Location:Sant Esteve de Palautordera, Natural Park of MontsenySee map here
More info:Minimum 2 nights. We offer a weekend rate, arrive Friday after 14:00, depart Sunday before 12:00, at €150.
Responsible tourism: Montseny farmhouse accommodation in Catalonia, Spain
When we rebuilt the house we included a number of improvements to limit our impact.
Heating is with wood – there is an efficient wood stove in the apartment that provides plenty of heat (and can boil a kettle.)
All windows are new and double glazed to ensure maximum heat retention in winter and to keep the place cool in summer.
We have a double water system including a “grey” water system which captures and filters rain water and water from the baths and showers and recycles it via the toilet flush. Drinking and washing water comes from our own well and is tested annually.
We have a vegetable garden, as well as a good collection of fruit trees (figs and walnuts especially). Where there is enough we’re happy to share produce from the garden.
We keep Ripollesa sheep – an indigenous Catalan breed – and breed lambs for meat. The free range chickens and ducks give us eggs; we normally have plenty to share. And we have just started to keep bees.
We make our own compost from garden waste, and feed kitchen scraps to the chickens. All plastics, glass and paper is recycled.
Chris and Jordan are closely involved with the local community, where Jordan teaches English. Chris is an active member of the local traditional dance group as well as being involved in local theatre and festivals.
We co-operate closely with many local people in Montseny involved in animal husbandry, bee keeping and forest work. We form part of a group of smallholders interested in sustainable and conservation farming. It is common for us to have groups of people working at Can Parròquia to improve the land and in exchange we provide food and English classes.
Can Parròquia forms part of a well-used walking, riding and mountain biking route, used by local people interested in small-scale and traditional farming.
Our friends are local, and we have learned a lot about the community and the area. We can recommend good restaurants, local producers of cheese, beer and wine, and lovely walks. We are happy to introduce you to the local festivals, theatre, music and circus events.
Reviews of Montseny farmhouse accommodation in Catalonia, Spain
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I am reborn! Simply the best holiday I have ever been on
Some great stories to tell the grandchildren. Would recommend to a friend
It was OK
A bit disappointing really
Reviewed on 31 Dec 2012 by Pippa Swan
1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?
All of it! Firstly, I was tired after finishing work and when I crossed into Spain my mobile didn't work cutting me off from potential calls to the owners who live 4km away from the village up a dirt track for the most part. Imagine my happiness when I drove straight to their masia and was immediately welcomed by Jordan who showed me around- not only my flat but her house too. I met the animals(dogs,sheep, donkeys and chickens)and I settled into my accommodation (wood-burning stove already providing plenty of warmth) feeling completely at home. The following day I trekked up a local peak (following Chris' advice), the weather was glorious ...I spent New Years Eve with Chris, Jordan and their guests - it was fantastic. And so it went on...it is no exaggeration to say it was a little corner of paradise. The accommodation is excellent - everything you need to cook, great hot shower, comfy bed, amazingly efficient wood-burning stove - perfect!
2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?
None. If you want a holiday away from it all this is the place. You couldn't wish for better hosts - I can't wait to go back. The opportunities for walking are super, and you can easily jump on a train and get to Barcelona if need be. I took a netbook as I had some work to do :-( and I hooked up to Chris' wifi network and managed to skype my family on Christmas Day too!! My only tip would be to ask Chris and Jordan for any advice on local places/restos/shops/traditions/customs/transport because they are an invaluable source of help.
3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?
Absolutely. Chris and Jordan are an integral part of the local community, not only through their actions of buying/exchanging but also through their humanitarian and cultural activities. All waste is sorted/recycled or composted; they work their land intelligently because they both have extensive knowledge of what constitutes good practice. I am learning Catalan and they even asked a local teacher to give me a lesson; I also had the opportunity to see a traditional Catalan Christmas play thanks to Chris and Jordan.
4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?
Excellent. I am going to give 5 stars because it rates as one of the best christmases I have ever had. For me it was a perfect holiday.