Relaxed places to stay

Sawday's guides have curated 30 stunning places where the journey is as magical as the destination, so that you can feel the freedom of travelling slowly, stopping for the views and losing track of time. You might travel deep into the heart of a gorgeous Vallée to a beautifully restored and elegant tower, arrive by boat to a serene island retreat for romantics and nature lovers, or climb through a high mountain pass to a cottage where loch waters lap at your garden, but every step can be a story if you take the slow road.  

The best trips are when you wind your way towards your destination, branching off from chance encounters, following hazy local directions and gathering a deep sense of a place. That sort of inquisitive wandering is 'curious travelling', so come and take a look, because curiosity will get you everywhere.             

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Finca la Ramallosa, Extremadura, Spain (above)

This foodie retreat offers splendid isolation, star-studded skies and home honey! The approach is rustic, wild and the term home-grown was coined here. The world could disappear and engaging hosts Rebecca and Alfonso wouldn't bat an eyelid. 

More details »

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Casas do Côro, Douro, Portugal

Minimalist modern houses are scattered throughout the grounds, dramatically embedded in the hugely atmospheric medieval village of Marialva. Ancient battlements creep uphill between olive and almond trees; views reach across vines, whitewashed, red-roofed village and imposing castle to shrub-covered hills. 

More details »

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La Stella, Emilia-Romagna, Italy

The long, twisting road to La Stella dances from Modena into the Apennines and this secluded farmhouse set in deepest nature. The reward: magnificent views of Monte Cusna, an enthusiastic welcome and a night-time carpet of stars. 

More details »

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'Visit' all 30 places here......... 

 
 

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