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Walking In New Forest - 458 experiences

Read our guide for Walking In New Forest and Find and Book experiences, courses, activities and tours! Browse through the list of experiences, either instantly book onto your dates or enquire to book. All you have to do is turn up and enjoy! If you’ve got any questions about any specific experience, send a message and the providers will aim to get back to you as soon as possible. Have a specific experience in mind that we don’t have listed? No problem, drop us a message and we’ll send your quote around to hundreds of the best experience providers nationwide and come back with you the best quote, making it easy for you to make the most of your spare time!

The New Forest

Covering just over 200 square miles and having been declared a Royal Forest by William the Conqueror almost 1000 years ago, the New Forest has a history almost as rich as it’s flora and fauna! Containing broad areas of both woodland and heathland it is home to wild horses and deer amongst others, who enjoy its idyllic glades, moors and majestic ancient woodland almost as much as the millions of visitors. Being just 90 minutes from London by train it’s a fantastic day trip if you can’t stay longer.## Walking in the New Forest With such a plethora of fantastic landscapes all within a short distance of each other, the New Forest is a walker’s dream, especially if you’re not a fan of hills! It’s relatively flat, meaning it’s ideal for those who want to cover some serious distance, or for those who’d rather have a gentle stroll amongst some of the finest ancient woodland the country has to offer.
For families there are streams to play in, woods to hide in, trees to climb and ponies to find, with plenty of well-made paths and signposting for easy walks. If you’d rather get off the beaten track there are quieter sections you can also find, with some idyllic picnic spots for a well-earned lunch.
new forest walks
Here are some of our favourite areas to explore:
  • Beaulieu to Bucklers Hard: Beaulieu itself is perhaps most famous for its large house and National Motor Museum, but it’s set in a stunning location on the river of the same name. Taking a path out of the village (if you can bear to leave its lovely pubs and teahouses behind), you can follow alongside the river for just over 2 miles to Buckler’s Hard. Where you can enjoy another pub. It’s a gorgeous little hamlet that runs down to the river, and is steeped in maritime history as an old shipbuilding yard. Enjoy lazing about here and letting the children run around before the pleasant stroll back to Beaulieu.
  • Brockenhurst: right in the heart of the New Forest, Brockenhurst and nearby Lyndhurst could be considered the beating heart of the place, with fantastic walks all around. Just to the north of the village on the road to Lyndhurst is Balmerlawn, with the Lymington River providing endless hours of paddling fun for little ones. Heading east from here are some lovely walks towards the Denny Lodge Inclosure, featuring open fields scattered amongst the woodland. It can get boggy to the sides of the main paths, though this makes for some fascinating walking - and brilliant fun for children - in the winter if it freezes over. To the west of the village is Rhinefield House and the Rhinefield Ornamental Drive, which is well worth a stroll along if you have time, for a beautiful setting amongst the conifers.

walking in new forest
  • Lyndhurst: vibrant and bustling Lyndhust is a great base from which to access a great combination of open moorland and dappled glades amongst ancient woodland. Head out to the east over some of the open moorland - usually with plenty of the wild ponies around here - before cutting back over the minor road at Matley Heath to explore some of the gorgeous glades and find the perfect picnic spot. If you’re happy going ‘off piste’ then there are some lovely tiny paths following streams in the area.
  • Fritham: to the north of the New Forest it tends to be a lot more open, with some more sweeping views of the moorland. Head out to the south and west via the oak and bracken filled Holly Hatch Inclosure, Sloden Inclosure and Amberwood Inclosure, keeping an eye out for deer roaming in between.

national parks walks near me

What to Wear for Hiking?

Getting the right hill walking equipment can be the difference between a fantastic day out and 50 shades of grim, or in a worst scenario an embarrassing call to mountain rescue. So what is essential walking kit? This differs based on where you’re going hill walking and what the weather is.
The climate can change very quickly in the UK, so essential walking clothing will protect you for all weathers. As one of the main hill-walking legends himself put it “There's no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable clothing”, Alfred Wainwright. Make sure you’ve got full body waterproofs, both a jacket and trousers. Take a carrier bag to waterproof out your bag. And add a carrier bag to protect essential items like your phone. Make sure you're wearing appropriate footwear for the terrain. And don’t underestimate how much of a beating they can take climbing hills, especially with rocks or scrambling. Bring spare warm layers such as a hat, gloves, neck scarf and spare fleece and warm clothes (enough to make you feel warm when not on the move).
forest walks near me

What to Pack for Hiking or Long Walks?

Depending on the conditions of your walk you’ll need to pack differently. If you’re going on a route that’s not well marked make sure you have the means to navigate.
  • Navigation tools: a map with a compass (even if it’s a backup to your digital tools), for the worst case scenario of the digital navigation tools running out of battery.
  • Mobile phone: fully charged. Don’t rinse through the battery using instagram in case you need to call for emergencies.
  • Take a good backpack, preferably with a built in hydration system so you can constantly take on water as you move, making it easier to stay hydrated throughout the day.

For Long Distance Walks:
  • First Aid Kit and Medicines: very important if going up particularly challenging terrain
  • Head touch and spare batteries: In case it gets dark due to the sun setting or a storm setting in, a head torch can be very useful, if not vital.
  • Group Shelter: can be used to set up quick camp, in the case of an almost immediate storm, should you wish to shelter temporarily.
  • A whistle: In case fog sets in and you need to help others find you.

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