New Forest Events - Summer 2018

A selection of our favourite New Forest events for July and August 2018

Summer Events in the New Forest

The New Forest National Park in Hampshire is becoming ever more popular as a holiday destination for families, couples and groups who appreciate the unique setting of coast and forest, and relish the opportunities afforded by the range of activities and events which take place during the summer holidays.

As the New Forest Holiday Lets team we are lucky to live surrounded by all the summer events going on in the New Forest this July and August and we thought it might be helpful to your holiday planning if we highlight some of the bigger ones!

We’ll go in chronological order and add a couple of extra thoughts at the end about places you can visit any day during the summer. And we’ll start with the super New Forest Tour initiative which is proving so popular.

7 July –  9 Sept  The New Forest Tour

First off, this New Forest hop on and off bus service which runs only during the holiday period is a brilliantly stress free way to get around the Forest. Enjoy grandstand views of the New Forest National Park –wandering ponies, pretty villages and magical landscapes. Stop awhile where you fancy – just hop back on the next bus and even switch routes, all on the same ticket! Bikes go free so you can combine bussing with biking. This year there are new stops including the New Forest Adventure Golf - stop off for a "round"! See timetable on the New Forest Tour website.

21 July - Fordingbridge Summer Festival 

The Fordingbridge Summer Festival is a family occasion held on the edge of the New Forest, superbly located and situated by the famous River Avon and enjoyed by thousands of visitors from far and wide, many travelling in their Vintage and Classic cars from across the counties of the south of England. From flowers and craft village to tractors and steam engines and heavy horses demonstrating their skills – there’s something here for everybody!


20-22 July - Curious Arts FestivalCurious Arts Festival yoga class for all

This fabulous family friendly festival in the New Forest has been quietly growing and gathering followers and this year has received a lot of national publicity including the Saturday Telegraph

In a very special setting close to Lymington in Pylewell Park on the Solent Shore, this is for literary as well as music lovers, the headline acts this year include John Newman and a visit from choirmaster Gareth Malone.  Comedy headliner is the legendary Al Murray. There is absolutely tons on offer for families which is creative, exploratory and fun.  Take part in workshops, join in a yoga class, just try things!

You don’t have to attend the whole weekend there are day tickets for families and adults.



24-26 July – New Forest and Hampshire County Show

 New Forest Show Heavy Horses regular favourites

Taking place in our very own village of Brockenhurst in the heart of the National Park, the New Forest Show offers visitors 30 acres of showground for the whole family to explore and is one of the top ten agricultural shows in the country. For the New Forest this is THE event not just of the summer but the whole year, and a real must if you’re holidaying in the New Forest that week! Each year the magnificent Heavy Horses Musical Display brings a tear to many eyes and the showjumping attracts the top riders plus there's a host of entertainment for all.  There’s something new every year too and in this its 98th year Atkinson Action Horses, who have spent the past twenty years training horses and riders for Film & TV, will be captivating us all.

Cowes the view from where the Lymington Ferry docks

4 - 11 Aug – Cowes Week

New Forest Holiday Lets is based in Brockenhurst in the south of the New Forest, and because there's a regular ferry between Lymington and Yarmouth we all tend to gravitate to the Needles “end” of the Isle of Wight.  But Cowes Week as well as providing top level racing for its competitors is also a brilliant spectator event with a great view of the racing and lots going on onshore.




 4-5 Aug – Supercar weekend at Beaulieu

 No list of New Forest events would be complete without mention of world famous Beaulieu Motor Museum!  And the Supercar Weekend would be a good weekend to visit - a family spectacular that brings some of the world’s most exclusive and desirable motors to Beaulieu; prestigious supercars with their distinctive engine notes as they unleash their horsepower on the demonstration run!  In the words of one of last year's visitors:  "We attended the Supercar Weekend with our 7 year old son and had a fabulous day… Our son didn't want to come home, would definitely go again."


11-12 Aug – Lymington Seafood Festival


Last year's inaugural seafood festival in the the historic market town of Lymington was a great success and it's going to be even better this year!  Entry is free, to then get a chance to sample the produce of some of the region’s most exciting chefs, restaurants and artisan producers. The Festival will play host to an array of over 60 producers and pop-up restaurants across the weekend, including renowned New Forest based Chewton Glen, The Montagu Arms and Carey’s Manor. Taste lobster, local hand dived scallops, clams, crab, mackerel….the list goes on.  In addition to pop-up food stalls there will be an arts and crafts area as well as live music across the weekend with leading bands and artists playing a mix of soul, blues, ska and rag-time – plus a 12-strong sea shanty band.  We’re excited!


30 Aug – 2 Sept - Bournemouth Air Festival


Award-winning and internationally renowned, the Bournemouth Air Festival is the UK’s biggest air festival providing 4 days of action and entertainment in the air, on land and at sea.  Check out the website for a taste of last year’s festival and confirmed times for the Red Arrows on display.  The festival also provides a reason to visit Bournemouth -  a very pleasant seaside town with lots going on at all times and a fabulous sandy beach.


And finally, a note about a couple of the BIG New Forest tourist destinations which you may which to include in your holiday itinerary.


Paultons Park

Which is always a fantastic day out for the family - especially with younger children


Big cats at Marwell Zoo

Marwell  Zoo

Which is a little out of the Forest but a very special place and a fantastic day out! 


Where to stay?

Well that's an easy question to answer!  Check out our selection of holiday properties across the New Forest or just pick up the phone and give us a call on 01590 622449 - we know all our properties inside out and would love to tell you about them!


Contact us here.