What is One Cat Farm’s USP?
Weave your way down winding Welsh lanes, through the stunning Brecon Beacons National Park (in springtime past fields of lambs and forests of bluebells) and you’ll end up in a small valley four miles south of the harbour town of Aberaeron. Tucked away down quiet tracks woven among rolling fields is One Cat Farm. It was was set up by Jessie Roberts-Duffey and Lyndon Duffey, who returned to Wales with their young family in 2015 to build a small, unique glampsite (there are no tents here but four cosy cabins, designed and built by Lyndon).
And the general vibe?
Wheelbarrows are parked outside The Pig Shed (a communal kitchen and lounge area) so guests can leave their cars behind and cart their luggage down the narrow stone path that leads to the cabins (here known, playfully, as dens).
Baskets of freshly cut logs are waiting for you to start your first campfire and a pared-back but homely communal kitchen is kitted out with a fridge, hobs, a toaster and kettles (and shelves filled with jars of popping corn, bottles of balsamic vinegar and fresh eggs). On one wall, a mini honesty shop (you put your money in a tin can) offers glamping luxuries including packets of marshmallows, bottles of Fentimans ginger beer and bars of NOM NOM peanut butter chocolate (made in Llanboidy, an hour down the road).
A blackboard hangs on another wall listing all the best things to do in the area during your visit, from where to see dolphins to which fish and chip shops are the best.
Down at your cabin, loaves of freshly baked bread and jars of flowers are waiting inside on arrival. Rays of sunlight streaming through the windows and moos from cows in the neighbouring fields act as nature’s wake-up call in the morning, while evenings are spent huddled around your personal fire-pit before the sea mist drifts over, engulfing each den in a mystical haze.
Which cabin should I book at One Cat Farm?
The four heated, grass-roofed wooden cabins (each one is named after a type of tree that grows on site) blend seamlessly into the buttercup-filled field that they’re dotted around. Each one has a simple stripped-back Scandinavian feel to it – comfy double beds (with both a firm and a soft pillow) are laid with crisp cotton covers and topped with plaid wool blankets while striped rugs cover the floors.
A bookshelf is stocked with well-thumbed literature ready to delve into, or relax on your hammock outside in the sun-dappled shade. Our cabin, Derwen, was at the bottom of the site, sheltered in a corner beside tranquil natural ponds. Bathroom facilities (two showers and two toilets) sit at the top of the hill next to the kitchen area, and each is supplied with eco-friendly toiletries and hand towels.
And to eat?
Stop at Watson and Pratt farm shop in Lampeter on your way to One Cat Farm to stock up on bundles of Wye Valley asparagus, vines of sweet Isle of Wight tomatoes, tubs of creamy Neil’s Yard Dairy yogurt and freshly baked country loaves and croissants from Lampeter Bakehouse (handily just next door). A well-stocked counter filled with local cheeses is hard to resist, as are the boxes of Booja-Booja truffles next to the tills.
Cook your haul over your cabin’s BBQ that evening before toasting marshmallows for dessert. In the summer months, be sure to ask Jessie for salad leaves as they have plenty growing in their garden and are happy to give them to guests.
Is One Cat Farm family-friendly?
Absolutely. Along with the double bed, each den comes with a single bed plus an extra pull-out one, too. There’s a rowing boat to take around the ponds as well as fishing nets if you want to take a closer look at the water’s wildlife. The hills are perfect for strolling around, or bring your bikes and cycle along the paths until you reach the coast.
What can I do while I’m there?
Wander four miles through muddy fields and up zigzagging footpaths until you reach Aberaeron. Head to the harbour and pay a visit to Hive for cones of ice cream to enjoy on the seafront. Each of the flavours is made with honey, so either keep it classic with vanilla (which has strong, sweet, floral notes) or order a scoop of creamy hazelnut if you like something a little richer.
Hop in the car and head 40 minutes along the coast to Cardigan to visit Bara Menyn bakery for freshly baked cakes and loaves of sourdough, and, in the summer months, stop for lunch at Pizza Tipi, a pop-up pizza restaurant on the banks of the Teifi. Grab a table next to river for stunning views, cosy up under the tipi next to roaring fires or perch on one of the stools in the bar. Simple pizzas on thin, crisp bases leave room for a side of crunchy focaccia drizzled in oil and covered generously with garlic.
The owner says…
Book in advance to reserve one of the outdoor wood-fired baths, designed and built by Lyndon. Overlooking the fields and farms, the site’s two cast-iron tubs are the ideal place to soak for a few hours with a mug of hot chocolate or a glass of wine. Keep them going by throwing logs on the burners and they’ll stay warm for over three hours – perfect for watching the sunset from.
Wrap yourself in one of the fleece blankets provided and huddle around the fire at night with mugs of mint tea. Listen to the crackle of firewood and the gentle hum of crickets while losing track of time gazing up at the star-filled sky. There’s no sense of urgency at One Cat Farm (and no phone signal either) so switch off and relax.
Cabins sleeping up to four people at One Cat Farm start from £160 for two nights, onecatfarm.com
Words by Ellie Edwards
Photos by Jessie Roberts-Duffey and Ellie Edwards