The New Forest in Spring – Wildlife, Walks and Events
(This blog was written pre COVID-19 lockdown. We do not advise going against Government advice around staying at home. We do encourage our customers and guests to look forward to the future and plan ahead for when we are able to return to our beloved forest)
When the air gets warmer, the nights get shorter and the sun seems to shine a little brighter – you know that spring is just around the corner. The New Forest comes to life in the spring months, bursting into bloom and filling with birdsong. It’s one of the best places in the UK to get back in touch with nature on long walks – and with each other at excellent local events. Here are just a few of the great things to enjoy this spring in the New Forest.
While the New Forest is gorgeous any time of year, there’s something special about spring. Everything’s just so full of life and colour, no matter where you turn. You have to see it to believe it.
As the daffodils push their way out towards the sun, the bees emerge, ready to start the honey making season. Before long, wildflowers are making the most of the pollinators – and the heath erupts with colour. Animals seem to be everywhere, little ones in tow.
Visit the famous bluebells, at Clayhill Heath near Lyndhurst. It’s more than just a great photo opportunity; these bluebells fill the air with the most wonderful smell – and you can’t get that from a photo.
New Forest ponies are pretty much everywhere, but we’ve got a handy guide to help you find them faster! Find the best places to see New Forest ponies.
The Deer Sanctuary
Deer give birth to their young in spring, and the sanctuary viewing platform at Bolderwood is a great place to catch a glimpse of these majestic creatures up close. They’re quite shy usually, but you’re more likely to spot them at feeding time – between 12:30-2:30pm from April onwards.
Don’t Fancy Going on a Bear Hunt?
If you’d rather go where you’re guaranteed to find some animals, then you’re in luck! Longdown Activity Farm is a brilliant family day out, where children and adults can get hands-on with chicks, calves and other cute farm animals. Learn about farming and where food comes from, get active and have fun.
If you’ve had your fill of furry animals, why not try a close encounter of the reptilian kind? Visit New Forest Reptile Centre, near Lyndhurst, where you’ll be able to see some of the more elusive lizards and snakes, native to the New Forest.
Great Local Springtime Food and Events
Let’s get down to our favourite subject – food! Local produce markets really kick off in spring, when the fayre is spectacularly varied and vibrant. There’s everything on offer locally, from vegetables to meat and fish. That’s why there are food festivals all through the year here, starting in spring.
Lymington Market takes over the high every Saturday, with plants, food, produce and unique crafts. Milford Sea Food Week is held in late spring – a primetime event for fans of fish.
And if you want a real taste of the New Forest, visit us at The Bell Inn, where our award-winning food is made with the finest locally sourced ingredients.
Pop in after a long walk in nature – bring the whole family, dog and all. We’ll present you with our exquisitely crafted menu, prepared by Head Chef Mark Young.
It’s the perfect place to settle down after a springtime stroll!