For its natural beauty and abundant wildlife, the New Forest is a treasured destination for holidaymakers throughout the year.
There is plenty of fishing, cycling, exploring and hiking to be done throughout the New Forest. And, although the outdoor activities are invigorating, there are a great many people enjoying a cottage holiday in the New Forest and Hampshire who look forward to another well-known attraction: the New Forest’s plethora of delightful, country pubs.
From real ales to roaring fires, beer gardens and fish and chips, the multitude of New Forest pubs are worthy of extended exploration as well as the walking trails.
Here is our guide to some of the best pubs in the New Forest:
Northern New Forest Pubs
High Corner Inn, Linwood
Many consider the High Corner one of the New Forest’s most remote locations, but this quaint pub is surrounded by the life of the Forest. With ponies and wildlife always nearby, it features the charm of a 17th century farmhouse. At the High Corner, the owners are passionate about their food and feature locally caught and sourced items.
The Royal Oak, Fritham
This tiny pub is described by visitors as a gem. A rural location, it features log fires, a simple menu, real ales and outdoor seating. The pub is located on a working farm, and often there are livestock roaming in the area. It is especially popular during nice weather.
Sir Walter Tyrrell, Brook near Cadnam
A perfect destination for families, there are plenty of reasons to stop by this pub for a pint or two. It features home cooking and a number of great fireplaces. There is an outdoor play area for the kids. The Sir Walter Tyrrell is also dog and horse friendly, so visitors who love animals should prepare to enjoy themselves at this pub.
Eastern New Forest Pubs
The New Forest, Ashurst
A Fuller’s pub, visitors love the family atmosphere of this location. It offers a great outdoor beer garden and a number of activities to keep the children entertained whilst Mum and Dad enjoy a pint or a glass of wine. There is a play area and a lovely garden.
The New Forest pub specialises in great traditional pub food, but also features a wide variety of seasonal dishes as well.
The Pilgrim Inn, Marchwood
Also part of the Fuller’s Brewery family, The Pilgrim Inn offers New Forest visitors a lovely opportunity to rest and enjoy the day. This thatched pub features an extensive menu and a wide variety of ales and spirits.
The Drift Inn, Beaulieu Road
Just east of Lyndhurst, the owners of this pub want to let their visitors know that walking boots, wellies and even dogs are always welcome. This family-friendly pub offers an extensive menu and lunch specials as well. From traditional favourites like fish and chips to locally baked pies, The Drift Inn also features an assortment of teas, coffees and sweet treats.
At the centre of the New Forest, the large village of Lyndhurst is home to a great number of amazing pubs. Although one of the most populous villages in the region, you will likely encounter traffic jams of a different sort. Such is life in the New Forest.
The Crown Stirrup, Lyndhurst
Since the 1400s, this pub has stood as a beacon for thirsty travellers making their way through the New Forest. It has an expansive outdoor beer garden that opens up to the Forest trails and walks. It is the perfect stop for lunch whilst hiking or cycling. The pub’s name comes from a measuring device – a medieval stirrup – that kept large hunting dogs from being used in the Forest and threatening the King’s deer. The Crown Stirrup is dog friendly as well.
The Fox & Hounds, High Street
The Fox & Hounds is housed in the village’s historic coaching inn; the walls of the High Street pub could probably tell hundreds of stories. An upright piano and a seemingly unlimited supply of horse-riding tackle immediately capture your attention. There is a great beer garden, shaded terrace and converted barn.
In the heart of the New Forest, the Fox & Hounds is the perfect location to launch or end your day’s outside activities.
The Oak Inn, Bank
One of the most popular pubs in the entire Forest, this building dates back to the 1700s. A favourite with cyclists and walkers, the pub has a lovely beer garden to enjoy on a warm day after some exercise. The pub is also popular with local ponies, who often congregate under the nearby shady trees.
The Oak Inn features an award-winning menu with locally sourced ingredients and stocks Fuller’s real ales.
Western New Forest Pubs
The White Buck Inn, Burley
A lovely Tudor-style country house, The White Buck Inn in Burley is also part of the Fuller’s family. This pub is the epitome of relaxation. The pub is near a number of New Forest attractions, including cycle and walking paths, shooting ranges, fishing spots and golf courses.
The pub serves lunch and dinner and offers some inventive dishes using local game and produce.
Queen’s Head, Burley
Once a popular spot for smugglers and highwaymen seeking the cover of the Forest, this pub dating back to 1685 was first built to house the village blacksmith. The Queen’s Head has remained virtually unchanged for the last 100 years. The perfect place for an afternoon cream tea after a long hike, there is also an extensive selection of food and a rotating menu featuring local ingredients.
The Burley Inn, Burley
Near New Forest landmarks like Buckler’s Hard, Beaulieu Abbey and the Rufus Stone, The Burley Inn is a welcoming pub. Also on a historic smuggling route to the sea, this pub now features cask-conditioned real ales and a great menu.
Southern New Forest Pubs
The Filly Inn, Setley
A celebration of horses, this pub overlooks the Setley Plain in the southern part of the New Forest. Near to Brockenhurst, The Filly Inn relishes the use of local ingredients. They are open for lunch and dinner, and their chefs are dedicated to putting a delicious plate in front of their customers.
They also provide excellent access to the Roydon Woods, where you can enjoy a number of special nature walks in this unique wildlife trust.
Fleur de Lys, Pilley
In the tiny Forest village of Pilley, this pub proclaims itself as the oldest in the New Forest – tracing its roots back to 1096. It was even included in a novel by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. This small, traditional thatched pub has had a number of owners, but has found some stability in recent years. Because of its small size, the bar portion of the Fleur de Lys is closed to children under 10. In the warm weather of the summer, the outdoor beer garden is a wonderful retreat and is open to visitors of all ages.
The Hare and Hounds, Durnstown, Sway
This 200-year-old coaching inn welcomes plenty of visitors in Sway. It offers an extensive menu and a number of ales and wines. Sunday at The Hare and Hound is an especially nice occasion with a traditional roast dinner and even more enjoyable pub quiz in the evening. They also have a children’s menu and play area available.