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The New Forest is on the south coast of England. It is tucked between Southampton Water and the major port of Southampton in the east, the Solent to the south, the Avon Valley to the west and the Wiltshire chalk downs to the north. The cities of Southampton, Winchester, Salisbury and Bournemouth are all within easy reach, as is the Isle of Wight. At Fawley, in the south-eastern corner of the New Forest, the historic landscape is cheek-by-jowl with a power station and an oil refinery. And within the National Park there is a major theme park and the National Motor Museum. In spite of these modern urban and industrial neighbours the New Forest can feel like medieval England. Stags wander from the mist-shrouded woodland and ponies graze freely under an historic system of common rights.

Everybody needs good neighbours - five unexpected features in or near the New Forest
1. A power station and oil refinery (Fawley)
2. A major container port (Southampton)
3. Two international airports (Southampton and Bournemouth)
4. The National Motor Museum (Beaulieu)
5. A motorway (a small section of the M27 is in the New Forest)
15 photos to find in the Forest

As a visitor to this website - hello, thank you - you will be interested in the New Forest or photographs or photographs of the New Forest, or all three.

If you want to take some pictures of your own, here are my top tips for subjects, locations and times.

1. Knobbly-kneed, wobbly-legged foals - photos with the 'aah' factor in the late spring and summer.

2. Autumn colour - 'leaf-peeping UK' any time from September to December with orange, yellow, scarlet, bronze and toffee-brown leaves and bracken in the ancient and ornamental woodland.

3. Views of the iconic Needles and the Isle of Wight from many places on the New Forest coastline.

4. Deer - you have a better-than-average chance of spotting these shy creatures in the New Forest, especially if you get up early.

5. Bolton's Bench - a landmark clump of yew trees on top of a small hill in Lyndhurst which provides a focal point from many angles in any weather conditions, often with ponies or cattle in the foreground.

6. Fungi - the Forest has 2,700 species (allegedly) so try to seek out interesting shapes, colours and compositions.

7. Events - the Beaulieu Road pony sales, farmers' markets, the Lymington bathtub race, for example.

8. Beaulieu - the village or the historic house or the picturesque river.

9. Donkeys - less common than the better-known ponies so you may need to look longer and harder to find them, but worth it because they are friendlier and even more photogenic.

10. Heather-covered expanses of rolling heathland - in the high summer the pinks and purples of bell heather, cross-leaved heath and ling carpet the landscape.

11. Visitors - walkers, cyclists or horseriders make a useful feature in photographs of the New Forest.

12. The coast - lighthouses, saltmarshes, boats, wading birds, sunrises and sunsets.

13. Damselflies and dragonflies - electric blue, honey-yellow, postbox-red: look closely to find these eye-catching insects near rivers and ponds in the boggy parts of the Forest in the summer.

14. Misty mornings - capture the magic of morning mist rolling across the heath or shafts of sunlight piercing the tangled woodland.

15. Thatched cottages - chocolate-box, yes, but most people like chocolate.