This was how my mum taught us geography: “For a South Hampshire folk, there are three rivers. The Itchen, Hamble and Test.”

I have written quite a lot about these rivers, which form part of this magical life. And here’s an afternoon at the Hamble and a delightful hotel:

What I love about the Hamble is not just her timeless, graceful flow and ebb, but the heaths and woods that lay on its fringe. But starting from the riverfront, there is a short, easy walk along its banks.


Photo: Giant ammonite. They first appeared about 400 million years ago and went extinct with the dinosaurs. A magical thing for children who love fossils.

There are several footpaths that lead to the heaths and woods, where carpets of wildflowers are to be found. Succulent blackberries, too, ripening early because of the fierce summer.

A little further on, a curious young deer came to watch us.

And then we stumbled upon this: the hotel for beetles. Stage beetles are endangered, thus it’s a great project for children to do. (Don’t worry, beetles don’t bite and won’t rot your trees and furniture).



This is the instruction for building your own beetle hotel. Please click here.

Walk into the little village, sit by the riverfront pubs, eat fish and chips. There is so much you can do here ❤

Related posts: When a girl loves a river, Jolly SailorHamble Lunch Date