There are so many reasons why you should visit the New Forest this October half term! This year half term is from Monday 28th October to Friday 1st November and the New Forest is the perfect place to enjoy an autumn family break.

Autumn in the New Forest as a spectacle of colours, glowing orange, red and yellow as the leaves on the trees change colour through the autumn season – and another amazing thing to witness if you are lucky is our historical Pannage -  Pannage is when up to 600 pigs and piglets get released onto the forest to eat up all of the acorns and nuts on the forest floor, which are poisonous to our New Forest ponies. This practice goes all the way back to the time of William the Conqueror, who founded The New Forest in 1079 – so come and see how many pigs you can spot during your trip. This year’s Pannage is from Monday 9th September to Sunday 10th November.

The New Forest is also home to a huge choice of all-weather attractions, activities and events. And as Halloween falls during half term, there will be sure to be loads of spooktacular events for everyone to enjoy and get involved with. There are also plenty of family friendly places to eat and drink in the New Forest too, including cosy pubs, wonderful restaurants and quaint cafes and tearooms.

But, let’s start with where to stay this October in the New Forest…

We have a host of family friendly accommodation for you to choose from in the New Forest, from hotels and bed & breakfasts, to holiday parks and self-catering cottages, and even some campsites are still open at this time of year too!

New Forest Living have some fantastic family friendly self-catering properties that are perfect for a family getaway this October. Beaulieu House is located within the Beaulieu Estate and this former brickworks is full of character and is perfectly situated for water based pursuits and outdoor activities during half term. This house sleeps 8 people across 5 bedrooms and 1 dog is also welcome to join the family fun too! Littlewell is another of their properties, which is located in the heart of the pretty village of Brockenhurst. This stylish cottage sets families in the ideal location for exploring the New Forest; with bike hire direct from the property and plenty of walks on your doorstep, it will be easy to get out and explore the wonderful autumn wildlife. This property sleeps 6 across 3 bedrooms and 1 dog is also welcome here too.

If you prefer an itinerary-set break in the New Forest this October then Shepherd Spring Cottages have come up with the perfect getaway for you from Friday 25 to Sunday 27 October. If you love running or walking in the forest, epic plant-based food, and socialising with like-minded people, this is the break that you need this half term! You will get to enjoy 2 nights in the beautiful accommodation at Shepheard Spring Cottages, as well as a 3 course Seasonal Plant-based Dinner Party, 2 Seasonal Plant-based breakfasts, lunches and 1 other dinner included in the price. You will also get to take part in 2 guided New Forest walks or runs, morning meditation, a cookery workshop and a fantastic fire pit dessert party. Don’t miss out on this fantastic weekend and book your place now!

Other self-catering properties who have fantastic deals for you to enjoy this October half term are Forester’s and Keeper’s Cottages, where you can enjoy either a 3 night or 4 night break at a super price. For a 3 night stay from 25 October, it’s just £360 at Forester’s Cottage or £390 at Keeper’s Cottage – or if you want to stay a day longer, they are offering a 4 night stay at Forester’s Cottage from 28 October for £440, or at Keeper’s Cottage for £480. These prices include staying at a beautiful cottage, which is a short walk away from Moors Valley Country Park where you can enjoy loads of fun half term activities, as well as free Wi-Fi, gas, electricity and loads more essentials.

As well as the lovely properties mentioned, there are many other self-catering cottages, houses and apartments in the New Forest that are perfect for your family holiday this Autumn.

If you’re looking to stay in a hotel, then book with Cottage Lodge for a break between 19th and 27th October and you’ll receive 15% off an authentic New Forest tour experience with Harry’s New Forest tours, where you will hopefully be guided to where the pigs are foraging, track the deer and find the ponies and cattle grazing. You will be sure to be entertained by your guide, Harry, with fascinating forest history and find you those magical moments to enhance your stay.

There are also many other fantastic hotels to choose from for your October half term family break, including New Park Manor, Balmer Lawn Hotel and Forest Lodge Hotel, head to our website to view them all and book your hotel holiday now.

Feeling adventurous and want to sleep beneath the stars surrounded by all of the beautiful nature in the New Forest? Luckily for you, some of our wonderful campsites are still open at the end of October/start of November, including Setthorns Caravan and Camping Site, Red Shoot Camping Park, Long Meadow Campsite and many more that you can find here.

Also brilliant for families is a fun-filled break at one of our fantastic holiday parks! With indoor pools, day and night live entertainment, restaurants on site and loads of other activities, it will be an October half term you won’t forget at one of our New Forest holiday parks, such as Shorefield Country Park, Sandy Balls Holiday Village and Hoburne Bashley!

Whether you want to stay deep in the forest or in one of our wonderful towns or villages, a holiday in a Bed and Breakfast is a great option, and there are many family friendly B&Bs to stay at in the New Forest too – have a browse through them on our website and find your favourite.

Family friendly places to eat this October half term in the New Forest

Once you’ve booked your accommodation for your break this October half term, you will need to start thinking about nearby places to eat where the whole family can enjoy a delicious meal and a refreshing drink.

Cosy up next to the fire at one of our traditional country pubs, such as dog-friendly Waterloo Arms in Lyndhurst, where there is a fantastic children’s menu and a large garden where the kids can let off even more energy (if it’s not too damp outside). Or head to The Burley Inn, which is located in the middle of the New Forest village of Burley, known for witchcraft and all things spooky – perfect for this time of year! The Rockingham Arms is a great place to stop off for a bite to eat and a local drink mid or after a long and peaceful walk in the New Forest.

If you want to enjoy a more formal evening out with the family then we have plenty of restaurants where children are welcome too. Including both Enzee Ristorante & Pizzeria in Lyndhurst and their restaurant in Brockenhurst too, where you and the kids can all enjoy some delicious Italian cuisine. Another Italian restaurant that you can treat the kids to is Ray’s Italian Kitchen in Milford on Sea. There are loads of tasty options on the children’s menu, including pizza, pasta and even a Nutella pizza with gelato for dessert. Have a look at all of our family friendly restaurants on our website now and choose where to go!

The New Forest is the perfect place to get up early and enjoy a full English breakfast before a day of exploring, and where better to head to than one of our many cafes and tearooms? Our town and village high streets are full of delicious and cute cafes and tearooms, and there are plenty of other dotted around the forest too – loads of which are very family friendly, with special menu choices, milkshakes and even babyccinos for the kids. So, make sure you enjoy that breakfast, or a lunch, a quick snack or just a warming hot drink at one of our cafes and tearooms while you’re here!

Events and things to do this October half term in the New Forest

There is so much for your family to get up to in October half term, so here’s some inspiration for you on how to spend your time in the New Forest during your holiday.

The New Forest is full of attractions and activities to enjoy, both on sunny autumn days and days when it’s a little grotty outside too, including museums, farms, cinemas, water sports, bike hire, spas and loads more. 

As well as our all of our amazing attractions and activities, there are so many events being held in the New Forest over October half term too, including fangtastic Halloween events and some Bonfire Nights & Fireworks displays too.

Join New Forest Activities on a paddle through Beaulieu River’s dark water by moonlight, dance the night away at Adventure Wonderland’s Night Time Monster Bash on 31st Oct and 1st Nov, enter the haunted barn at your peril at Longdown Activity Farm where you can carve your own pumpkin into a grimacing ghoul, or hop on board the Halloween Ghost Train at Exbury Gardens and meet the creepy characters that have risen from their coffins for another week of spooktacular fun.

For some more relaxing activities, head to the New Forest Heritage Centre on Tues 29th Oct or Thurs 31st Oct for their fun-filled Family Discovery Days where your kids will learn even more about the history and heritage of the New Forest by making simple take home crafts. Buckler’s Hard also have loads of great things to do over half term, including daily tours to discover what life was like in the 18th century in this beautiful village, plus explore the village with the fun family quiz trail.

Beaulieu is full of fun this half term, starting the holidays off with a bang on Saturday 26th October at their Fireworks Spectacular where they will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing with an Out of this World theme. Then between 27th Oct and 3rd Nov, the whole family can enjoy the fantasmagorical Chitty-themed fun at their Chitty Chitty Bang Bang 50 years exhibition, there will also be story telling at Palace House and other Chitty themed crafts too.

Check out all of the wicked Halloween events happening in the New Forest this year on our website and find out some beautiful locations where you can enjoy fireworks during your stay too.

However you decide to spend your family October half term getaway in the New Forest, you will be sure to have an unforgettable break in this magical part of the world!

And if you want to save money during your visit, don’t forget our Go New Forest Card can get you discounts of many of our New Forest businesses – for more information visit the Go New Forest Card website.




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