How to Spend a Weekend in Hampshire

18th March 2024 | 4 minute read

Hampshire is the county with it all, perfectly positioned with the north of Hampshire as a gateway to London, and the south offering beautiful seafront locations and islands with sandy beaches. With so much to see and do in Hampshire, you'll need some tips from the locals to see the true beauty and secret spots that Hampshire (and the surrounding areas) has to offer.

Read on to find great tips from our team (all who have lived in Hampshire their whole lives!) that you may not find elsewhere.

Please note: we are not associated or endorsed by any of the below attractions, they are simply a guide on what you may find in the local area. All activities and attractions are visited at your own risk.

Get Outside Into Nature

If you are visiting Hampshire, you have to get outside into nature and explore the stunning countryside. With a variation of terrains including woodland, seaside strolls and an abundance of fields with great walking trails and footpaths. The impressive South Downs National Park stretches across Hampshire and the surrounding counties and is right on the doorstep of Old Thorns.

South Downs Way - full of wonderful walking routes and views.

Shipwrights Way - adjacent to Old Thorns, you can walk part of the Shipwrights Way, a 50 mile trail that links the villages of East Hampshire.

Butser Hill & Queen Elizabeth Country Park - offering beautiful views, a cafe and woodland trails.

Alice Holt - perfect for going for a walk with the family or enjoying a picnic.

Do Some Shopping

In Hampshire, you'll find an array of shopping options, whether you are looking to shop with local businesses and boutiques, historic high streets or waterfront designer shopping outlets. Pair your shopping trip with a spot of lunch, and venture back to Old Thorns for a relaxing afternoon in the pool followed by cocktails in the Atrium Cocktail Bar!

Liphook - take a stroll around our local village and shop with some of the wonderful local businesses.

Petersfield - shop the local boutiques and small businesses in the market town of Petersfield.

Guildford - just over the border in Surrey, Guildford has a huge offering of stores and dining options and makes for a great morning out.

Winchester - a historic high street that once was the capital of England, find unique local businesses plus some of your high street favourites.

Gunwharf Quays - set on the waterfront of Portsmouth, this huge outdoor shopping outlet has designer outlets, dining and entertainment for the whole family.

Visit Fantastic Local Attractions

We are extremely lucky to have a great selection of award-winning attractions near Old Thorns Hotel & Resort. Choose from great activities for the kids, to adrenalin-filled fun for the grown-ups and big kids!

For families - explore Birdworld, Marwell Zoo, the Watercress Line, Hollycombe Steam Fair, the Gruffalo trail at Alice Holt or Blue Reef Aquarium in Southsea. A little further up the road, you'll find Legoland or Chessington!

For outdoor adventure - rent mountain bikes at Queen Elizabeth Country Park, take on GoApe at Alice Holt or paddleboarding at Hayling Island.

For thrillseekers - about an hour away you'll find Thorpe Park, one of the UK's best theme parks, or take to the skies on a hot air balloon ride!

Learn About the Local History

Hampshire has a wealth of history that is waiting to be explored! Did you know that the iconic literacy novelist Jane Austen lived in Hampshire and that Portsmouth Historic Dockyard holds the recovered remains of Henry VIII's flagship, the Mary Rose. With so much to be explored, don't miss these fantastic local historical attractions during your Hampshire getaway.

Jane Austen's House - Explore where Jane Austen wrote some of her most famous novels including Pride & Prejudice.

Hollycombe Steam Fair - Step back in time and enjoy the steam powered fairground!

Portsmouth Historic Dockyard - Take to the seas and explore HMS Warrior and the amazing Mary Rose Museum.

Winchester Cathedral - A key component of the history of the south, Winchester Cathedral holds 1,000 years of history.

Sample the Local Produce

With the rolling hills and fields, Hampshire provides the perfect base for food and drink companies to produce their products, and nearby to Old Thorns you'll find some great produce that you can learn about and explore the production!

Hogsback Brewery - a local brewery where you can enjoy a tour and sample the produce too!

Hambledon Vineyard - explore the vineyard and learn about the process that goes into making Hambledon Sparkling Wine.

Farmshops - a drive through the countryside will help you find lots of farm shops selling local produce, why not explore the Country Market at Bordon or Stansted Farm Shop at Rowlands Castle.

Where to Stay in Hampshire

Located centrally in Hampshire and just a short drive from some of Hampshire's best spots, Old Thorns Hotel & Resort is the perfect choice for your getaway in Hampshire. Whether you are looking for a family break in Hampshire, a romantic couples getaway or a weekend away with friends, our Hampshire Hotel offers the perfect base for exploring everything Hampshire has to offer.

Spend your days exploring the local area, then return to Old Thorns Hotel for delicious dining, a dip in the pool, pampering spa treatment or even a couple of cocktails in the Atrium Cocktail Bar!

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