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Hampshire Welcome to HAMPSHIRE


From the creeks and harbours of the Solent in the south to the bustling modern town of Basingstoke in the north, this is truly an area of contrasts. Winding country lanes carry you peacefully from hamlet to hamlet while the two motorways mean that every part is quickly accessible. You’ll find fine trout fishing and vineyards producing excellent wine.


In the north, Andover has a maze of modern ring roads but persevere, the centre is pleasant with some fine Georgian buildings. It also makes an excellent base for exploring the surrounding downs and the Upper Test Valley. The direct route from Andover to Basingstoke is along the A303, but a far more pleasant way is to take the B road up through Whitchurch, where a silk mill is still operational.


CRANBORNE CHASE


To the south lies the town of Alton. Not only is the town itself a pleasure to walk around, with fine old buildings and quaint shops in little alleyways, but it is also close to a number of villages. Selborne was home to the famous parson and naturalist, Gilbert White. At Chawton you will find the house in which Jane Austen lived and wrote some of her best-known novels. The best way to explore is to leave the car and take the train on the Watercress Line, which runs through some beautiful country down to Alresford.


Wimborne PURBECK


Winchester has one of the finest collections of medieval buildings in the country; churches, shops, inns, houses, a mill, the ruins of Wolvesey Castle, fortifications and, of course, the splendid cathedral, which includes all architectural styles from Norman to Perpendicular.


The ancient and beautiful town of Romsey lies in the south of the Test Valley. Still dominated by its Norman Abbey, the heart of the town is built alongside the river Test, which continues to meander through small woods and meadows


Barton on Sea


until it meets the tidal flow of Southampton Water.


Portsmouth abounds in naval history while Southsea provides the holiday atmosphere. The Solent is one of the busiest of sea channels, with both commercial and pleasure craft everywhere. Luxurious cruise liners pass


small sailing dinghies while the ferries pass busily to and fro.


Finally the Isle of Wight, complete with its unspoilt scenery, long golden beaches and the spectacular and famous Needles is simply stunning. Stay some time in this area - and we are sure you will want to come back again.


Winchester Cathedral www.touristhandbook.co.uk We hope you enjoy these pages: please leave for the enjoyment of others 29


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