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Holidays in Highcliffe

An attractive clifftop town on the outer fringes of the New Forest

UK | South Coast | New Forest | Highcliffe
Highcliffe beach

Tucked away in the far eastern corner of Dorset, on the edge of the New Forest, lies Highcliffe, also known as Highcliffe-on-Sea. Its clifftop location is just above a truly spectacular stretch of coastline along the Solent, with far-reaching views out over to the Isle of Wight as well as The Needles, three distinctive stacks of chalk rising out of the sea.

From the clifftop visitors can follow a short walk along the Christchurch Coastal Path past the landmarks of Highcliffe Castle, Steamer Point Nature Reserve and further afield to Mudeford Quay. Highcliffe’s beach, a mixture of sand and shingle, is also perfect for a stroll, with many cliff-side paths and promenades to explore.

Highcliffe Castle

The town is possibly most famous for its castle, a Grade I-listed building built by Lord Stuart de Rothesay in the 1830s, surrounded by thousands of conifer trees. Within the former staterooms the Heritage Centre can be found showing a variety of exhibitions, while tours are also run three times a week giving visitors a chance to see rooms not usually opened to the public. The castle can also be seen in the distance from the Highcliffe Castle Golf Club, a challenging course spanning 18 holes.

Spanning 24 acres, the Steamer Point Nature Reserve is also a popular attraction in Highcliffe. A mixture of woodland and aquatic habitats, the diversity of flora and fauna found here is sure to delight nature lovers. Footpaths can be taken from the reserve all the way to Mudeford Quay, which lies a few miles to the west. Here you’ll find a sandy beach as well as some pretty fishermen’s cottages.

The town of Christchurch is less than ten minutes away from Highcliffe, and makes for a good day out, with a wider choice of shops and restaurants. There’s also four miles of coastline to explore, as well as two pretty rivers, a stunning natural harbour and the historic Priory Church and Castle.

“Its clifftop location overlooks a truly spectacular stretch of coastline along the Solent, with far-reaching views out over to the Isle of Wight…”

Highcliffe has many great places to eat and drink should you fancy a bite to eat. Overlooking the sea is the Cliffhanger Café, with a menu that makes the most of its waterside location including homemade fish cakes and a classic fish and chips. For something more exotic, try Similan Thai, serving authentic Thai curries, soups and more.

Our Highcliffe cottages are the perfect base to explore both the New Forest and the Dorset coast from – why not visit our collection and become inspired?

While you’re there

Steamer Point Nature Reserve

An alternative to the beach with 24 acres of land to explore, with many kinds of plants and wildlife to spot

Highcliffe Castle

Highcliffe’s stand-out landmark, which dates back to the 1830s and offers exhibits on 19th and 20th century life

Highcliffe Beach

A beautiful stretch of sand and shingle beach with far-reaching views of the Isle of Wight

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