6 New Forest Villages – Most Popular
The New Forest is a beautiful place to live or visit. It’s full of amazing scenery, wildlife and history.
There are so many things to do and see in the New Forest.
The New Forest villages are small communities within the forest that have their own unique character. Each village has its own history and traditions, with some dating back hundreds of years. Many have shops, pubs and restaurants where you can enjoy a meal or drink with friends and family.
See also: 11 Pubs in the New Forest – (Plus Video and Photos) * Burley New Forest – Walk Around * New Forest Ponies – Where To See? * Burley Manor New Forest * 13 Unique Things to do in the New Forest
We’ve put together a list of the villages in the New Forest so you can find out where they are, what they’re like and what you can do there.
The villages are all very different from each other, but they all have something special about them. You can find out more about each one by clicking on the links below:
1. Brockenhurst – New Forest Villages
Brockenhurst is a popular village in the New Forest with its own train station. It’s very easy to get to and is on the London line.
A small village in Hampshire, England. The village has about 3,500 residents and is situated within the New Forest National Park.
The village has a rich history, dating back to Roman times. A large part of the village was destroyed by fire in 1731 and much of what you see today dates from that period onwards.
There are many things to do in Brockenhurst including walking and cycling trails, horse riding and golf courses.
There are also many historic buildings and sites within the village – with some dating back to Roman times. Some examples include:
- The church (St Mary the Virgin) – which was built around 1150 AD
- The Tithe Barn – which was built in 1635 to store tithes paid by local farmers towards their parish priest
- The Manor House – which dates back to 1730 but was substantially rebuilt after it was destroyed by fire
There are bikes to hire in the village for those who want to go out into the forest bike riding there are also a few horse riding stables that offer rides out into the forest, these get extremely booked up though and its best to book way in advance if you are planning on going horseback on your trip.
As well as many activities to take part in there are quite a few lovely restaurants and quaint cafes you can stop off at as well as some nice rural pubs.
2. Burley New Forest Villages
Burley is one of the most popular new forest villages and this is because its a stunning and popular village in the heart of the new forest next to the lovely town of Ringwood.
A visit to the village of Burley in the New Forest is like stepping back in time. This lovely, picturesque village is set at the heart of The New Forest National Park, a place of breath-taking beauty.
The village has a rich history and is famous as the birthplace of Beatrix Potter, who lived in Burley House from 1881 until 1925. In fact, she even named her famous story character Peter Rabbit after her pet rabbit based on an incident that happened here in the village!
Burley is very special as it has its links to magic and witches which you can see from the famous shops of which craft which still feature in the center of Burley today that sell everything mystical and which craft.
Not only is it unique in this respect but this village is renowned for free-roaming New Forest Ponies, Cattle, Pigs, Donkeys, and other forest animals roaming freely within the village itself.
In the center of Burley, there is also the Deer park where Deer walk freely throughout the acres of park and can be spotted wandering around. You can even take a safari out into the park to spot some deer.
If you fancy stopping for a Cream Tea then Burley does one of the best Cream Teas of all the new forest villages from the quiant little thatched cafe you will find in the square which has been there for hundreds of years.
If you’re partial to ice cream then you must sample the ice cream in Burley which are adorned with every topping imaginable.
Burley also has their very own cider pressing and you will be able o go and watch the process of cider making and purchase some freshly made cider.
3. Burley Manor
Burley Manor Hotel is a stunning manor house and is the most stunning manor house of all of the new forest villages. Set right in the middle of Burley. It is surrounded by acres of Deer park where you can see the deer from your hotel window.
The Burley Manor, in the heart of the New Forest, is a beautiful and historic manor house. It is set in 12 acres of grounds and gardens that are open to the public, offering visitors an opportunity to explore the history of this beautiful building.
The manor was originally built as a hunting lodge for King Henry VII in 1487. It was then rebuilt as a Tudor mansion for Sir Thomas Tresham, who became High Sheriff of Hampshire in 1521. Today it stands as one of only three Tudor mansions still standing in the New Forest.
In 1620, William Paulet (later 1st Marquis of Winchester) bought Burley Manor from Sir Thomas Tresham’s son and spent £9000 on improvements to the estate. The 1st Marquis had been Secretary of State under Queen Elizabeth I and Master of the Mint for King James I.
He also served as Lord High Treasurer under King Charles I during the Civil War. After his death in 1668, his son Sir John Paulet inherited Burley Manor and lived there until 1722 when he sold it to Admiral Sir Edward Hawke who lived there until his death in 1781
The main attraction of this area is its rich history. There are lots of walks available in the surrounding area with both locals and visitors alike enjoying their time in this beautiful part of England.
In the summer months, there are horse carriage rides you can jump on which will take you on a lovely tour of the area. There are also bikes that can be hired from the village.
If you’re looking for a stunning lunch, cream tea or dinner then Burley Manor is definitely the place to go. Its also a hotel so you can stay there too and also bring along your dogs.
4. Lyndhurst – New Forest Villages
Lyndhurst is a village in the New Forest National Park of Hampshire, England. It lies on the eastern side of the New Forest and is about 2 miles (3 km) east of Brockenhurst and about 5 miles (8 km) southwest of Lymington. The village had a population of 1,543 at the 2011 census.
Lyndhurst was founded by Sir Richard Onslow, who obtained a grant of free warren in his manors of ‘Brockenden’ and ‘Holcombe’ in 1656. He built Lyndhurst House in 1660 as his residence with gardens designed by Charles Bridgeman of Kew and Capability Brown.
The house was later owned by the Earl of Normanton, who used it for entertaining guests to hunt with him at Fordingbridge. In 1851 it was bought by Edward VII when Prince of Wales for use as a country residence for himself and Queen Alexandra during visits to the area.
Lyndhurst is very near to Southampton so is easy to get to. The small village has lots of lovely shops and places to eat. It also has a Ferrari garage full of the latest Ferrari models, so its a great experience going around the showroom and having a good look at all the Ferraris you could buy when you win the lottery.
5. Beaulieu – New Forest Villages
The new forest villages of Beaulieu (which means ‘beautiful place’ in French) is a small, peaceful community with a population of just over 1000 people. It is located in the north of the New Forest National Park, which is one of the biggest areas of woodland in southern England.
The village has several attractions, including Beaulieu Abbey, which was built in 1201 and has been used as a monastery, palace and prison. There are also many historical buildings, including a manor house called Beaulieu Castle and a Tudor mansion called Palace House. The majority of these are open to the public during certain times of year.
The village has many shops and restaurants as well as hotels and bed & breakfasts for visitors who want to stay overnight while they explore the area. There are also several campsites nearby if you want to camp or park your caravan or motorhome while you visit this beautiful part of England!
National Motor Museum
Beaulieu is also home to the famous National Motor Museum. People come from all over England and the world to visit this incredible museum.
This museum is home to some of the most famous record braking cars in the world and even features the famous Blue Bird. This is a place that must be visited on your trip if you are an avid car fan.
Some of the historic cars at the Museum you will get to see are the following:
- 1875 Grenville Steam Carriage. The oldest self-propelled passenger-carrying road vehicle still in working order. But it’s a team effort because it takes 3 people to operate!
- 1895 Knight. One of the first purpose-built petrol-driven vehicles to run on public roads in Britain. Its owner, John Henry Knight, also became the first person to be charged with a motoring offense in Britain.
- 1899 Daimler 12hp. John Montagu became one of the first British drivers to compete in a European motor race when he entered the Daimler into the 1899 Paris-Ostend road race. He also drove it in the 1900 Thousand Mile Trial to help promote motoring to the British public.
- 1901 Columbia Electric. Who says electric vehicles are a new idea?! Queen Alexandra bought this one new for use in the grounds of Sandringham House.
- 1903 Mercedes 60hp. The ‘supercar’ of its day, this particular vehicle competed in the Nice speed trials in France and is one of only five 60hp Mercedes still in existence.
- 1903 De Dion Bouton 6hp. One of the original five cars that launched the Montagu Motor Museum in 1952. Early visitors could see it on display in the entrance hall of Palace House! It is a regular entrant to the annual London to Brighton run.
- 1914 Ford Model T. Widely accepted as the car that brought motoring to the masses. Contrary to popular belief they were available in colours other than black!
What is the new forest bucklers hard in Beaulieu like?
The New Forest Buckler’s Hard is a 16th-century shipbuilding site on the Beaulieu River, which is now owned by the National Trust. It has been restored and is open to visitors. The site was originally a water-powered sawmill, built by Thomas Buckler in 1550. By 1580 he had added a shipyard so that he could build his own vessels, using timber from his own estate.
The first vessel built at Buckler’s Hard was probably a galley for Henry VIII. The building of ships continued throughout Queen Elizabeth I’s reign and into King James I’s reign until about 1630 when it was abandoned because of competition from other shipyards along the south coast.
Within this lovely village you will find a hotel and a pub on the river that serve up delicious means and in the summer months offer outside barbeques to sit and take in the beautiful river seanery.
6. Lymington – New Forest Villages
Lymington is one of the most popular new forest villages in the New Forest. It has a long history of being an important port and still has two working harbours that smugglers used during the 18th century. Today, it is a thriving town with lots of shops, hotels and restaurants along its high street.
There are many things to do in Lymington including:
- Visit one of the museums like The Red Lion Museum or The Lymington & Pennington Museum which tells you about local history
- Enjoy some shopping at The Harbour Centre or browse through some antiques at The Old Fire Station Market
- Take a walk along The Quay where you will find plenty of places to eat or drink as well as an ice cream parlour and children’s play area
- Go on a boat trip around Poole Harbour with Poole Boat Trips who offer trips all year round including sunset cruises during the summer months.