In a nutshell
A former ship-building village on the River Beaulieu within the New Forest. Attractions embody a maritime museum telling the story of warships constructed for Nelson’s navy and different moments in seafaring historical past, from the sinking of SS Persia by a German U-boat to Sir Francis Chichester’s circumnavigation of the globe in Gipsy Moth IV. Costumed volunteers are available to reply questions and enthuse youngsters with, say, a game of coits or clarify how households lived within the Shipwright’s Cottage. In summer time hop on a ship for a cruise up the river (further cost).
The saying “money for old rope” comes from sailors promoting outdated ships’ ropes for oakum (used to waterproof ships) and subsequently getting one thing for nothing.
The maritime museum. Photograph: Samantha Cook Photography
Best factor about it
The setting is beautiful, two rows of well-preserved red-brick staff’ cottages – separated by an immaculate garden – lead right down to the water’s edge the place boats glide previous. Many household sights are an assault on the senses (and the pockets) with their high-tech wizardry and high-octane actions however Buckler’s Hard affords a gentler time out.
What about lunch?
We arrived hungry and made a beeline for the Captain’s Cabin Tea Rooms, which had only a few choices. We had do-it-yourself however not very good soup with a roll (£four.50), so doughy my son made bullet-like balls out of it. I want we’d held out for the Yachtsman Bar and Garden, a part of the on-site Master Builder’s resort.
Exit via the reward store?
The store shares house with the tearoom and has a deal with twee homeware: plenty of crusing or shell-related objets, plus cushions, mugs and kitchen indicators – most of them emblazoned with “witty” phrases. There is little to tempt small beady eyes. The store within the museum has toys and maritime-related books.
Take the M27, exit at junction 2 and comply with the vacationer indicators in the direction of close by Beaulieu motor museum – from there Buckler’s Hard is signposted. Train to Brockenhurst then taxi – or rent a motorcycle and cycle the eight miles via the New Forest.
Photograph: Baxter Bradford
Value for cash?
Yes. The period of time you’re taking will seemingly depend upon the climate. On a sunny day you might simply spend a day for an affordable £6.90 (grownup), £four.70 (youngster 5-16) or £19.70 (household) – all on-line costs. An annual cross is £12.50 for an grownup or £33 for a household and permits limitless free visits.
10am-5pm each day, besides Christmas Day
eight/10. At its peak, Buckler’s Hard would have been noisy, crowded and smelly. Now it’s a relaxed backwater – in a great way.