5 Reasons You Should Visit the New Forest When Travelling From Abroad
The New Forest has been a holiday destination throughout the ages but it’s not just because of the forest ponies roaming wild. As part of English Tourism week we asked the team at our New Forest Hotel why those travelling from overseas should visit the New Forest this year…
The nature and landscape
The New Forest is a place where ponies, donkeys and cattle have been freely grazing the land and helping to keep the patchwork of different habitats intact for thousands of years. Deeper in the forest, wild deer can be found beneath canopies of mighty oak and beech, all of which are natural scenes unchanged by the modern world. With a combination of idyllic glades, ancient woodland, open moors, heathland and cliff top walks, there is no place quite like the New Forest anywhere else in the world.
The New Forest Ponies and Donkeys
There are many different types of livestock which are put out to pasture in the Forest, including the infamous New Forest ponies, donkeys, pigs and cows. Unlike the New Forest ponies, the donkeys can be found throughout the forest all year round. Greatly loved by the visitors, only around 100 donkeys are turned out into the forest in comparison with the 3,000 New Forest ponies. All of the livestock are wild in the sense they can roam freely but in fact they are owned by New Forest Commoners.
The Local Towns and Villages
The villages and towns of the New Forest are charming. Even in these populated areas you will see a few New Forest ponies and donkeys trotting along contently and grazing on the pavements.
Lyndhurst is known as the capital of the New Forest since William the Conqueror established it as a royal hunting ground in 1079. Visitors can expect a royal welcome to the delightful village of Lyndhurst, the village has been visited by kings and queens throughout the centuries. Whilst in Lyndhurst, be sure to pop into The Bell Inn, our charming 18th Century Coaching Inn located in the heart of the beautiful New Forest. Surrounded by ancient woodland, yet only 5 minutes from Junction 1 of the M27, it’s the best of both worlds and has been awarded a fourth AA Inn Star. Owned by the same family throughout its history, this listed building is as much a part of the timeless landscape as the ponies and deer which roam freely through the surrounding forest. If you’re in the area on Sunday 26 March 2017, we recommend treating Mum to a Mother’s Day Lunch at one of the cosiest places to eat in the New Forest.
The New Forest is jam packed full of outdoor fun and activities for all the family. It provides an amazing setting for weekend walks, cycle rides and horse rides, with a vast network of bridleways and designated cycle paths that are well signposted and open to the public. When you combine that with incredible scenery and fantastic stop off points for lunches and Afternoon Teas, it’s easy to understand why the New Forest is the perfect place for a holiday from abroad.
It couldn’t be easier to get to the New Forest once you touch down in London. The forest is only a 89 minute train journey from Waterloo station, meaning you can easily escape city life to where where ponies, cattle, donkeys, pigs and deer roam free – even if just for the day. South West Trains to the New Forest also run straight from Basingstoke, Winchester, Southampton, Bournemouth, Poole and Weymouth. Driving is also an option which means you also have the freedom of being able to explore areas of the New Forest that are too far to cycle or walk.
So there we have it, when you combine wild ponies, incredible scenery, charming villages and some great outdoor adventures, who wouldn’t want to visit the New Forest this year?
Need somewhere comfortable and cosy to stay whilst exploring all that the New Forest has to offer?
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