Eastleigh, in Inland Hampshire, is the perfect holiday destination for people looking for a holiday full of fun things to do. If you're visiting with family there are all kinds of child-friendly attractions in the area as well, so everyone can enjoy their break in this great town. Finding accommodation in Eastleigh couldn't be easier either - there are a wide assortment of B&Bs, hotels and holiday apartments in the town, and many of them are close to local attractions, such as The Point, Eastleigh's premier theatre, art gallery and cinema.
If you want to learn more about Eastleigh during your visit you can spend a day at Eastleigh Museum, where you'll find all sorts of exhibits on everything from Eastleigh's old industries to previous residents of the town. While you're staying in Eastleigh you should definitely treat yourself to a great meal out at one of the many restaurants, or you could stop for lunch at one of the cafes which are all conveniently located close to the popular shops in Eastleigh, including the Swan Shopping Centre.
The Point is a unique venue in Eastleigh and is the ideal place to go if you want to take in some of the arts - it's one of the few theatres in Eastleigh, as well as being a great cinema, an art gallery with regular exhibitions from well known artists and hosting workshops and classes. Everyone should be able to find something of interest at this varied attraction, and tickets for each event are very reasonable.
One of the best family attractions in Eastleigh is Eastleigh Museum, which has special child-friendly exhibits that can help children learn while they're playing. The exhibits at the museum are constantly changing, but there are a few permanent ones, such as the Mr and Mrs Brown exhibit. This display includes a replica of a Victorian terraced house that a family like the Browns would have lived in during the 1930s. Kids can take one of the museum trails or take part in one of the activity days.
There are a number of outdoor activities in Eastleigh for you to try your hand at while you're visiting, but probably the most popular is fishing. The River Itchen is considered the best chalk stream for fly fishing in the whole of England and anglers from every corner of the country visit Eastleigh every year because of it. There are free fishing areas close to Eastleigh, so you can go to one of the fisheries in the area.
You can also go walking in Eastleigh. The Itchen Way follows the River Itchen all the way from Hinton Ampner to Woolston and passes through Eastleigh just over halfway through the walk. This long distance path stretches for 31 miles, and you can either walk the entire distance or just complete a section of it.
There are lots of great places to eat in Eastleigh so you should never be stuck for somewhere to book a table! You needn't break the bank when it comes to dining out either, you can have an amazing three course meal for a lot less than you might expect.
If you're after Italian restaurants in Eastleigh there are a few on offer, one of them being La Fenice on High Street. This restaurant has some superb meals on their lunch and dinner menus, including dishes for vegetarians and meat eaters. Their imaginative dishes are all made with local ingredients, with all of their seafood dishes using freshly caught fish. They also have a selection of handmade desserts for those of you with a sweet tooth.
For a taste of Eastleigh's nightlife you should visit the BreakBar & Loft in The Swan Shopping Centre on Southampton Road. During the daytime this is a great cafe serving hot & cold food and you can order drinks for their fully stocked bar. Come evening the real fun begins - you can dance the night away while you sample one of their specially made cocktails.
You could also relax in one of the local pubs in Eastleigh, such as The Chamberlayne Arms, just across from the Swan Shopping Centre on High Street. This pub serves food throughout the day, as well as serving all of your favourite drinks.
The best place to go shopping in Eastleigh is at The Swan Shopping Centre, where you'll find a huge number of shops all under one roof. There are shops for everything from clothing to children's toys and everything else in between at this shopping centre, and there are ample parking facilities onsite.
There are quite a few outdoor shops in Eastleigh, so if you need to pick up a new pair of walking boots or a tent for camping you can do so easily. Oswald Bailey, on Market Street, stocks all of the best brands for outdoor wear, and they often have sales on so you can shop for less.
Those staying in Eastleigh self-catering accommodation will need to go food shopping before they can settle into their holiday apartment. Hampshire is home to some incredible local produce and there is a variety of supermarkets and food shops in the area for you to choose from. You could also buy your food at the weekly market in Eastleigh, where you'll also find stalls for homewares, clothing, bric-a-brac and more.
Skate Park image contributed by Peter Facey. Lakeside Railway image contributed by Rob Candlish. Roundabout image contributed by Peter Facey. All images are copyrighted but licensed for further reuse under the Creative Commons License.