Umbria farmhouse accommodation in Italy

“Get back to nature on this 250-acre organic farm in Umbria. Home-cooked food, a swimming pool and kids’ activities mean it’s family friendly, too.”

Highlights

Accommodation in a 14th century farmhouse and surrounding houses | restaurant serving homemade organic food | swimming pool | horse riding | guided nature walks | pasta making workshops | activities for children |open-air ecology lab

Description of Umbria farmhouse accommodation in Italy

This accommodation is a recently restored 14th-century farmhouse, believed to have once been a monastery. It sits on a 250 acre organic and educational farm in the Pietralunga Forest, a beautiful area of the Carpina Valley in Upper Umbria. Gubbio, Perugia, Assisi and Urbino are not far, and the Adriatic Sea is just 80 km away.

There are three houses, the Oak, the Marble Gall and the Old Barn, and a selection of rooms and suites within the farmhouse all named after local trees. The rooms are rustically furnished to reflect the local culture and surroundings, and some even have open fireplaces. Guests can also make use of the organic restaurant, a club house with a reading room, music room and a bio-cafe with veranda, an acorn-shape swimming pool and a barbeque. There is also a horse riding stables and numerous bridle paths nearby, making this an ideal place for a relaxing holiday surrounded by nature.

Gino and Silvana have run this farm since 1990. They introduced organic farming methods, wood management based on natural forestry, and ecotourism. The Wizard’s Garden, an open-air ecology lab within the farm with lots of information about local wildlife, means this is an educational farm, too. Gino is involved with local projects protecting the environment of the Carpina Valley and he organises guided nature walks in the Pietralunga Forest. Silvana organises activities for children and runs short cooking courses for adults on making traditional pasta by hand with her mother. She also prepares delicious food, which is 100% organic, using local recipes and ingredients in the farm restaurant.

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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Umbria farmhouse accommodation in Italy

Environment

In 1998 we created the Wizard's Garden, an open-air ecology lab within the farm, where our guests can get information about local wildlife from 8 posters in wooden boards (1 for any habitat). Since 2006 we co-operate with the local Natural History Museum in Candeleto Oasis, projecting their ecological path and organizing guided visits and eco-culture events.

In 2007 we created the Carpina Valley Nature Guidebook "Il Giardino del Mago", an illustrated handbook for leaf identifying in Pietralunga Forest, printed on Greenpeace recycled paper (and since now we are running a blog about the Pietralunga Forest wildlife); once a week, we organize guided nature walks.

On our farm we produce green ENERGY with 2 solar PV systems grid connected (a 20 KW solar array in a hidden farm corner + a 10 KW PV system on the barn roof ) and we adopt energy saving measures such as using high efficiency rating ridges and freezers, long-life/low-energy bulbs, small kettles to decrease water and power useage.

Community

We work in partnership with the local community (we were born here!) by:

- setting up a cooperative (CARDEA) for environmental education activities, to educate the community about the need for conservation and the benefits of preserving the local habitat;

- we transformed our farm into a teaching farm: the local schools come several times a year for projects on organic agriculture, ecology and ecotourism;

- setting up a group (the Carpina Valley Association) for responsible tourism in the Upper Tiber Valley territory (encouraging guests to visit local communities and get involved; printing the Carpina Valley Card, a passpartout to locally owned restaurants, organic local food and handmade crafts shops)

- campaigning for the Authentic Village of Pietralunga and for the Undiscovered Carpina Valley together with associations and the Town Council.

- We used traditional building methods with locally available materials and local craftsmen/builders; we grow our own fruit and veg (and animals): the food we don't produce we buy organic, as well, locally and seasonally available.

2 Reviews of Umbria farmhouse accommodation in Italy

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Reviewed on 31 Aug 2017 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Many memorable moments, but probably the bell ringers in Gubbio, the Medieval procession in Montane and the guided walk with Gino and new friends also staying at La Cerqua.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


We loved the balcony that was attached to our room-a lovely spot for relaxing, reading, socialising. The room itself was spacious and pleasant. Try the great meals served in the evenings. There are some wonderful cultural and historical sites within a reasonable distance so lots to do other than sit by the pool.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Hope so but not sure with the environmental impact of flights and using a car. There didn't appear to be much local industry and many farms offered agrotourismo so am assuming this brings benefits to communities that have seen many of their young people move to cities.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


Excellent! It was very relaxing but we also had many wonderful experiences and met some very friendly people. (Only blight was the falling £)

Reviewed on 17 Aug 2017 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


This is a superb place for a relaxing and fascinating holiday in the Umbrian countryside. Welcoming hosts, beautiful, peaceful surroundings, guided walks, horse-riding, organic food and a small pool on site. Fantastic forest walks, breathtaking views and medieval villages and towns all nearby.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Great holiday for people looking for peace and quiet, history, countryside. Own car recommended.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


This is an organic farm serving local and home-grown food. Energy is provided via solar panels.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


Absolutely wonderful.

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