Burley

all you need to know

The enchanting village of Burley, with its mystical history of witches and dragons, is the perfect place to relax and unwind. Surrounded by stunning ancient forest, don’t be surprised to see the New Forest’s famous ponies and free roaming cattle strolling past your front door.

About Burley

Tucked in the lee of a leafy hill lies the charming village of Burley where cattle and ponies still roam freely under commoner’s rights.

Burley is full of endearing traits, from the cattle grid at the entrance to the local fire station (thought to be the only one in the country), to the secret smugglers’ cellar full of coins and pistols discovered beneath the bar at the 16th century Queen’s Head inn. Its history can be traced back to a prehistoric era and the Bronze Age burials mounds and Iron Age hillfort on the western fringe of the village. The name ‘Burley’ is of Saxon origin and means fortified place (burgh) and open meadow or clearing (leah).

Burley is renowned for its long association with witches, the most famous being Sybil Leek, a self-styled white witch who, during the 1950s, walked around the village in a long black cloak with her pet jackdaw on her shoulder. As a result, you’ll see plenty of witchy gifts and ornaments for sale in the village’s novelty shops, in fact, one of the shops has a portrait of Sybil Leek hanging up above the old Jacobean fireplace inside.

If you possess a penchant for popular folklore, Burley Beacon is bound to capture your imagination; the supposed lair of a once fearsome dragon that was slain by Sir Berkeley ‘The Valiant’ on Bolton’s Bench Hill after a battle that raged through the forest for thirty days and thirty nights.

There’s so much to see and do when you holiday in Burley. If you want to discover Hampshire’s great outdoors, you’ll find endless tracks and trails beneath the mighty oaks and giant redwoods of the New Forest. In the heart of Burley, you’ll find Forest Leisure Cycling where you can hire mountain bikes, comfort hybrids and electric bikes, plus family-friendly accessories such as child seats, trailers, tag-a-longs and tandems.

Wildlife enthusiasts will enjoy the New Forest Deer Safari at Burley Park where you’ll have the chance to learn all about these ancient forest dwellers and see them in their natural habitat. Enjoy the leisurely roll of a Burley Wagon as it takes you on a gentle tour in the dappled shade of primrose hedgerows and hoof-worn byways, a delightful way to discover this historic parish. If you’re looking for a truly mindful experience, then The Horse Raft offers you the unique opportunity to spend one-to-one time with horses while exploring and learning about their woodland home. The Burley Murder Mystery trail is definitely one for the super-sleuths as you endeavour to solve the riddles and clues found on the village’s prominent features and monuments. The trail reveals the village’s history of witchcraft and smuggling, while also introducing you to some of the New Forest’s most colourful characters, including legendry snake catcher and woodsman, Harry ‘Brusher’ Mills. Other popular excursions include the Beeches Brook Fishery, The Burley Food Trail, Brockenhurst Riding Stables and Burley Golf Club.

If you’re in the mood for something a little more sedate, why not take advantage of Burley’s wonderful hospitality, from cosy tearooms to pretty pub gardens, you’ll have no problem finding a quiet corner, a scenic view and a tempting menu. For the sweet-toothed among you, a visit to Burley Fudge Shop is a must, and for those keen to sample a drop of the local moonshine, a detour to the brewing house at New Forest Cider could easily help fill an afternoon.

Our impressive list of Burley Holiday Cottages is awaiting your perusal…

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Forest Leisure Cycle Hire
(Less than a mile)

The home of cycling in the New Forest National Park, Forest Leisure Cycle Hire has everything you need to explore this natural wonder of the world on two wheels.  It is conveniently located close to the huge network of trails that you can take advantage of with free entry to the park, and catering to all ages and abilities.

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Great day out, great service from polite and helpful staff. A must if you are staying in the new forest.

August 2017


Excellent! Very friendly service

February 2018


Brilliant service and very efficient. Great value for money and the cycle routs provided suit all levels.

June 2018


Burley Wagon Rides
(Less than a mile)

See the New Forest at a leisurely pace on a horse and cart or wagon ride!  Get a glimpse of times gone by as you potter down quiet lanes and through villages for 20 minutes, half an hour or an hour.  Longer trails take you into forest and woodland, meeting wild ponies, cattle and the two village donkeys!

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New Forest Deer Safari
(Less than a mile)

Few things are as magic as seeing the majestic deer in its natural habitat, and the New Forest Deer Safari brings you exactly that.  On a unique 30 minute safari ride by tractor and trailer through Burley Park, you can see the Red Deer and their calves at close range - learn and be inspired.

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Avon Tyrell Outdoor Activity Centre
(3 miles)

An outdoor activity centre that gets kids and young adults active, Avon Tyrell Outdoor Activity Centre is a chance to experience, learn and develop, whilst having fun at the same time.  fly down a zip wire or learn about conservation, the great outdoors is your classroom as you learn about the wonders of our world.

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Liberty's Owl, Raptor & Reptile Centre
(4 miles)

Get up close to owls, reptiles and all sorts of creepy crawlies at Liberty’s. Highlights include a wide range of birds of prey on display, daily flying displays in the all-weather indoor flying area or outdoor field, a reptile house with snakes, lizards, and much more! Plus a large free car park, and a café and gift shop.

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The Burley Inn
(Less than a mile)

This spacious yet cosy pub overlooking the pretty village of Burley provides the perfect place to relax and sample some of the fine Ringwood ales and ciders, accompanied by a good-value traditional pub meal.

The Burley Inn (T: 01425 403448) Ringwood BH24 4AA

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Friendly and welcoming with an area we could take our dogs in and get a meal. Enjoyed our dinner, quite a good, varied menu to choose from. Very well located in the village.

September 2017


The Queens Head - Burley
(Less than a mile)

If you’re looking for hearty portions of good, honest pub food at reasonable prices, the Queens Head fits the bill. Located in the centre of the village with plenty of parking, the pub is open for breakfasts and meals throughout the day – they also offer a good selection of dishes for vegetarians and vegans.  This characterful olde worlde pub is steeped in history and atmosphere with regular live music. There are roaring log fires in the winter months, providing a welcome retreat to warm up after a walk in the forest. Outside there’s plenty of seating for the warmer months. If you’ve brought your dog on holiday, they’ll love this pub’s dedicated dog area with water bowls and doggie biscuits.

Queen's Head, (T: 01425 403423) The Cross, Burley, BH24 4AB 

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Good food...nothing wow however service and staff could not have been nicer.

August 2017


A lovely pub with good food

September 2017


A great pub. Food and service were excellent. Staff friendly and helpful. Mixed grill is superb.

October 2017


Food good but service still far too slow, even when not particularly busy - 30+ minutes (and no dog water bowls or biscuits evident!)

October 2017


Food good, service appalling

October 2017


This was poor - now a Chef and Brewer and not well run (and clearly some dishes just heatde up from frozen) . A very long wait as the owers had underestimated demand for half term lunch - did provide a free round of drinks when we complained though

February 2018


Very nice pub. Good for kids. Great food

April 2018


Excellent meal, but out of some parts of our meals and did tell us when ordering, felt sorry for them seemed very short staffed but they done well. The property overall needs refurbishment

September 2018


Cider Pantry
(Less than a mile)

Idyllic rural café complete with pigs, cider presses and geese. The menu features a range of tasty lunchtime options, cream teas, and cakes. Visit the shop inside a former cowshed where you can buy apple juice, preserves, chutneys, brandies and of course homemade cider straight from the barrel.

The Cider Pantry (T: 01425 403589) Burley, Ringwood BH24 4ED

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We had a very nice brunch here, the food was delicious, would definitely recommend and return if in the area.

June 2017


The White Buck
(2 miles)

A wonderful pub serving imaginative, well cooked food  wit a fast, friendly service. The pub has the décor and ambience of a large country lodge, compete with log fires through the winter months. Huge windows offer views out to a large and beautiful beer garden and terrace. Plenty of space for children to let off steam, and they’ll love the little woodland walk through the trees. Food at The White Buck is beautifully cooked, delicious and creative; and the bar stocks a good selection of beers, ales and wine.

The White Buck, (T: 01425 402264)  Burley BH24 4AZ 

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A great pub serving lovely food complimented by friendly staff. Dogs are welcome and you can also tether your horse up in the car park too! Really delightful setting with plenty of outdoor and indoor seating.

August 2018


Old Station Tea Rooms
(2 miles)

The perfect stop when out for a walk or destination out in the forest for some scrumptious food and drink. Set on the old station line when steam trains used to ferry passengers between Sway and Burley, these tearooms have a new lease of life. Serving hearty portions of well cooked food and deliciously naughty cakes and cream teas. There’s plenty of seating inside and out on the patios. 

Old Station Tea Rooms (T: 01425 402468) Station Road, Holmsley BH24 4HY 

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Highcliffe Beach
(7 miles)

A picturesque, tree-lined beach of shingle, and sand at low tide. Good facilities on the cliff top including an excellent tea room, award winning public toilets, baby change and a children’s play area in the Castle gardens. Plenty of parking, but there is no disabled access and quite a few steps to get down to the beach. Lifeguard cover from July to Sept. No dogs allowed.

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Lovely clean sandy beach and a really i would highly recommend this spot for your car to break down takes the ouch out of waiting for the recovery truck

April 2017


Barton on Sea
(7 miles)

A stony beach with sandy areas as the tide goes out, and a great spot to do some fossil hunting. The cliffs are subject to considerable coastal erosion and at times parts of the beach can be cordoned off. The Beachcomber Café on the cliff top is one of the most popular cafés in the region. Plenty of parking in car parks along the cliff top as well as on-road parking.

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Mudeford Sandbank
(8 miles)

This is one of the most scenic of New Forest beaches. Lined with some of the most picturesque and expensive beach huts in the country! There’s no parking next to the beach, as it’s a traffic-free zone, but there’s pay and display parking at Hengistbury Head from where you can catch a little train to the sandbank, and Mudeford Quay which runs a small ferry (5 mins) over to the sandbank. Can also be reached on foot and by bicycle.

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Beautiful place, our favourite beach in south of England. It feels like an island, when you go over on the ferry and at times (off-season!) on sunny days it can feel like a little piece of Heaven, it's so peaceful and beautiful- bit of a sense of New England. There's a super little 'restaurant', the Beach Hut, which does great breakfasts, meals all day and some evenings. Also takeaway eg pizzas, you can eat on the beach. Very simple surroundings, with a sheltered veranda that can be uncovered in fine weather, and amazing views. Quite pricey and often very busy (and you are best to ring and check opening times and book since often weather and ferry-dependant) but the quality of the food and those stunning views make it more than worthwhile!

March 2018


Milford on Sea
(9 miles)

A beautiful shingle beach with pretty painted beach huts, plenty of parking, and excellent coastal walks along Hurst spit to Hurst Castle with clear views of the Isle of Wight and needles. The superb Raft Rocks Restaurant is worth a visit with its Art deco style and roof terrace. You can also walk across the wildlife marshes to Keyhaven harbour and (in season) take the boat to Hurst Castle or the Isle of Wight.

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Lovely village, plenty of shops and places to eat - no post office though.

June 2017


Fantastic sea location with goods pubs, shops etc

November 2017


Great for a dog walk along the spit to Hurst Castle. Needles Eye cafe is a welcome break, quite good food but very busy and a bit basic.

December 2017


great walking area, small cafe-the needles, children climbing play park- crashing waves over stoned beach

March 2019


Boscombe Beach
(10 miles)

Boscombe is a popular family beach with plenty of sand, and a small pier with extensive facilities including a children’s play area, several seafront shops and cafés, crazy golf, plenty of parking and a safe traffic free area perfect for cycling and scooters.

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