New Forest Walking Festival

10th October 2017

Autumn is the perfect time to enjoy the New Forest, watch the leaves turn from green to orange as the changing of the seasons takes place all around you.


From the 14th to 29th October the New Forest Walking Festival is taking place and there are over 80 planned walks for 2017. These walks will be led by local guides, experts in their chosen area. With a variety of walks planned to explore the history, heritage and wildlife of the Forest.


If you are lucky you might even witness Pannage, this is the practice of releasing domestic pigs into a forest. In the Autumn after the acorns, beechmast, chestnuts and other nuts have fallen, up to 600 pigs will work their way through the forest eating them from the forest floor. The 2017 Pannage season ends on 12th November.


Most of the guided walks are accessible by public transport, and many walks are free or discounted if you arrive by bus, train, bike or on foot. Walks this year will cover a superb selection of topics including:

  • Free-roaming pigs, ponies and the traditional rights of commoning
  • Play activities for children
  • Walk to a WWII prisoner of war camp
  • Map reading for beginners
  • Top tips for bird watching in the Forest

The festival is run in partnership with many local organisations including the Forestry Commission, Hampshire County Council, New Forest Association, New Forest Ramblers and Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust. To book onto one of the walks please visit the National Park Authority,

Of course, all these fantastic walks are just a stone's throw from our Hampshire & Dorset parks. Why not book a last minute break and make the most of some of these wonderful local walks?