Step back in time and discover the charm and natural beauty of this unique destination. The New Forest became a national park in 2005 and was once a royal hunting ground for William the Conqueror. It covers an area of 566 square kilometres and is made up of vast tracts of unspoilt woodland, heathland and river valleys. Today deer, ponies and cattle continue to roam free in its ancient heaths and woodland.
The Durley Dean Hotel, Bournemouth; an historic Victorian townhouse hotel is situated close to the beautiful beaches of popular Bournemouth. With many comfortable rooms to suit everyone, you will be sure to have a relaxing stay here. The hotel also offers a Spa and leisure facilities for guests. After a day sight-seeing, you could make the most of the heated indoor pool and relax in the tranquil sauna and steam room.
We depart Pembrokeshire and make our way towards the New Forest. We will stop for lunch in Winchester, with plenty of independent shops, wonderful coffee shops and an admirable cathedral, there is lots to do before we make our way to the hotel.
After a full English breakfast to start the day, we make our way through the New Forest to Beulieu. There is a choice of things to do; take a walk around Palace House, once the gatehouse of the medieval Beaulieu Abbey, has been the Montagu family home since 1538; explore the inspiring National Motor Museum; find the iconic cars from memorable TV challenges from the show Top Gear or delve into the Secret Army Exhibition. After a busy morning visit here, this afternoon we make our way to Bucklers Hard. On the banks of the Beaulieu River, in the heart of the New Forest, you will find this peaceful haven which remains untouched by the passage of time. Once a thriving shipbuilding village where ships for Nelson's fleet at Trafalgar were built, now Buckler's Hard is a tranquil village, perfect for escaping the hustle and bustle of modern life.
We will discover the history of the village in the Maritime Museum, take a step inside a historic shipwright's cottage, or simply amble down the high street to watch the boats sailing by on the Beaulieu River, added to this we will take a 30min river cruise down the Beaulieu river.
After a leisurely breakfast we start our way home, with comfort stops en route.