Heavenly holiday homes in Wales

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Location: Glan-y-Rhyd Cottage, Snowdonia
Accommodation: sleeps 4, 2 doubles
Contact: 07966 187744; www.snowdoncottage.com

A 200-year-old single storey cottage located in the heart of Snowdonia’s National Park, and recently restored by local craftsmen using traditional methods and environmentally friendly materials. Glan-y-Rhyd, which translates as ‘on the shore’, has beautiful views overlooking the River Conwy.

Location: Dolbelydr, Trefnant, Denbighshire
Accommodation: sleeps 6, 1 double, 2 twins
Contact: 01628 825925; www.landmarktrust.org.uk

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A stone house in the pastoral valley of the River Elwy, recently dated to 1578-9, Dolbelydr was the family home of humanist and physician Henry Salesbury. In 1593, Salesbury published, in Latin, his Grammatica Britannica, claimed to be the first systematic treatise on the Welsh language, which he had written at Dolbelydr over the previous six years. The house thus has some claim to be the birthplace of modern Welsh. Rescued from dilapidation by the Landmark Trust, its fine timber mullioned windows, spiral staircase and plank-and-muntin screen can now be enjoyed again in their original context.

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Location: Trehilyn Uchaf, Strumble Head, North Pembrokeshire coast
Accommodation: sleeps 5: 1 double, 1 twin, 1 single
Contact: 0844 500 5101; www.underthethatch.co.uk


Set in 70 acres of farmland, Trehilyn is only a mile from the dramatic Pembrokeshire coast, with its black volcanic headlands and red sandstone bays. The 1830s farmhouse derives its name from Heilyn, son of Gwyn the Old, a Welsh hero who appears in the medieval Mabinogion saga. Named by The Observer as one of the ‘Top 15 Green Places to Stay’ in Britain, it was restored by the BBC’s Griff Rhys Jones in consultation with the architectural historian Greg Stevenson, with a view to environmental sustainability. The interior preserves its original tiled floors, while the external stonework has been renovated with mortar and lime plaster in warm russet tones, and the roof retiled with North Wales slates. Adjacent is the smaller Trehilyn Isaf: the two houses can be booked together for large parties.

Location: Maesyronen Chapel, near Hay-on-Wye, Powys
Accommodation: sleeps 4: 2 doubles
Contact: 01628 825925; www.landmarktrust.org.uk


This little cottage was built before 1750 on to the end of Maesyronen chapel. Converted from a barn in 1696, this nonconformist chapel dates from the earliest days of nonconformity and, given its seemingly impractical and remote position, it was probably used for worship before the Act of Toleration. Still in use today, the chapel is perched on top of a high shelf above the Wye, from which its adjoining cottage enjoys views of the Black Mountains.

Location: Monks’ Hall, Brockweir, near Chepstow, Gwent
Accommodation: 4 plus infant
Contact: 01873 890190; www.wyevalleyholidaycottages.co.uk


Said to be the oldest house in the Wye Valley, Monks Hall once belonged to Tintern Abbey. Dating from the 12th century, it was extended in the 14th century and has now been sensitively renovated to the highest standards by its owner, an expert in historic restoration. The interior has solid oak doors, a huge medieval fireplace in the drawing room and original windows with leaded lights, as well as discreet modern technology and kitchen equipment. Antique furniture, oil paintings, well-filled bookshelves and a log-burning stove enhance the warm atmosphere. The windows take in views across the garden to the Wye Valley hills; the river is just a few steps away. In the garden is a Roman-style wood-fired pizza oven.