Local campsites for families

Myself and the kids are spending our first night under canvas in August, what appeals is that we’re staying in the New Forest, less than an hour from home. My friend also assures me that she has a marquee sized tent and a plentiful supply of wine so we should be ok! We’ve come up with a list of campsites within an hour of Portsmouth and Southampton, so whether you’re a seasoned camper or just fancy trying it out there’s an option without too much travelling involved.


These campsites are ideal if you are new to camping and just want to test out your tent without being too far from home. Its also great to be away from home having a break but not wasting time on the road.

Fairthorne Manor, Botley

  • 60 pitches on flat ground
  • beautiful, relaxed setting dotted with copses, a stream and plenty of room to play
  • FREE self led children’s activities, including our sandpit, tree swing, ponds, stream and climbing tree!
  • exciting adventurous activities available onsite – see our activity calendar
  • purpose built toilet, shower and wash up facilities
  • café, licensed bar & small shop for essential camping supplies
  • pitch BBQ & fire pit hire

Sunnydale Farm, Netley

The park has 40 level serviced pitches with electric, water & grey waste drain (23 hard-standing) with a separate camping field and dog walk. The toilets and showers have underfloor heating and there is a laundry room available with washing machines, tumble driers, dishwashing sinks, microwave, kettle and a freezer for ice packs. There is a small shop on site and a Tesco Extra superstore a short drive away.

Hayling Island Family Campsites

Two campsites, The Oven and Fleet Farm. BBQs allowed as long as they are off the ground. The Oven has 350 pitches and has a small outdoor pool, a snack bar, shop and play area. Fleet Farm is a smaller, quiet site with a playground and windsurfers can be launched directly from the site. Toilets, showers, wash up area and electric to all plots.


What’s not to love about the New Forest, who could resist the free roaming ponies and pigs. Our kids are fascinated by them and are quite happy enjoying a picnic watching them wander about. There is also a ford near to Brockenhurst for the kids to cool off if the weather is as warm as it has been over the last few days (wishful thinking, I know).

Sandy Balls, New Forest

Lodges, camping pods, safari tents and caravans. Also touring pitches and the Cornfield camping site (open 2-29th August, no electric or water hook up).

Perfect for either camping or caravanning, our fully serviced touring pitches are surrounded by grass and all are just a short walk away from the central Sandy Balls Village Square.  With top class facilities including our fully stocked Village Store, launderettes, heated shower and toilet blocks, water supply, electric and TV hook up, we have everything you need to enjoy your stay with us.

Features include;

  • Hard standing, fully serviced pitches
  • At least 9m x 9m with gravel area of at least 5m x 5m
  • Unlimited 10AMP electricity supply and water hook up included
  • TV hook up
  • Heated shower blocks open 24 hours a day
  • Great security and 24 hour warden
  • Hire of various camping equipment available
  • Prices include 2 adults and children

Facilities include:

  • Café and restaurant
  • Pub
  • Swimming pools indoor and outdoor
  • Bike hire
  • Shop
  • Jacuzzi, sauna and gym
  • Indoor soft play area and outdoor adventure playground
  • Hair and beauty salon
  • Various activity sessions
For prices and further information please see


New Forest Water Park

Camp alongside the facilities of the waterpark, cable wakeboarding, the inflatable aquapark, stand up paddle boarding and kayaking.

Our woodland pitches are ideal for groups, but can also be filled with individuals. These are in clusters in the woodland, under the trees, and with campfires shared in the middle.

The lakeside pitches are more open and on grass, from most of the pitches you can see the lake. Fire pits are also allowed here, we supply them for the lakeside on stilts.

We have all the necessary facilities such as a shower and toilet block, washing up sinks, and fresh drinking water. There is no electric hook up, small campervans are welcome. The site is intended for quiet groups, there is a strict noise limitation policy after 10pm, if you’re looking to chill this is the site for you. If you’re looking to party it definitely isn’t!

Information and prices

Green Pastures, Ower, Nr Romsey

Green Pastures Farm is a family-run farm and local campsite just on the outskirts of the New Forest. Great location for visiting Paultons Park.

Cleanliness is a top priority. There is a modern toilet block with free hot showers along with shower and toilet facilities for the disabled.

Other facilities available include; washing machine and dryer; washing-up area; small shop; calor gas and camping gaz; payphone.

Shamba, Ringwood

We have 150 pitches all with electric hook-up facility and welcome caravans, motorhomes and tents.

Our superb 40ft heated indoor/outdoor swimming pool also has a separte toddlers paddling pool.  Shamba’s clubhouse/reception building hosts a games room, bar, takeaway, reception and shop. The children’s play area offers an abundance of play equipment including swings, slides and climbing frame/adventure play.

Shamba has a modern amenity building which incorporates award-winning facilities, including toilets, ladies and gents showers, family/disabled changing and shower rooms, a family bathroom (small charge), enclosed wash-up area and launderette. With under-floor heating included your comfort is assured. There are ample water points located around the park, a chemical disposal point and a motor vehicle greywaste disposal point.

Greenhill Farm, Nomansland New Forest

We have a children’s play area which includes our extremely popular zip wire. We also have a separate area dedicated to the under 7’s so that they can play quietly and safely.

There is a large recreation field with football goals where all the kids (and Mums & Dads!) can get together to enjoy a game. This is also a great area for kite flying. There is lots of open space on the site for exploring and cycle riding, and we hire both adult and children’s bikes as well if you can’t fit them on the car.

The site has free toilet and shower facilities, heated in the winter months.

The new facilities include:

  • Large showers and drying areas with clothes shelf
  • Private vanity cubicles with large basins
  • Underfloor heating in the winter months
  • Hairdryers
  • Full disabled room including shower
  • Family bathroom with child’s bath, shower, baby changing facilities and ‘mini’ toilet and basin.
  • Private adult bathroom with bath and shower (available to hire by the day)
  • Covered washing up area
  • Reception and small licensed shop
  • Licenced bar (season hours) (covered/heated dog friendly area)
  • Electric Hook-ups (16A) (You will need a 20m hook-up cable. If your unit is more than 20m from the nearest electrical point we will lend you an extension cable in return for a £20 deposit)

Hoburne Bashley New Milton

A variety of Touring pitches all with electric hook up. No tents. Dog friendly.

  • Entertainment complex
  • The Venue entertainment room
  • Sammy & Tommy Children’s activities
  • Indoor soft play area
  • Amusement arcade
  • Heated outdoor swimming and paddling pools (mid May to mid Sept)
  • Sauna & steam room
  • Brasserie 1912 restaurant*
  • Bars
  • Cafe H coffee shop*
  • ATM
  • Shop

Hurst View New Forest

Hurst View Leisure is a family run business providing static caravan homes for rental, a mews of cottages and an open camp site for tents and touring caravans with toilets, showers and electric hook ups. Lovely views across the solent. Well behaved dogs welcome and small campfires are allowed. Family campsite, no large single sex groups allowed.

Red Shoot Camping park, New Forest

Our facilities include an on-site shop and bakery, childrens play area, laundry room, under floor heated showers/toilets and family and disabled bathrooms. We welcome tents, campervans and motorhomes. Facilities also include a shop and bakery, children’s play area, washing up sinks, drive over chemical disposal unit, grey water disposal, gas cylinder exchange and ice pack service all on your doorstep. Dog friendly. The Red Shoot Inn pub is right on the door step, handy if you don’t want to cook.


The coastline around the Witterings is beautiful, the sandy beach goes on for what seems like miles and is great for young children.

Bunn Leisure, Selsey

Our Five Star Touring Park – Warner Farm – is a purpose built, modern local campsite with a choice of pitches from Standard, Electric and Super all having space for one car. Visitors can take advantage of all our onsite facilities including; 20 FREE shower cubicles, toilets and a laundry room. We also have amenities for our disabled visitors.

Our prices are all inclusive with use of indoor and outdoor swimming pools, and entry to all three entertainment venues with top billing entertainment throughout the season.

All of this FREE!

  • Showers and toilets
  • No charge for awnings
  • Swimming pools
  • Evening entertainment
  • Children’s play areas
  • Multi-sport courts
  • Courtesy bus service
  • Club membership to all Bunn Leisure Village venues
  • Kids clubs for 0-16 year olds
  • Amenities for disabled visitors


The Isle of Wight holds fond memories of childhood holidays for me. There is something about getting on the ferry that feels like you’re properly going away, even though its only a couple of miles from home. The sandy beaches are really lovely and there are plenty of interesting coastal areas to explore. We loved Ventnor when we were over for a weekend 2 years ago, the windy paths from the botanical gardens lead to a stoney beach where there was a lovely seafood café and also a pub further on. Be prepared for the steep walk back up though, 10 weeks pregnant and feeling queasy didn’t mix well with that one!! St Helens is also nice with the wall you can walk along across the harbour, great for crabbing. There is a nice beach café if you get as far as the beach, off road buggy needed.

Whitecliff Bay Away Resorts

Facilities include indoor and outdoor pools, indoor soft play and outdoor adventure playground. Bar, café and takeaway available. Situated near a sandy beach. Dogs welcome.

Ninham Country holidays

Outdoor heated pool and sun terrace, onsite coarse fishery ponds, sport and play areas, TV and games room, laundry. Safe sandy beaches very close.

2 camping areas –

The orchard – modern toilet facilities, no dogs in school holidays.

Willow Brook – low density pitches, dogs allowed.

Grange Farm, Brighstone Bay

Kids will love the big play area, including a tractor and boat to play on. The farm has a wide range of animals including goats, sheep, guinea pigs, rabbits, poultry, pigs, donkeys, horses and alpacas. The animals are generally friendly and love attention.

This local campsite overlooks the sea and access to the beach is 100yds down the path. There are all the usual facilities, showers, toilets, laundry, dishwashing etc.

Image credits –



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *