Photo of the week: A lovely B&B outside the Brecon Beacons

We were heading to the Brecon Beacons national park in Wales in 2010 during the Easter weekend but foolishly hadn’t made any bookings. I called at least a dozen B&Bs inside the park but couldn’t find a vacant room anywhere. Finally I came across a link to a place called the Ty Shon Jacob Farm situated just outside the Brecon Beacons, on a hill above the town of Pontypool. At £25 per head per night, it was a good ten quid lower than other places and the website was so basic (I’ve learnt over time not to judge a British B&B by its website) that I immediately felt a little suspicious about what the deal promised.

Anyway, I called Agnietta Harris, the British-Swedish woman who runs it, and she sounded so friendly that I felt a little more assured about what lay in store for us.

We’re glad we got there during the day because once we were off the expressway, the GPS directed us down a narrower and narrower path going uphill till we found our car being slashed and scraped by branches on both sides with barely any room even to open the door if we had decided to stop there. At the end of that we emerged at the top of a range of hills and tucked down a long, narrow driveway with open fields and horses on all sides we finally reached the loveliest little B&B we’ve ever been to.

The bathrooms are luxurious, the rooms very comfortable and the biggest bedroom has a large, wooden balcony overlooking a green valley. Agnietta is very much a working woman on a working farm, tending to her horses one minute, and dashing about her kitchen cooking you breakfast the next.

I’ve been there twice which is the only reason I’m happy to share the recommendation widely now. But remember that its convenient and enjoyable only if you’re getting there in a car.

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