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The Best Places To See The Bluebells

24th Apr 2024

The bluebell, the quintessential British flower; shrouded in folklore and one of Britain’s most popular wildflowers with its distinctive blue transforming our woodland floors and grasslands every spring.  

A vibrant welcome to the new season, bluebells are an important source of nectar for many species of bees and butterflies, thriving in areas of low grazing, they favour damp, shady conditions and are considered an ancient woodland indicator. They’re a protected species in the UK, with nearly half of the world’s bluebells growing here, so this spring, why not plan a last-minute short break and head to the countryside to see our magnificent carpets of blue and purple hues.


But where are the best places to see the bluebells?


Areas of low grazing is key for the bluebells to succeed as they’re sensitive to footfall, the leaves easily damaged when trodden on which in turn means they’re are unable to absorb the sun and photosynthesise, causing them to die back. The New Forest’s 34 square kilometres of broad-leaved enclosures, offer areas where bluebells can flourish, undisturbed in the shade of the trees.


Bluebells in Field


Pondhead Inclosure, near Lyndhurst

One of the best places to see the bluebells in bloom during your Hampshire break is just 6 miles from our New Forest hotel at Pondhead Inclosure near Lyndhurst - considered by the Forestry Commission as one of its top 10 bluebell woods in the UK. A unique and protected area of woodland that has not been grazed by cattle, ponies or wild deer for several centuries and so is home to an abundance of flora and fauna not found elsewhere in the National Park.


Exbury Gardens

For nature-lovers and gardening enthusiasts alike, your New Forest getaway isn’t complete without a visit to Exbury Gardens, just 3.5 miles away from our country hotel. You may visit for the bluebells but you will want to stay for their 200-acres, home to their famous ‘Rothschild collection of rhododendrons, azaleas and camellias’.


Bluebells - Roydon Woods


Roydon Woods Nature Reserve - near Brockenhurst

Just 8 miles from our New Forest hotel, at Setley, discover the tranquil Roydon Woods Nature Reserve, owned by the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, the 1000-acre nature reserve is home to un-grazed ancient woodland, inviting bluebells to flourish under its canopy of trees.  


Furzey Gardens

Support a local charity enterprise and take in the wonderful wildflowers at Furzey Gardens ‘a secret woodland garden nestled in the New Forest National Park.’ Just 11.5 miles from our Hampshire hotel, the Minstead Trust provides support and work experience for more than 300 people with learning disabilities through physical and therapeutic activity. Visitors can wander through the peaceful gardens, visit their wildflower meadow, Arboretum or to the lake, and stop in for tea and cake at the tea room.   


Bluebells in Field Hampshire



For those wishing to tour our beautiful New Forest National Park on two wheels during your short break, plan a cycle ride to the village of Bank, approximately 9 miles from our hotel, near Lyndhurst. Hire bikes, take in miles of waymarked trails and make it your mission to find the shady blossoming bluebell spot in the quaint village, where there is also a lovely pub so you can stay refreshed for your journey back to Beaulieu.   


Broomy Inclosure

If you can’t get enough of the bluebells make your way to Broomy Inclosure, a little further afield, it’s a pleasant 20-mile drive north west through the New Forest National Park towards Fordingbridge.

The inclosure guides you through the woodland on winding pathways, boasting an abundance of thriving bluebells, you’re sure to smell their wonderful scent before you even spot them in this protected area of wild and ungrazed woodland.


A perfect way to see in the spring, with a calming and relaxing short break visiting our beautiful bluebell havens. A break here, in our ancient woodland invites you to spend time in nature, breathe in the fresh spring air and take in our thriving flora and fauna, bursting back to life after winter.



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