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Camping in the Forest: Five woodland sites that will blow you away

When the sun's out and photos of the coast are splashed across every travel magazine, it's easy to forget about one of the UK's most magical summer settings – the woods. It's precisely this time of year, though, when trees are green and leafy and dormant animals have woken to fill the forest with sound, that woodland camping is at its best.

Whether you're an avid nature lover or simply adore being outside, woodland camping could well be what you need. The forest – sheltered and secluded – provides a comforting natural barrier to the outside world, allowing you time and space to disconnect from the everyday stresses of life and gadgetry. In today’s busy, modern world, this is priceless.

Camping in the Forest have 16 beautiful campsites located on protected Forestry Commission land and run by the Camping & Caravanning Club. Each site is unique, ranging from expansive, full-site facilities to more laid back, traditional camping and all are accommodated in some of the most beautiful parts of the UK. The locations are vast and varied, from the beautiful, unspoiled woodlands of the New Forest and the Forest of Dean, to the stunning Scottish Highlands. Below, we pick out just a few of our favourites…

roundhill

Roundhill is set between the lovely towns of Lyndhurst, Brockenhurst and Beaulieu. Roundhill campsite is the perfect example of New Forest camping with lots to do and explore. With 500 pitches you have plenty of spots to pick from, whether you go for a quiet spot hugged by majestic trees, or for a more open space, you’ll be spoilt for wonderful views. The campsite offers wide and open areas, a lake and sprinklings of ferns and trees; this picturesque site is just waiting to be explored.

hollands wood

Hollands Wood is the perfect retreat for both mind and body. Set amongst 22 hectares of beautiful oak woodland, it is the ideal backdrop for relaxation or an action-packed break. Nearby villages include the beautiful Brockenhurst with its abundance of restaurants, pubs and shops. It's a place to be surrounded by the incredible oaks and green spaces of the New Forest, making Hollands Wood a perfect retreat for all campers.

holmsley

Holmsley campsite occupies part of what used to be Holmsley Airfield in WWII, now a beautiful and unique forest base for camping holidays and outdoor activities. Holmsley offers the perfect location to take in the stunning forest views. Pitches can be found nestling amongst the trees in their own secluded areas or sitting in open fields. The rural villages of Burley and Bransgore are close by and not much further are Christchurch, New Milton and Bournemouth making Holmsley campsite the perfect base from which to explore the forest’s more urban neighbours.

ashurst

Ashurst campsite is a magical blend of the traditional forest camping experience and wide, open pitches – allowing you to soak up the New Forest ambience and enjoy the unique character that makes Ashurst so special. Boasting 280 standard pitches, ranging from open spaces to peaceful spots amongst the trees, you’ll always have a piece of the beauty within reach. Just a five minute stroll away is the pretty village of Ashurst, where you will find shops, traditional pubs and welcoming restaurants.

bracelands

Bracelands campsite is waiting to welcome you. Open all year round and located on the edge of the Forest of Dean, you can pitch your tent whenever you like. The site allows you to immerse yourself in the Forest of Dean and the miles of walking and cycling tracks it offers. Bracelands is a stone's throw from many local attractions including, the famous Symonds Yat Rock, the River Wye and Monmouth town. There are camping pods on this site, an exciting new addition that means you don’t need a tent to enjoy all the Forest of Dean has to offer.

For more information on any Camping in the Forest sites, visit: campingintheforest.co.uk