Vitamin ‘Sea’ in Milford-on-Sea

Drink, Food, Travel
The village green

In January, I was invited down to stay in Milford-on-Sea. As a frequenter of this town’s beach in the summer months, I naturally was delighted to receive said invite so that I could explore a little more, and I am pleased to say that the town very much lived up to my excitement.

Views of the Needles & Isle of Wight

The town centre itself is relatively small, circling a very charming green onto which many of the shops and cafes look. Historically, Milford-on-Sea dates back to Saxon times, and is even recorded in the Domesday Book. That central village green was once ancient common land, and many of the old houses (now residential) such as the Old Mill, vicarage and manor, still remain today (in fact the Old Mill recently featured on Channel 4’s Extraordinary Extensions, having undergone serious restoration works).

The beauty of a weekend/short/long break in Milford on Sea is that there is as much or as little for you to do as you choose, and most activities are outside in the wonderful seaside air.

Where to Stay

Our little AirBnb hut

We were given a two-night stay in an Airbnb, which was an incredibly aesthetic little hut with an outdoor space, all necessary amenities, a very comfy double bed, and within walking distance of the town centre and beach. I would certainly stay there again, however if you are after a bit more space then you are not short of alternative AirBnbs, B&Bs, and a few hotels too, in the area.

What to Do

Walking routes around the town


Milford-on-Sea itself offers 3 different footpaths (see photo); the Clifftop route (taking you to Barton-on-Sea along the Hordle Cliffs), the Lymore route (which takes you inland towards Lymore), and the Keyhaven route (which takes you out along the peninsula to Hurst Castle) which forms part of the Solent Way where you can continue on to Lymington, Beaulieu, and beyond, all the way to Portsmouth! Have a look here for some more ideas!

Then there is, of course, the matter of the New Forest National Park being right on your doorstep too – click here to search for some of your many options.


Hurst Castle – an old artillary fortress built by Henry VIII and now an English Heritage site, Hurst Castle sits on the end of a long peninsula with lovely views of the Needles and Isle of Wight on the one side, and Keyhaven on the other.

Water sports – paddle-board, kayak, swim, windsurf, sail… Milford-on-Sea is a great base-point for all of these things, particularly because it is quite protected from the elements and not too windy. Bring your own, or hire equipment from the New Forest Paddlesport Company.

The beach huts along Milford-on-Sea’s beach are picture-perfect

Beach – If energetic water-sports are not your thing, why not sit yourself comfy on the beach, read a book, bring a flask or bottle of fizz, and watch the (water)world go by? The beach is a pebbled one, so deck chairs might be sensible, or you could do one better and hire one of the gorgeous beach huts for the day.

Bikes – hire bikes from New Forest Bikes and explore the areas surrounding Milford-on-Sea, including Lymington, the New Forest, and Barton-on-Sea.

Shopping – a small but noble offering, No64 Biscuit House is a beautiful homewares store and a double Muddy Stilettos winner, and Noah Valentines Antiques shop is a treasure trove tucked away off the main road.

Food & Drinks Scene

Rays Italian


On our first night we had takeaway burgers and chips from La Perle, where you can also dine in. The burgers were fab and I’d like to return and eat in to try the rest of the menu. They also did great chunky chips (something I am passionate about!).

For our second night, our host booked us a table at Rays Italian, which is also a deli in the day (more on that below). The meal was absolutely excellent, really reasonably priced, and I would certainly go back again. My favourite plates were the arancini and the charcuterie platter (which was a special).

The Paddle on the Green

Some other places we were recommended include The Cave Wine Bar, The Lazy Lion, The Beach House, and Britannia Thai.


There are many lunch options, and something to suit all requirements. The Pickled Weasel offers quick options like pre-made sandwiches, sausage rolls and the like. The Paddle on the Green also offers some great light-bite and brunch options. Also pop by Rays Italian for a sit-down lunch menu or grab some bits from the deli and head to the beach!

Breakfast at The Paddle on the Green


We had our first breakfast in the AirBnb, but on our second morning we headed to The Paddle on the Green. This was by far my favourite eatery, and a very popular one with the locals and cyclists. The wait for the tables moves quickly, the coffee is excellent, and the food great – avocado on toast, granola bowls, pastries, etc. Delightful.


As mentioned above, The Paddle on the Green had brilliant coffee. Also check out the Coastal Bakery, and Rays Italian.

Unmissable upcoming markets

Drink, Food, Shopping, Style, Travel

We visited Alresford last weekend, and had the luck of stumbling upon their bi-annual brocante and antiques market, hosted by ACVR events. Although we (and they) were nearly blown away in these uncustomary gale-force winds we’ve been having, there were some beautiful pieces and/or bargains (the joy of an antiques market is that the two are never mutually exclusive) for sale there.

I love having a mooch around a market, particularly when having a lazy weekend, so I thought I would make a list of some of the upcoming ones over the next few months.


On the first Sunday of every month is the Antiques Market (it’s brilliant. You could spend a lot of time there).

On the second and fourth Sunday of every month is the Hampshire Farmer’s Market.

On the third Sunday of every month is the Art & Design Market.

I am biased, but Winchester is one of my favourite places. We are spoilt with inescapable history on every corner, independent shops and fantastic food options.


Love Southsea Market hosts a fantastic market every two or so weeks. Stalls include street food, flowers, clothes and fashion, homewares and accessories, and jewellery.

You need to book tickets at the moment, due to Covid : About — Love Southsea Markets

Separately, there is also a farmers market on the third Sunday of every month.

Southsea is a lovely coastal town, east of Portsmouth (a little like Brighton & Hove twin together, so does Portsmouth & Southsea). It is full of cool eateries, coffee spots, and independent shops (and very lovely 4-storey townhouses looking out to sea).


Alresford – Every Thursday, Alresford hosts their weekly market of local foods, ceramics and homewares. There’s lots to also explore around Alresford, including shops and walks, so it’s definitely worth a day-trip.

Alresford’s bi-annual vintage and brocante market that we stumbled upon last weekend is separately hosted by ACVR events. The next is on the 26 September. If you want to catch it sooner, head to Ringwood, Romsey or Bishops Waltham, or otherwise have a look here: Calendar of Events – Speciality Markets & Events (

Alton – The pretty little market town of Alton hosts a weekly market on a Tuesday. The farmers’ market is also on, on 12 June, 17 July and 14 August, and the Hampshire farmers market on the second Saturday of each month. Alton is also a stone’s throw away from Chawton House, Jane Austen’s family home.

Petersfield – On every Wednesday and Saturday, the Petersfield market has a variety of stalls and is on between 8:30 and 3pm. The Hampshire farmer’s market is on there on the first Sunday of every month.


The Hampshire farmer’s market is held on the last Saturday of each month. There is also a weekly market every Wednesday selling local produce, crafts, clothes and plants.

On 3 July, 4 September, 6 November, and 4 December the ACVR vintage and antiques market we had the pleasure of visiting in Alresford today, will be at Ringwood.

Ringwood is another lovely Hampshire market town, close to beaches and the New Forest, with excellent eateries and independent shops.


Romsey’s market is hosted every Tuesday, Friday and Saturday morning in The Cornmarket. Romsey has hosted a market for over 400 years, so although I have not visited this one, I imagine it would be a nice one to stroll through. Romsey is another town with some nice independent shops and cafes.

The Hampshire farmers market is also on, on the first Sunday of every month.

The ACVR brocante market is also here on 25 July, 17 October, and 28 November.

Bishops Waltham

The ACVR brocante market is also here on 18 July and 10 October. Bishops Waltham’s markets are sadly on hold at the moment, but is usually on Fridays.

I have not been to Bishops Waltham in a long time, but it’s on my list now that things are opening up. I have, however, heard that there is a Josie’s there and therefore I am convinced it will be a nice day trip. Bishops Waltham is nestled on the edge of the South Downs, en route to other towns and villages worth a visit, such as Wickham.