Additional Information for Activities Sessions and Courses

On this page you can find lots of useful information and tips to make the most out of your watersports session or course. If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact us.


•  All our courses are run to the highest level, and safety is considered by all members of staff as of first importance.
•  All equipment is regularly assessed for safety and courses and operating procedures are regularly reviewed to ensure all courses are taught to the highest standard.
•  All members of teaching staff hold a relevant qualification from the Royal Yachting Association (RYA) and we are recognised by the Adventure Activities Licensing Authority (AALA) for sailing and canoeing (licence number R0308).
•  We have a fleet of powerboats, equipped with a first aid kit, toolkit, bivvy bag, throw line and radio, suitable for providing rescue cover for all dinghy sailing and canoeing courses.
•  On site security is also to a high standard. Entry into each building is by a security code, which is changed regularly, and is made known to our guests on their first day. CCTV is in operation and certain doors are alarmed at different times of the day.

Risk assessments are available for download:
Dinghy sailing
 (See S015)


We stock several sailing and powerboating handbooks and logbooks, otherwise you can buy them from the Royal Yachting Association (RYA).

The canoeing resources can be bought through the British Canoe Union (BCU).

Dinghy Sailing

Resources for Youth Courses (8-16)
• RYA Youth Sailing Scheme – Dinghy Sailing. RYA G11. ISBN 0901501751
• RYA Go Sailing! A practical handbook for young people. RYA G32. ISBN 1905104049
• RYA Go Cruising! A practical introduction to yachts and motor cruisers. RYA G42. ISBN 1905104332

Resources for Adults (16+)
• RYA National Sailing Scheme Syllabus & Logbook. RYA G4. ISBN 090150145X
• RYA Start Sailing – Beginners Handbook. RYA G3. ISBN 0901501824
• RYA Dinghy Sailing Advanced Handbook. RYA G12. ISBN 1905104057
• RYA Dinghy Coaching Handbook & Logbook. RYA G14. ISBN 0901501964


• RYA Powerboat Logbook. RYA G20. ISBN 0901501506
• RYA Start Powerboating. RYA G48. ISBN 1905104324
• RYA Powerboat Handbook. RYA G13. ISBN 0901501999


• BCU Canoe and Kayak Handbook 3rd edition, ISBN-13: 978-0953195657


Centre facilities

•  Male and female changing rooms.
•  A drying room to hang any wet clothing.
•  A small snack shop where you can purchase crisps and chocolate bars.
•  A lounge area where you can relax before and after your session.
•  A secure and safe office to keep any valuables not wanting to be taken on the water. However, we do
have waterproof bags and containers on our boats for keeping things dry.

Preparing for your course/session

•  We advise you to take out Holiday Travel Insurance in the event of unforeseen cancellation etc.
•  We ask that you read the following information and bring the recommended kit and documents with you on the day so you can get the most out of your time on the water.

What to bring on the day

Kit and Clothing advice
When on the water, we recommend wearing clothing that you don’t mind getting wet and footwear which will stay on your feet when in the water (i.e. old trainers, crocs or booties. Not flip flops). It is also advisable to bring a change of clothing with you for those that get a little bit more than, a bit wet! Also please bear in mind that the weather can change whilst out on the water so to bring layers that can be put on or taken off.

Items to bring 
Buoyancy aids are provided but please bring the following items:

–  Soft shoes that you don’t mind getting wet
–  A complete change of clothing, including a warm top and swim wear if sailing, canoeing or kayaking.
–  Towel and wash kit
–  Sun cream, sunglasses and a hat. Even if it isn’t a particularly sunny day, the amount of sun reaching your skin is magnified from the reflection off the water and may catch you off guard!
–  If you have them; a set of waterproofs, a wetsuit, wetsuit boots and sailing gloves
(The Centre has a limited number and sizes of wetsuits and waterproofs for borrowing if necessary,
please enquire when booking).

Personal Effects
There will be good opportunities for photos so feel free to bring a camera.

There are two documents to you may need to bring with you:

–  A completed booking form for Canoeing/Kayaking/Sailing taster session if we have not received it already.

       –  If doing the RYA National Powerboat Level 2 course, a passport photograph is required for a    
          certificate. Please bring one with you otherwise we will not be able to issue your certificate.


What to expect when you arrive at the Centre

The centre prides itself on its warm and welcoming atmosphere. When you arrive you will be asked to sign-in at reception and complete a Medical and Booking Form if you haven’t done so already. You will then meet in the lounge area for an introduction to the Centre, and meet the instructor(s) that will be with you for the duration of your session/course. We will make sure you’re kitted out and ready to go and then it’s time to start!


Directions to the Centre and Parking information

Click image for our location on Google Maps:
• From Newport – follow the signs towards West Cowes on the dual carriageway.

• From West Cowes – follow the signs towards Newport on the dual carriageway.

• In both circumstances you will reach a large roundabout – take the exit towards B&Q – 4th exit from Newport (right hand lane) and 1st exit
from West Cowes (left hand lane) – We are sign posted as Medina Valley Outdoor Centre.
• At the next small roundabout, take the lst exit
• Go straight over the next two roundabouts.
• Keep the hospital on the left and you will pass a sign saying straight on for Medina Valley Outdoor Centre.
• The road bends round to the right – turn left, continuing on Dodnor Lane.
• Continue on Dodnor lane (including a tight right hand bend) until you reach a cycle path.
• lgnore the sign saying ‘No access except for restricted access’ and drive straight ahead across the cycle path. (Please note that this is a popular path for pedestrians and cyclists, so please take care when crossing).
• The entrance to the Centre is on the right hand-side (you will see our sign at the entrance).
• Free parking is available onsite for ~30 cars – Please park sensibly on the large concrete patio area in front of the Centre.
• Once you have parked, please sign in at Reception (straight ahead through the main entrance).