A must see when you visit the New Forest is a trip to Bolderwood Deer Sanctuary and the Ornamental Drive. A beautiful drive to get here and a trip that is worth a whole day or to come back again and again. A very happy day can easily be spent here for the whole family.
In case you didn’t know the New Forest National park was once the hunting grounds of the former kings of England, and some of the ancient traditions are still practiced today by the commoners.
The car park at Bolderwood gets really busy, so on a really lovely sunny day, plan your trip early to avoid disappointment. Adjacent to the car park and the woodland there is an open green which is great for having your picnic and a family/friendly game of rounders. You can get a delicious forest ice cream from the resident ice cream van here.
Just inside the entrance to Bolderwood there is a marvellous woodland area with some picnic and barbeque facilities. You will also find a Forest Ranger manned information centre here which is great for getting advice and answering questions you might have about the forest. There are also some great examples of some of the foliage etc. that you will find during your visit to Bolderwood.
Once you have entered into the Woodland area at Bolderwood there is a choice of variable well marked walks you can choose from. The shortest is about half a mile long and this walk will take you past the Bolderwood Deer Sanctuary. There is a viewing platform here where you can look out across the forest to see how many deer you can spot. The forest feed some deer from here, so if you get the time just right, you can often see a many a deer feeding and grazing.
If you decide to take the Jubilee Walk, this is a about half a mile and will take you through the Bolderwood Arboretum. This is a fabulous display of a range of trees which began as far back as the 1800’s. Unfortunately, because of the high winds we had here in 1987 and further more in 1991, many of the great trees were destroyed. A project of ongoing planting has since been put in place to return this area to its original beauty.
The Radnor Trail
The Radnor Trail is another walk which will take you through this ancient beautiful forest, during this walk you might spot the odd Deer grazing in the distance hiding amongst the many more variety of tree species. There are many suitably placed benches to take a rest for a while and to admire the beauty of the forest surrounding you.
The New Forest Cycling network which takes you through the many finest parts of the forest and links many of the major villages includes Bolderwood. Cycling through Bolderwood which includes the Ornamental drive is beautiful and can take about 3 and one half hours.
Bolderwood Ornamental drive must be visited either on the way in to Bolderwood or on the way out. The ornamental drive takes you though this marvellous picturesque route around Bolderwood and during the summer it is at its most beautiful. This is a busy fairly narrow windy road however and many hikers and cyclists as well as the wildlife use it too, so take care !