Bucolic bliss awaits
Farm holidays in Germany's Bavaria offer you the ultimate pastoral paradise. Outdoor pursuits and locally-sourced produce are both intrinsic to the Bavarian way of life. Known for its beer, the region also offers sublime forests and Alpine foothills, excellent for avid cyclers and hikers. Stay on a working farm and learn how to tend to animals like chickens and cows, or appreciate the fruits of others' labours with a hearty plate of Schweinshaxe (pig knuckle) or homey Spätzle (freeform noodles).
Farm holidays in France tend to centre around the country's internationally renowned viticulture. Riding a horse through a verdant vineyard is the perfect accompaniment to a stay in a tranquil gîte (traditional holiday home with the owner nearby) and wine tastings at famous wineries like Grand Cru Classe in Bordeaux. To taste the fruits of your own labour, enjoy your stay during September's annual Fête de la Gastronomie, which sees more than 3,000 feasts take place across the country over a long weekend in a celebration of farm-to-table cuisine.
Escape to Italy's pastoral oases with farm holidays in Tuscany. Wildflower-filled meadows, sparkling pools, and olive groves await. The drone of bees is all that interrupts al fresco meals in Puglia, featuring local cheese, fruit, and patisserie. Travel back 600 years at Villa di Campolungo. The family-run residence, where 1,000 olive trees produce olive oil and soaps, embodies a passion for sustainability. At Podere La Casellina Figline, you can gather chestnuts and wild mushrooms, and stay in an old hayloft in view of a church, the Chianti mountains, and stately cyprus trees.