Swimming, Sailing and Other Watersports


A popular swimming beach but care is needed as it is a gently shelving shingle beach with strong tides which, from about two hours before until three hours after high water, flow to the west. There are no beach life guards but GAFIRS have a lifeboat station at the east end of the beach.



A friendly sailing club in the centre of the bay in front of the public dinghy slipway. The club offers sailing and boat storage for dinghy and catamaran sailing and racing together with temporary membership for occassional visitors.

For more information, visit their website Stokes Bay Sailing Club


According to Windsurf Magazine:
Stokes Bay is :Probably the safest place to sail on this stretch of coast and suitable for beginners. The ideal wind direction for Stoke Bay are SW and SE which produce the cleanest wind but can also be sailed in anything from E to WNW. The tidal range is small, the most furthest you have to walk to the water is 10 metres and launching is easy even in very strong winds. It’s a very good place to practice short board technique. In an E just about every windsurfer in the area sails here as the wind funnels between the Isle of Wight and the mainland.

A speed limit of 10 knots is applicable within half a mile of the Solent shoreline at Stokes Bay and Lee-on-the-Solent.

Stand Up Paddleboarding and Kayaking

The bay is very popular with stand up paddleboarders and kayakers, the only thing worth noting is that the tides move west from about two hours before until three hours after haigh water, moving east the rest of the time.


No 2 Battery West Car Park Slipway has a public slipway suitable for windsurfers, kayaks and small sailing dinghies. Pebble Beach Car Park has a public slipway in front of the sailing club suitable for sailing dinghies with hand trolleys only; powered craft are not permitted. Gilkicker Car Park Slipway is a public slipway suitable for motor and sailing boats requiring launching with a car wth the west side reserved for GAFIRS.

Jetskis and Water skis are not permitted to use any of the Stokes Bay slipways

Water Quality

Water quality was classified as excellent in 2023 with more information from the following link:


However, after periods of heavy rain, the quality can change with the notifications from Southern Water about storm release activity to be found at the following link: