Hampshire, county of downland and the New Forest, ports of Southampton and Portsmouth and the old capital of England, Winchester. A captivating county in all its seasons, wiles and nuances.

chuckling stream Hampshire

Chuckling stream in Longparish, a village in this lovely county
Photograph © Copyright M.Temple

Rolling chalk downs, clear chuckling streams in delightful valleys. Cottages that seem to be part of the ground from which they were built, their thatched roofs making chocolate box pictures. Villages strung along those winding narrow lanes that beg exploration.

The New Forest now a National Park is an area of beautiful forest and heathland. Ponies graze on the roadside, there are no fences throughout the forest. Deer are plentiful, but very shy during the day. A large area of nearly 225 square miles it encompasses several towns and villages.

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Towns and Cities

Spinnaker Tower Portsmouth Hampshire

Spinnaker Tower, Portsmsouth
Photograph © Copyright M.Temple

Southampton from which the name Hampshire derives, is a large city port in the south of the county. Famous as the port from which those luxury Cunard liners left for America. Southampton Water is the estuary for two chalk rivers, the renowned trout stream, the River Test, and the River Itchen.

Portsmouth, affectionately known as Pompey, is a major Royal Navy port. The headquarters of the D Day landings of World War II were at Southwick House to the north of the town. Portsmouth is home to “HMS Victory”, Nelson's flagship in the Historic Dockyard, which also houses the “Mary Rose” and “HMS Warrior”. Both Charles Dickens and Isambard Kingdom Brunel were born in Portsmouth.

Winchester Cathedral Winchester

Winchester Cathedral
Photograph © Copyright R.Temple

Winchester, once the capital of England, is a picturesque city on the River Itchen which meanders along near the magnificent Cathedral. King Alfred with his sword arm raised stands guard over the High Street. At the opposite end rises Winchester Castle, although now only the ancient Great Hall remains. It is now a museum and a 'copy' of King Arthur's Round Table adorns the wall.

Jane Austen was born in the small village of Steventon, near Basingstoke, in the north of the county. She is buried in Winchester Cathedral.

Andover is a pleasant market town in the North Downs with a wide High Street, where the market is held, is dominated by the Guildhall.  A summer evening stroll along the banks of the River Anton is pleasant. The area itself goes back to prehistory, visit the Iron Age Museum in Church Close.

Romsey set in the lovely Test Valley is a pretty market town with an Abbey. Walk along the river. Motisfont Abbey and also Broadlands, the home of the Mountbattens, are not far away,

Petersfield centre of an Area of Outstanding Beauty on the south downs. Easy to get to by road and rail. The town itself is attractive. Queen Elizabeth Country Park is nearby. High Street has a recreation of a 17th century herb garden which is open to the public.

Lymington on the edge of the county, the New Forest and the Solent, it is a lovely Georgian town. A ferry runs from the town to Yarmouth on the Isle of Wight. There are some designer shops for the shopaholic. Sailing enthusiasts will know all about Lymington!

Fareham close to Portsmouth. It is an expanding town still. Big Shopping Centre, plenty of areas to eat and drink, plenty of parking.

Farnborough Home of the famous Air Show held every two years. Aircraft are very much part of Farnborough. It is ancient as well as modern for it was founded in the Saxon era. the Abbey was built in the late 1800's by the French Empress Eugenie for her husband's burial. He was Napoleon III, he, his wife and son rest in the Crypt. 

Eastleigh is home of Southampton Airport  so has excellent access by road and rail. Home of the Spitfire developed on the airport. Not far from Winchester, Southampton and Portsmouth.

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Walking in Hampshire

The county has some lovely walks. Why not take the Test Way from Inkpen in Berkshire to Eling near Southampton along the valley of the pretty River Test. The footpath goes by a pub's grounds in Longparish, time it for lunch! Or you could walk in the New Forest. Why not in the Petersfield region an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. May be across the North Downs. Spoiled for choice in this county.

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Cycling in Hampshire

Once again one is spoiled for choice in this enchanting county. There are four Sustrans routes: NCN routes 2, 22, 23 and 24. A couple of excellent long routes, The National Byway and the South Down Way. A couple of shorter routes: The East Hampshire and Lindford to Alice Holt. Off Road routes for all levels of experience. And of course why not cycle in the New Forest, There is a route there which finishes on the Isle of Wight, includes the ferry, naturally!

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Other pages that may be of interest


Events in Hampshire

Family History in South West England




Isle of Wight



Famous People in Wessex

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thatched Cottages, St Marybourne

St Mary Bourne
Photograph © Graham Horn

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Useful Information

Things change. Always check out the external links for the latest information.

These are just helpful suggestions only.

There is only one affiliate link, SBI.

Travel Wessex is a Guide.

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This is a developing map. Some areas have better coverage.

To find the nearest Electric Vehicle Charging Point please click here.

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Public Transport

National Express

If you do decide the leave the car at home and help the environment too, why not go National Express. They run coaches all over the country. Some pretty good fares too.

Just imagine - sit back and relax, no hassling with the traffic!!!

Do you know that you can book on your mobile phone and they will send the ticket as a text!!!!

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National Rail Journey Planner.

For train journeys all over the United Kingdom connecting the places you want to go efficiently and quickly.

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Traveline is a very useful resource for public transport throughout Wessex, even local buses. In fact all over the United Kingdom.

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Hampshire Beaulieu


Hampshire Tranqulity


Hampshire Wherwell


Hampshire Canoe Lake Southsea

Canoe Lake, Southsea

Hampshire Mottisfont


Hampshire Plough Inn Longparish

Plough Inn, Longparish

Hampshire Lymington


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