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The best places to live in Hampshire & IOW

From quaint coastal towns to breathtaking New Forest scenery, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight are a no-brainer for city dwellers looking for a rural escape. It’s not all chocolate-box villages and Victorian holiday homes, though; the area is full of smart eateries, chic indie boutiques and family-friendly attractions, with cities like Winchester being prime commuter territory.

Hampshire & IOW

Best Place to Live in Hampshire & IOW Reader Vote

We made our selection – now it’s time to have your say!

Cast your vote by ticking the town or village you think deserves to win and entering your email address for the chance to win a year’s supply of artisan gin. Cheers!

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All aboard! Catch the Watercress Line to this picture-perfect Georgian town near Winchester to enjoy the foodie scene and smart boutiques.


Mix a mega-foodie high street with indie boutiques and a focus on local produce, and you have mini town Stockbridge on the banks of the Test River.


This chocolate-box village in the heart of the New Forest National Park has 'rural idyll' written all over it - and a surprising number of attractions on its doorstep.



Within commuting distance of London and home to excellent schools and foodie hotspots, Winchester is stylish and sought-after in equal measure.



Perched between the forest and the sea, Lymington is the best of both worlds when it comes to countryside living.


This pretty village on the east of the Island punches well above its weight when it comes to gorgeous scenery (families will love the three beaches) and seafood eateries.

Cowes, Isle of Wight


Cowes and its sister East Cowes are popular Isle of Wight destinations in the summer, but they're much more than a holiday destination.

The Old House Hotel, Wickham


With its peaceful location in the Meon Valley, listed buildings and bustling market square, Wickham Village is a slice of British history.

Know another brilliant place to live in Hampshire & IOW?

Tell us your favourite town or village and we’ll check it out for our next edition of Best Places to Live.

I nominate...


Now go win yourself a year's supply of gin! We have two cases of six 70cl bottles to give away to two lucky winners, courtesy of Hampshire's Bombay Sapphire and the Island's Mermaid Gin. Perfect for celebrating lockdown freedom with friends and family.

Need to know

  • - Read our full Reader Treat Terms and Conditions here

  • - Entrants must be UK residents aged 18 or over

  • - The prize draw closes on 09/02/21

  • - Once notified by email, the winner will have 48 hours to accept their prize
  • - Only one entry per person per county allowed