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Pony near Hampton Ridge
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New Forest pub guide - an introduction

Welcome to the New Forest Pub Guide.

New Forest pub guide

New Forest pubs invariably offer warm, friendly hospitality; comfortable surroundings; fast, friendly service; a wide choice of drinks and delicious food to satisfy even the keenest appetite. Indeed, a good New Forest pub can’t be beaten for a great night out, a quiet drink or a pleasant meal.

And there’s a great selection of pubs available. Choose from village centre pubs or walk, cycle or drive into the midst of the Forest and enjoy some of the more outlying establishments.

Or why not stray a little further and take in some of the pubs just beyond the ’old’ New Forest boundary, for example along the nearby coast at Lymington, Pennington or Keyhaven; or in the numerous delightful villages set amidst rolling Hampshire countryside at places such as Damerham, Rockbourne and Whitsbury; or along the valley of the mighty River Avon at Fordingbridge, Breamore or Sopley.

Most of the local pubs serve food. Some start as early as 7.00 am with full English breakfasts that cater best for campers tired of early morning cooking. Lunchtime and evening menus are varied, whilst cream teas have developed into something of a local speciality. Quality and service are often impressively high, and customers usually leave well-satisfied with their culinary experience.

Many pubs also cater well for children, offering gardens, play areas, special menus and smaller portion main meals. Some also offer accommodation for those who enjoy staying in a pub environment, or maybe do not want too far to walk after an evening of eating and drinking. Some of the pubs also make particularly good bases from which to explore the surrounding Forest, and make great refreshment stops during walks or cycle rides.

As well as the expected wines, spirits, lagers and keg beers, many of these pubs offer at least one real ale, and often a regular changing, varied selection, including top quality guest beers.

Find out more about some great New Forest pubs

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New Forest ponies
New Forest ponies in the road
New Forest ponies, cattle, pigs, sheep and donkeys are a popular part of the New Forest scene, but in 2015, 55 were killed on the roads.
Always take care when driving
New Forest 'what's on' - a small
selection of local events and activities
May 2016
Friday, 6th - Brockenhurst Village Hall, Burlesque Varietease, 8.00pm - 10.00pm.
Saturday 7th May to Sunday 10th July - New Forest Centre, Lyndhurst, Special exhibition: Curiouser and Curiouser, 10.00am - 4.30pm.
Saturday, 14th - Exbury Gardens, RHS New Forest Breakfast Walk. Booking essential - 02380 891203.
Sunday, 22nd - Burley Village Hall, Craft Fayre, 10.30am - 5.00pm.

June 2016
Wednesday, 1st - Walk through Time with a Forestry Commission volunteer ranger, 10.00am - 1.00pm, advance booking essential.
Tuesday, 14th - New Forest Centre, Lyndhurst, Walk and Talk: St Michael and All Angels Church, 2.00pm - 4.00pm. Advance booking essential.
Saturday, 25th - Exbury Gardens, Devoted to Dogs Day.
View the full 'What's on' programme.
New Forest seasonal highlights
May
Bluebells and other wild flowers brighten the woods, usually in relatively small numbers.
Bird song can be heard throughout the day but is at its loudest at dawn and, to a lesser extent, dusk.
Foals are born in increasing numbers and can be seen beside ever-attentive mares.
Dragonflies are more frequently observed on the wing as spring progresses.

June
Badgers can now often be watched above ground well before darkness falls.
Deer - fallow, red, roe and sika deer are all present - give birth, although the youngsters are unlikely to be noticed until July.
Heath spotted-orchids add delicate pink colour to many of the heaths.
Hobbies, dashing birds of prey, can often be seen aloft, hawking for insects.
Content produced by Andrew Walmsley
Content produced by Andrew Walmsley