3 (all year)
Smuggler's Loft is a Grade II listed gem in the heart of Lymington sleeping four guests (plus infant in a cot). Despite its central location with the quay, shops, supermarkets, restaurants, pubs and cafes moments from the door - it remains a peaceful place where couples, families or friends can relax and enjoy being on holiday. Big bay windows overlook the colourful High Street, and there is a quiet courtyard at the rear.
Lymington is an excellent holiday destination at any time of the year. The historic quay is always busy with fishing trawlers, sightseeing cruises, sailboats, catamarans and yachts. The Saturday morning market is a lively affair with over 100 stallholders selling local produce, gifts, crafts, clothing and lots of other things you never realised that you needed. There are plenty of places for a meal out and pubs if you fancy a pie and some fish and chips (an outdoor table at The Ship Inn on the quay is perfect for a sunny day, though watch out for greedy seagulls trying to steal your chips!). Go for a swim in the seawater baths, which opened in 1833 and is one of the oldest lidos in Britain.
Day trips can include sunning yourself on the beach at Milford-on-Haven - about five miles away, or 18 miles away at Bournemouth. Drive or cycle to Keyhaven and catch the little ferry over to Hurst Castle, or walk along the shingle spit and enjoy the breathtaking views over the Solent to the Isle of Wight. The ferry from Lymington to the Isle of Wight takes about 30 minutes. Grab a bike (there is a popular bike hire company just off the High Street in Henderson Court), sail over to Yarmouth and spend a day cycling around the pretty island.
The New Forest National Park is on the doorstep, with endless footpaths, bridleways and cycling routes that wind their way through ancient forests and native woodlands. The area was once protected as a hunting ground for royalty, then as an essential resource for the building of navy ships. Some of the oaks still bear the mark of the Crown, showing they were grown for shipbuilding for the Royal Navy. You can find out more about this part of Britain's history at Buckler's Hard. Other favourite places for a day out include the National Motor Museum at Beaulieu, and Paultons Park and Peppa Pig World.
Everything you need for a fun and relaxing holiday is practically on the doorstep of Smuggler's Rest. You don't even need a car because the mainline train station links to Brockenhurst in the New Forest, and London Waterloo.
David & Claire Irvine joined Independent Cottages in September 2020
Smuggler's Loft is a first-floor apartment with the entrance via a quiet courtyard at the rear. The Grade-II listed property has recently been refurbished and redecorated to make the most of its original features while being comfortable for modern-day guests.
Outside: Guests have shared use of a private courtyard where there is a table and chairs. There is no allocated parking but guests can use the parking bay to unload their cars and will have a parking permit to use in any of Lymington's public car parks, including one that is just a two-minute walk away.
Additional Information: All utilities, WiFi, sheets and bath towels are provided. A travel cot (no bedding) and highchair are available - please ask when booking. Short breaks are possible depending on availability. Smoking and pets are not permitted.
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