Situated on the southern coast of England, Hampshire is one of the best places to visit in the UK. With so much to see and do, it’s a popular area with locals and tourists alike. In fact, there’s so much on offer that you’ll find it difficult to squeeze everything into just the one trip. So whether this is your first visit to Hampshire or you’re a regular to the area, we’ve created a cheat sheet to help you tailor your trip to your tastes. From top areas to explore to spectacular gardens and historic houses, as well as local walks and hidden gems, there’s something for everyone.
From retail therapy to award-winning restaurants and stunning countryside, Hampshire really does cater to all tastes. Put your explorer head on and take a trip to Emsworth for a wide selection of local walks. The South Downs offers numerous walking and cycling trails if you want to get lost in the countryside for the day, while New Forest boasts ancient woodland and spectacular heather-coated heaths. Whether you’re looking for a gentle stroll or a day-long hike, you’ll find all this and more in New Forest.
Foodies will feel right at home in Hampshire as there’s not only a wide variety of delicious local produce to try, but there are also many food and drink events not to be missed. The Southampton German Beer Festival takes place in May and promises a fabulous night out with all the atmosphere of a traditional German beer festival. Boasting live oompah bands, sizzling sausages and huge steins of ale, it’s a night to remember. The Cheese & Chilli Festival is held in July and offers you a taste explosion of many different cheeses and chilli, along with cooking demonstrations from top chefs. If sport is more your thing, come along to the National Watersports Festival on Hayling Island in September. Featuring three days of windsurfing and paddle boarding, it’s open to people of all ages and experience levels. Go on, try out your skills and impress the crowds!
National Trust and historic houses
Step back in time and marvel at the splendour of Hampshire’s many National Trust properties and historic houses and gardens. Tudor House and Garden is known as Southampton’s most significant historic building, steeped in 800 years of history. Tour the house to learn how each of the rooms looked throughout history and enjoy a cream tea afterwards in the café which looks out onto the spectacular garden. The award-winning Sir Harold Hillier Gardens are famous throughout the county and boast 180 acres of changing seasonal displays to enjoy.
Best kept secrets
Hampshire is home to so many wonderful hidden gems, among which include Gunwharf Quays in Portsmouth, the premium retail outlet of the south. Indulge in a spot of retail therapy in more than 90 outlet stores, with discounts of up to 60 per cent. When you’re all shopped out, there’s a choice of more than 30 bars, coffee shops and restaurants in which to relax and have a bite to eat. If cars interest you, head to Beaulieu National Motor Museum to see a fantastic display of history’s greatest cars, including those featured on Top Gear and in the James Bond films.
If you’d rather explore the area on foot, there are many local walks to enjoy. From gentle strolls along the harbour to longer trail walks, there’s something for everyone. The Billy Trail takes you along the west coast of Hayling Island for five miles while there are stunning views of the Isle of Wight from the Queen Elizabeth Country Park route.
For more information about what to do in Hampshire, check out our cheat sheet infographic. Book a stay at our Lakeside Coastal Village or Sinah Warren Hotel (on Hayling Island) to explore Hampshire for yourself.
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<img src=”https://warnerleisurehotelsblog.files.wordpress.com/2016/03/warner-leisure-hotels-hampshire-cheat-sheet.jpg” width=”440″>
<p>Hampshire Cheat Sheet– An infographic by the team at <a href=”http://blog.warnerleisurehotels.co.uk/“>Warner Leisure Hotels</a></p>