From movie streaming and dating to food delivery and virtual worlds – we’ve got so much technology at our fingertips nowadays that sometimes we just crave the ability to switch it all off, to disconnect from the outside world and go off the grid for a bit. So, we scoured our collection of villas to try and find the ones that have no WiFi or very weak signal (it was hard, we won’t lie) – it’s time to unplug, switch off, and unwind because we’ve pulled together a list of 8 villas that are great for a digital detox!
Internet situation: No WiFi
It might sound like we’re lying to you, but if you take the kids away to this farmhouse in Snowdonia you’ll actually see their faces and not just the top of their heads – because they won’t be glued to their phones… we know, we can hardly imagine it either!
This gorgeous farmhouse dates back to 1652, and it’s been lovingly renovated while retaining its character. The open fire, traditional farmhouse kitchen, Victorian-style roll-top bath and original beams attest to this. The location is idyllic too, overlooking valleys, mountains and farmland (the house is on a working farm) so it’s the perfect place to get out and about, breathe in that fresh countryside air and get the kids active – there’s plenty of hillwalking right on your doorstep or if you want to head for a drive, Berwyn Mountains is 20-minutes away while Snowdonia National Park is 30-minutes away.
Back at the farmhouse, there’s a BBQ and picnic table for some alfresco dining!
Price from £12pppn ($14pppn)
Internet situation: Limited internet and phone signal
For starters, this is a very unique and interesting historic property to escape to – located in the Highlands and surrounded by rugged countryside, this castle dates all the way back to 1560 and it comes with lots of historic stories. Partially destroyed by the Duke of Argyll in 1640 and rebuilt into this magnificent bolthole, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time as you enter the Fortalice. With a great hall perfect for banquets and feasts, your group will have fun imagining what these castle walls have seen! There’s even a tiny chapel to host weddings.
Being surrounded by rolling hills, it’s another entry on the list that’s great for exploring the outdoors – make use of the bicycles and head off along a cycling trail, strap your boots on and go for some hillwalking, or teach the kids how to fish for salmon and trout at one of the nearby rivers.
What’s more, if you want to take full advantage of your digital detox, you can entertain yourselves with one of many bookable experiences at the property, from hosting a traditional Ceilidh in the great hall to a whisky tasting.
Price from £61pppn ($74pppn)
Internet situation: There is WiFi (if you really need it), but you’re unlikely to get decent mobile network coverage out here. Ideal for switching off and enjoying a cycling holiday.
Berry Wood Barn is ideal for a digital detox where you want to spend the time in engaging in some physical activity. We would highly recommend any keen cyclist bring their mountain bikes and take advantage of the numerous trails through the hills and across Offa’s Dyke. The loops in and around the valleys are great fun for road cyclists too!
You won’t go hungry with a fabulous selection of delicious Welsh restaurants within easy reach. Michelin starred, Walnut Tree Inn, is just a few miles away, as is The Hardwick Restaurant with its Michelin starred chef, Stephen Terry, or try the Bell at Skenfrith for a yummy Sunday lunch.
Price from £22pppn ($26pppn)
Internet situation: No WiFi
Fancy jetting off to the sunny shores of Spain for your digital detox? We don’t blame you! There’s nothing better than taking some time out, lying in the sun by the pool. And if you’re completely switched off from the outside world, even better!
Boasting beautiful ocean views right from the balcony, you can enjoy a sumptuous breakfast at this villa before having a dip in the pool or getting stuck into a book. It’s perfectly set up for alfresco dining too, with a brick-built BBQ and shaded terrace for dining. And if you’re looking for some lazy beach days, the nearest sandy stretch (Son Bou) is only 2.6km away.
Sun, sea and a stress-free break… that’s something we can get on board with!
Price from £16pppn ($20pppn)
Internet situation: Internet access is available only in the WiFi lounge adjacent to the pool and in the pool area. Strong access can’t be guaranteed.
On the banks of the River Lyon, this stunning 11th-century château is perfect for a large group looking for an authentic French retreat. Lovingly renovated while preserving so much of its original character, you’ll be left in awe by this historic property’s interiors– high ceilings, stone walls and antique furniture along with a stunning courtyard, fire pit, grand piano and library.
With 5 hectares of gardens and parkland, you’ll be able to make use of the bicycles to explore the rural surroundings or go for a walk along the trails that wind through vineyards, spotting wildlife along the way. It’s the perfect place to soak up all that rich, cultural heritage as the château is sandwiched between two wine-producing villages, a short 1.2km walk towards the nearest village which hosts a weekly Farmer’s Market, and the owners can organise a wine-tasting as they have great relationships with wineries in the area.
Price from £72pppn ($88pppn) based on an occupancy of 10 people
Internet situation: No mobile signal in the cottage.
This cottage offers staycation at its best – our Cornish coastline is absolutely gorgeous and when you stay at this cottage you’re basically on the beach. Tucked away just behind sandy Mawgan Porth, you’re just a few yards from a top surfing hotspot with sea views on your decking. There are loads nearby too, famous Watergate Bay is just down the road with its surfing beach and there’s a couple of well-known eateries from top chefs Jamie Oliver and Rick Stein, too. Surfers, foodies and beach lovers will be in their element!
Back at the cottage, you’ll find crisp white interiors, with skylights and French windows to make the most of the surroundings. The doors all open out onto the deck, which has everything from outdoor dining and BBQ to a roll-top bath and hot tub! Plus, when you stay here you’ll get direct access to the beach via a private gated bath – it’s your own personal retreat.
Price from £61pppn ($80pppn)
Internet situation: With the cottage being so rural, mobile signal depends on your provider but isn’t guaranteed for at least half a mile.
This sweet little hideaway is nestled in the heart of the Devonshire countryside, surrounded by farmland, gardens and lovely walking trails – it looks like it’s been plucked straight out of a classic English novel. A roaring fire sits at the heart of the living room, which feels homely and welcoming, and the fully-equipped kitchen has a gorgeous Aga, which really makes it feel like a farmhouse. The whole cottage has a warmth to it and reminds us of the cottage from The Holiday (although so far we’ve unfortunately been unable to locate Jude Law). The perfect day at this cottage for us would be going for a walk in the countryside, then coming back and curling up with a good book by the fire – we are feeling the romance here.
If you’re looking for a tranquil, rural escape that is quintessentially English then look no further. You can even get organic chicken and sausages from the farm next door! We’ve included this cottage in our list because although it does offer WiFi, the mobile signal isn’t guaranteed and we think it would be the ideal place to just switch off and enjoy rural living.
Price from $70pppn ($92pppn)
Has this list of lovely villas got you craving a digital detox? Either head to our website or get in touch with our concierge team if you’d like to find out more information about these villas, along with what onsite activities can be arranged.