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18 June 2014
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Woodlands | New Forest

New Forest map
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The New Forest in Hampshire dates back nearly 1,000 years to 1079 when William the Conqueror established the area as a royal forest and hunting ground - his 'Nova Foresta'.

The New Forest is a nationally important environment comprising woodland pasture, heaths, bogs and the remains of coppices and timber plantations. It's a great place for a variety of nature watching activities.

New Forest Pony

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The great thing about woodlands is that they offer little windows into the past. If you know what you're doing, you can get a rough idea of how old a forest is.

Red Squirrel

Hands on Nature activities

Our woods offer amazing opportunities for wildlife watching. Why not take a few tips from the Hands on Nature team? Try your hand at deer watching or birding.


New Forest - Visitor Guide

Address:Lyndhurst, New Forest, Hampshire.
Postcode: SO42
Telephone: 0238 028 2269 - Lyndhurst Visitor Information Centre
01590 689000 - Lymington Visitor Information Centre
Key attractions:

Wild life watching - Deer, Badgers, Foxes, New Forest Ponies. Watch the Deer being fed daily between Easter-September near Bolderwood in the New Forest.

There are several walks including the Deer Watch Trail (0.5 mile), the Jubilee Grove Trail (1 mile), the Tall Trees Trail (1.5 miles) and the Radnor Trail (2 miles). There is also a Reptile Trail (1.5 miles) and a longer woodland walk called the Wilverley Wander (2.5 miles).

Essential kit:Binoculars, walking shoes and a trail map. Plaster of Paris for making animal footprint imprints. Get hold of a wildlife map from the visitors' centre.
Nature watching:Dusk is a good time to watch deer in the forest. The best times to see badgers are April and May. There are special hides for spotting the deer - but avoid the middle of the day

If you want to go on an organised butterfly safari - trips run every Saturday.

Access:There are three access friendly trails for wheelchairs and pushchairs - Boldwater, Black Water and Whitefield Moor - obtain guide at visitor centres. The New Forest can be very boggy in Winter so keep to gravel tracks.

Getting there:Three main routes in from the M27 junction 1 (busy in Summer), the A35 from Southampton, and the A31 from Bournemouth.

Trains stop at Ashurst, Beaulieu Road, Brockenhurst and Sway within the forest - ring 08457 484950 for times.
Opening times:Open all hours.
Charges:Not applicable.
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