Get those steps in in the magnificent surroundings of the New Forest. Whether you are choosing to go on a walk for some post-Christmas exercise or are looking to blow those cobwebs away, we’ve put together a list of ten of our best winter walks that you can enjoy.

  1. The Lepe Loop

Take to the New Forest coastline on the Lepe Loop walk (5.9 miles).

This circular walk starts and ends at Lepe Country Park.

Begin the walk by following along the coastline, passing relicts from Lepe beach’s efforts in WW2 and D-Day before travelling inland close to the beautiful village of Exbury.

This walk is family friendly and although long, could be broken down into a beach walk. Be sure to pop into the Lookout Café, (open 9am-4pm from November-March) near the main Lepe car park for some well-deserved post-walk refreshments.

  1. Bolderwood: Jubilee Grove Trail

A great walk if you have a dog in tow, this is one of several walks that you can do from Bolderwood Car Park, centrally located in the New Forest National Park.  

A 1-mile circular route, this trail takes you past the Bolderwood Deer Sanctuary.  This area also featured as part of the Ancient Canopy dedicated to the late Queen Elizabeth in celebration of the Platinum Jubilee in 2022.

Winter walks blog - Bolderwood
3. Burley Village Walk

Famous for its witchcraft connections, find out more about mysterious Burley on the 4.2-mile Burley Village Walk.

This circular walk encompasses the village and includes a gentle climb along Castle Hill Lane, offering some wonderful views across the Avon valley. As you return to the village, stop for some food and drink at the Queen’s Head pub or pick up some tasty treats from the Burley Fudge Shop. You may even see some of the New Forest wildlife in the village – it’s often a regular hangout for the resident donkeys and cattle!

  1. Ashurst Stroll

Catch the train to Ashurst and pick up the Ashurst Stroll walk from the railway station. This short, 2.8-mile walk showcases a variety of landscapes that characterise the New Forest. Look out for our famous New Forest Ponies grazing, near the start of the walk, pass through Ashurst Woods and swing back into the village with a pit stop at The New Forest pub.

Winter walk - Bramble & Beach

  1. Lymington Town Trail

This family-friendly trail is 1-mile in length and is packed with history. Starting from Lymington Railway Station, you’ll pass yachts moored in Lymington’s harbour before travelling further inland through to pretty streets of the town. Time your walk with Saturday’s market and pick up some local crafts, food items or other mementos of your visit.  

  1. Rufus Stone Trail

A very accessible walk, the Rufus Stone Trail is a 0.2-mile route that starts from the Rufus Stone car park. Follow along the gravel path to the Rufus Stone, which marks the site of the demise of King William II (known as Rufus), who was fatally wounded by an arrow.

This is also a great spot for a winter picnic, so bring along your thermos flasks and comforting food for a great, accessible winter walk.

Winter walks - blog

  1. Blackwater Tall Trees

Add some colour to your winter walk by taking on the 1.4-mile Blackwater Tall Trees Trail. Along the way, you’ll see the evergreen conifers and Douglas fir trees as well as the extremely tall redwoods!

Keep an eye out for birdlife and other wildlife along the route.

This walk is suitable for families, dog walkers and for visitors with accessible needs.

  1. Rockford Common Walk

On the western side of the New Forest, just north of Ringwood, Rockford Common is an area of open heathland and woodland, grazed by livestock belonging to New Forest commoners. This 2.5-mile walk is rich in wildlife and can also be adapted to a shorter, accessible route.

Close by, you’ll find Blashford Lakes Nature Reserve, a popular site to visit in the winter months thanks to the migrating winter birds.

  1. Whitefield Moor short loop

A fantastic walk to do with young children, this 1-mile route passes along gravel tracks besides Ober Water. Pass over Puttles Bridge for a game of Pooh sticks and see if you can spot any of the New Forest Ponies taking a dip in the water.

A longer loop is also available here for those who are willing or able to walk a little further.

Winter walks - Whitefield

  1. Keyhaven Marshes

Last but by no means least, wrap up warm and head to the Keyhaven Marshes this winter. Keen birders will love this 3.5-mile route which is teeming with birdlife. The winter months is typically when the most species of wading bird can be seen, so bring your binoculars and look out for wigeon, redshank and curlew. Added to this, along the route you can expect some stunning views across the Solent to the Needles and the Isle of Wight.

Finish your walk off with a visit to the historic Gun Inn, which sits in the heart of Keyhaven village.

Book a winter walking break

Make the most of your time on a winter walk and book a winter getaway. Whether you fancy a short break in a cosy cottage or a luxurious stay in a spa hotel, you’ll find plenty of choice. Find out more about places to stay in the New Forest.