Caring for the New Forest
People and nature live harmoniously in The New Forest National Park. To ensure that we continue to do so we ask everyone to follow a simple code of behaviour.
Keep to tracks and avoid disturbing wildlife. Plan your route to be out of the open forest by dusk.
The New Forest is a great place to walk dogs but please keep them within sight and under control at all times. To help birds rear their young keep dogs on the tracks between March and July. Some beaches are out of bounds to dogs during the summer, look out for local restrictions.
Use a designated car park and lock your car, taking any valuables with you.
The 40 mph speed limit on unfenced roads greatly reduces the number of accidents involving animals. Always give ponies and other forest animals a wide berth; they have little road sense! Be especially careful at night.
Fires & BBQs
Because uncontrolled forest fires are a great threat, no campfires are allowed in the open forest. Raised non-disposable BBQs are welcome at Anderwood, Blackwater, Bolderwood, Hatchet Pond, Linford Bottom, Whitefield Moor, Wilverley Plain and Wilverley Inclosure car parks. Disposable BBQs can only be used on the specially provided metal plates fixed to the picnic tables at Bolderwood and Blackwater. For these sites please contact the Forestry Commission in advance (tel: 023 8028 3141).
BBQ facilities are also provided by Hampshire County Council at Lepe Country Park.
Keep to the way-marked tracks. Give way to walkers and horse riders, and call out a warning when approaching them. Ride in single file on narrow roads and never more than two abreast. Wear bright colours to be visible and always use lights in the dark. More information on cycling in the New Forest.
Take notice of any warning signs and keep a safe distance from work sites. Do not pass any vehicle loading timber unless told it is safe to do so.
Please take your litter home.
Please do not feed the ponies, they may look cute but they can bite and kick - expecially mares with foals - and hand fed ponies tend to gather near roads and become aggressive with other visitors. There is plenty of natural forage for them in the forest. Learn more about the famous New Forest Ponies.