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two go down to the New Forest ...

... travelling back in time into another world. Strange, but that's exactly how it feels. Things are so different here, and yet the forest is only a short car journey away from us in West Sussex.

Now if horses were loose on our local B roads, the police would have the road cordoned off with diversions in place!

We stayed at the Forest Park Hotel in Brockenhurst, and we got a room upgrade 'cos we didn't want to be over the bar. It's a comfortable hotel with no fancy trimmings ... you get what you pay for.

The room was lovely and bright facing south, and very floral, but although clean the bathroom was in need of an update. Can't complain, 'cos we got a good deal in three nights for the price of two, £68 pounds for the room per night which included a good choice of breakfast.

Our bikes came with us, note my new white Specialized one. I'm definitely liking it, as it helps me keep up the pace with John on his Gary Fisher! We were relatively lucky with the weather, and only got rained on the once.

I couldn't resist taking a photo of this very puffed-out Robin on one of our rides. I felt a right clown though 'cos I was talking to it in a silly voice, not aware of a chap sitting in his van with his driver-side window down!

To be honest I expected to see more wildlife down here, and apart from the usual suspect birds, saw just one squirrel and a deer, which was unfortunately roadkill along the side of a verge.

One thing you're in no danger of missing in the New Forest is trees. The first photo is of a giant sequoia, one of the largest specimens in Great Britain. It's situated in Rhinefield Ornamental Drive and is part of the Tall Trees Trail, which is a pleasant walk for adults and kids alike.

Can you see what I see in this trunk of another old tree?

Brockenhurst is a great place to stay if you want to be at the starting point of many cycle routes. The whole of the National Park is well kitted out for keen cyclists, and being out of school holidays we practically had it all to ourselves.

I really wasn't expecting to see these cows stopping traffic on the road into Burley. They were hilarious, and in no hurry to budge!

We stopped here for a much needed drink, and waited a good half an hour for our coffee. Such a leisurely pace of life, and a stark reminder of just how manic our everyday lives can sometimes be.

Of course there are many beautiful New Forest ponies to be seen roaming around too. They don't need a wide berth, but not a good idea to pet or feed them, and keep to a 40-mph limit on all unfenced roads.

Remember, it's their forest so look after them!


Rosie said...

I love the New Forest and you are right it is like stepping back in time to a slower pace of life. I loved all the animals roaming about although when we went to Burley we only saw two goats in the car park! I can see the head of a tortoise or turtle in the tree. Glad you had a super time:)

Pomona said...

I love the cows! It looks like a lovely place to spend the weekend.

Pomona x

Poppy said...

We love going for walks in the New forest! Beautiful pictures Louise.

Lou xxx

periwinkle said...

I talk to everything I'm trying to take photo's of so you're not alone there lol... you've lost me with the tree trunk though?

Glo said...

What a wonderful trip to share with us ~ I have visited there, so can relate to the loveliness of the area. Love your photos and so glad you had a great time.

OhSoVintage said...

Love those cows. Funnily enough my daughter mentioned Burley only this week as she lives near there and said what a pretty place it is.
Have a lovely weekend.
Ruth x

Simone said...

It looks like a lovely break Louise. I see the head of a turtle pointing out from the tree trunk! x

Lisa said...

We had a lovely walk around Brockenhurst during the summer hols. I cans ee a turtle on the tree trunk!
Lovely photos.
Lisa x

haizi daizi said...

Sounds wonderful ~ it makes me want to jump in the car and drive to the forest. A splendid way to relax, super pictures too ~ Haizi x

lifeinredshoes said...

Looks like you had a well earned break :)

Carol said...

Well how funny reading this. I was ther too. Staying near Brockenhurst, at Sandy Balls! we went to Burley and laughted at the ponies and cows in the road, as you drive slowly passed we just hope they didn't kick the car!
It was not too busy this time of year either.
Lovely images. Beautiful place.
Wished I taken my bike.
Looks like you had a wonderful time.

Anonymous said...

It looks wonderful,
I love your pictures and i am seeing a tortoise!

Kris said...

Looks lovely!

acornmoon said...

I hope you enjoy your stay, it is a pity that you missed the sunny spell a few weeks ago.

Wild Rose said...

I love seeing ancient trees. I've just come back from Vancouver and I will be posting about a trip that I made where I had a chance to walk amongst the treetops. This visit was the highlight of my trip (the worst bit was the exam that took me there in the first place!)

Have a lovely weekend Louise.

Marie x