If you want to live at the centre of an unspoilt National Park, a home in the Hampshire village of Lyndhurst might be just what you’re looking for.
Its charm has been recognised since the days of William the Conqueror, who made the area a royal hunting ground. Since then it’s been visited by kings, queens and the nobility, as well as countless artists and writers.
Today Lyndhurst boasts a busy and thriving village centre that’s still surrounded by picturesque countryside. Property continues to be highly sought after with the average currently standing at £553,000, a considerable leap up from the average across Hampshire as a whole. You can take a look at the most up-to-date data here.
Discover what there is to see and do in Hampshire by reading our dedicated guide.
Living in Lyndhurst: what to expect
Thanks to its location within a National Park, Lyndhurst has retained its historic character and unspoilt surroundings. Character cottages and converted period properties line the roads and many homes boast uninterrupted views over the surrounding countryside.
Lyndhurst residents enjoy a close-knit community, with more amenities than might be expected of a small village. The High Street in particular boasts a choice selection of independent shops, galleries, cafés and restaurants.
Residents can explore the local woodland, heaths and coast on foot, bicycle or even horseback. More than 140 miles of tracks curve through the area, where free-roaming ponies, donkeys and cattle can be spotted. On the coast, water-skiing and wakeboarding are popular pastimes.
Parents don’t have to travel far to find good schools. St Michael and All Angels Church of England Infant School received a ‘good’ rating from Ofsted and The New Forest Church of England Primary School in nearby Nomansland was found to be ‘outstanding’.
Where to start your property search
Period terraced cottages are available on streets such as Southampton Road, which also has elegant double-fronted detached properties. If you’re looking for a comfortable semi-detached family home – either modern or character – take a look at Wellands Road, Queen’s Parade and Empress Road.
Sprawling country houses can be found on the outskirts of the village. Search roads such as Beaulieu Road for 1930s detached homes that command enviable views over the National Park or Pikes Hill Avenue for large stand-alone properties that sit among landscaped gardens.
Modern detached homes can be found on the Cedarmount estate and The Meadows, which are south of the centre. Take a look around the latter for modest detached homes that are tucked away in quiet cul-de-sacs.
If you’re looking for a single-storey home, try Knightwood Close. It’s one of the finest residential areas in the village and is located to the north west of the centre. Here you will find attractive bungalows scattered between larger properties, some of which present opportunities for loft conversions.
The attractive Pikeshill area situated north of Lyndhurst village is also worth a look. It’s a particularly sought-after location as it is away from the bustle of the tourist centre. Take a look here for elegant 1920s detached homes that are set back from the road and attractive cottages and semis.
If you’re looking for a home towards the lower end of the price spectrum, flats and maisonettes can be found along the main Southampton Road and in King’s Close, which is off the A337. Higher-end apartments in a Georgian conversion on Gosport Lane also occasionally become available.
Getting around Lyndhurst
By rail: There is no railway station in Lyndhurst village itself, but Beaulieu Road station is just two miles away. Residents can also catch trains from Ashurst New Forest and Brockenhurst stations, three and four miles away respectively.
All three stations are managed by South West Trains and are located on the London Waterloo to Poole line. The latter station offers the greatest number of services, including a CrossCountry service to Manchester Piccadilly.
By car: Lyndhurst is situated just below the A31 and M27, offering easy access to Dorset to the west, the seaside resort of Bournemouth to the south-west and the port cities of Southampton and Portsmouth to the east. It’s also easy to jump on the M3 to reach London in two hours and 20 minutes.
Narrow and old one-way streets mean that the village itself can suffer from congestion, particularly during tourist season. Campaigns for a bypass continue but plans have not yet been approved.
By air: For domestic and European flights, Bournemouth and Southampton airports are both less than half an hour away by car. More international flights can be accessed at Gatwick and Heathrow airports, which can be reached by road in two hours.
Things to do in Lyndhurst
History: The New Forest Centre is located at the heart of the village. You’ll find a family-friendly museum of displays and activities relating to the history, geology and wildlife of the New Forest National Park, as well as a gallery with a year-round programme of events and exhibitions.
The New Forest Reptile Centre, which sits two miles west of Lyndhurst, is home to adders, grass snakes and the rare smooth snake and sand lizard, as well as toads, newts and slow worms. Walking and cycling routes and a picnic area are also available.
On the edge of Lyndhurst village is one of the New Forest’s most recognisable landmarks: Bolton’s Bench. The bench itself, which sits under a towering yew tree, commemorates the 18th-century New Forest Master Keeper, the Duke of Bolton, and offers visitors panoramic views of the area.
Outdoors: Sign-posted walking routes can be found three miles west of Lyndhurst in Bolderwood, whereas a purpose-built viewing platform at Bolderwood Deer Sanctuary helps visitors catch a glimpse of the New Forest’s fallow deer.
Four miles east of the village is at the New Forest Wildlife Park which is home to owls, wolves, otters, wild boar, Scottish wildcats, foxes and pine martens.
The informal Furzey Gardens in Minstead, established in 1922, are renowned for their year-round beauty and tranquillity. As well as wandering through the 10 acres of woodland, visitors can also explore a 16th-century thatched cottage to learn more about the area’s history.
The New Forest’s 40 miles of coastline is another area rich in wildlife. Enjoy views across the Solent to the Isle of Wight and look out for egrets, herons and birds of prey. Yachts, canoes and kayaks are available to hire so that visitors can discover hidden places from the sea.
Shopping: The centre of Lyndhurst is filled with independent gift shops, clothes stores, butchers, bakeries and cosy coffee shops.
Stock up on old-fashioned sweets at Sweet Thoughts, a traditional confectionary shop that sells sugary treats from banana split toffees to cherry bonbons. For clothes and shoes, pop into Sofikas on High Street.
A wide selection of high-street favourites can be found in Ringwood, which is just outside the New Forest National Park. The Furlong Shopping Centre has popular stores such as Waitrose and Waterstones, and it hosts events including decorative art fairs and farmers’ markets.
Food and drink: Tea-lovers will find a natural home in Tea Total, a specialist café and tea shop that has a choice of more than 50 loose-leaf teas. Breakfast, lunch and homemade scones and cakes are available in the lounge, which also serves classic cream teas.
The Oak Inn and Fox & Hounds are typical country pubs that serve food made from New Forest and Hampshire produce. Alternatively, settle down in The Waterloo Arms, which is a 17th-century inn. Cask-conditioned ales are served alongside hearty dishes such as sausage casserole and beef lasagne.
St Michael & All Angels Church not only features stained-glass windows by William Morris, it’s the final resting place of Alice Hargreaves, who inspired the character of Alice in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.
5 reasons to live in Lyndhurst
Surrounded by the picturesque and protected National Park
Busy village centre with plenty of amenities
Plenty of outdoor activities are available
Easy access to the motorway network, major A roads and airports
Have you been persuaded to find a property in Lyndhurst? Tell us what grabbed your attention in the comments below…