With many of our trips, the main focus is the location, and this was definitely true of our last camping trip. We had decided to head away for a couple of nights, and as we were taking some extra family members along, I thought that it was probably wise to stay within a couple of hours of home. After researching some family friendly areas, I decided that the New Forest would be ideal. I hadn’t been there since a rather eventful Brownie pack holiday in the mid 90’s, so I was more than ready for a return visit!
I picked out a site, again mainly going by location, and so we headed to Long Meadow Campsite for a well earned change of scenery. I had been enticed by the fact that Long Meadow was right in the heart of the New Forest National Park, with easy access to woodland walks. Also, being right between the villages of Lyndhurst and Brockenhurst, it was easy to pick up supplies if we needed anything.
There is an area for caravans, and then the main field which is dominated by tents and is large and flat with allocated pitches. There are a few electric hook ups available, although we went without this time due to our short stay. Luckily, we had one of the more scenic pitches right on the edge of the campsite. I thought that the tent pitches were a good size, but quite close together. Fortunately, we had no neighbours on one side so we didn’t feel too hemmed in. Although it was half term week, the site wasn’t too crowded and everybody stuck to the quiet times. The view from our tent was gorgeous, and it was great to be able to see deer and ponies from our pitch. The campsite keep a large clear area free around the edge of the site, so it really feels nice and open, plus there is plenty of space for children to play away from the tents.
The toilet and shower facilities at Long Meadow were clean and well maintained. There was plenty of hot water and lots of space in the cubicles (important when you have a toddler), although there is also a family shower room if needed.
The reception offers a warm welcome and lots of helpful information on the local area, although there isn’t a shop. We are the sort of family who always forgets something, so it would have been useful to be able to buy a few essentials, but it wasn’t too much of an issue as we could at least drive to a local shop. They will also freeze ice blocks for you, you just need to ask.
Although Long Meadow may not have the facilities (eg shop and playground) of other sites, it does offer a beautiful, relaxed campsite in a stunning location. There is plenty of space, plus the site leads directly into the woodlands nearby.
The New Forest is definitely a place that we would love to come back to once our children are older and able to walk and cycle with us.
A two night stay with a large tent and awning cost us £60, which is definitely the higher end of what I’m willing to pay. Having said that, we were staying in a prime location during a school holiday, so I know that comes at a premium, and it wouldn’t put me off returning. It wasn’t an issue for us this time, but it is also worth noting that due to the proximity to woodland, there are no campfires allowed.
Have you ever camped in the New Forest? Any other sites that you would recommend?