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2018-year -of -our -island

2018 is a year to celebrate our Island and our connection to it, to celebrating the vast amount of things we have to see and do, the places we have to explore and the events for everyone take part in.

It is about celebrating our UNESCO Biosphere status and to get involved more and give our time and efforts into maintaining and enhancing our environment and our community.

2018 will bring a range of events and opportunities for us to value our environment, our culture, our heritage and our community, and to remind ourselves how these enhance our quality of life and our health and well-being.

We'll be adding more events to our programme throughout the year, so follow our social media pages to find out more! 


  • January – Our Dark Skies
  • February – Our Stories
  • March – Our Great Outdoors
  • April – More Great Outdoors
  • May – Our Innovation and Creativity
  • June – Our Seas and Shores
  • July – Our Culture
  • August – Our Quality of Life
  • September – Our Festivals
  • October – Our Heritage
  • November – Our Rainy Days
  • December – Our Artisans and Producers

January – Our Dark Skies

One of the things that makes our Island a special place to live is our unique dark skies environment, with an incredible 26 official dark skies discovery sites across our Island. 

Discovery sites are places that:

  • are away from the worst of any local light pollution
  • provide good sightlines of the sky
  • have good public access, including firm ground for wheelchairs – the sites are generally freely accessible at all times

All of our dark skies sites are classed as ‘Milky Way’ sites — this means not only can you see the seven main stars in the winter constellation Orion, but the Milky Way is visible to the naked eye.

During Dark Skies Week we hope to encourage you to take part in organised events or to just star gaze from your back door step and to take part in a community star count. 

Download our Dark Skies booklet to find out more! 

March & April – Our Great Outdoors

We will be promoting events, walks and other outdoor pursuits to highlight some of the many and varied activities we have to do here on the Isle of Man.

We are launching the 2018 Trail – a set of 12 established walks on the Island that will be accompanied by a booklet with interesting information and activities to part in whilst out enjoying our great outdoors.

Over the Easter Holidays there will be organised, guided walks that could introduce you to some of the fascinating natural and historical landmarks and the varied flora and fauna of our rich landscape.

We want to know how you like to spend your time exploring more and what makes our outdoors so special to you – connect with us @Ourisland2018 or by using our #OurIsland2018 tags!

May – Our innovation and creativity

In May, Year of Our Island will be working with our creatives across the Isle of Man. We've partnered with the Isle of Man Arts Festival as well as Peel's new Festival of Fire to help showcase Manx creativity and design. We'll also be running a series of workshops throughout the month to help stir up creativity.

But that's not all – Year of Our Island will be working with IsleExpo, the Isle of Man Arts Council and Culture Vannin to put on more events and exhibitions in collaboration with our funding partners.

June – Celebrating our seas and shores

In June we'll be celebrating our seas and shores. The Isle of Man has 160 km of coastline and a diverse seascape which includes loads of areas of special scientific interest around our coasts.

We'll be highlighting these throughout the month and organising events with our partners to help you explore more of our shores and work to protect them.

We have partnered with Isle of Man Beach Buddies to organise island wide beach clean!

Sunday 17 June 2018

There are loads of events happening throughout the month such as:

  • 8 June – World Oceans Day
  • 16 June – World Sea Turtle Day (and yes, the Isle of Man has sea turtles)
    • Seawatch at the Sound hosted by Manx Whale and Dolphin Watch
  • 17 June – Beach Buddies Big Beach Clean
  • 21 and 22 June – Port Erin Festival of the Beach and Sea
  • 30 June – Viking Boat Race (Peel)
  • 30 June – Mindful Mann 2018

Oh and don't forget to check out our beaches guide available this summer!

Download our Seas and Shores booklet to find out more!

Our Island Rocks

July – Celebrating our culture

In July we'll be working with Culture Vannin to celebrate - you guessed it- our culture. Year of Our Island is showcasing what makes the Isle of Man unique, so whether you're Manx as the hills or newly Manx we want to show you that there is so much love about our Island.

We'll be at Tynwald Day with a very special event and be carrying on the celebration throughout national week!

We've also partnered with the Celtic Gathering to bring over a number of special acts (we'll let them tell you who they are) for their weekend of celtic cultural celebration.

Year of Our Island will also be launching our Flower Garden which will be the culmination of loads of hard work by our Island's schools.


5 July 2018 – Year of Our Island at Tynwald Day

1-7 July 2018 – Isle of Man Flower Festival

20-21 July 2018 – Manx National Heritage Shakespeare in Peel Castle

22 July 2018 – MNH Shakespeare in Rushen Abbey

28-29 – Year of Our Island at the Souther Show

Partner Events

15-18 July July 2018 – The Celtic Gathering

Download our Culture Booklet and Treasure Hunt to find out more!

August – Our quality of life

Celebrating our quality of life

Sick of those 5 hour commutes? We didn't think so.

August is about celebrating the benfits which living on the Isle of Man brings to our mental and physical wellbeing.

We'll be talking to residents about why they love to live here and what they do to get away fro mthe hustle and bustle of the 'big city'.


11 Aug 2018 – Pilates in the Park

18 Aug 2018 – Mindfulness in the Glen

September – Celebrating our festivals

Whilst our Island's social calendar is always bustling, the month of September is a particularly busy when it comes to festivals. Whether you're a seasoned attendee or just want to find a weekend activity for the family, there's so much to try this month! 

Whether it’s baths, books, music or films – there’s something for everyone this month. We’ve partnered with festival organisers across the Isle of Man to bring you the very best in September.

Download Celebrating our Festivals in September to find out more and view our social media pages to keep upto date.

Partner events

The Great Manx Shindig

Location TBC

31 August – 2 September

The World Tin Bath Championship

Castletown Harbour

7 September

Our Island: Our World

Peel Centenary Centre

7-8 September

Isle of Man Film Festival

Locations around the Island

7-9 September

The Isle of Man Salsa Festival

The Palace Hotel

14 – 17 September

Summer Music Season

Villa Marina Arcade

2 – 23 September

Isle of Man Food and Drink Festival

Villa Marina Gardens

15 – 16 September

Manx Lit-Fest

Locations around the Island

25 – 30 September

October - Our heritage

Celebrating our heritage

In October, take some time to celebrate the stories that make our Island so special. From Manx National Heritage’s open days to the Hop Tu Naa festival, there is so much to get involved in this month! Discover more of our heritage at the events below!

Discover more about what’s happening this month with our 'Heritage What’s On' guide 

Autumn Heritage Walks

Download our Autumn Heritage Walks Guide and start your journey.

1. Sulby
2. Maughold Blueway
3. Laxey
4. Douglas
5. Port St Mary Blueway
6. Port St Mary
7. Port Erin
8. Peel Kippers, Boats and Quays
9. Peel Towns, Shops and the Seaside
10. Peel Teas and Quays
11. Peel Victorian Hotspots
12. Niarbyl Blueway

Hop tu Naa

Hop tu Naa is one of the oldest continuous Manx traditions and historically has been a time to come together with friends and family for a celebration. In 2018 Year of Our Island has worked with our partners to bring you a comprehensive Hop tu Naa to-do list!

Download our 2018 Hop tu Naa What's on guide.

November – Our rainy days

Celebrating our rainy days!

We know that November doesn't always bring the best weather, that's why we'll be working with local clubs and societies to bring a number of open days to you.

Have you ever thought about trying karate? What about bowling? Or snooker? Maybe your just want to improve your backstroke?

There are so many things to try on our island, and we want to let you know what you can do when it's not looking that great outside.

December – Celebrating our Artisans

December is all about celebrating our local businesses.

Throughout the month we'll be working with start-ups and established Manx makers to spread the workd about the fantastic quality of produce and products made on our Island!

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