A Break From The City
Mimi ON Dec 14, 2011 AT 4:01 pm
By Emma Skipper
It’s not often I get a chance to escape the busy city life in London and head for the countryside, however I was recently given the chance to try the new 7-seater Chevrolet Orlando for the weekend so I used it as the perfect excuse to hit the road with a few friends.
With so many options for final destinations we thought we would keep it simple and opt for an adventure around the New Forest and got far more than we bargained for! We took off in our super spacious and easy-to-drive Chevrolet Orlando (it easily fit 4 people plus luggage and a big set of golf clubs in the boot – which can also seat another two passengers in fold down seats) and began our 1.40hr journey down to Lyndhurst in the centre of the New Forest National Park. The car made the journey an absolute pleasure with a great sound-system, functional sat-nav (although it did centre on North meaning it was a bit confusing with the directions on the map!) and comfortable interior.
After over an hour of some dubious singing skills we made a stop at Lyndhurst and spent the entire day biking around the New Forest on hire bikes from a slightly crazed old man from AA Bike Hire (quote “you’re not in London anymore dear”… how could he tell?). At £10 per day they were pretty good value, although the gears had A LOT to be desired up hills. We took one of the suggested tour routes and ended up at The Rhinefield Hotel (which , although looks lovely, had the most offensive barman I’ve ever been served by so watch out). After leaving before ordering post-barman incident, we continued on through the picturesque deer park and on home. The New Forest was truly breathe-taking I’d 100% recommend it to anyone wanting a break from the city. There are wild ponies EVERYWHERE and deer aren’t too uncommon either. We were really lucky with the weather, but even on a bad day it’s still a fab way to get outdoors.
After a night in the lovely South Lawn Hotel in Milford-on-Sea (which, although dated was incredibly hospitable with fab staff) and a HUGE meal at the lovely local country pub, The Smugglers Inn, we made a spur of the moment decision to head over to the Isle of Wight on the regular ferry from Lymington (it’s roughly £20 per car and only a 20 minute ferry ride each way) and spent the day driving around the coastal roads. We head across to the Needles tourist spot and had the most divine Cream Tea’s at the National Trust cafe in the Old Battalion and then drove all the way around the island and back up to Cowes for an early dinner before heading back across on the ferry and back to London.
It was a flighting visit but it’s what we all needed to realise that skyscrapers and black cabs weren’t the norm! A big thanks to Chevrolet for giving us the means to go cross country. The Orlando was the perfect thing to take a group of people (and their ridiculous amount of luggage) away for the weekend without us all getting neck ache or restrained knees due to lack of room. Plus, it handled amazingly on the small country roads on the Isle Of Wight which I wasn’t expecting for such a big car and we only used half a tank of diesel after covering over 250 miles (!) – my only niggle was the slightly stiff gear box!
If you want to have a cheap weekend out of London I can wholeheartedly recommend taking a trip similar to ours… you don’t even need a car as trains go to both destinations!
For more information on the Orlando visit www.chevrolet.co.uk
For more information on trips around the New Forest visit www.thenewforest.co.uk
For more information on the Isle of Wight visit www.iwight.com