Fun for Father's Day
PUBLISHED: 11:57 18 May 2011 | UPDATED: 19:24 20 February 2013
Treat your dad to the perfect Father's Day with this selection of fun, interesting and quirky ways to show just how much you care
Board a steam hauled dining train for a three course lunch or afternoon cream tea. Its a relaxing way to enjoy the Hampshire countryside: just sit back as your lunch or tea is served to you at your table. The Father's Day Lunch Train on the Watercress Line departs from Alresford at 12.40pm 50.00 Adult and 45.00 Child. Cream Tea Special departs from Alresford at 3.00pm 18.00 Adult and 10.00 Child.
Contact: The Railway Station, Station Road, Alresford SO24 9JG
01962 733 810; www.watercressline.co.uk
On Your Bike!
Hire a couple of bikes, grab a map and away you go for a leisurely bike ride through the New Forest. Maps of well-researched routes are provided with rides suitable for all abilities. There are even tandems, trailers and child-carrying seats available so you can bring the little ones. Safety helmets provided and tools in case of a puncture.
Prices from 43.00 for a family bike hire (2 adults and 2 children). Contact: Country Lanes, The Railway Station, Brockenhurst SO42 7TW
01590 622627; www.countrylanes.co.uk
Pat Chapman is one of the leading authorities on curry, he is a founder of The Curry Club and he has written thirty-four books, with sales topping 1.5 million copies. Throughout the year Pat and his wife Dominique host some marvellous cooking classes where you can learn about the different cuisines, hear all about the history of the food and the ingredients and try some cooking yourself. There are various courses to choose from including Thai, Indian, Japanese, Malaysian and Indonesian. The courses are run as group sessions or as private, one to one tuition. How about teaching Dad how to cook Murgh Tikka Masala with Saffron Pullao Rice with a freshly cooked Chappati at the side?Courses start from 75.00. Special offer All Hampshire Life readers can now Buy One, Get One Free on Group courses by quoting HAMLIFE01 when calling to book. Contact: Pat Chapman, PO Box 7, Haslemere GU27 1EP, 01428 658327, www.patchapman.co.uk
Archery was traditionally used as a tool for survival and became an icon for many popular characters such as Robin Hood. Today archery it is an Olympic sport and a great skill to learn. The 90 minute sessions offer a chance to learn the skill of Archery using top of the range equipment. The trained expert instructors guide pupils prior to letting them have a go themselves. The setting is ideal as the archery lesson takes place just next to Bucklers Hard on the Beaulieu estate... ideal for any budding Robin Hoods! Adult 20.00; Children 15.00; Family ticket (2 adults and 2 children) 60.00. Contact: New Forest Activities Booking Centre, The Old Forge, Beaulieu SO42 7YA, 01590 612377; www.newforestactivities.co.uk
A great catch
Hosted by the stunning Lainston House, grab your wellies and rods (all provided by the hotel) and head down to the peaceful riverbanks nearby for a heavenly day's fishing in the chalk streams of The Test and The Itchen. A private stretch of river will be yours for the day, including all the rods, flies and equipment required and the license to fish. On the trip, an expert gillie will be on hand to teach the tricks of fly fishing and make sure Dad gets the most out of his day. Coffee and a delicious bacon sandwich is delivered mid morning and come lunchtime a mouth-watering picnic hamper will arrive.Fishing Day: 675.00 Contact: Lainston House Hotel, Woodman Lane, Sparsholt, Winchester SO21 2LT, 01962 776088; www.lainstonhouse.com
A close shave
Wet shaving is a specialty at the stylish new barbershop, The Gentry. Invite Dad to recline in the huge, leather Barber's chair and relax as the expert barber works the magic of a traditional hot towel wet shave. The relaxing 40 minute shave involves being swathed in hot towels and will leave him looking and feeling invigorated and oh, so handsome! Using specialist creams, oils and moisturisers he will be treated to a little bit of luxury... nothing less than he deserves. Hot Towel Traditional Wet Shave: 20.00. Hot Towel Traditional Wet Shave and 'The Gentry' Haircut by the Master Barber: 25.00. Contact: The Gentry, 60 Gregson Avenue, Gosport PO13 0UR, 01329 233663; www.thegentry.co
Take to the skies
Who could resist the thrill of riding in a hot air balloon, gracefully gliding over the magnificent Hampshire countryside? Passengers will hear a little about the flight terrain, receive a flight certificate signed by the pilot and have transport back to the launch site. There is also local parking and free insurance. Launch sites include: Fordingbridge, Alton, Fareham, Basingstoke, West Meon and Petersfield.
Prices start from 120.00. Vouchers are valid any time and are delivered with a balloon in a box for Fathers Day. Contact: Go Ballooning, Nursery Farm, Woodborough SN9 5PF, 0845 337 1566; www.goballooning.co.uk
The Balmer Lawn Hotel is famous for its fabulous Sunday Carvery Lunch where Dad can enjoy a sumptuous meal in the Beresford Restaurant to the sounds of live jazz. The restaurant has an AA rosette for Fine Dining and the staff do all they can to make every guest feel welcome. Desserts are a must! How about Coconut and Raspberry Tart with Coconut Ice-cream or Chocolate Marquise with Chantilly Cream? Heavenly! Carvery Lunch:12.95, Three course Carvery Lunch: 22.95. Contact: Balmer Lawn Hotel, Lyndhurst Road, Brockenhurst SO42 7ZB, 01590 623116, www.balmerlawnhotel.com
Thrill of a Rollercoaster
If your Dad is a thrill-seeker who would enjoy flying through the air on The Cobra rollercoaster or swooping and spinning on The Edge then he'll love a day at Paultons. There is even a Log Flume, a Wave Rider and many more exciting rides. For those more inclined to chug along on Daddy Pig's Car or soar above the clouds in Grandpa Pig's Train, then Paultons is also an ideal destination as the fabulous new Peppa Pig World opened earlier this season that both children and daddies alike will love. Adults and children from 19.50 (online price). Contact: Paultons Park, Ower, Romsey SO51 6AL, 02380 814442, www.paultons.co.uk
A need for speed
Treat your Dad to the ride of his life with forty minutes of pure exhilaration on a speed boat ride around the Solent. The inflatable powerboats are capable of some mean feats and during an exhilarating white knuckle ride Dads will sample a few tricks: wake jumping, high speed turns and speeds of up to 50 miles per hour.Excursions start at 20.00 for 40 minute ride. Contact:0844 8040 432; www.experiencemad.co.uk