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Afternoon Tea in the New Forest

Great places to enjoy afternoon tea in style in Lymington, the New Forest and surrounding areas...

Vegan afternoon tea at Careys ManorAfternoon tea is one of the most quintessential of English customs and no wonder – all those delicious sandwiches, fruit-laden slices, yummy scones and melt-in-the-mouth cakes. 

In fact, afternoon tea a relatively new tradition. The tradition of drinking tea dates back to the third millennium BC in China and was popularised in England during the 1660s by King Charles II and his wife the Portuguese Infanta Catherine de Braganza, but it was not until the mid 19th Century that the concept of ‘afternoon tea’ first appeared.

Anna, the seventh Duchess of Bedford, would have a “sinking feeling between luncheon and supper”. In 1840 she asked that a tray of tea, bread and butter and cake be brought to her room during the late afternoon. This became a habit of hers and she began inviting friends to join her.

This pause for tea became a fashionable social event. During the 1880’s upper-class and society women would change into long gowns, gloves and hats for their afternoon tea, which was usually served in the drawing room between four and five o’clock.

‘Wouldn’t it be dreadful to live in a county where they didn’t serve tea!’ - Noel Coward

Careys afternoon tea hampshire careys manor 600x400These days there are several distinct excuses to our mind for taking afternoon tea. The first is to make a change. Those groups of friends who have the luxury of time to meet for morning coffee and gossip could try switching their gatherings to try afternoon tea in one of the many New Forest eateries where it’s served.

The second is for a business meeting with a colleague or your team, especially when you need to do a bit of brainstorming and thinking outside the box. We tried an afternoon tea and it works brilliantly!

And of course afternoon tea in the New Forest is a wonderful experience to share with loved ones on an anniversary, special birthday or other occasion; afternoon tea is a sophisticated and relaxed way to celebrate with your closest friends and family.

Pour your tea and enjoy a traditional afternoon tea, usually including a selection of dainty sandwiches, scones served with clotted cream and preserves. Cakes and pastries. Tea grown in India or Ceylon is poured from dainty teapots into delicate bone china cups. 

Where to enjoy a splendid traditional afternoon tea in Lymington and the New Forest

Remember to mention that you read about them on when you arrive!


Balmer Lawn AfternoonTea New Forest

Balmer Lawn, Brockenhurst

Afternoon tea served between 2.30pm and 4.30pm. Booking essential.

Enjoy traditional Afternoon Tea at this historical country house hotel on the edge of the New Forest - ideal to combine with a stroll from the hotel across the forest! Whilst there, take a walk along the photo wall gallery and learn some history of the New Forest and the Balmer Lawn.

Afternoon tea is served in one of the comfortable and spacious lounges or outside on the terrace if the weather permits. It includes a pot of Birchall Tea, freshly prepared finger sandwiches, scones with clotted cream and jam and a selection of home-baked cakes and biscuits. Add Champagne for a really special occasion!

Find out more about afternoon tea at the Balmer Lawn...

Afternoon Tea on the lawn at the Chewton GlenChewton Glen, New Milton

Afternoon tea served between 3pm and 4.30pm. Booking essential.

Named after the celebrated naval officer, Captain Marryat, afternoon tea at the Chewton Glen features sandwiches, cakes, scones, jams and teas - most locally sourced (although the smoked salmon comes from the slightly further afield crystal clear waters of Scotland).

Enjoy afternoon tea in The Dining Room, or in fine weather on the terrace overlooking the croquet lawn.

Find out more about afternoon tea at Chewton Glen... 

Lime Wood terraceLime Wood, Lyndhurst

Afternoon tea served daily from 3pm to 5pm.

Lime Wood's afternoon tea includes a selection of finger sandwiches, homemade scones, clotted cream & strawberry jam and sticky eclairs, with your choice of tea. Plus choose a big slice of one of the homemade cakes, and tuck into some of the daily pick and mix treats. Perfect to pair up with a glass of fizz or a cup of Lime Wood blend. Or try the G&Tea - A special Gin from the head bartender’s selection paired to your tastes and to accompany your sandwiches and sweet treats.

Find out more about afternoon tea at Lime Wood...

HPH Rhinefield afternoon teaRhinefield House Hotel, Brockenhurst

Afternoon Tea served daily: 2pm - 5pm. Booking essential.

Enjoy afternoon tea in The Lounge or al fresco on one of the terraces during warmer months. Afternoon tea at Rhinefield House is perfectly accompanied with a stroll around the beautiful garden featuring ornamental ponds, fountains and terraces. Add to the country mansion’s exquisite surroundings, its distinguished reputation, impeccable service, delicious handmade food and Taylors of Harrogate tea strained to your own taste, afternoon tea at Rhinefield House makes for a memorable occasion.

Find out more about afternoon tea at Rhinefield House Hotel...

Stanwell House Hotel afternoon tea

Stanwell House Hotel, Lymington

Afternoon tea is served from 3pm to 6pm.

Situated on Lymington High Street, the exclusive Stanwell House Hotel provides a calm and relaxing escape for an afternoon tea. Enjoy afternoon tea inside in the light and airy conservatory or outside in the delightful garden if the elements permit!

Select your tea from a range of SUKI teas and then then work your way through three tiers of assorted freshly prepared sandwiches and homemade sweet treats. Finish off with homemade scones served with clotted cream and jam. Menus change regularly to offer the freshest, locally sourced produce in line with the season.

Find out more about afternoon tea at Stanwell House Hotel...

Macdonald Elmers Court Hotel, Lymington

Traditional Afternoon Tea at Elmers Court Lymington

Afternoon tea (booking essential) is served between midday and 4.30pm.

Enjoy afternoon tea at Elmers Court's Waterford Restaurant which is situated within the 19th century manor house, which has fabulous views down the lawn to the Solent shore. Choose between a traditional afternoon tea, cream tea or just freshly baked cake! Elmers Court has an excellent range of tissanes, served with homemade shortbread.

A traditional three-tier stand comes loaded with a selection of traditional finger sandwiches, freshly baked scones with Devonshire clotted cream and strawberry preserve and assorted fresh fine pastries & cakes. Served with a choice of teas, tisanes and coffee. Add champagne for a special treat!

Macdonald Elmers Court is just up the road from Lymington Pier Station and the Wightlink ferry to Yarmouth, Isle of Wight.

Find contact details for Macdonald Elmers Court...

The Thatched Cottage, Brockenhurst

Afternoon tea at Thatched Cottage HotelAfternoon tea (booking essential)

Enjoy afternoon tea or cream tea inside at The Thatched Cottage or out in the beautiful garden when the weather is kind. This charming Grade 2 listed Hotel was built in 1627 during the reign of Charles I.

Located in Brockenhurst in the heart of the New Forest National Park, the hotel is within easy walking distance of the railway station, village centre, open heathland and forest.

Find out more about afternoon tea at The Thatched Cottage...

South Lawn Hotel, Milford on Sea

Afternoon tea at South Lawn HotelCream teas and full afternoon tea served 2pm to 5.30pm (Monday to Friday) and 2pm to 6pm (weekends)

The South Lawn Hotel is a county house retreat near Milford on Sea. Enjoy Afternoon Tea in the Cedar Tree Restaurant, with views across their manicured gardens. Indulge in a selection of sandwiches, cakes and scones served with clotted cream and jam along with a choice of tea or coffee.

Find out more about afternoon tea at the South Lawn Hotel...

 Careys Manor, Brockenhurst

Careys Manor Afternoon Tea in the garden

Afternoon tea served Monday to Friday from 2:30pm to 5:30pm and weekends 1:30pm to 5:30pm. Booking essential.

Indulge in Traditional Afternoon tea at the chic Cambium restaurant or in the comfort of a cosy lounge in front of a roaring log fire. A mouth-watering selection of finely cut sandwiches, speciality cakes including freshly baked scones smothered in New Forest Jam and thick clotted cream, all complimented by a large selection of the finest artisan teas from Camellia’s Tea House and Fair Trade coffee. 

Careys Manor cater for everyone, their gluten free afternoon tea and vegan afternoon tea are especially popular. Special afternoon tea menus and offers are usually available for Easter, Mothering Sunday and Father's Day (with additional delights for Dad, including more savouries and local ale!)

Find out more about afternoon tea at Careys Manor...

Montagu Arms Hotel, Beaulieu 

Montagu Arms afternoon tea

Afternoon tea served from 3.30pm to 5.30pm. Booking essential.

Afternoon tea at The Montagu Arms is reminiscent of the rituals of its 1840s origins, with a twist. A unique ‘course by course’ tasting journey starts with a savoury selection of delicate finger sandwiches and an array of sweet treats, before arriving at freshly baked scones served with homemade jam and clotted cream. Your afternoon tea will be perfectly accompanied by a selection of finest loose leaf teas and fairtrade coffee.

Enjoy an unforgettable afternoon tea experience in quintessential English surroundings in comfort of a cosy lounge with log fires or in the conservatory overlooking the manicured gardens.  Special afternoon tea menus and offers are usually available for Easter, Mothering Sunday and Father's Day (with additional delights for Dad, including more savouries and local ale!)

Find out more about afternoon tea at the Montagu Arms...

New Park Manor, Brockenhurst

New Park Manor afternoon tea

Afternoon tea is served from 3pm to 5pm. Booking essential.

If you are looking for a family-friendly location then New Park Manor makes the perfect setting for afternoon tea after a walk in the New Forest. One of the luxurious Family Friendly Hotels, children of all ages are welcome and catered for.

Take a seat in one of the cosy lounges, in The Vinery, or on the terrace if the sun shines, and sample sweet treats and delightful savoury snacks with a wide range of fresh loose-leaf teas, from traditional English breakfast and herbal classics to flavourful fruit blends. 

Find out more about afternoon tea at New Park Manor...

June 2021

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