101 Things To Do In The New Forest

Whether you live here or are just visiting for a while, I hope you find some ideas for family activities in my mega list of things to do in the New Forest. Some of the activities are free and while you will be able to find most in the New Forest area, some locations mentioned are a little more further afield.

(This list is comprised entirely of activities my family enjoys in and around the New Forest. It does not contain sponsored content).

So here goes, my list of 101 things to do in the New Forest:

  1. Try your hand at crabbing at Mudeford Quay

2. Meet Peppa Pig and friends at Paulton’s Park

Peppa Pig World

3. Have a picnic and a paddle in the stream at Wooton Bridge (near Bashley)

Wooton-Bridge-New Forest
Wooton Bridge

4. Take the ferry from Mudeford Quay to Mudeford Sandspit

5. Hold a chick and feed baby goats at Longdown Activity Farm

Longdown Activity Farm

6. Find the fairy doors nestled in the trees at Woodside Park (Lymington)

Fairy door at Woodside Park

7. Splash around at  Quomps Splash Park (Christchurch)


8. Collect fossils on the beach at Barton on Sea

Barton On Sea

9. Sample one of the many delicious flavours of New Forest Ice Cream (available widely)

10. Have a swim and play on the inflatables at Lymington Sea Water Baths

11. Marvel at the sheer variety before attempting to finish a mouth-watering sundae at Sprinkles Gelato (Bournemouth)

12. Pick your own strawberries and other fruit and vegetables at the Cat and Fiddle Farm

Pick-Your-Own- Christchurch
Pick your own at the Cat & Fiddle Farm

13. Enjoy a picnic and gentle walk at Cadman’s Pool

14. Explore Hurst Castle

The view from Hurst Castle

15. See ponies wonder the streets of Brockenhurst

16. Build a den at Moors Valley Country Park

17. Go back in time at Buckler’s Hard

18. Ride the steam train at Exbury Gardens

19. Take the land train at Hengistbury Head

20. Spend a day being entertained at the New Forest Show

21. Run for miles on the unspoilt, sandy beach at Southbourne

Southbourne Beach

22. Discover the many things to do (including a visit to the National Motor Museum) at Beaulieu

23. Zoom around the BMX track (and the mini track for younger children) at Dudley Avenue Recreation Ground, Hordle

Hordle Park

24. Go for a pony ride from Burley Villa

25. Enjoy a leisurely walk around Hatchet Pond

26. Ooh and aah over the Friday Summer Fireworks from Bournemouth Pier

27. Visit the sea creatures at Bournemouth Oceanarium 

28. Bowl your heart out and play some arcade games at Bowlplex Poole

29. Catch a movie or see a play at the Regent Centre Christchurch

30. Discover more about the New Forest through the New Forest Centre at Lyndhurst

31. View the snakes and lizards at the New Forest Reptile Centre

32. Take an open-top bus tour

33. Stuff your face with delicious cake and wash it down with cider (for the adults obviously!) at the Cider Pantry (Burley)


34. Have fun on the rides, meet the Madhatter and get lost in the maze at Adventure Wonderland

Adventure Wonderland

35. Have a go on the ringos and skibobs at Snowtrax

36. Burn off some energy at Gambados Indoor Play Centre

Gambados Eastleigh

37. Have a picnic and play at Avon Heath Country Park

38. Go Ape at Moors Valley

39. Navigate the Inflatable Aqua Park at New Forest Water Park

40. Spot some deer from the viewing platform at the Bolderwood Deer Sanctuary

41. Take in the beautiful Solent views at Lepe Country Park

42. Have fun throwing pebbles into the sea at Milford

Milford On Sea

43. Take a ferry to the Isle of Wight for a day

44. Race around the gokarting track at Matchams

45. Have a cuppa and play at the Good Play Cafe in Southbourne

46. Build sandcastles at Avon Beach

47. Swing, slide and Climb at Highcliffe Playground

48. Visit the animals at Marwell Zoo

49. Walk along the Rhinefield Tall Trees Trail

50. See the ponies and cattle at Whitefield Moor

51. Have an adventure at Calshot Activities Centre

52. See the New Forest on a wagon ride from Burley

53. Hire a boat at Christchurch Quay

54. See otters, owls and more at the New Forest Wildlife Park

55. Get on your bike and explore the forest

56. Hire a beach hut for the day at Avon Beach

Beach huts at Avon Beach

57. Paint your own pottery at The Clay Studio

58. Drive a farm tractor at the Dorset Heavy Horse Farm Park and Rescue Centre

59. Fly down the zip wire at Avon Tyrell Activity Centre

60. Enjoy a beautiful walk in the gardens at Furzey

61. Go crabbing on the bridge at Keyhaven

62. Burn off some steam at Monkey Madness Play Centre

63. Climb the wall at Roof Reef Activity Centre

64. Ride the rapids at Romsey Rapids Sports Complex

65. Tackle the trails on a Segway at Moors Valley

66. Ride the land train along the sea front in Bournemouth

67. Enjoy a day out at Farmer Palmer’s Farm Park

68. Sunbathe on Highcliffe beach

Highcliffe Beach

69. Take a round of crazy golf by the sea at Sandbanks

70. Explore the Woodland Play Trail at Upton Country Park

71. Be dazzled by the Christmas lights on Byron Road, Barton-on-Sea (December time)

72. Watch a flying demonstration at Liberty’s Owl, Raptor and Reptile Centre

73. Picnic at Bolton’s Bench

74. Have some safari soft play fun at Play Site on Safari

75. See what’s on at the Bournemouth International Centre

76. Scooter, cycle or push a buggy along the promenade at Avon Beach

Avon Beach

77. Visit Sammy Miller Motorcycle Museum in New Milton

78. Discover Bournemouth Pier


79. Spy on some buzzards via the nest cam in Lyndhurst

80. Clamber through the play bus full of balls at Molly’s Den, New Milton (update Nov 2017: Molly’s Den is closed until further notice)

81. Sit in a cockpit at Bournemouth Aviation Museum

82. Have a swim at Two Rivers Meet

83. Explore the pretty village of Beaulieu and stop for a cream tea

84. Feed the ducks at Christchurch Quay

85. Marvel at the beautiful scenery around Eyewoth Pond

86. Explore Calshot Castle

87. Browse the stalls at Lymington’s vibrant Saturday Market

88. Catch the Hythe Ferry

89. Have a fantastic day out at the Bournemouth Air Show (takes place in August)

90. Run up and down the zig zag path to the beach from Highcliffe Castle

91. Smell the beautiful roses at Braxton Gardens

92. See the real reindeer and make a date with Santa at Stewarts Garden Centre (December time only)

93. Let older kids skate and scoot at the New Milton Skate Park (there is a smaller park next door for younger children)

New Milton Skate Park

94. Run about and have a play at Long Meadow, Barton On Sea

95. Walk around the lake or ice skate (during winter) at Poole Park

96. Kayak or canoe on the Beaulieu River

97. Get crafty or see what’s on at the New Forest Arts Centre

98. Enjoy a bite to eat and breathtaking view of the ocean from Aruba, Bournemouth

99. Visit Boscombe Pier

100. Enjoy a balloon ride in Bournemouth

101. Grab something to eat and have a play on the pirate ship at the Rising Sun, Bashley

Things To Do In The New Forest When It Rains

(Disclaimer: This is simply a list of activities and attractions and is not a recommendation or review of any of the places listed. I strongly recommend you visit each attraction’s website and before you visit as well as phoning for more information. I do not accept liability for the outcome of any visit. I have made every effort to ensure the accuracy of the information contained in this post and do not accept liability for any errors or omission.)

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