Features | Map | Visitor comments
- Black Mountains view-in-a-million
- Comfortable and cosy 1950s interior with big bed
- Separate electric shower with a view (and endless hot water)
- Proper flushing loo in separate hut
- Great walking straight up onto the mountain
- Not far from good pubs and food shopping
- Fire pit (with logs supplied)
- One well-behaved dog welcome
Gracie, a 1950s caravan with a heart-stopping view of the surrounding Black Mountains landscape, is a delightful place for a couple to stay and really escape from the rigours of day-to-day life. Gracie was originally from Northumberland, hidden away in woodland and used as a shooting hut for the owners’ family and friends. The death of a great-uncle meant that she was to start a new life in the Black Mountains, so quite a journey was embarked upon to get her to her new resting-place under an oak tree. This involved three separate farmers, a low-loader with driver, a fork-lift operator, and a tractor and trailer man. Now, beautifully restored, Gracie sleeps a couple plus a good dog.
Inside, the caravan feels nicely spacious, and the big comfy bed one end has a beautiful view down the field and across the valley to Sugar Loaf Mountain. A neat living-space includes an upholstered bench, a table with a bench and stools, and a fabric armchair. The 1950s units line the walls – nifty cupboards, shelving and seating, and a sink unit the other end. An oven with a double electric hob top is next to it for easy cooking. Gracie has running water and electricity, and is properly equipped with all the kitchen utensils, crockery and cutlery you could possibly need for a happy self-catering stay.
A purpose-made shower cabin (with a corner window for enjoying another wonderful view over the Gaer), and a hut for the proper flushing loo are both tucked away behind the caravan. Made of wood and dark blue corrugated iron, they are nicely private and camouflaged.
Outside, you can sit by the firepit (there are plenty of logs to help yourself to) and enjoy the spectacular view as day turns to night and as stars emerge brightly into the most un-light-polluted of environments (the area has been designated an International Dark Sky Reserve); and on still nights, you can hear the hoots of the resident Tawny Owl. Alex, one of the owners, is a horticultural therapist and plantswoman, and Rob, the other, is a rural surveyor and countryman. The life they have created for themselves in the mountains is one of happy synergy with the natural world around them. Their farmhouse is at the other end of the field from Gracie, so are on hand if needed.
Things to do in around this perfect glamping spot in the Black Mountains
A stile in Gracie’s enclosure takes you up the mountain for superb walking. You can walk for miles and miles if you choose to, where the air is fresh and the views inspiring. The fascinating pilgrims’ church of Partrishow is a walkable 20 minutes away in a northerly direction. This is unsurpassed walking country, both for scenery and wildlife. Although you can find real seclusion in the hills, you are never too far from useful and beautiful villages or towns – Abergavenny (‘Gateway to Wales’) is 15 minutes away, Crickhowell is the same, and the lovely hamlet of Llanthony with its ruined Cistercian priory (complete with pub inside its walls) is 20 minutes’ drive up the spectacular Llanthony Valley. Hay-on-Wye is within reach for a fascinating day out, with its second-hand bookshops, galleries, antique markets and boutiques, and getting there over Gospel Pass is a highlight, if views are your thing.
Treat yourselves to a meal out: the choice around here is rich and varied. From simple pub meals to high-end dining, the Abergavenny area has got loads to offer. The Crown at Pantygelli is about 10-minutes’ drive away for good food and wine, the Michelin-starred Walnut Tree Inn is about 20 minutes away, and you can get pub food, café meals and take-away in Crickhowell.
The nitty gritty
Live online booking
This property has flexible booking: you can book any number of nights from any available day, but the minimum stay is 2 nights, and you can't leave a single unsellable night. Check availability and book online below, or check availability for all cottages.
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From the visitors book at Gracie
'There are no adequate words to describe the most needed holiday break this has been! From the stunning views at every turn, the smell of fresh country air, the peace in wildlife song, and the pampered seclusion, Gracie is a gift from God! Alex and Rob, thank you for creating a lovely atmosphere and valuable recommendations! We will never forget Gracie and be sure to come back again. Wishing you and your family happiness and health!' Barry and Jennifer, Leicester
'Gracie, a magical place in the Black Mountains. Never have we been able to unwind so quickly and forget about the outside world - amazing, magical and a little bit of heaven on earth. Thank you for having us.' Arthur and Judith (and Morgan the dog), Ellesmere Port
'Fantastic views, fresh air, gorgeous surroundings, and peace and tranquility, have all made this a wonderful stay in Gracie. The firepit and shower were the favourites. Great to return to after a day's adventuring, especially to warm up in after a swim in the Wye. We really enjoyed the food at The Crown at Pantigelli and thought the service there was also excellent. Thanks for providing the perfect setting for a relaxing few days away.' Jen and Mish from Bristol
'After almost not finding her, Gracie welcomed us with fabulous views, a cosy vintage interior, a comfy bed and all the comfort you could possibly long for in such a remote location. Sitting by the fire, taking in the beautiful surroundings, birds singing and sheep talking.....until only embers remain and we cuddle up in Gracie's warm bed, greeted by her resident owl. Thank you, Alex and Rob, for creating this unique and tranquil little place to get away from it all! We absolutely loved being here!' Kristof and Hanne, Gent, Belgium
'Thank you, Gracie, for having us these past 3 nights. It has been the most relaxing break ever, and the perfect way to spend the Easter bank holiday. Thanks, Rob and Alex, for the hot cross buns and mini Easter eggs, and thank you, Rob, for letting us borrow your backpack and map (without which I think we would have got lost). No shower will ever compete (with that view!), and we enjoyed sitting out at night with the fire pit. We even cooked jacket potatoes on it. Gracie is in a great location, with amazing walks right on our doorstep, and our dog loved it, too. We will be telling all of our family and friends about this hidden gem. Thanks again, and I hope we will be back one day!' Vicki, Jack and Kandi (the dog), from Leicester.
'To Green Gracie in the Green Valley: We are usually campers and do love to get out into the countryside. This was so special, though, for its soaring secludedness. Gracie was more spacious than we expected, and the shower I think must be one of a kind, and incredible to be in there and hear the birds singing all around. Mark saw a bird of prey soaring around when he was in there.... Favourite bit: the camp chairs around the fire pit. We cooked two evening meals and one breakfast, and the camp fire kept us warm late into the night while we watched the stars. All in all, wonderful, amazing, special. Many thanks.' Mark and Hayley, Penarth.
'Alex and Rob, we love Gracie! Thank you for a fab weekend here. We enjoyed a lovely walk through the valley, looking at the lambs. Gracie is such a super little hideaway with fantastic surroundings. We woudl love to come back so we can kiss for longer under the stars! Thanks again.' Lewis and Debbie, Suffolk and Hereford
'We loved Gracie, and we are very sad to be leaving, as she is AWESOME! We have enjoyed a fire, toasting marshmallows, listening to rain on the roof, hearing owls and birdwatching, views from the shower, the cosy bed, welcome daffodils and Welsh Cakes (yum), and a 1950s weekend. Thank you!!' Clare and Pat, Crewe
'We absolutely loved the experience and will definitely call again. We would have loved to have stayed for longer, but unfortunately commitments prevented us from doing so. Rob, you are a very nice and friendly person. Many thanks for being such a great host!' Ash and Ruba, Syria
'We love Gracie! The weekend was booked as a surprise birthday treat and we loved every minute! What a beautiful setting to spend a weekend. Gracie is great - with everything you need. No shower will ever compete, with a view like that! Although we only live over the hill, it felt like we were a million miles away. I will be recommending Gracie to all our friends. Thank you for a wonderful weekend away.' Joelle and Lewis, Hay-on-Wye.
'Like camping but better! Gracie has blown us away, and we've had a lovely time watching meteors, bats, swifts, morning mist in the valley and beautiful blue skies. We've toasted marshmallows and painted and played music and visited loads of wonderful places - this is a proper break away from the daily grind! Love the al fresco facilities, the welcome pack and the resident wildlife. Thanks, Rob and Alex, for putting Gracie here and making her so welcoming!' Tash and John, Sheffield
'What a wonderful location to put your feet up and enjoy the view. Gracie has made a welcome on the hillside with style and grace. It's been a surprise birthday present I'll never forget. The little green caravan is a secret place to be shared with the dear to your heart. Look after Gracie - we'll be back to visit soon!' Dee and Rene, Merthyr and Maesteg
'We had a wonderful time staying here at Gracie! It was very peaceful, with fantastic views! Rob and Alex were very welcoming and made our stay relaxing. We toasted marshmallows over the firepit, and even enjoyed the shower outside (considering the weather was cold)! We would definitely recommend to everyone and hopefully will return one day. Thank you very much.' Amy and Jared, Rhondda Valley
'First ones in the caravan!! We stayed two nights in this amazing caravan and had a great time. Never seen anything like this before, and think it is such a good idea. It is so much better than staying in a B&B, and much comfier than camping! It is easy to see that it has been very well thought out - has everything you need. Especially love the firepit and the abundant firewood! And what a view. All in all a great place, and very glad we found it.' Katie and Andy (from Brighton)