Hampshire Tourist Guide
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Hampshire Tourist Information

The county of Hampshire has huge visitor appeal. For a short break, a longer stay or a great day out, Hampshire certainly ticks all the boxes!

As a tourist destination, Hampshire has so much to offer: a diversity of landscapes, stunning coastline, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty including the magnificent New Forest; superb walking and cycling territory, the Hamble Valley with its unspoilt countryside and ‘olde worlde’ villages; the vibrant and historic cities of Portsmouth, Southampton and Winchester…and all this within easy reach of London by road or rail!

Image © Hampshire Cam

Hampshire Tourist Information at a Glance
 Location: Situated roughly midway along the South Coast of England, the county of Hampshire is bordered by Wiltshire and Dorset to the west, Berkshire to the north and by Surrey and West Sussex to the east.
 Area: Hampshire covers an area of approximately 3,769 square kilometres (1,455 square miles).
 County Town: Winchester; Hampshire also includes the cities of Portsmouth and Southampton.
 Character: The origins of the historic county of Hampshire date back to Anglo-Saxon times. To this day, the county retains a traditional feel with a strong maritime allegiance, especially in the cities of Southampton and Portsmouth.
 Travelling to and from Hampshire: Easily accessible from all main UK cities, Hampshire is also a convenient gateway for mainland Europe, with major ports at Southampton and Portsmouth. The city of Southampton is served by an efficient local rail network and has ferry services to the Isle of Wight. Southampton International Airport is also nearby (off Junction 5 of the M27 motorway). Southampton, Portsmouth and Winchester all have direct rail links and a network of scheduled coach services that connect Hampshire with London.

Tourist Tip …
For those who wish to combine a visit to London with a trip to Hampshire, why not base yourself in Hampshire and do a day trip to London, instead? This way, you enjoy the best of both worlds, while avoiding city prices for accommodation and entertainment!

Popular Places to Stay in Hampshire
Hampshire boasts a wide range of accommodation to suit all tastes and budgets, from cosmopolitan, state-of-the-art hotels to stylish rural guest houses and charming pub-style B&Bs. Here are just a few suggestions of places to stay in Hampshire:

Portsmouth: Centre of Britain’s naval heritage and headquarters of the Royal Navy, Portsmouth makes an ideal base for exploring the sights and attractions of Hampshire. Portsmouth is approximately 75 miles by road from South West London. The city has recently been given a complete ‘facelift’, most notably in the areas of Gunwharf Quays and the Gosport Millennium Promenade. Quality accommodation is plentiful; restaurants and waterside pubs offer great atmosphere, particularly in and around the Old Portsmouth area.

Southampton: Centrally located and easily accessible from all directions, Southampton makes an excellent touring base. With its rich mediaeval and maritime heritage, Southampton is also geared up to serve the modern day tourist; hotel and guest house rates are surprisingly competitive and standards are generally high, even in budget-style accommodation. There’s plenty to see and do in Southampton; visitor attractions include art galleries, museums, parks, walking tours, not to mention the city’s vibrant café culture, numerous pubs, waterside bars, restaurants, night clubs, etc.

Hamble Valley: If you’re looking for somewhere to stay that is quintessentially English, head for Hamble where the pace is slower. Explore the unspoilt countryside, the quaint villages and hamlets, the waterside lifestyle along the River Hamble; experience Hampshire off the beaten track. The New Forest, Portsmouth, Southampton, Winchester and ferry links to the Isle of Wight are all close by. The Hamble Valley is noted for its top notch tourist facilities and wide range of quality, value-for-money accommodation.

The New Forest: For many first-time visitors to Hampshire, the county is synonymous with the beautiful landscape of the New Forest. Here, ponies and livestock have right of way and enjoy grazing rights throughout the area. Visit the towns of Lyndhurst (also known as the ‘capital’ of the New Forest) and the attractive market town of Ringwood for local flavour. Tourist accommodation is available throughout the area, ranging from independent hotels to self-catering options.

Fascinating Facts about Hampshire
 The Solent is recognised worldwide as a premier yachting and cruising centre. The Hamble River and Hamble Point Marina, in particular, has excellent boating facilities and is often used as a base for international yachting competitions.
 Southampton is one of the top five UK shopping destinations, having no less than three large retail centres, with independent up-market shops concentrated in the West Quay area and chic boutiques in the Bargate.
 ‘Hants’, the abbreviated form of ‘Hampshire’, is derived from the Old English phrase ‘Hantum plus Scir’, which roughly translates as ‘a district governed from the settlement’. The Anglo-Saxons term ‘Hamtunschire’ (Hampshire) was transcribed in the Domesday Book as ‘Hantescire’, hence the modern day name, ‘Hants’.

Hampshire Tourist Information Centres (TICs)
To make the most of your visit to Hampshire, contact your nearest TIC:

39 The High Street
Tel +44(0)1252-320968
email: mail@rushmoorvic.com

6 Church Close
Tel +44 (0)1264 324320
email: andovertic@testvalley.gov.uk

7 Cross and Pillory Lane
Tel +44(0)1420 88448
email: tourism@easthants.gov.uk

The TIC has closed
but they have a web site

Fordingbridge TIC (summer only)
Salisbury Street
Tel +44(0)1425 654560

Westbury Manor Museum
84 West Street
Tel +44(0)1329 221342
email: touristinfo@fareham.gov.uk

The Harlington Centre
236 Fleet Road
Tel +44(0)1252 811151

Bus Station Complex
South Street
Tel +44(0)23 9252 2944
email tourism@gosport.gov.uk

Hayling Island
Beachlands Seafront
Tel +44(0)23 9246 7111
email tourism@havant.gov.uk

St Barbe Museum & Visitor Centre
New Street
Tel +44(0)1590 689000
email: information@nfdc.gov.uk

Main Car Park
Tel +44(0)23 8028 2269
email: information@nfdc.gov.uk

County Library
27 The Square
Tel +44(0)1730 268829
email: petersfieldinfo@btconnect.com

The Hard
Tel +44 (0)23 9282 6722
email: vis@portsmouthcc.gov.uk

The Furlong
Tel +44(0)1425 470896
email information@nfdc.gov.uk

13 Church Street
Tel +44 (0)1794 512987
email: romseytic@testvalley.gov.uk

9 Civic Centre Road
Tel +44(0)23 8083 3333
email: tourist.information@southampton.gov.uk

Clarence Esplanade
Tel +44(0)23 9283 2464
email vis@portsmouthcc.gov.uk

The Guildhall, Broadway
Tel +44(0)1962 840500
email tourism@winchester.gov.uk

Southampton Airport: Tel 0870 0400 09

South West Trains: Tel 08457 48 49 50

Hampshire Tourist Information

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