One of the jewels of South East England the affluent county of Hampshire is blessed with elegant historic towns, impossibly pretty villages, gorgeous stately homes, undulating lush green landscapes, and a stunning coastline. In fact, there’s so much beauty in the part of the United Kingdom it’s hard to know where to start exploring first. So from world-famous ancient hunting grounds to protected and revered rolling hills, here is our choice for the best and most beautiful places to visit in Hampshire, United Kingdom…
South Downs – beautiful tranquil Hampshire countryside and rolling hills
Definitely one of the best places to visit in the county of Hampshire, The South Downs National Park offers an alternative to the world-famous New Forest. It starts from the Itchen Valley in Hampshire in the west of Beachy Head in East Sussex, Instead of flora and greenery, South Downs offers scenic views of the beach in Hampshire and if you venture into the next country the sea.
The chalk cliffs at Seven Sisters give visitors a surreal, almost ethereal experience as they marvel at the waves’ beauty. The monolith-like peaks are the perfect contrast to the gentle rolling of the waves on the shore as well. This place is a great stop as you explore Hampshire and witness all the beauty that it has to offer.
Hotels and Airbnbs in South Downs
The New Forest – famously one of the best places to visit in Hampshire, England
The New Forest National Park offers a serene reprieve from the hustle and bustle of the busy city. Be surrounded by nature, flora, and fauna when you visit this serene spot in Hampshire. You’ll be surrounded by crisp, clean air with multiple fun activities to do alone or with your family and friends. This national park allows you to reconnect with nature and discover all its wonder.
Hotels and Airbnbs in The New Forest
Chawton House – a stunning Elizabethan manor house that once belonged to Jane Austen’s brother
If you know of Jane Austen, you probably know she referred to a “Great House” in the many letters she wrote. This is the house that she was referring to; Chawton House is the perfect destination for those who want to learn more about Jane Austen and her letters’ history.
Visitors to Cawton House will be greeted by a vast garden trail and a spacious receiving area upon arrival. Within the house itself, visitors will be able to see the Library Reading Room, the Library Terrace Gardens, the Great Hall, and the Old Kitchen, to name a few. I promise you’ll be entranced by the rich history behind the walls of the Great House.
Hotels and Airbnbs in Chawton House
Beaulieu – a pretty small village located in the New Forest but deserves a special mention of its own
While it’s also located within New Forest, Beaulieu deserves a spot of its own on the list. Beaulieu is a small village on the southeastern edge of New Forest. One of the best places to visit in Hampshire, it’s home to both the Palace House and the British National Motor Museum.
Beaulieu is the perfect side trip for those who want to discover and learn a bit of history while they’re down in New Forest. The village’s architecture is already worth the trip, and the rich history just adds a lot more richness to the overall experience.
Hotels and Airbnbs in Beaulieu
Milford-on-Sea – a charming village and stunning sea views and a must-see place to explore to Hampshire
If you’re feeling like going on a beach trip while you’re visiting beautiful Hampshire, Milford-On-Sea is your best destination. This clifftop, the seaside village, is sure to give you the other side of nature in Hampshire. It offers impressive local shops for you to shop from amazing seafood as well.
Take a walk on the clifftop paths and discover what Milford-On-Sea has to offer. If you want to go for a dip, the amazing beaches in the area are sure to satisfy your swimming needs. This place offers the perfect mix of ocean, nature, and history, all in one area.
North Wessex Downs – an area of outstanding natural beauty in Hampshire
North Wessex Downs offers a beautiful and surreal landscape, filled to the brim with historical sites and nature and the great outdoors. Many scholars, historians, and other individuals have come to this place throughout history because they were enchanted by its beauty and history.
Not only is the area an excellent site for tourists to visit, but it’s also sustainably maintained to ensure the charm and history never fades away. Because of this, North Wessex Downs is one of the most well-preserved historical sites in all of England. This is a must-see for everyone who wants to learn more about this beautiful area’s rich history.
Highclere Castle – where Downton Abbey was filmed
Downton Abbey fans will be delighted with the prospect of being able to go where the show was filmed. Highclere Castle is the set of Downton Abbey, located within the area of Hampshire, and is undoubtedly a must add to your itinerary. Enjoy the exquisite landscaping of the grounds and refresh yourselves afterward with a bit of tea and scones.
Afterwards, walk around the castle and see the exhibits that they have. The architecture of the castle itself is a marvel to look at. Enjoy the company of the various animals that roam the grounds as well, including deer, fowl, and multiple Labradors.
Winchester – the picturesque historic Hampshire city
Whether it’s shopping, architecture, nature, or history, Winchester has it all for you. It’s one of the most popular to visit in Hampshire, garnering fame for the multiple activities and events that occur in the area year-round. Winchester is practically the melting pot of culture, both classic and modern.
Discover local British shops and find unique bargains when you explore the area. Take a walk in nature and free your mind from the hustle and bustle of the city. Discover the rich history of King Arthur’s Round Table and marvel at the glorious 11th Century Cathedral. Whatever it is you’re looking for, you’re sure to find it in Winchester.
The Solent Coastline – a pretty 20 mile-long stretch of water
The Solent is a strait that separates the Isle of Wight from the landmass of England. The crystal clear, cerulean blue waters and salty sea airs are amazing to experience on your trip to Hampshire.
The coastline itself may be void of any shops or tourist attractions, but the view is worth the trip anyway. The area offers a picturesque view of the Isle of Wight, as well as some of the coastal towns and villages in Hampshire. This is the perfect place to go in Hampshire to for those who are constantly looking for the fresh Sea breeze on their skin.
Chilbolton Common – an ancient rural Hamphire common that lies along the River Test
Have you ever wanted to go for a dip in a river? Go to the Chilbolton Common! This freshwater river offers a refreshing alternative to summer strolls and beaches.
The area in Hampshire is beautifully kept and easy to access, making it great for families to come and enjoy. The water is clear and cool, with the minnows and small fishes becoming more visible on good days. This is a great place to come to if you want to go for a freshwater swim in a safe and secure area.
The Vyne – a 16th-century estate and country house which is one of the most stunning places to visit in Hampshire
Up for an escape from the city? Visit this Tudor palace turned family home. The aura of The Vyne is unique and captivating, combining beautiful architecture with vast gardens and ponds.
Upon arrival, you’ll be greeted with a wide countryside area perfect for taking strolls or long walks on. If you prefer a more static way of enjoying the area, they also offer seating and light refreshments. The Vyne is the perfect place to go in Hampshire if you want to take your mind away from stress and recalibrate how you see the world.
Barton-on-Sea – a charming cliff-top village in Hampshire which is surrounded by beautiful sea views
Barton-on-Sea can be found over a mile west of New Milton. This beautiful and scenic Hampshire village is famous for its enchanting coastline, where people can enjoy safe swimming and clifftop golfing. The cliff and golf course views provide a panoramic view of the coastal scenery from Milford-on-Sea to Hurst Castle, including Isle of Wight’s well-known Needles.
Magical and cathartic coastal walks make this area the best choice for those who love the great outdoors. From walks, bodyboarding, or even just a simple drive, this stunning place in Hampshire offers a lot of beauty and magic just waiting for you to discover.
Mottisfont – a beautiful historical priory, garden and country estate
When thinking about Mottisfont, one may have visions of romantic nights and the famous walled garden found in the area. Visiting Mottisfont is a must-do, especially if you’re there for the summer. The roses, which would be in full bloom, fill up the walled gardens’ atmosphere with their enamoring scent, setting the mood for romantic walks and small talk.
Mottisfont is the perfect place to go to with a lover or even with just your family or friends. The 500 unique rose varieties are sure to pique your interest and make you want to learn more about how they keep them alive year after year.
Buriton Village – a scenic village that idyllic setting at the foot of the downs
Travel back in time and discover what rural England probably looked like in the past when you go to Buriton Village. Located in East Hampshire, this village remained strong in its identity even when times passed by, and people grew. Because of this, going to the village would feel like going in a time machine.
The rural aspect and atmosphere remain, even with the advent of technology. The streets, houses, buildings, and roads all have a hint of history and age to it. This charming Hampshire village is a great place to go for people who want to discover what England was like in the centuries before us.
Hinton Ampner – an elegant country house, garden and woodland in Hampshire
If you’re looking for a place that offers beautiful natural scenery and vast fields and gardens, Hinton Ampner should be on your list. The area is a must-see for families who want their children to see the beauty of nature firsthand.
Hinton Ampner offers one of the best and most exquisite walking paths in the entire country, making it great for those who love to capture the moment as they walk in nature. If you’re a history buff, Hinton Ampner also offers around 500 years of history behind its walls, waiting for you to discover it. Enjoy your beautiful place to visit in Hampshire!
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