Woodhouse Farm

UK Wales Mid Wales Powys Rhayader

  • Electrical hook-ups
  • Campfires allowed
  • Groups welcome
  • Good walks nearby
Heavenly camping in a mellow valley

If your children are bookworms then they might well know that Rupert Bear often talks about the flower meadowsweet. So we think Rupert would have been very happy at Woodhouse Farm, a registered nature reserve, with meadowsweet growing in abundance, and the River Marteg running alongside it. It’s a pretty harmonious spot, surrounded by rolling upland pastures studded with caramel cattle and white fluffy sheep. And meadowsweet is only for starters: if you pitch your tent there in late spring or summer, the chances are you’ll wake up in a field carpeted with wild flowers. Hay rattle, speedwell, forget-me-nots, milkwort, red clover, white celandine, meadow buttercups, harebells and meadow vetch all burst forth in the camping field. Most children love getting up close and personal with bugs, beetles and things that can swim, and so they can get stuck into ponddipping among the bulrushes and giant golden king-cups, while you get stuck into a bottle of Chablis. You can keep an eye on the sunset at the same time. Before you know it, you’ll be bottling up meadowsweet wine to take home. Watch out though: Rupert Bear never let on, but it’s potent stuff.

Details

Facilities

The place is run as a smallholding, with pigs, sheep, ponies, cows, ducks and chickens; children can help at feeding time. The river’s good for swimming if the water’s not too high. You can fish, as this is one of the best salmon rivers in the country. It’s a great place for spotting wildlife, too, mainly rare bird species. You're almost guaranteed to spot a Red Kite and even a Kingfisher if you're lucky.

There’s a small lawn-like field with a scattering of pitches for statics, but down on the riverside meadow there are no designated pitches, but you’re unlikely to be squashed. Campfires are permitted in specified areas down by the river. There’s a tipi (sleeping 8) with a chimnea, gas-burner and stove; charcoal’s provided, but bring bedding for the airbeds. The bunkhouse sleeps up to 20 (a room for 6 downstairs; upstairs sleeps 14 fairly cosily) and comes with a kitchen that’d make most homes feel jealous; a dining room with dartboard, piano and video/DVD player; a utility room with laundry (1 washer, 1 dryer, plus a drying rack) games for wet-weather days. Duvets can be hired. Facilities for campers are basic at present: a solar shower can be borrowed, and chemical loos are available for hire (£2 per day), but you’re advised to bring your own lav tent. Plans, however, are afoot for a toilet and shower for campers’ use by the farm.

Suitable For

Every man and his dog (if his dog is on a lead) on the campsite. No dogs permitted in the bunkhouse or tipi.

Nearby

A network of tracks runs off the site for walking, cycling and horse-riding, and if you have older children the Glyndwr’s Way long-distance path (01597 827562) and Gilfach Farm Nature Reserve (01597 870301) are within walking distance. You can hire ponies at the Royal Lion Hotel (01597 810202) in Rhayader. At the Gigrin Farm Red Kite Centre (01597 810243) red kites are fed every afternoon.

Food & Drink

The Adamses sell their own pork, bacon, lamb and eggs as and when available; other basic provisions can be bought in for your arrival if you pre-order. They do home-cooked dinners, packed lunches and breakfasts (you must book the previous day). There’s a small health-food shop in Llanidloes beside the Cobbler’s tea rooms (07973 782646), and another in Rhayader (the Wild Swan). Also in Rhayader, you can get a mean cream tea at Günter’s tea rooms (01597 811060) and sublime fish and chips at Evan’s Plaice (01597 810317). Thursday night is curry night at the Crown Inn (01597 811099).

Opening Times

Bunkhouse and campsite: all year, but call ahead in winter to check. Tipi: Easter to September.

Family Friendly

The river along the edge of the site can flow very fast and quite deep in wet weather. There’s also an electric fence running around the small campsite.

The Owner Says

Located in the gloriously wild Mid Wales hills Woodhouse Farm offers camping and caravanning and tipi hire, along with bunkhouse accommodation for those who prefer a real roof over their heads. We are 5 miles north of Rhayader close to the villages of Pant Y Dwr and St. Harmon, both with their own pubs, and are ideally situated for outdoor activities such as walking and cycling and we have even had canoeists and fishermen staying. The Gilfach Nature Reserve is right on our doorstep and the farm itself is a private nature reserve where over 50 different species of bird have been spotted. Anyone camping during the spring and early summer will stand a real chance of being woken by a curlew calling or a skylark high above them.

Location

Woodhouse Farm, Woodhouse, St. Harmon, Rhayader, Powys LD6 5LY

Show Map

Getting There

From Rhayader take the A470/A44 towards Llangurig for about 150 yards. On the right is Rhayader Leisure Centre and a turning signed B4518 to St Harmon. Take this road for 5 miles passing through St Harmon and on to Pant-y-Dwr. At the Mid Wales Inn turn right towards Bwylch-y- Sarnau. After a mile turn right just before a garage and continue for about half a mile. Woodhouse is on the right, signed with a finger post. (Don’t use satnav – it’ll take you up a tricky single-track lane.)

The nearest train and bus stations are at Llandridnod Wells, Newtown and Hereford. From Llandridnod there is a twice-daily bus service to Rhayader, from where it’s best to take a taxi to the site.

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