Buckler's Hard & Beaulieu

Wednesday 18 August 2010
To the astonishment and dismay of my English friends, I've yet to properly explore the UK. There are many grand estates and beautiful rivers in Hampshire county, home to famous authors like Jane Austen and Charles Dickens. Since it was the school holidays and much effort is required to entertain the kids, Lou decided to take us all to Buckler's Hard and Beaulieu, both of which are in Hampshire.

Buckler's Hard is a remarkably well preserved 18th century hamlet where warships for Nelson's Navy were built. I felt like I was transported back in time. It was originally named after the second Duke of Montagu who built it as a free port for trade with the West Indies. I later found out that a friend's husband is the ancestor of the Duke. I must ask him more about his family history.



We decided to have a picnic with the girls on the hilly grounds overlooking the yachts. It was a lovely sunny day which is always a nice surprise (if you live in the UK long enough, you'll understand why).



I was absolutely starving so we went into the nearby Master Builder's house which is now a pub cum restaurant for lunch. Since we're near the sea, I suggested good ol' English pub fare - fish and chips. It was the best fish and chips I've ever eaten far. The two best friends had ice cream but poor L was stung by a wasp who was attracted to her dessert. She howled her head off but thankfully, one of the customers at the pub had a bee sting cream handy.

The Master Builder's House






The interior of the restaurant and pub

The two best friends.

The next stop on our itinerary was Beaulieu (pronounced Bew-Lee) or otherwise known in French as "the beautiful place". So it is. It's where the stately home of the current Baron of Montagu is located, British National Motor Museum, famous for its display of James Bond's cars and Beaulieu Abbey, one of the most haunted places in the UK.

beaulieu palace
The Palace House


The kids decided to re-enact their famous Disney Princesses on the cemetery grounds. Rather odd place to prance around if you ask me.



The town centre is teeny tiny but it was a great place for a spot of tea. Our two girls were extremely courteous on the day and did not forget their please and thank yous, albeit with little volume control to the amusement of the patrons at the tearoom. It was such a pleasant surprise when a gentleman sitting at the next table got up and told us that the two Ls were the most well-behaved little girls he'd ever had the pleasure to meet.

high st
The town centre

I wanted to capture the wild horses of the New Forest. They come and go as they please and often saunter into the town centre. Every car on the narrow stretch of road screeched to a halt when this little fella decided to graze on the grass by the roadside.



I couldn't resist poking my head into a nearby car yard to check out some of the restored cars.

mini cooper



MG old


  1. Love your photos in this post, and L's such a cutie pie. I love her dress! :)

  2. Thank you, Heather. That's L's favorite dress at the moment because it twirls so well!

  3. Nice to see Beaulieu in summer, - I was there during winter. The New Forest (amazing what goes for 'New') ponies are such characters.
    Love L's Joules dress. They make such nice pieces for girls. I've got my eyes on some of the new autumn releases.

  4. We had to go into the changing room to try out the dresses for L. She declared that only this dress worked for her because it twirled perfectly.

    Joules has revamped themselves. Really reasonable prices for good quality clothes. I wanted to capture two ponies whilst they were making friends with tourists on the High St but by the time we got there, they'd left.



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