Minstead is a small rambling village situated two miles north of Lyndhurst. It is set in attractive New Forest countryside and at its centre can be found the village stores and tea rooms, a pub and the village church. It is the church, or more precisely its graveyard, that attracts significant numbers of visitors each year for it is here that can be found the last resting place of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. There is an intriguing story to Conan Doyle’s last resting place. He was originally buried at his home in Crowborough, but when that house was sold, his remains were moved to Minstead, which is near a holiday home that had belonged to him!
Around a mile from Minstead is the Rufus Stone which reputedly marks the spot where King William II was accidentally struck by an arrow whilst out hunting in the Forest – or was it murder!
Also close by is Furzey Gardens whose informal woodland gardens were first planted in 1922 and now contain a wide collection of rare and beautiful plants from around the world plus displays of thatching. It is open all year with something of interest in each season – well worth a visit (one of the Forest’s hidden gems).