The winter’s over, spring has sprung and now’s the time to plan your best Easter ever…in the magical New Forest.

Not only do we have real Easter bunnies hopping round our heathlands, we also have plenty of amazing things to do, Easter events and a huge variety of great places to visit for that first family trip of the year.

As well as the perfect accommodation for your Easter Break, Sandy Balls Holiday Village has plenty to keep the kids amused, too, with activities varying each day throughout the break. Let your little ones learn how to make cotton bud lambs, decorate Easter eggs and pottery, learn how to make a marble Easter egg and make an Easter bonnet. They can also cook up a storm in the kitchen, making chocolate nests and bunny biscuits, and learn how to make bird boxes in the gardens.

There’s more cooking and crafty activity on offer at the National Motor Museum at Beaulieu where you can roll up your sleeves in the Victorian kitchen and help Lord Montagu’s cook roll out Easter biscuits, talk to costumed guides about life in the 19th century and join in with Easter crafts. Younger visitors can also have their face painted with Easter designs.

Over Easter weekend (Good Friday April 18th - Easter Monday April 22nd) see the larger-than-life Easter bunny as it hops through the daffodils in the grounds of the attraction. And check out Beaulieu’s Bonnets Galore extravaganza, when the museum’s amazing motors are brought out and driven around the grounds of the attraction from April 6 to Easter Monday April 22.

See a selection of the vehicles in the cavalcade as it parades across the Events Arena each afternoon, then head inside the museum to take a peek beneath the open bonnets of even more remarkable machines and talk to museum guides about the vehicles’ incredible stories.

Over at Paulton’s Park they’re open for Easter with the addition of Bobtail Bunny and his friends, including Red the Deer and Betty Bunny from April 5-23.

Children can also take part in a spring activities workshop and make either a Daffodil windmill, a pop up bunny, a rabbit magnet or an Easter card. A small donation will be required to take part in the workshop with all proceeds from this going to the Marie Curie charity.

The Easter Bunny will be visiting Exbury Gardens, too, which will have burst into their spring colours. Hop around their 200 acres with springtime highlights including the luminous daffodil meadow, the stream of 100,000 spring bulbs and, of course, their world-famous rhododendron collection. Young ones are also invited to take part in an Easter trail to win prizes as well as ride on Exbury’s miniature steam railway, feed giant koi carp at the ponds and let off steam themselves, in the adventure play area.

April is also a beautiful time to visit Furzey Gardens, as the vibrant colours of the Rhodendrons and Azaleas provide dazzling displays. In amongst all these displays of colour they have hidden an Easter Trail for their younger visitors to follow, running from Saturday 6th April – Monday 22nd April. How many parts of the trail will you find when you visit?

Try something different and go on a Canoe Easter Egg Hunt down Beaulieu River with New Forest Activities! Spend time taking in the stunning scenery of the River before disembarking for an Easter egg hunt with a twist! Leave no leaf unturned as your little ones hunt for those hidden chocolate eggs along the riverside.

During the two weeks of the Easter holidays the Sammy Miller Motorcycle Museum will be running their Motorcycle Alphabet Quiz for children aged six years and older, looking at the different bikes and answering questions.

Their Teddy Bear Hunt is for any age but also suitable for Under 5’s, too. On completion of each activity every child will receive a certificate, a postcard, and a little Easter surprise!

Easter Sunday also sees the tearooms and the museum’s Easter Egg hunt which takes place within the Museum Courtyard. Also, in the courtyard over the Easter weekend, Seahorse Yarns will have some treats to give out to children and, weather permitting, hope to have their table outside decorated with an Easter theme.

Easter is the perfect time to shake off the winter blues with The New Forest Paddle Sport Company’s 2019 season Hurst Castle Experience. This is a fantastic family day out which includes two hours of Paddle Boarding or Kayaking from Keyhaven to Hurst Castle through the stunning salt marshes. Once at the castle your experience includes lunch from the castle cafe, plenty of time to explore and a ferry return home.

Visitors to Hurst Castle are being encouraged to complete a step count challenge to burn off some energy this Easter.

The Easter "Step Challenge" will take place from Saturday 6th April to Monday 22nd April and is designed to get visitors to explore and enjoy the castle's open spaces.

An additional cost of £1.00 will be charged for the step challenge and includes a pedometer and reward. Arts and crafts activities will also take place at the castle and these will be included in the admission price. The castle is opening for the 2019 season on Monday 1st April and will be open seven-days-a-week from 10.30am to 5.30pm until the 1st November. Access to the castle is via ferry from Keyhaven from 10.15am, then approximately every 20 minutes.

If you fancy travelling a little further afield during your New Forest stay, why not journey to Marwell Zoo’s world exclusive exhibition of BRICKOSAURS! Created with more than two million bricks, this interactive expedition will excite families, dinosaur and LEGO® enthusiasts alike. Track down all of the dinosaurs with the free BRICKOSAURS! Trail; create your own masterpiece in the 'brick pits', and don’t miss the perfect photo opportunity inside the 3D Meglosaurus! You will even get the chance to come face-to-face with the largest and most fearsome touring LEGO brick dinosaur model ever made – a whopping, eight-metre T-Rex. BRICKOSAURS! is included with general zoo admission.

But, if a traditional Easter Egg Hunt is the only thing that will do, then get along to the National Trust’s Foxbury site in the north of the Forest near East Wellow, where you’ll get the chance to discover nature’s hidden secrets, plus some chocolately treats when the Cadbury's Eggstreme Easter Trail at Foxbury returns on April 21 and 22. Take on the nature trail and discover early signs of Spring with their rangers. You can also learn about the Forest-dwelling birds and there will be den building, bushcraft, chainsaw carving; tractors, toasted marshmallows by the fire, a BBQ and, of course a Cadbury's prize!

If you’re hoping to enjoy a fun-filled Easter break, full of walks, bike rides and memories to last a life time, you need to snap up all the eggs-cellent deals and make sure you don’t miss out on any of our New Forest accommodation.

Enjoy a self catering break – with fantastic properties that can sleep from 2 to 16 people across the forest, you will be sure to find the perfect place for you and your family. New Forest Cottages have 150 properties in their portfolio which include a few with availability for Easter. Try Heywood Rest in Brockenhurst, Ferry Cottage in Lymington, and Ash Barn and Oak Barn, situated next door to each other. More amazing self catering holiday homes are at Riverside Park and they are offering a £50 discount for two people at its Christchurch site and discounts on some weeks in April. Check out all of our self catering properties in the New Forest here.

If your kids don’t know how much fun can be found in exploring the natural world, Easter is a lovely time to take a camping trip – Camping in the Forest has ten sites to choose from. There are also plenty more private Campsites to choose from, and there are also loads of fantastic Holiday Parks in the forest offering the best breaks for the whole family, with day and night entertainment, activities and more included in the price!

Perhaps you would prefer a stay in a beautiful Hotel? We have a great choice of hotels in the New Forest, including Passford House Hotel, where rates for an Easter break start at £160 for Bed & Breakfast (based on 2 guests sharing a standard double room for 1 night) – Passford House Hotel are also holding an epic Easter Egg Hunt on Easter Sunday at 2pm, make sure you call 01590 682398 to book your space! Chewton Glen Hotel also have loads of Easter Holiday events at ‘The Kitchen’, including Junior & Teen Chef Easter Holiday Cookery Camps. Have a browse through all of our hotels in the New Forest and book your wonderful break with them now.

We also have the most gorgeous, welcoming and homely Bed & Breakfast’s here in the New Forest too! Take a look at all of the options of B&B’s on our website and find the perfect one for you!

You might also want to think about booking your Easter Lunch! Many of our amazing restaurants and pubs will be offering the most delicious menus on Easter Sunday and Monday, we couldn’t think of anywhere better to celebrate Easter with your family and friends. Find some great inspiration of where to book your Easter Lunch on our website and book your table now so you don’t miss out, as tables will go quickly!

Whatever you do and wherever you go it’s time to get booking – after all, you only get one Easter holiday every year!

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