Travel & Life Digest

Bank Holiday Daytrip - Riverside at Master Builder's, New Forest

One of the reasons I started this blog, was to share how beautiful I find the English countryside.  
Traveling to continental Europe used to be the norm for a short weekend away, but over the years overworked Londoners have realised the mesmerising beauty of the south coast and spend more and more Bank holiday weekends there.
The New Forest is my happy place. Just as you drive in and spot the wild horses on the side of the road, lazily grazing on grass, crossing the country roads with their elegant aura, not bothered one bit about passing cars, you can't help but turn into your carefree self.  
The road brings you through Beaulieu (pronounce Bew-ley) although I do prefer my francophone version of Bo-leio. Keep driving parallel to Beaulieu river and you arrive at Buckler's Hard, a ship-building village, where Nelson's fleet was built. Nowadays there is a maritime museum, great for kids (of all ages) to spend the day learning about life in other eras and off course, there is a riverside pub, Master Builder's. (check availability)
Beaulieu Marina view from Master Builder's

Buckler's Hard - a riverside village with long-standing, ship-building tradition

Where to stay, eat and play: 
The Pig - Great food -try the scotch eggs- and boutique hotel, love the big swing in the garden!
Limewood - Pasta from Angela Hartnett and sleek bunny sculptures in the polished gardens.
Rhinefield House - Old charm, surrounded by woodlands, great for poolside sunbathing! 
Master Builder's at Buckler’s Hard - Riverside marina views and "that" holiday feeling.

Left: Beaulieu Marina. Right: Wild horses grazing around the New Forest.
Sweet afternoon light by the Solent
Drinks & Snacks at The Master Builder’s
This is a gorgeous place by Beaulieu river to have lunch. We took it extremely easy, kept postponing our reservation and next thing you know, it was 4pm as we drove down the windy road, through the thick greenery, into the beautiful opening with a view of Beaulieu marina.

This is the moment I usually smile and mentally start taking notes for a blogpost just to be able to share how different it feels to be on the English coast. It really feels like you are on holiday.
Sailboats coming in from their day trips, dinghies messing about, a group of canoes practising and lots and lots of tanned and chilled local families having a blast in the afternoon sun.
There is a gastropub restaurant at Master Builder's, which we missed because we were late and there is also an outdoors bar, with excellent views over the river. First come-first serve, great finger food, salads, pizzas and sandwiches available, claim your spot on the terrace and never move! Jug of Aperol, ham hock, avocado on toast and a leafy salad for us, sorted!

Afterwards straight to the beach. One of life's treats is to catch the sunset on the beach and down here, you head for the Solent. 
It’s a bit frustrating that although you can spot the sea and the Isle of Wight from the main roads, you can’t actually get on the beach because a lot of the roads are private.
So, take Tanner’s Lane all the way down to the pebbly beach.

The Isle of Wight is within arm's reach and the sun slowly retires after shedding its' warmest rays on the blue water. My favourite time of the day! x

End the day by the Solent with a view of the Isle of Wight, such a treat!

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