We have just returned from a relaxing break in The New Forest at a magical family campsite called Hollands Wood.
I’ve always loved the New Forest and its slow pace of life. You only have to be there an hour or two before everything slows down and you start to breathe. It was a perfect place to down camp after a muddy Camp Bestival this year.
Hollands Wood is a gorgeous campsite just a short stroll from the village of Brockenhurst. It’s part of the Camping in the Forest group of sites so is really well looked after with wildlife everywhere.
We loved that you could park anywhere and ponies would just stroll right up to our van. With a reasonably large motor home we often find we get frowned at when arriving at sites who take tents. These guys were super helpful and really friendly Dutch guy told us all about what to expect and safety around the horses.
The kids loved climbing all the ancient oak trees and the landscape is just beautiful. You can camp right along the edge of a huge open common with so much space for kids to run. We watched family cricket games, Frisbee and football matches from the comfort of our pitch.A 5 minute stroll from the campsite takes you to an idyllic river side spot with shallow water, perfect for children to play. Although the Brockenhurst is a reasonable way from the coast, the river makes up for that.
A bridge across the water and a 20 minute walk takes you in to Brockenhurst village with several, shops, pubs and cafes, and a very good ice cream shop.
Closer to Hollands Wood campsite we found a rather fancy hotel which served food and drinks. We only managed to last 2 drinks in here with the kids before retreating to the river. I did notice it had a lovely outdoor pool and a spa. One day maybe.
I loved all the horses and cows just wandering around. It really helps to slow your brain down to the New Forest pace of life. The kids even managed to go gadget free for a few days.
We were camped next to a lovely family who had made the journey to this lovely campsite all the way from Europe. Our kids made friends and they taught each other some words in their own languages.
The girls really enjoyed playing with the horses. We’d told them several times what the man we met on arrival had said about not petting them because they bit. They didn’t listen too well and Daisy ended up with a nip.
It didn’t seem to put them off.
Picturesque and perfect!
What you can’t see in this picture is the friendly warden asking us to take the hammock down. Something about ‘rules of the forest’. We politely accepted his request after another 5 minute swing.
Such a fabulous break. Playing in streams, climbing trees, making friends, and enjoying the great outdoors.
Hollands Wood is a magical little spot.
Check it out if you are in the area and discover this hidden treasure.