Brockenhurst is located centrally in the heart of the New Forest National Park, the former hunting ground of Kings. Lying between Lymington on the coast and Lyndhurst (the former capital of the forest), Brockenhurst is a wonderful small village with a number of country Inns and local shops brimful of local produce. There is no better place to stay in the New Forest. Every direction leads to beautiful deciduous forest or pastures. Beware of donkeys and ponies walking along the high street.
Originally comprising four Saxon manors: Mapleham, Hinchelsea, Brochelie and Broeste, Brockenhurst grew in importance only when salt production in Lymington required a more direct routing to London around the mid 18th Century. Lying directly on the trading route Brockenhurst became a natural stopover and many of the places to stay took guests hundreds of years ago. The earliest signs of settlements are from the Bronze Age a little more than 4,000 years ago (in the form of burial mounds known as tumuli). Although it is believed the people were nomadic at this time. It was not until William the Conqueror made the forest his hunting ground that Brockenhurst is recorded as a distinct destination.
The church of St Nicholas is mentioned in the Doomsday Book (1086) and was the only church of the forest recorded. The village and surrounding area is highly prized real estate and rivals London in regards to prices. One of the reasons for this is that it lies on the direct train line to London Waterloo (1hr 30mins). Transport links and tourism has expanded the population of the village, however it still manages to retain the intrinsic qualities of a small country village, complete with cricket green in front of the Balmer Lawn Hotel.
There are many attractions to entice the visitor to Brockenhurst. Not least of all the beauty of the New Forest which encircles the village. The Lymington River, formed by the merging of the Blackwater and Ober Water just outside Brockenhurst provides ample opportunities for walking and picnicking. The Rhinefield Ornamental Drive begins just outside Brockenhurst and is a delightful way to explore deep into the woods. An arboretum can help you to discover local trees and shrubs native to the area.
Brockenhurst is a hub for visitors to the New Forest and whilst there are many hotels, bed and breakfast and self catering accommodations it’s always good to book in advance to ensure a place to stay.
There is a wide variety of accommodation available and Brockenhurst hotels include some of the best the forest can offer. Careys Manor Hotel offers 5 star luxury with on-site leisure and spa facilities whilst The Balmer Lawn Hotel is steeped in local history being the place that Montgomery and his generals met to plan the D-Day invasions.
There are many guest houses providing bed and breakfast accommodation (Brockenhurst B&B). Often these provide a more intimate way to experience the area and you will certainly get to know some of the locals. If you prefer self-catering accommodation there are plenty of cottages available to rent out in Brockenhurst or alternatively, camp sites can be found at Hollands Wood and Long Meadow.
The New Forest Hotels provides a directory of all accommodation available in the New Forest with links to every property. Find New Forest Hotels to book your stay in Britain’s newest National Park.