Before we moved to Devon we lived in Berkshire – right next door to Hampshire. It’s a brilliant place to live, near London but full of fun family-friendly days out too.
Whether it’s commercial kid-friendly heaven you want or a more laid-back day out then you’ll find it in Hampshire. Here are some suggestions to get you started…
If you’ve got a small person in the house you’ll win serious parent points for taking them to see Sing-a-long-a Frozen at The Anvil in Basingstoke. Make a night of it and book a hotel in Basingstoke before taking the kids to the next place on the list…
Peppa Pig World
Peppa Pig World at Paultons Park is on the edge of the New Forest in Hampshire. It’s a full day out so you’ll need to stay nearby if you’re not within driving distance. Basingstoke is a great place to use as a base. There’s a Holiday Inn that would be an ideal stopover spot.
A bike ride in the New Forest
The New Forest is beautiful and well worth a visit if you’re in Hampshire. You can hire bikes from Brockenhurst and follow a cycle route to suit whatever ability. Stop off at a pub for lunch or take a picnic and enjoy the scenery over a sandwich.
Christmas markets in Winchester
Mulled wine, crafty gifts, carols – all in the shade of the stunning Winchester Cathedral. The Christmas markets at Winchester are not to be missed. It’s a guaranteed way to ramp up those Christmassey feelings and soak up the atmosphere before the day itself.
The Hawk Conservancy in Andover is a conservation charity and visitor centre offering a fun day out for animal lovers. There are over 150 birds of prey to check out and you can even hold one too if you’re brave enough.
Blue Reef Aquarium
Down on the coast at Portsmouth you’ll find Blue Reef Aquarium. Billed as “the ultimate underwater safari”, the aquarium is home to over 40 living displays. And when you get hungry there’s a café offering a great selection of food to enjoy.
Fish and chips in Lymington
Back to the New Forest and Lymington offers a beautiful spot to check out the boats and grab fish and chips by the sea. We spent our mini honeymoon in Lymington and loved browsing some of the independent shops there. It’s a lovely place to spend a few days – or just to pop along for an afternoon.
New Forest Reptile Centre
Another one for the animal lovers, New Forest Reptile Centre is a couple of miles from Lyndhurst, housing an impressive collection of snakes, lizards, frogs and toads. Apparently the best time to visit is on a sunny day when the reptiles are basking in the sunshine – so this is probably one to keep for the height of summer.
Have you got any great recommendations for places to go and things to see in Hampshire?
Disclosure: Thanks to InterContinental Hotels Group for collaborating with me on this post.