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With the M3 cutting straight through it and the M4 nearby, Hampshire is an easy county to get to. While it's probably most famous for being the home of Highclere Castle - which also doubles as TV's Downton Abbey - and the lush splendour of the New Forest, Hampshire has another ace up its sleeve in the form of some of the most fantastic beaches in England. Whether you're visiting in the sun-splashed summer months or in the fresh frosts of winter, a trip to a Hampshire beach is a must. Fortunately, there are a good number of beach hotels along the coast, ranging from relaxed, family-run guest houses, to chic and elegant establishments.
If you're travelling with the family, finding a beach that offers everything you need to keep little ones entertained can be a bit of a bind. The beach at Barton on Sea ticks all the boxes. When the tide's in it looks little more than a stretch of stony coastline. However, at low tide, the sea pulls back its blue curtain to reveal golden sands. There are lifeguards on patrol, a children's play area and even a nearby restaurant. The Cliff House Hotel overlooks the beach and gives you easy access to clifftop walking and cycle trails. Rooms here are light and airy and many come with spectacular views across The Needles and The Solent.
The Balmer Lawn Hotel is ideal for those who want to be able to spend some time on the sands, but have somewhere secluded to retire to at the end of the day. Set deep in the New Forest, this hotel is favoured by couples who want to steal some quality time together. However, with excellent conference facilities, you'll also find it a popular destination for businessmen attending meetings in sublime surroundings. These surroundings also have a definite appeal for those looking to tie the knot, as the Balmer Lawn Hotel is also a licensed wedding venue, with everything you could need to make your Big Day go smoothly.
Hampshire is a fascinating and beautiful county to visit, at any time of year. With a good number of beach hotels in the area, you can enjoy the best the coast has to offer.