Forest trees and fallen leaves
Autumn in the Forest
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Autumn in the Forest

It’s hard to beat autumn in the New Forest for incredible scenery and dramatic changes to the visual appearance. Not only will you find beautiful leaf colours, but there is also an abundance of interesting wildlife and fauna that can be seen.

When the acorns start to fall in the forest, this can become a problem for the ponies and cattle – as they are poisonous when consumed. This isn’t the case for all of our residents, however, and the now-vacant areas will be filled with the local pigs. These pigs are taking part in the annual pannage, a tradition that goes back hundreds of years. Owned by the forest commoners, the pigs are released to feed on the fallen acorns.

Other things that you will see thriving in the now moist and fertile ground, are a vast range and fungus. This varied and interesting life form is always of interest and decorates the Forest in a natural and wonderful way.

Take a walk through our autumn colours

One of the best ways to explore the autumn colours of the New Forest is on foot. Exploring the forest by foot is a great way to experience not only the colour change but the crunch of leaves underfoot. This is a great time of year to be in the forest with children as well as dogs.

Taking place for a fortnight over the autumn, the annual New Forest Walking Festival is a popular event. Organised by the New Forest National Park Association, there are over 70 different walks that you can join in with. Family walks, nature walks and much more. Come along and see different parts of the New Forest that you may not have discovered before.

Foodie delights in the autumn

During the Autumn, we all start to crave warm food. There are many incredible places to eat in the Forest, but we are proud of our in house restaurant. By sourcing local food, we ensure that the food is as seasonal as possible, and gives a genuine taste of the local area.

If you are looking for a relaxing drink with friends, a quick snack or a 3-course meal you can make an evening of, our restaurant is designed to leave you feeling satisfied, having experienced dishes that showcase a respectful nod to the season.

Top ten things to do in autumn in the New Forest

See The Nature

As the forest is a cyclical and natural environment, visiting at a different time of the year can yield different results in terms of the natural sights you can see. Visiting in autumn is the perfect opportunity to witness the forests pigs. They have an important job to do – eating up all the acorns which may be harmful to other forest animal inhabitants. This is the only place you will see this happening in the UK, and it’s a fantastic opportunity to give children unique memories or get an incredible photo of the pigs in action.

Sample the feast!

During New Forest Food & Drink Fortnight which will be running in November for 2019, you can taste and buy the best of local New Forest produce, and see top chefs create stunning seasonal dishes. The food in the forest is one of the major draws for visitors to the area, and it’s never better than in the autumn.

Take an autumn walk along the Coast

The forest has attractions beyond the lush trees and woodland nature. The length of coastline also offers an incredible walk complete with sea birds and panoramic views.
The coastline is prone to being a little colder and windier, but its a great way to spend the day. Walking wrapped up and returning to the hotel for a hot meal and a warm room.

Enjoy the peace & quiet

The forest is typically a little quieter during the autumn months, and with low-speed country roads, this time of year is ideal for riding bikes. With over 140 miles of beautiful roads complete with small villages and towns to stop at should the thought take you, this time of year is a great time to re-center and enjoy the natural world around you.

Booking at The Bell

With all this on offer, this season is the perfect time to come and visit us. Stay with us for the weekend, the long weekend or even the week. We have the flexibility to make your stay exactly what you are looking for.