The Beaulieu River Buckler’s Hard Yacht Harbour keeps pace with modern demands while remaining an unspoilt, stunning, natural haven.
The Beaulieu River is one of only a few privately owned estuaries in the world. Four centuries of custodianship by the forebears of Lord Montagu have ensured that it remains an unspoilt haven, where riverside development and the number of moorings at Buckler’s Hard Yacht Harbour are carefully controlled.
Its unique character and natural charm make it a popular boating destination. Considered one of the most picturesque locations on the south coast, it is close to the sailing centres of Cowes, Lymington and Hamble and in the heart of the New Forest National Park.
With Harbour Master Wendy Stowe and her new team at the helm, the award-winning yacht harbour and boatyard has introduced a fresh approach to delivering a personal, quality service, with modern facilities to match the expectations of customers.
With a top-rated five Gold Anchors, Buckler’s Hard Yacht Harbour offers a stunning setting for 115 fully serviced berths, more than 300 moorings and a boat park with a slipway.
Yachts up to 60ft can be comfortably accommodated in the marina. The on-site boatyard workshop offers an extensive repairs service, as well as lift out, washdown and storage services all year round.
As well as a first-class service from experienced staff, permanent berth and mooring holders can enjoy benefits including:
- One-month free storage October – February and 10 per cent off lift and launch
- Reduced rates for early payment for a berth or mooring
- Reciprocal berthing arrangements with other marinas via membership of TransEurope
- Free Wi-Fi throughout the marina
- Free parking on-site
- Conveniently located boatyard services
- On-site recognised Volvo Penta service and parts centre
- Special seasonal offers on boatyard services
- Privilege card available from the Master Builder’s Hotel, giving 10 per cent discount on food and drink
- Free entry to Buckler’s Hard Maritime Museum for mooring holders
- Two tickets to the Beaulieu visitor attraction
- Two tickets to Beaulieu Boatjumble, with a free shuttle bus between Buckler’s Hard and Beaulieu
- On-site chandlery open seven days a week
- Buckler’s Hard Water Taxi (April – September)
- Captain’s Cabin Tea Rooms at Buckler’s Hard
- Lavatories, showers and a launderette
- Newsletter six times a year
- Professional on-site yacht broker
BHG Service chandlery
Family-owned BHG Service, which is part of the award-winning BHG Marine group, offers three generations of experience from its chandlery at Buckler’s Hard Yacht Harbour.
The chandlery for Beaulieu River mooring holders and visitors is open seven days a week and sells a range of rope, hardware, Calor and Camping Gas, grocery provisions, outboards, dinghies and canoes.
For engineering services for all inboard and outboard powered craft, electronics, antifouling and GRP repairs contact BHG Service.
Meandering out through the salt marshes of the Beaulieu River is like entering a unique world of pure escapism and relaxation, before joining the modern-day bustle of the Solent. Yet only a short sail away is the yachting hub of Cowes, with its world-famous calendar of popular regattas and racing events.
Lord Montagu’s rights to ownership of the river bed derive from those granted to the monks of Beaulieu Abbey by King John in 1204 and the river now forms the south-eastern edge of the Beaulieu Estate.
Rich and plentiful riverside flora and fauna make an exceptional habitat at the gateway to the New Forest National Park with riverside woodland wildlife walks in a designated National Nature Reserve. It supports a wide range of bird species, particularly waders and wildfowl.
The Beaulieu River is an ideal starting point for weekend sails around the Solent, with nearby destinations including Lymington, Newtown Creek, Yarmouth, the Folly Inn on the Medina River, Alum Bay, the Needles and Hurst Castle.
The timeless quality and tranquil pace of life continues as you step ashore to the 18th century village of Buckler’s Hard. It is easy to imagine how it was when Admiral Lord Nelson chose to build ships for his Trafalgar fleet there. Its gently sloping street down to the river is still flanked by original shipbuilders’ cottages.
The Captain’s Cabin Tea Room and Master Builder’s Hotel, with a bar and restaurant with beautiful views overlooking the river, make a welcome retreat.
The Buckler’s Hard Maritime Museum tells the story of the river’s important role in shipbuilding history. To revive its past, a Shipwright School has been built using a traditional hand-raising of the timber framework for a replica 18th century shipwrights’ workshop. At regular courses, maritime archaeology students learn ancient shipbuilding techniques to keep the skills alive for future generations.
The Beaulieu attraction is only minutes away from the river, where you can see the National Motor Museum’s collection of more than 250 vehicles, the new-look World of Top Gear, On Screen Cars, the ancestral Montagu home of Palace House, 13th century Beaulieu Abbey and the grounds and gardens. Yacht Harbour visitors receive 20 per cent off visits to the Beaulieu and Buckler’s Hard attractions.
To help explore inland, a new bike hire service is available from the Buckler’s Hard Yacht Harbour office. The New Forest offers the very best of England with 300 square miles of idyllic woods and open moorland where New Forest ponies, cattle, donkeys and deer roam free under ancient Commoners’ rights. Charming towns and villages and 43 miles of coastline offer a range of activities from walks to family fun and there are a large number of characterful pubs and award-winning restaurants to enjoy.
Events at the Harbour
The Mooring Holders’ Summer Party is an annual event to bring together the boating community. Whether it is an evening soiree or delicious afternoon tea, you are guaranteed great company in beautiful surroundings at the event on the banks of the Beaulieu River. It is key date on the Beaulieu River calendar.
A new event, which was recently added, the Gourmet Riviere pop-up restaurant was held for the first time this summer and offered a charming evening of French cuisine for mooring holders. The event was a sell-out and there are plans to make this a more regular feature in the future.
Yachting author and broadcaster Tom Cunliffe believes that English Channel mariners enjoy a richer life for the challenges of an ever-changing tide. So Tom has produced a special guide to help visitors navigate the Beaulieu River.
Using his expert knowledge and experience of mooring his boat on the Beaulieu River for more than 25 years, Tom has recorded his top tips which you can see at www.facebook.com/pg/beaulieuriver/videos/.
You are in good company if you moor your boat on the Beaulieu River. Sir Francis Chichester moored his boat on the river and departed and returned there from his epic voyage to become the first person to single-handedly circumnavigate the globe.
His record-breaking yacht, Gipsy Moth IV, can still be seen back at its original home on the Beaulieu River for regular tours for mooring holders and visitors. Now owned by the Gipsy Moth Trust, just stepping on board the famous yacht brings home what life was like for Sir Francis as he sailed around the world 50 years ago.
Buckler’s Hard Yacht Harbour was named as ‘one of the most desired locations’ on ‘one of the most picturesque rivers in the UK’ by the assessor for its top-rating 5 Gold Anchors award.
The report said: “The Beaulieu River is undoubtedly one of the most picturesque rivers in the United Kingdom and the historic village of Buckler’s Hard and the Yacht Harbour are one of the most desired locations.
“The marina blends into the countryside offering tranquil berthing either on pontoons, berths or swinging moorings. The marina, dating back to the early eighties, offers berth holders good facilities all within 25 minutes of the main south coast motorway network.”
Tune into VHF Channel 68 and call on Beaulieu River Radio or Beaulieu River Patrol.