Designated a national park in 2005, the New Forest dates from 1079, so it’s anything but new – and not even really a forest. It’s home to free-roaming animals, including pigs, cattle and the eponymous ponies, and it’s made up of woodland, bog, marshland, heathland and coast, with many quaint villages in between. In the New Forest, and have are fantastic cycle routes and hiking.
If you’re in the New Forest for just the day, focus your attention on one activity, whether that’s visiting a historic site, such as Buckler’s Hard, Hurst Castle or Beaulieu, or following a walking trail where you’ll be drawn in by the beautiful colors of the landscapes. Many people come to the area simply to dine at The Pig in Brockenhurst, which celebrates home-grown and local produce.
The region is slightly under a two-hour drive from central London. If traveling by train (1 hour 30 minutes from London Waterloo to Brockenhurst), consider renting bikes and following trails that take you beyond the town.