Please sign in to post.

What To Do In and Near Southampton, Including Beaulieu

Many travel to and stay briefly in Southampton to catch a cruise ship for a European cruise or even a transatlantic crossing. For those staying one or two nights in Southampton (and I have already taken the train from London to Southampton on the morning of the sailing), what is there to do?

And specifically, has anyone traveled to Beaulieu outside Southampton? Without a car, it seems to take some effort to travel to Beaulieu from Southampton--the Hythe ferry and then a taxi, or a train to Brockenhurst and then a taxi. But Beaulieu, which housed the SOE's "finishing school" for its agents during World War II, does offer two small museums that look interesting, a car museum and the Special Army Experience devoted to the SOE, as well as a palace, an abbey, and a very nice hotel with restaurants.

Posted by
6752 posts

The other place to visit nearby is the wonderful Exbury Gardens, complete with it's narrow gauge steam railway- https://www.exbury.co.uk/

In High Summer (so not for another few weeks yet) there is the New Forest Tour Bus which runs about hourly from Brockenhurst Station.

The other nearby village well worth visiting is Buckler's Hard- where ships for Nelson's fleet at Trafalgar were built- https://bucklershard.co.uk/attractions/bucklers-hard-village/

There is a footpath and also a River Cruise there from Beaulieu.

Posted by
493 posts

I show my ignorance. I had not even heard of Winchester. It looks lovely.

Posted by
1072 posts

"I show my ignorance. I had not even heard of Winchester. It looks lovely."?? It was named the capital city of England in 871 but eventually London became the capital.

Posted by
171 posts

The car museum at Beaulieu isn't "small", it's one of the biggest in Britain and is well worth visiting if you are interested. It is quite hard to get to without a car, though. The only public transport access now appears to be a summer-only tourist route from Brockenhurst.

Posted by
493 posts

Phillip, are you suggesting that the train to Brockenhurst and Hythe ferry options I described in the original post are not available in some months?

Posted by
6752 posts

If Philp is suggesting that then he is incorrect. There is in fact also a very limited Tuesday and Thursday year round bus from the Hythe Ferry and more frequently from Lymington (railway station, and Isle of Wight ferry port) - More Bus Route #112- https://passenger-line-assets.s3.eu-west-1.amazonaws.com/morebus/WDBC/112-timetable-20240415-158aaa25.pdf

Lymington also has an hourly bus, More Bus #6, from Southampton and Brockenhurst Station.

Posted by
171 posts

Yes, those buses look useful. I was going by the Beaulieu website which implied that they were at antisocial times.