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What to do in the New Forest National Park

The New Forest National Park is just a stone’s throw away from us here in Lymington, so we are lucky enough to be able to access what the New Forest has to offer within just a short drive.

Walking in New Forest

The New Forest National Park is incredibly popular with walkers who want to explore the woodland trails and see some of the local animals in their natural habitat.

Dogs are allowed to be exercised in the New Forest National Park, but it is recommended all dogs are kept on a lead so they don’t disturb livestock who may be caring for their young.

There’s a wide range of walking routes to explore in the New Forest National Park and the handy app makes it easy to navigate.

Trails include:

  • Blackwater: Heartwood Trail
  • Boldre Village
  • Buckland Rings Trail
  • Keyhaven Marshes
  • Godshill and Castle Hill
  • Rockford Common


If you’re more into cycling than walking, there’s plenty of cycling trails to enjoy in the New Forest National Park. If you don’t own a bicycle, you can rent a bike from one of the hire operators in the New Forest.

Houses and Gardens

If you’re a bit of a history buff, you might be more interested in the houses and gardens in and around the New Forest National Park.

  • Avon Tyrell II
  • Brockenhurst Park II
  • Cadland House II
  • Exbury House II
  • Hale Park II
  • Pylewell Park II
  • Rhinefield II

In the Spring, there’s plenty of stunning flowers to see, with colours bursting through as you head down the pathways.

Things to do with the kids

If you’re visiting the New Forest with the children, finding activities that can occupy them and spend quality family time together is important.

Luckily, the New Forest has plenty to offer for children of all ages.

New Forest Wildlife Park

The New Forest Wildlife Park has a wide range of animals to discover, including otters, deer, badger, ferret, wolf, lynx, boar and wallaby to name a few.

You will have the opportunity to get involved in feeding times which happen at certain durations throughout the day. During these feeding sessions, the keepers will be on hand to answer any questions you have about the animals.

On site, there’s an adventure playground, that features climbing ropes and swings. There’s also a section dedicated to the younger ones with sand pits and diggers to enjoy.

Distance from Lymington: 13 miles


New Forest Activities

One for the older children, New Forest Activities gives you the opportunity to try adrenaline fuelled activities such as canoeing, kayaking and archery to name a few.

For something a bit different, there’s the low and high ropes course or if you’re looking for something competitive, the BattleZone laser tag lets you cut loose in the woodland.

Distance from Lymington: 5.5 miles


Longdown Activity Farm

Perfect for a morning of fun, Longdown Activity Farm is ideal for the younger ones, allowing them to get up close and personal with the resident farm animals.

There’s hands on activities that include bottle feeding goats and calves as well as duck feeding. Some of the animals you can meet include donkeys, goals, alpacas and cows.

On site, there’s a farm shop that is stocked with tasty treats for you to sample during your visit or take home and enjoy.

Distance from Lymington: 13.5 miles


Bolderwood Deer Sanctuary

The New Forest is home to a large number of deer, but getting close enough to see them in their natural habitat can be difficult.

At Bolderwood Deer Sanctuary, there’s a dedicated viewing platform that overlooks the meadow where the deer settle.

The deer are fed daily by a keeper close by, so you are more likely to spot deer from this location as they are comfortable staying in this area.

Distance from Lymington: 12.5 miles


Exbury Gardens and Steam Railway

Exbury Gardens has something for all ages, with the gardens to explore and the steam railway to enjoy for a truly unique day out in the New Forest.

The steam train travels through the site, visiting Summer Lane Garden en route (only accessible via train).

Distance from Lymington: 10 miles


Liberty’s Owl and Reptile Centre

For something a bit different, Liberty’s Owl and Reptile Centre will guarantee to keep the younger ones occupied, as well as the adults.

There’s daily flying demonstrations available so you can watch the birds of prey in their natural environment.

The reptile house has snakes and lizards to see and there’s also a children’s sand pit to enjoy on those warmer days.

Distance from Lymington: 16.5 miles


If you have a growing family or want to start making an effort to get out and enjoy what the New Forest has to offer, make sure you have the right car so you can travel comfortably and with all the gear you need.

Contact Everton Garage to take a test drive of any of our Hyundai models.

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