THE ISLAND is awash with opportunities to try sea-based activities but, if you’ve yet to dip your toe in the water, head to Cowes Yacht Haven this weekend.

On Saturday, May 11, and Sunday, May 12, British Marine’s Fun on the Water event gives you the chance to try out all kinds of activities, free of charge.

Why not try paddle boarding, dinghy and yacht sailing, RIB rides, windsurfing, model boat racing and even watching ‘man overboard’ demonstrations?

There will also be information and demonstrations from the RNLI and the National Coastwatch Institute, plus plenty of informative stands and displays from respected Island boatbuilders and businesses, including the Classic Boat Museum.

Learn all about the Island’s maritime industry, discover great opportunities to study at CECAMM or UKSA and enjoy live music from the Tea ‘n’ Biscuit Boys on the Sunday, from noon until 2pm, while you sit and relax with something from the new Pontoon View Bar at Cowes Yacht Haven.

Subject to availability, you can book a one-hour stand-up paddleboarding session at the UKSA stand. Time slots are between 10am and 4pm on the Saturday and Sunday and sessions are available to anyone aged eight or above. These cannot be booked in advance, so head to the stand in good time.

The RNLI will also have their swim safe team and Waterside Pool Trust will be available to answer questions. The inshore Atlantic 85 and Tamar lifeboats, along with Bembridge RNLI and their all-weather lifeboat will be putting in appearances (subject to operational requirements) on both the Saturday and Sunday.

You can also see Natasha Lambert on her amazing Sip ‘n’ Puff boat designed by her father, and learn about her latest challenge — the Atlantic.

On Sunday, May 12, Natasha will be joined by Wetwheels Solent, offering trips on their wheelchair-accessible power boat. Don’t miss this amazing chance to take the plunge into all the maritime fun there is to be had on the Island. You can even get your face painted on both days.

Fun on the Water runs from 10am until 4pm, during both days of the weekend.

Please note: the free activities will be weather-dependent and some may be age restricted.