The great outdoors
With 145 square miles of stunning parkland on the doorstep – not to mention the Solent and striking South Coast – guests at Passford really are spoilt for choice. If you’re feeling active, we have just the thing to get those pulses racing…
With a pair of comfy shoes there’s no limit to what the forest can show you. There are plenty of options to help you stretch your legs and soak up the scenery. In particular, Bolderwood is good for a stroll – ice cream and deer spotting – and the Tall Trees walk provides ample shade from the midday sun.
Top tip: If you can handle an early start then look out for Dawn Chorus walking events throughout the year.
Those who don’t walk, cycle. With over 100 miles of off-road way-marked tracks to discover, the New Forest is a cyclist’s paradise. In fact, many find the only obstacle to be an occasional pony on the path. And, if you’re feeling even more adventurous, a cliff-top cycle on the South Coast is both exhilarating and exhausting, in equal measure.
Top tip: Bike hire shops are popular in the New Forest. Just ask one of the Passford team for advice on the best deals and the most enjoyable routes to take.
The New Forest certainly knows what makes a good, albeit often challenging, golf course. There are plenty of chances to work on your handicap – and enjoy some of the wonderful scenery as you play. At just under 6,000 yards with a par of 69, the nearby New Forest Golf Club at Lyndhurst boasts some of the most scenic holes in Hampshire.
Brockenhurst Manor Golf Club (Par 70) is also nearby and has just been voted the 'English Champion Club' of the year. Elizabeth Bennett who is the Ladies Number 1 English Amateur, plays golf here and lives in Brockenhurst. Anyone wanting to play here will need to have a Handicap Certificate – 24 for Men and 30 for Ladies. The cost is £49.50 per person midweek and £60.00 at the weekends and needs to be booked in advance.
Top tip: If you don’t fancy a shot at the real thing, try your hand on our putting green before heading to the coast for some crazy golf.
You can’t get much more off the beaten track than on back of a horse. With nearby stables offering rides for both the enthusiastic beginner and seasoned rider, you’ll be heading off into the Forest’s leafy glades in no time.
Top tip: Horse riding is a must for animal lovers. Free to roam across the Common ground, you are sure to encounter much of the Forest’s wildlife – from sheep, pigs, donkeys and cows, to the ever-popular New Forest ponies.
For those wanting the wild side without the walk, four-wheel drive safaris are available at Burley Manor Park. With a New Forest farmer as your guide, you’ll learn all about the birds, animals and plants that have made the Forest their home. Tractor rides are also popular with those looking to enjoy life in the slow lane.
Top tip: On Thursday evenings throughout the summer, visitors to the park can indulge in a deer safari with a campfire picnic – the perfect way to round off the day.
Whether it’s pleasure cruises, sailing, kayaking, paddle or banana boats you’re after, the Solent is waiting to satisfy your every whim. Even if you don’t know your ballast from your bowline, you could be sailing on the open seas just moments from the hotel – but make sure you leave the skippering to someone a bit more experienced.
Top tip: Treat your team to a bit of sea air by hiring a yacht for the day. Sailing the Solent could do wonders for the business plan.
The New Forest Activities Booking Centre
The New Forest Activities Booking Centre based on Beaulieu High Street offers a range of great activities and things to do in the New Forest. Whether you are looking for family activities such as canoeing on the Beaulieu River, Archery in the New Forest, or want a little more adventure with Battlefield LIVE or Kayaking, the Booking Centre has something to offer everyone. If you just want more information on local New Forest Attractions, maps of the area or want to explore with cycle hire or a guided walk, then pop in and meet the team. Call 01590 612377 or visit www.newforestactivities.co.uk.