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Our guide to luxury Hampshire holidays

With its bucolic woodlands, flaxen shores, and free-grazing ponies, is it any wonder so many crave the unbridled, back-to-nature bliss of a weekend in Austen’s county? This is the Unique guide to luxury Hampshire holidays.

Hampshire is a county painted by Mother Nature’s masterstroke. From the sylvan plains of the South Downs (England’s newest National Park, stretching from Winchester to Eastbourne in East Sussex) to the ancient heathlands of the New Forest (and former hunting haunts of William the Conqueror), this is a pocket of England that marries adventure, history, and home comforts. For intrepid souls seeking airborne thrills, the Solent Sky Museum poses the opportunity to go “up, up, and away” in a vintage aircraft, whilst water babies harness the wind and waves of the Solent. Meanwhile, cyclists can make tracks through the Meon Valley, and hikers can clock miles along the Jurassic Coast.

There’s no such thing as a short to-do list in this county; behold the soaring spires of Winchester Cathedral that safekeep King Arthur’s table, or head to Portsmouth Dockyard for stories of seafaring and the world’s most iconic naval vessel, HMS Victory. In our guide to luxury Hampshire holidays, we’ve taken steer on the best places to see, eat, and stay, including woodland hideaways and big group options designed with family in mind (we’re talking treehouses, zip wires, outdoor pools, arcade games, and acres of woodland glades for Gruffalo hunting). Whatever your ideal Hampshire holiday looks like, we’ve got luxurious self-catering homes to suit both the young – and the young-at-heart.

Locations in Hampshire

From the pastel-hued houses that line the cookie cutter port town of Lymington to the wild heathlands and Hansel & Gretel houses hidden deep in the New Forest, we´ve got every corner of the hillocky county covered.

Collections in Hampshire

Whether you´re seeking a coastal cabin complete with a woodfired hot tub and cruiser bikes for a last-minute break, or a chef-ready country house to celebrate Christmas en masse, our curated collections have it covered.

Things to do in Hampshire

Spend days on the Solent aboard a power boat or fly-fishing in Fordingbridge. There´s plenty of adventures to be had on dry land, too, including safari drive-throughs at nearby Longleat and antique-scouting at Romsey Markets.

Things to see in Hampshire

Journey through history in Hampshire; step into Bronze Age Britain at Bransgore, watch sunrise at Calshot Beach, or delve into the Elizabethan era at Breamore (where you might spy scenes from Pride & Prejudice).

Where to eat in Hampshire

Forgo the flop of homemade pancakes and seek fresh stacks at Hampshire´s buzziest brunch spot, or tuck into the finest pizza this side of Napoli. The county is speckled with coaching inns serving stellar Sunday spreads, too.

Journals about Hampshire

Pour a glass of Champagne and read all about these cream-of-the-group properties, including the Soho Home-inspired "shack" crowned one of Britain’s best cabins, and where to go with aspiring Attenboroughs.

The British Nordic

The British Nordic

We owe much to The Nordics. Givers of Edvard Munch and the Moomins, of saunas and smörgåsbords. Here, we offer up our most earthen homes, built on hygge foundations.

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Beautiful places to visit in the UK in autumn

Beautiful places to visit in the UK in autumn

Whether heading to the hills with walking boots in tow or for a hot soak in a Roman city, autumn offers a new perspective for travellers. Read our guide to making the most of the season.

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Places to visit from London

Places to visit from London

We’ve curated a list of the best places to visit from London – from Kent´s coast to the Cotswolds´ countryside – and covered everything to see and do when you get there.

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The best luxury homes with private pools

The best luxury homes with private pools

On your marks, get set, and dive! This month marks the grand reopening of our pools for the season. Natural, heated, or designed like a Roman bath, these sparkling vats of water await your slinky arrival this summer.

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Hampshire FAQ´s

Looking for the county´s literary haunts? Want to know the prettiest places for photography in the county? If you have a Hampshire-specific query, you might find the answer here. For everything else, visit our general FAQs.

Is the New Forest in Hampshire?

Yes, almost all of the New Forest’s 140,000 acres sits in Hampshire, with a smaller part in Wiltshire. Completely unsown, this ancient forest and heathland is unchanged since medieval times. It was William the Conqueror who originally named this area as the ‘new hunting forest’ in 1079. Now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the forest is best known for its wild ponies, wandering the land and occasionally poking their noses into open car windows passing by.

Where exactly is Hampshire?

Sat snugly between Dorset, Wiltshire, Surrey, and West Sussex, Hampshire is located in south-central England. Roman villas dot the countryside, romantic monastic ruins lie in wait for afternoon picnics, and remnants from the medieval wool trade still colour the streets of Winchester to this day. With a charming coastline, ancient forests, rolling chalk downlands, historical market towns, and the cities of Portsmouth and Southampton too, this is a county for all explorers.

Did Jane Austen live in Hampshire?

Yes, in fact she grew up in Hampshire, in the village of Steventon until she was 25. One of Britain’s most celebrated authors, she later moved to the pretty village of Chawton, where her brother owned Chawton House. He found a cottage in the village for Jane, her sister and her mother – which is now known as Jane Austen’s House Museum. It was from here, in the peaceful countryside near Alton, that Jane Austen wrote some of her greatest works, including Emma, Mansfield Park, and Persuasion, and it now resides as a small indy museum open to the public.

What is the main city in Hampshire?

Perhaps not the largest by population, of which Southampton claims the title, Winchester is Hampshire’s official county town. Once capital to the ancient Saxon kingdom of Wessex, and England’s capital in 871, it’s now most well-known for Winchester Cathedral, both grand and ornate in nature. As one of England’s smallest cities, it’s easily accessible on foot. Slowly amble your way through its cobbled streets, exploring the city’s hidden antique shops and cafes, before landing at Winchester Castle, home to King Alfred’s legendary round table.

Where is the prettiest village in the New Forest?

Many say Beaulieu is the prettiest of them all, the name itself meaning ‘beautiful place’. Perched on the banks of the tidal Beaulieu River, wooden-beamed buildings line quaint streets and classic car enthusiasts roll through the centre, having visited the nearby classic motor museum and estate. Meandre the high street, dipping into independent boutiques and tiny tearooms for slabs of apple cake. Further up the river, you’ll find Buckler’s Hard, an old, 18th-century shipbuilding village that built Admiral Nelson’s great Agamemnon warship, used in the Battle of Trafalgar.

Own a property in Hampshire?

Are you the keeper of a forested treehouse? Or the custodian of a cottage by the sea? From Winchester to Cowes to the hamlets of Hartley Wintney, we´re seeking Hampshire´s most unique homes to join our growing portfolio

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