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Flamenco Campers & VansAndalucia, South Spain, Spain
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Cloud House Farm Glamping
Having driven up the endless switchback roads of the Rio Genal Valley and bumped along the final two-kilometre track to Cloud House Farm, it’s fair to say you’re expecting an excellent view. Nothing, however, can prepare you for the truly epic vistas this Andalucian escape affords. Passed the chestnut trees and through the cork oak forest, the natural terrace on which your yurt protrudes reveals the sun-soaked mass of the Sierra Bermeja range in all its glory. A golden oriole whistles its distinctive 'wee-li-woo' call and a woodpecker taps in the trees. There’s getting away from it all and then there’s this.
Yet while Cloud House Farm undoubtedly owes a lot to its scenery – you’ll never find a toilet with a better view – this English-owned escape is more than a one-trick-pony. Dan and Justine, who live in the farmhouse and are ready to welcome you with ice-cold cerveza, have crafted the place with such acute attention to detail that you’ll want for nothing. And you’ll discover far more than you ever dreamed.
The glamping site itself is made up of just two yurts, the first with breathtaking views of the Genal Valley, the second in a separate space, tucked among an inviting orange grove where guests can pick as they please and press their own orange juice. Inside, each yurt is well suited to couples, while fold-out futon beds and boxes of games, toys, books and puzzles make them great for children too. Cupboards and side tables have been handmade by local craftsmen and the wooden floors lead out to your private deck, where an outdoor kitchen space lets you cook alfresco in a reliable climate that England could only dream of. Make tapas if you want to keep it Spanish – grab ingredients in the white washed mountain village of Genalguacil nearby – then do as the locals do and take a siesta, lounging in one of the hammocks provided.
Despite the kitchen, the showers and the charging point for your phone (better still, switch it off), Cloud House Farm is entirely off-grid. Solar panels provide the power, the farm’s own wood fuels the stoves for cooking and heating and fresh water is gravity fed from a natural spring. From recycling waste water to managing the 17-acre woods, Justine and Dan constantly have the sustainability of the place in mind.
If eco-friendly mountain living has you captivated then there are activities to suit. Rope swings and river pools are never too far away. It’s a 20-minute stroll to the Rio Almarchal, a fresh water mountain stream, and 25 minute’s to the larger Rio Genal. The 25-minute drive to Venta San Juan, where the spectacular river pools are deep enough for cliff jumping, is well worth it too. After that there’s hiking, biking and simply lounging in picturesque mountain villages to add to the itinerary, plus essential must-visit towns like Ronda less than an hour away. Some, but not all of it, involves more switchback driving through the trees of the Sierra Bermeja. So if you never leave the hammock you can always blame the roads.
Both yurts sleep up to 4 (2 adults & 2 children) in a double bed and children's futon beds (bedding and towels provided). There's solar power and lighting, a communal solar oven, ice-box fridge, an iPod dock, solar charging points, games, books, magazines and bespoke furniture and storage. A private outdoor kitchen has your cooking covered (fresh herbs also growing a'plenty) and you'll have a private outdoor shower room too. Wooden decked platform, shaded pergola, hammocks, rope swings, seating area. Wi-Fi is available by the farmhouse.
Families, Couples, Honeymooners – yes. Large groups - no
The local village of Genalguacil (20 mins drive, or about a 45 minute walk up, up, up the valley) is home to an Arts Festival every two years, so its tiny little alleyways are full of pieces of sculpture and many of its white-washed walls painted with ultra-modern graffiti. The local rivers Rio Genal and Rio Almarchal have several natural pools – perfect for swimming – especially in the heat of the day. The historic hill-top town of Ronda is just over an hour’s drive away and if you need the coast, enjoy a mountain road drive to the sandy swathes of Estepona – about 1 hr away.
Food & Drink
An evening at El Vizir (+34 669 80 82 71), Genalguacil's premier restaurant and bar, should not be missed, offering a contemporary take on the region's traditional food with exceptional and friendly service. Venta Las Cruces (+34 952 15 20 39), also in Genalguacil, gives a real taste of local life at a slightly lower price mark.
Mid May – mid October.
Accommodation2 luxurious yurts, each sleeping up to 2 adults and 2 children.
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ReviewsAdd Your Review
Rated ★★★★★ over 1 reviews
We stayed at Cloud House Farm in August 2013 for 5 nights with two children age 7 and 11. This was luxury camping at its best. We couldn't have asked for better weather...paradise! Every day here was an adventure, walks to river pools, driving round on off road tracks and exploring little villages all unique. But I think best of all was just relaxing and enjoying complete tranquility whilst our own children had their own little adventures which we hope they'll never forget. We had a lovely family holiday together away from technology! Bliss!