The Barn Annexe, Wales
Cefn-Yr-Allt, Crickadarn, Powys, Wales LD2 3AJ, UK
Your relaxing break at the Barn Annexe
On the south-facing slope of a peaceful green valley below the hill of Cefn Llwydallt in mid-Wales, there is a cosy stone cottage.
We — Dave and Jo — call it the Barn Annexe, Wales. It has a remote and "get away from it all" feeling, but is just three miles from the main A470 road.
The Barn Annexe is 1000 feet up, in a beautiful location at the eastern end of the Mynydd Epynt (the "mountains crossed by horse-paths"). All around are hills and green fields. The views are brilliant!
And the Barn Annexe is perfect for that relaxing break which you've been promising yourself.
Imagine it... you step out of the front door into the clean morning air, and you look westwards along the sparsely populated Sgethwin valley. To your north rises the sheep-grazed common land of Cefn Llwydallt; to the south are the Brecon Beacons, with Hay Bluff, Twmpa and the other Black Mountains as your backdrop; to the east are the Radnorshire hills on the far side of the hidden River Wye.
You might choose to spend your day unwinding, soaking up the tranquillity. Just watching the clouds drifting past until the sun sets in a blaze of colour behind green hills. Now it's time for something to eat. Maybe outside under the stars?
The evening passes and then it is time to fall asleep to the gentle sounds of sheep and the breeze in the trees.
For more energetic days, there are lots of fine walks. Some start from the front door of the Barn Annexe.
You could make your way to the top of 'our' hill — Cefn Llwydallt — and from there, if you wish, continue to cross a hidden valley, then ascend to 'trig point hill' (great views, and you may see some semi-wild horses). Or stroll along leafy lanes down to the babbling Sgithwen Brook, and then up to the wide-open common land of Mynydd Fforest hill.
Whichever local walk you choose, your backdrop will be the magnificent sweep of the main peaks of the Brecon Beacons: Pen y Fan, Corn Du, and Cribyn. The Barn Annexe is just ten miles from the Brecon Beacons National Park. Which means that superb walks on these uniquely memorable peaks, and on the lesser-known Black Mountains, are only a short drive away.
And if you prefer some gentler strolls, then the sparkling River Wye is just three miles away. How about trying some of the Wye Valley Walk?
But what if you've had enough walking, and need to do some shopping? No problem, close by are:
- Hay-on-Wye, "the town of books" which hosts the world-renowned annual Hay Festival
- Amospheric Brecon with its Cathedral and Jazz Festival
- Builth Wells for the celebrated Royal Welsh Showground
- Quaint Talgarth, "the jewel of the Black Mountains".
Other attractions and activities in the area include canoeing on the Wye, horse riding and pony trekking, sheepdog trials, historic sites, art galleries, theatres, music festivals, and more: click here for a list.
And if you feel that creative urge, then this is a great place for writing, painting, and musical inspiration.
But don't forget to look up from time to time: you'll see pipits, redstart, wagtails, nuthatch, house martens, swallows, kites, buzzards, maybe even wheatear and crossbill (we have!).
And if you've brought your telescope, then you'll love the darkness of our night-time skies.
From garage to cosy cottage
Nowadays, the Barn Annexe is a cosy self-contained stone cottage, which our guests love. But before we moved from Oxfordshire to this beautiful Welsh hillside in 2017, it was a rather dilapidated (and crowded!) double garage.
We decided to make it into a nice place for visitors. This took us over a year and involved a lot of hard work. We got there in the end, though.
The Barn Annexe is now as comfortable as we can make it. Just right for your self-catering stay!
The Barn Annexe inside and out
Up to four people can sleep in the Barn Annexe. It can be booked for just one night, a few nights, or for a month or more.
Inside is spacious but cosy, traditional in style but with modern amenities. And while there is pretty much everything that you need for a comfortable stay, the place is deliberately uncluttered. Take a look at these photos.
Downstairs is open-plan, with kitchen, dining and lounge areas, and a toilet. Upstairs there are two bedrooms (one with a double bed, one with two single beds) and a bathroom with shower and toilet.
Outside, there is parking for up to three cars. No parking hassles here! And we have a key safe (a lockbox) so that you can check yourself in any time after 2 pm on your day of arrival.
Just outside the front door is a picnic table for your use. This is next to our well-mowed grassy lawn, and next to a field — which sometimes has sheep in it — that leads down to a tree-lined stream.
Have a wander: you are welcome.
And while you are our guest, the Barn Annexe is all yours. We live nearby, in the Barn, but we will always respect your privacy. We're happy to chat if you are, tho' 😃
The Barn Annexe in Winter
In winter, the Barn Annexe has its own cosy charm. Shut the door, then make yourself at home and get warm: there is double glazing in every window and electric heating in every room.
Once you've warmed up, then venture outside again. You might find our valley wreathed in mist, white with frost, or glistening in the rain. Whatever the weather, it is always beautiful here.
If you go walking in winter then you are likely to have the landscape to yourself (but make sure you wear suitable winter clothing and take sensible precautions).
The Barn Annexe: Amenities
|Drinking water is from our borehole (wonderfully fresh tasting)||Wifi internet access throughout|
|One or more electric radiators in every room (set your own temperature)||Double-glazed windows throughout|
|Hot water via immersion heater with boost||Underfloor heating in upstairs bathroom|
Eating and Drinking
|Fitted kitchen with electric hob and oven||Microwave|
|Double sink with washing-up liquid, liquid soap||Electric kettle|
|Four-slice toaster||Filter coffee maker|
|Chopping boards||Traditional wooden dining table with six chairs|
|Pots and pans (including wok)||Cooking implements|
|Dishes, cups, and glasses||Silverware and table mats|
|Oil, salt, pepper etc.||Wastebin and recycling bags|
|Child's high chair (available on request)|
|Freesat satellite TV||TV soundbar and bass box*|
|One settee, two armchairs (all comfy)||Padded stool|
|Colour-changing table lamp||Glass-topped tables|
|Books with a focus on local interest, Welsh crafts and history etc.||OS maps|
*You can also use this to play your own recorded music, via cable or Bluetooth.
|One double bed in the main bedroom||Two single beds in the smaller bedroom|
|Bedside cabinets with reading lights||Skylights with room-darkening shades|
Bathing and Clothes
|Downstairs toilet and washbasin||Upstairs bathroom with toilet, washbasin and shower|
|Heated towel rail in upstairs bathroom||Hair dryer|
|Portable illuminated makeup mirror||Wall-mounted clothes hangers|
|Soft towels||Liquid soap, shower gel, toilet paper|
|Clothes-drying rack||Iron and ironing board|
|Vacuum cleaner, dustpan and brush|
|iMist fire prevention system||Fire extinguisher|
|Smoke detector||Carbon monoxide detector|
|First aid kit||Child's stair gate (available on request)|
|Picnic table||Well-kept lawn|
|A field (sometimes with sheep in it) leading down to a stream||Walks right from your door|
That's all, folks! If there's anything else you'd like to know then please contact us.
All the best!
Dave and Jo
PS Just one more thing: we love where we live. And we're glad that our guests can also enjoy this wonderful part of the world, along with us and our two cats.