Days Out – Here and There in the New Forest

Hello lovely readers. Hope this post finds you fit and well wherever you’re at in the world. How’s your Summer going? Ours is busy busy as usual, our feet don’t seem to touch the ground too often and time sure does fly, can’t believe it’s August already. How did that even happen?

We get two days off each week, mid-week as the weekends are too crazy , and either spend them flitting around exploring the New Forest or just chilling here on site. It’s not as easy to move the van to a tranquil spot within our 300 acres of campsite when the kids are off school. The little buggers get everywhere!! We love em though, As I’ve said several times before, it’s a breath of fresh air seeing the young uns having good old fashioned, gadget-free, fun. Our own dear little tikes came to visit us last week. They had an absolute blast and it was quite wonderful having them here.

They tired themselves out tearing around the vast, safe space during the day and slept like logs at night. Fresh air is a fine tonic. They loved the ponies and thought it was too hilarious when the donkey gang visited them and raided the car boot as ‘Papa’ (Grandpa) was trying to unpack!! Such rascals them pesky donks! Check out this one pinching Dylans drink! Come in why don’t ya!

They are really cheeky! I was doing a permit check the other day and four of the little blighters came nonchalantly strolling out of a tent followed by an elderly gent rubbing his eyes. He’d gone for an afternoon snooze with the door open as it was so warm and woken up to donkey fest!

Thought I’d just share a couple of places with you which are great to visit and close by if you’re ever in the area. The first is Bucklers Hard. Matt and Lulu came to see us for a couple of days and we were lucky enough to bag some free tickets. It’s around 3 miles from Roundhill. It was good to have Matts car to nip around in instead of relying on our bikes. It’s a lovely spot on the banks of the Beaulieu River. The Hamlet itself is just a couple of rows of pretty, Georgian Cottages, a chapel and a hotel/bar running down to the river. Bucklers Hard forms part of the 9000 acre Beaulieu Estate and is one of the few privately owned estuaries in the world. It was once a shipbuilding village where ships for Nelsons fleet at Trafalger were built. River cruises run several times daily from the dock. The Maritime Musuem is really interesting and well worth a look.

There are historic cottage displays in the compact little Museum and lots of information about Nelsons Navy warships, the DDay landings and Sir Francis Chichester and his yacht, the Gypsy Moth. We all had an enjoyable day and finished off with a cheeky pint outside the Yachtsman, undeterred by the odd shower!!

Next day we took another drive out, through beautiful 13th century village of Beaulieu and on to the Drift Inn by Beaulieu Road Station. Drift is a term used for the twice yearly round up of the wild ponies in the New Forest. They are herded up by the Commoners on horseback and checked over. The foals are taken off and weaned ready for the sales in September. It’s an exhilarating event to witness although they do discourage public intervention as it can cause problems if the riders are working around spectators. Part of it takes place on our site so we were very lucky to see this last year. Opposite the Inn you can see the historic stalls where the animals are corralled and auctioned off.

The Drift Inn is a smashing former coaching inn with log fires and home cooked, locally sourced, seasonal food. It’s doggie friendly and very welcoming. There are some wonderful scenic walks round about. It’s a great place to finish a stroll with a pint or two!

Lymington is always a firm favourite. We often come here on our days off as it’s only a 5 minute train journey away from Brockenhurst. We love the quaint high street and the little waterfront shops and cafes. I am seriously in need of a bit of retail therapy. I’ve discovered a new Danish label called Dea Kudibal. Stanwells Boutique is my favourite guilty pleasure in Lymington and they are stockists. Mark has developed a serious case of wallet ache and says he needs a lie down. I’ve also found an amazing Hair Salon (I don’t half miss the girls at Velu keeping my wig in shape when we’re away!!). Jack and the Wolfe is a small, luxurious salon run by a knowledgeable enthusiastic couple. I have really good vibes about this place. Can’t wait for an appointment, my hair is a serious birds nest. Patch test done and we’re good to go next day off!

Time for lunch!

You can take a boat trip from the jetty or just sit and watch the Isle of Wight ferry glide in and out. We had planned a posh lunch but now quite fancy fish and chips by the water. Good job as I’ve spent all the money 😆Yummy anyway.

The seawater baths here are very popular. You don’t even need sunshine, just wriggle into a wetsuit. Great fun! Not with a belly full of fish and chips though!

Today we were visited by our lovely pals from Buxton, Kerry and Neil and their daughter Eadie. What a nice surprise! They had been to Peppa Pig World in Southampton. It was good to catch up over a coffee. So kind of you guys to take a detour to come and see us.

And so, all our guests have departed ☹️. It’s a quick whizz around Marks and Spencer’s food hall for provisions and back to base.

We’ve had a most pleasant few days. Time to knuckle down now and earn more pennies for next time!

Hope you enjoyed reading my lovelies. Take care of yourselves and each other and do join us again soon. Much love from the forest.

M and M ❤️

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