About the property
- House1937 sq. ft.
- Separate WC's0
- Minimum Stay2 nights
Off Grid straw bale house in St Dogmaels with stunning views of Cardigan Bay
Grand Designs Eco home award winner 2008, Quiet Earth Retreat is a two storey loadbearing straw bale house (first in the UK).
A luxurious off grid home, offering a truly sustainable experience in a very beautiful and quiet haven. Situated in St Dogmaels on a woodland hilltop overlooking breath taking views of the Cardigan estuary and close to local beaches and the Pembrokeshire coastal footpath.
We look forward to welcoming you and sharing the many gifts of this place.
This straw bale eco retreat home was self built between 2003-05 and generated much attention due to it's unique nature.
Please read the full description before booking!
It is a beautiful peaceful retreat centre, offering special time to relax in an untouched woodland upon a hill overlooking spectacular views of the Teifi estuary.
There are various idyllic beaches within a couple of miles of here and many inspiring walks. We are two miles from the start of the Pembrokeshire coastal path.
It is also an off grid home, powered by the sun and the wind and this is one of it's important features, giving one the opportunity to experience living with the elements and being powered by them. Low energy appliances may be used with awareness such as occasional laptops etc. (no hairdryers/ straighteners!) The Nature of this place does invite the visitor to just enjoy being switched off for a while and to enjoy the gifts of the environment.
Downstairs you will find a large open plan kitchen and living room with a wood stove which heats the whole house. There is a downstairs bathroom in a rounded stone turret with sunken bath and rain water harvested toilet. Water is solar heated and back boiler heated in the winter.
The house offers a long conservatory to enjoy the views.
We have 3 delightful and gentle cats here in the house and then daphne the dog who will be with us in the eco lodge close by. We can arrange at times for the cats to be out of the house and use the conservatory for short periods. If you have serious cat allergies however this may not be for you.
Upstairs is a large open plan room which offers itself as a luxury bedroom and studio for a couple or a space for family or a retreat space for a group of up to 8- 10 with low futon style beds. We have also now opened up the large beautiful attic bedroom as an extra with a double mattress and space for more. This is accessible by ladder.
In the warmer months there is extra camping space in the woodland and a self contained eco lodge too.
The woodland is terraced, with paths for visitors to explore and we are currently developing a forest garden.
We also encourage artists and writers in residence to spend time here working in a natural and supportive environment on a project. We can offer subsidy for this also at times.
Please note; this is a natural straw bale/ clay built home and we hire a wonderful cleaner to scrub the place... it will never be a bleached holiday home but it is clean by nature's standards and we use no chemicals in the process.. There are also spiders and insects as we live in a woodland...!
Guests will have access to the house and land.
Space sharing is negotiable. We would have daily access to the conservatory to feed the cats and also to check the power meter once a day in the house.
In the colder months we can offer a large basket of wood on arrival and then extra if required for £7 a basket.
We can on occasion as an extra, offer yoga, local walks, meditation sessions, massage, flower essence therapies, wild food foraging, raw food and chocolate preparations, natural building and sand art designs on the beach for groups.
We can also prepare a delicious healthy meal or cake for special occasions.
We can also negotiate a discount for couples at quieter times.
The beauty of this place is all that Nature has to offer along with the gifts of many of the creative people living in the nearby village and surrounding area.
There are many circular walks for which we can give directions.
We are situated at the beginning of the pembrokeshire coastal path and close to an array of stunning beaches. Our local beaches Poppit and Mwnt have regular sitings of bottle nosed dolphins and seals.
Cardigan town is a few miles away along the estuary and offers shops, restaurants, theatre, cinema, spa and a heritage centre.
In the heart of the village is a ruined Abbey, a visitors centre and cafe. The village offers a good few pubs along the river, a wonderful deli with homemade produce and cafe.
We encourage guests to visit our local produce markets and organic market gardens.
Most foods can be bought locally.
The gift of this home is that it is secluded in a woodland and yet a walking distance to the village estuary and beaches.
Access to the house is by foot for 5-8 minutes up a woodland pathway and parking is in the village close by.
Buses run to the village from the nearby towns and trains run to the nearby towns.
This home supports sustainable living and invites visitors to also come and experience the fruits of living this way.
We also run occasional retreats and courses here in sustainable/ conscious living and building.
We are also happy to offer a tailor made retreat for a group including yoga,meditation, wild food forages, sacred geometry sand circle creating, silent walks and retreats too and more...
Please express interest.
Finally, whilst we endeavor to keep this place clean and hire great cleaners, this is an earthen made home in the middle of the woods and so please bear in mind when reviewing cleanliness that we do our very best to keep it to a woodland home quality.. and the spiders do weave their webs!
We ask guests to refrain from smoking here; it is a straw bale home!
We also ask to keep alcohol to a healthy minimum to support the tranquil nature of this place.
This is NOT a party place but a retreat into Nature...
We recommend bringing indoor shoes.
- Response rate:
- Response time:
- within one day
- Calendar last updated:
- May 21, 2018
About Rachel Shiamh
Over twenty years ago this land found me and life took a 180 degree change. Starting with a small woodland hut free of electricity and collecting rainwater for washing and carrying spring water; very little else was needed but to listen to, and remember the ways of living with the seasons and to live a much lower impact life. With planning permission granted, I was fortunate enough to be able to self build a self sustainable and off grid eco home with a host of good workers and volunteers. It was life changing again and since then the house has become a beacon for living lightly on the land and for conscious living. I love to share this home with those also interested in such a way of living and offer retreats too in yoga, pranic and contemplative living. I love the peace and nurture of this place, meditation and also exploring the vast, wild and ancient local landscapes we are blessed with.
Rachel Shiamh purchased this House in 1993
Why Rachel Shiamh chose Saint Dogmaels
As a child with my family we used to come to Wales, the land of my father and especially Pembrokeshire. I dreamed to live here and bask in Nature. This particular property is very unique and a testament to a natural and harmonious way of living. Being off grid, we rely on power from the sun and the wind which means sometimes, just switching off and enjoying the quiet and simplicity. We cannot be excessive with power. We are blessed with the most gorgeous local beaches, woodlands and sacred sites and the village of St Dogmaels is a haven for friendliness and creativity. The heart of the village hosts a ruined abbey with a visitor centre and a local produce market, recently voted the best local market in the UK. We also have a local organic market garden, a few nice pubs and neighbouring cardigan town within walking distance.
What makes this House unique
As channel 4 tv presenter George Clarke said; " This is more home than any home I have been in". This straw bale house is cosy, funky, spacious and beautifully sited on top of a wooded hill, overlooking the Teifi estuary and Cardigan Bay. It is peacefully situated an 8 minute walk from the village and offers woodland walks and stunning views. Ideal for anyone looking for a quiet retreat.
Local Services & Businesses
Sports & Adventure Activities
Check-in: 4:00 PM
Check-out: 11:00 AM
100% refund for cancellations more than 60 days before check-in date. 50% refund for cancellations more than 30 days before check-in date. You must contact the owner directly to request cancellation.
Unique and Restive Experience
Lovely location, friendly, helpful and welcoming owner. The quiet and secluded location was much appreciated by me and, surprisingly, my 13 year old son! Credit to Rachel and her helpers for persevering and constructing this lovely home!