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Discover New Forest Villages

Here are just a few of our favourite places to discover in the New Forest … A locals’ tried and tested guide to New Forest Villages, attractions, delightful shops to browse, enchanting walks, downloadable maps and where to find an excellent meal. All insider knowledge to ensure you experience the best during  your New Forest holiday.

Beaulieu River

Beaulieu

The name Beaulieu means ‘beautiful place’ and this idyllic village located in the south east of the New Forest certainly lives up to its name. Perched on the south banks of the tidal Beaulieu River, there is an abundance of historical buildings to discover and it makes for a lovely day out.

Visit..
Beaulieu Abbey founded in 1204 by King John as a monastery of the Cicercian order. The principle building is now  The Palace House, built originally as the gatehouse to the Abbey. It’s open to the public throughout the year and is listed as one of the ten most magnificent palaces, stately homes and English castles in Britain. Nearby, on the banks of the river, you’ll find the peaceful haven of Bucklers Hard, an 18th century ship building village. Here the riverbanks display an abundance of wildlife, both flora and fauna.

Walk..
Beaulieu to Bucklers Hard, way marked by the side of the Montague Arms. Forming part of the Solent way, this lovely 2.5 mile amble, takes you through woodland, along scenic riverside banks and through to the salt-mashes. For a map click here.

Cycle..
Hire bikes from New Forest Activities and take a leisurely ride. Their activities centre on the high street offers a great selection of maps too.

Browse..
The village itself is a tiny street with several boutique shops such as the yummyBeaulieu Chocolate Studio which we highly recommend! Fairweathers Garden Centre, a real plantsmans paradise, is at the top of the lane and has a nice cafe for a spot of lunch.

Pub Lunch at..
Just outside of Beaulieu Village in East Boldre, you’ll find The Turf Cutters. A traditional dog & child friendly forest  pub with roaring log fires in the winters and spacious gardens for sunny days.

Dine at..
The Montagu Arms, Beaulieu Village. Here, foodies are spoilt for choice. The Terrace restaurant offers superb Michelin starred menus, or for a more relaxed affair with the family, Monty’s Inn offers rustic country fair and classic English favourites.

Stay at..
To browse our selection of New Forest Holiday cottages Click here.

Lymington High Street

Lymington

A yachting haven with colourful and bustling cobbled streets, perched on the mouth of the Lymington River. Many of the streets are lined with Georgian buildings which were built by gentry made rich from the local Salterns and boat building. Both industries have shaped the Village over the centuries right through to modern day.

Visit..
St Barbe Museum & Art Gallery explores the unique history of Lymington and the New Forest coast. The collections reflect aspects of life in the area from prehistory to the present day, alongside galleries displaying art galleries exhibitions that regularly include works on loan from national and regional collections.

Known as the Lymington Lido, the Lymington seawater baths date back to the 1780′s, gaining popularity in 1833 for the healing and strengthening properties of the minerals in the salt plains mud and water. Open May-Sept and well worth a dip!

Walk..
The coastal footpath to Keyhaven Nature Reserve, way marked from the far end of the marina. Click here for a map.
Or, jump on the Isle of Wight ferry and explore Yarmouth on foot.

Cycle..
There’s a lovely scenic ring route from Lymington that takes you though Bucklers Hard and Brockenhurst. At 30 miles its not a round trip for the novice, although it takes you through the heart of the forest and there’s plenty of idyllic pubs and pretty spots on route to have a breather and relax. Click here for a map.

Browse..
The cobbled quay boutique shops, plus a fantastic street market that takes over the High Street every Saturday.

Lunch at..
The Haven and take in the stunning views across The Isle of Wight and the Solent.  There’s a really vibrant atmosphere here and the menus are top notch.

Dine at..
Lanes of Lymington, just off the High Street. Effortlessly stylish and the food here is exceptional.

Stay at..
To browse our selection of New Forest Holiday cottages Click here.

 

New Forest Ponies

Brockenhurst

South of Lyndhurst, you will find the pretty village of Brockenhurst (the name meaning ‘Badgars Wood) set amidst the most picturesque forestland. The village itself is renowned for the ponies and donkeys that congregate in the  High Street (you often have to shoooo them out of the way just to get into tecsos).

Visit..
Book a day spa or treatment at Sens Spa. Perfect for chill out time.  For family time, head to Balmer lawn where the Beaulieu River makes a good spot for a picnic and a chance to paddle and cool off in the summer months.

Walk..
Brockenhurst is a great starting point with an endless choice of routes to Beaulieu, Burley,Lyndhurst or Lymington. For a selection of walking ideas and maps click here.

Cycle..
Hire bikes from New Forest Cycle Hire and check out their extensive range of cycle routes from Brockenhurst Click here.

Browse..
Setley Ridge Vineyard and local produce shop is great to stock up for picnics.  Brockenhurst is dotted with sweet little Retro clothing and antique shops which are worth a nosey.

Dine at..
Our absolute favourite is The Pig, just outside Brockenhurst going towards Beaulieu. You will need to book in advance but its well worth the wait. Leave some time to explore the extensive and beautifully maintained vegetable gardens onsite to see what the chef has picked for the daily menu. Tel: 01590 622354 for bookings.

Stay at..
To browse our selection of New Forest Holiday cottages Click here.

lyndhurst

Lyndhurst

Lyndhurst is known as the ‘Capital’ of the New Forest and has been the centre of the New Forests administration sine the 14th century. For centuries a Verderers Court has sat to administer justice with the forest boundaries.

Visit..
The New Forest Centre is packed full of displays and activities that interpret the history & commoning traditions with interactive exhibits. Located alongside the main car park in Lyndhurst.  Keep an eye on their ‘Whats On‘ listings for the guided walks & activities for children.

Walk..
For a really pretty forest walk, follow Bolton’s Bench at the end of the village to Matley wood. This easy walk will take you across open moorland, through ancient oak woods and past water meadows. Click here for map.

Cycle..
From Lyndhurst to Brockenhurst through forest tracks and across stunning heathland. This is a scenic and easy route taking you through the forest with minimum road work. Click here for map.

Browse..
The bustling high street is now full of independent, boutique shops and tea rooms.  The Lyndhurst Gallery in the High Street offers a vibrant range of affordable original paintings. Search for Art Deco at The Lyndhurst Antique Centre, offering the wares of 30 dealers.

Lunch at..
The Oak, in Bank is a lovely traditional pub just on the outskirts of Lyndhurst.  A lovely friendly atmosphere, irresistible menus, with a focus on local produce. Dog and child friendly, with lovely oak woods on the doorstep for an amble after lunch. Its worth booking a table in advance.

Dine at..
Lime Wood. It doesn’t get much better than this. The dining here is exceptional, in the most elegant of surroundings. Ingredients are sourced from their extensive gardens, foraged from the forest and local farmers.

Stay at..
To browse our selection of New Forest Holiday cottages Click here.

 

 

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