport. Legend has it that King Henry VIII watched his flagship the 'Mary Rose' sink into the Solent from the ramparts of Southsea Castle.
Windsor Castle. The spectacular Windsor Castle is one of the Royal Family's homes. St George's Chapel in the Castle is used for major royal occasions such as the marriage of Prince Charles to Mrs Camilla Parker-Bowles.
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