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Finca al-manzil, a unique place to stay in Extremadura, stunning house and pool - The Cortijo

9 Reviews
Bedrooms 4
Half Baths1
Property type farmhouse
Minimum Stay 2 - 4 nights

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Half Baths
Minimum Stay
2 - 4 nights


Cáceres Farmhouse Rental Photos and Description

In world of its own, a wonderful traditional atmosphere, bird watching, walking.

Finca al-manzil is in the magical Sierra de Montanchez, Extremadura, a wonderful part of Spain with plenty to see and do. This is a unique property full of character, please see reviews. A perfect summer holiday, spring break or winter retreat for families, friends or couples. The CORTIJO for 2 -6 people OR Romantic BARN just for 2. Both houses are in their own walled grounds and have total privacy. There are lovely views from both houses, over the olive groves or up to the spectacular peaks of the sierra. Decorated with great care, a mixture of simple, good quality design with antique and ethnic furnishing, plenty of books for a good read on the patios and terraces. Bedrooms all en-suite, one with roof terrace, perfect for sunny breakfasts or star gazing. The swimming pool is situated in a natural curve of the mountains, surrounded by trees and shrubs, it has a wonderfully peaceful atmosphere with stunning views of mountains and olive groves.

Walk directly into the Sierra on ancient Moorish paths, nature is a delight at any season. BIRD WATCHING IS especially RECOMMENDED with many rare species on the finca including an eagle owl nesting in the high crags behind the finca. The walk to our local village of Montanchez takes 40 mins on a delightful path through the natural scenery of the sierra.

There is also a great 3 hour walk up the watermill gorge, over the mountain and into Montanchez. There are 4 World Heritage towns within 40kms: Caceres, Trujillo, Guadalupe and Merida, fascinating to explore, great night life and shopping. Horse riding, biking, and hiking from the finca. Welcome to join in the local farming activities & fiestas or a fun cooking morning.

Spring is a delightful time to visit the finca, it's a long season from late March until the middle of May, the wild flowers are spectacular and a wonderful time for bird watching.

Summer means lovely lazy days surrounded by beautiful views of olive groves and up to the shady woods of the sierra, the evenings are a delight, long balmy hours for candlelit dining on the beautiful terraces, and possibility of sleeping outside under the breathtaking stars, all very romantic.

Autuum is wonderfully warm until the end of October, another great bird watching opportunity with the winter migrations starting. Time for enjoying the uniquely preserved moorish paths of the sierra.

Cooking holidays at Finca al-manzil: We run an interesting creative cooking holiday at Finca al-manzil several times a year. Please contact Pippa.

More Details

Details for The Cortijo 4 Bedrooms, Sleeps 6, 4 Bathrooms, 1 Half Bathrooms

The cortijo is the original farmhouse/countryhouse at Finca al-manzil. An ideal place for peaceful family holidays or a wonderfully romantic atmosphere for groups of friends. It has been beautifully renovated but retains that special Spanish country house feel. Very spacious with double height sitting room, 3 spacious bedrooms, all en-suite bathrooms. A covered porch, a roof terrace, as special place ideal for all time of the day and for sitting under the canopy of stars at night. The kitchen is well equipped for creative cooks, dining room has huge refectory table and doors to outside dining terrace. The swimming pool is a wonderful space tucked into the natural hillside. There are stunning views in all directions, up to the peaks of the mountain and across the olive groves. Superb walks directly from the finca straight into the mountain and to the village of Montanchez. The cortijo can be rented with the barn for groups of 8. Discounts for renting a 2nd week. Dinner can be ordered.

  • Groups
  • Long-term Renters Welcome
  • Singles
  • children welcome
  • non smoking only
  • pets considered
  • wheelchair inaccessible

Pippa Sharman
Member since: 2004
Speaks: english, french, german, spanish, portuguese
Response time:
Within a few days
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
October 3, 2016
Call Owner

About Pippa Sharman

Pippa is English, Manfred is Austrian. They have lived in Portugal and Spain for over 20 years. After a huge project of renovating a group of watermills in the Alentejo Portugal and creating the famed Moinhos de Madragoa they moved to Spain and bought the extensive finca on the slopes of the Sierra de Montanchez. It was a labour of love to build and renovate the two houses on the finca, the cortijo and the barn. Pippa comes from an arts background and has worked in England, Portugal and Spain as an interior designer, Manfred ran many successful restaurants in Austria and Portugal...both experiences have been useful in creating Finca al-manzil.

Pippa Sharman purchased this farmhouse in 2000

Why Pippa Sharman chose Caceres Province

Totally fell in love with the view of the mountain peaks and the sense of tranquillity.

The nature is so pure in this small but perfect sierra, original moorish paths lead one to spectacular views. Bird life is particularly varied with many rare species nesting in the tranquility of our surroundings.

What makes this farmhouse unique

A place that feels quite secluded, wrapped in tranquility but is quite close to local villages and the 30 min. drive into three large towns, all of which are amazingly interesting historically as well as having some good shops, restaurants and bars. Also the friendly local people who made us so welcome in their community.

Very rewarding for bird watching and generally for the rich bio-diversity of the sierra.

Guestbook comments from the owner

We drove from Santander to Extremadura and stayed at the cortijo of Finca al-manzil for 2 weeks. It was an adventure,we didn't know what to expect despite the beautiful web site for Finca al-manzil. It was all that we could possibly dream of. The cortijo is a beautiful building in a stunning situation. Interior decoration is unique and feels like a real home. We had great fun with the extensive library and dvds. Pool is divine! We will be back.
Apr 2010
  • 1 of 1


based on 9 traveler reviews

The Cortijo
average rating of 4.6666665 based on 10 reviews
London, England.

A little piece of heaven

  • 5 of 5

If you want to stay in rural Spain away from the costas stay in Extremadura, if you stay in Extremadura, stay at Finca al-manzil. We stayed for 1 week during the summer and we had such a great time not only at the finca where everything was bliss but exploring the 3 world heritage towns nearby, eating at super restaurants. From the finca you can hike into the beautiful mountains, hire horses and bikes. We were made to feel very welcome in the cortijo which felt like home, very warm and lovely atmosphere. Not to mention the great pool secluded in a beautiful part of the grounds. The descriptions and photos are tempting but don't come near the real thing.

  • Submitted: Dec 30, 2007
  • Stayed: Jul 2007
  • Source: HomeAway
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6 1

A place of tranquility and romance!

  • 5 of 5

A great base for walking in mountain scenery on ancient paths and of course bird watching in the ideal natural conditions around the finca. Wonderous sightings of birds including a family of eagle owls! The house is very special, full of character, a real home with great books and dvds. Lovely outside spaces as well, especially the pool area, a little paradise. We loved it all and will be back as soon as we can.

  • Submitted: Nov 21, 2014
  • Stayed: Oct 2014
  • Source: HomeAway
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1 0

The Cortijo at Finca al-manzil, happy memories!

  • 5 of 5

One of the best holidays we have had for a long time. The cortijo is so special, we chose it because it looked so charming in a beautiful landscape but it was so much more than we expected, the views, the tranquility, the wonderful atmosphere of the house. We could hardly drag ourselves away from the cortijo and pool but did go on some memorable trips to the stunning historical towns and the national park of Monfrague to see the griffon vultures in the wild.

The local markets and restaurants were great, fantastic value for money. We particularly enjoyed the outdoor restaurant in an olive grove near Montanchez.

Pippa and Manfred gave us some good tips and we enjoyed the bike rides and horse rides arranged by Manfred, star horse was "Fatboy". Star walk was straight from the finca to Arroyomolinos and up the watermill gorge to Montanchez, spectacular! We loved it all and are plotting a return visit, maybe in the spring when the bird life and wild flowers are at their peak.

  • Submitted: Sep 17, 2014
  • Stayed: Jul 2014
  • Source: HomeAway
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1 0

Most relaxing holiday ever

  • 5 of 5

The Cortijo farmhouse is a wonderful place to stay. The accommodation is excellent, the situation glorious and the views magnificent. We had the most relaxing holiday ever. We had planned birdwatching trips but they all came to us as we lounged and read around the pool! Eagles, vultures, bee-eaters, golden oriole to name a few. Azure-winged magpies everywhere. One evening flying ants (I think!) rose in the most amazing thick clouds all together across the entire countryside. The walk to Montanchez is delightful. There are spectacular Roman remains - almost complete amphitheatre and theatre - at Merida. Trujillo and Caceres are also fascinating to visit. I can't recommend this lovely farmhouse and its environs highly enough.

  • Submitted: Sep 17, 2014
  • Stayed: May 2014
  • Source: HomeAway
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1 0

Lovely place but some reservations

  • 3 of 5

Finca al Manzil is a charming house in a lovely setting near the delightful village of Montanchez. We (2 adults & 4 children) spent a very enjoyable week here. The house itself is well maintained and clearly loved by its owner. The pool is small (as advertised) and did not occupy our children for long; the water was also not quite clear on our arrival and this was a little off-putting. The pool is shared with the occupants of the barn, in this case a very nice couple from Lisbon & their two dogs. Kitchen and dining areas inside & out are very pleasant. There's a simple gas BBQ - charcoal (according to the owner) not permitted due to bush-fire risk. Three bedrooms all nice but two are open to the grounds via the veranda so not suitable for unaccompanied young children from a security point of view.

A couple of negatives unfortunately:

1. We knew the house did not have air-con but there were no fans at all in the house which made the nights most unpleasant and almost sleepless. The owner suggested that their solar power supply might not cope with fans running at night but we felt this was unlikely. We understand from the owner that fans have since been added.

2. For a house in this budget range we felt the shower fittings were too basic - shower heads inclined to droop on the wall etc....not good enough really at €1550 per week!

The area around the house is very nice and the walk to Montanchez (in the cooler early morning) is lovely. Montanchez itself is very welcoming and we used the excellent outdoor municipal pool complex on several days which our children enjoyed very much. Lunch in the restaurant there is very good. Jamon from the various producers in the village has to be tasted to be believed!! Easy drives to Trujillo (gorgeous), Merida and Caceres are all worthwhile.

In summary, whilst this is a very nice house and the area interesting, it's perhaps not ideal for a family with children especially in the hot months.

  • Submitted: Aug 26, 2013
  • Stayed: Jul 2013
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thanks for this review which I find positive but lacking perspective as it's from the point of view of parents with 4 young children, quite a rare occurence and not our usual group staying at the cortijo which tends to be 2 or 3 adult couples or couples with grown up children or a group of adult friends. The last 2 weeks of July were exceptionally hot all over Europe and although usually we do not need cooling in the house at night we have now installed fans in all the rooms just in case we get another heat wave. Usually the house withstands the heat well with a natural flow of cool air from the mountain at night through open windows protected with screening. Possibly these parents were worried about leaving windows open even though protected and the open porch outside 2 of the bedrooms is not on ground level but 2 .50 metres high with a strong railing so well protected....not that we have any security issues in our area which is a haven of tranquility. I think this family had a good time at the cortijo, we parted on warm terms, the only issue they mentioned was the heat. As to the pool, it is not exactly "small" certainly spacious enough for up to 8 people, it is 3.50 x 12.00, we have a salt water system and explained that the day before this family arrived we had replenished the salt and it take a day or two to clear but was only a little cloudy, still very clean and translucent, certainly not dirty. Surely parents should be happy to have salt water cleaning the pool rather than harmful chlorine. Oh and finally the shower head, one shower head in one bathroom which drooped because it was too heavy, an experiment with a power shower that didn't work so now replaced. I think it can be seen from the review that the family had a good holiday despite the challenging heat, I really appreciate all the plus points and must say they certainly took care of the house very well, leaving everything impeccably clean and tidy.
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2 0
Haslemere, Surrey

The pictures speak for themselves!

  • 5 of 5

Absolutely stunning countryside, views and situation. The pool is simply gorgeous, its outlook includes the 3 peaks of Montanchez and is amazing. The singletrack path to the house from the pool is so unique. The garden was filled with wildflowers. We can't speak highly enough about the scenery, the Cortijo and the countless things to do. We went to Trujillo, Merida and walked to Montanchez, all fabulous, but we have to come back to go to Caceres, Park Monfrague, Guadaloupe, and Proserpina Embalse.... and a few other things!.. 6 days wasnt enough.

Enjoy!.. Its a lovely place.

  • Submitted: Jun 7, 2013
  • Stayed: May 2013
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: What a super review, very much appreciated! The comments about our own environment at Finca al-manzil are particularly heart warming, it's hard work keeping the cortijo, barn and finca looking good but feedback like this makes it all worthwhile. Also great to know that our clients are exploring the area around the finca especially our three wonderfully atmospheric towns, Trujillo, Merida and Caceres as well as the spectacular scenery and unspoilt countryside. We have been at Finca al-manzil for 10 years now and the most wonderful thing is how many clients return to stay again and also recommend us to family and friends. Another wonderful thing is that the roads are still very relaxing, I drove to Merida on the old road yesterday and passed 2 cars in 40 kms! A big thanks to this reviewer and all our clients, some of whom are now old friends. Pippa and Manfred.
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Nearest Airport
250 Kilometres
Seville or Madrid
Nearest Barpub
1 Kilometres
Nearest Ferry
300 Kilometres
Nearest Golf
40 Kilometres
Nearest Train
40 Kilometres
Nearest Motorway
40 Kilometres
Nearest Restaurant
4 Kilometres
Car: recommended

Finca al-manzil is in the Sierra de Montanchez , Extremadura. The sierra is a magical place, still rich in the traditional olive, fig and vine cultivation, also a sanctuary for wild life. We have an eagle owl nesting in the peaks behind the finca. Walking and bird watching are unique experiences in our woods and mountain paths, views are spectacular in any direction. The slow pace of life still goes on in our local village of Montanchez, famed for the delicious jamon iberico which can be sampled in the little bars on the plaza where it's fun to watch the life of the village going on, still plenty of donkey traffic. A walk up to the Moorish castle is worthwhile, amazing views from this originally Roman fortress.

.The finca is exactly in the middle of the golden triangle of 3 world heritage towns, Caceres, Trujillo and Merida, 40kms to any of them. Each town is a delightful experience, Merida for the Roman ruins and beautiful Moneo museum of Roman art; Caceres for its intact medieval centre and lively night life including the famous Atrio restarurant; Trujillo is an undiscovered gem, full of conquistardor palaces, Moorish gardens and the Plaza Mayor at sundown with the beautiful buildings turned to gold.

The famed monastery of Guadalupe is 1 hour away, a special experience to visit the black madonna and explore the remote mountain town.

Bird Watching for very rare species at the national park of Monfrague and in the sierra of Villuercas.

Nearest airports are Seville, Madrid and Lisbon.

Other Activities: Cooking holidays,Trekking with Donkeys, Hiking, Bird Watching, Property Searching /Buying


Rates & Availability

Cáceres Farmhouse Rental Rates

Rental Basis:
per property
Owner accepts payment in:
Convert Currency
Rate Period Nightly Weekend Night Weekly Monthly Event
Sep 20 2016 - Nov 26 2016
2 night minimum stay
Nov 27 2016 - Feb 11 2017
4 night minimum stay
Feb 25 2017 - May 7 2017
4 night minimum stay
May 14 2017 - Sep 10 2017
4 night minimum stay
My Standard Rate
2 night minimum stay

Additional information about rental rates

Pet Fee $11
Refundable damage deposit $164

There is a 10% on 2nd week
Discount available for less than 6 people occupation
Free cleaning and linen change once in a 2 week stay.
There is a final cleaning charge of €25
Winter - Logs are charged according to use.
Rates for Easter, Christmas and New year €1400 per week or minimum of 4 days.
Bed and breakfast rates are €65 per night for en suite double room

Owner's Cancellation Policy

100% refund if canceled at least 60 days before arrival date.
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Cáceres Farmhouse Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • farmhouse (detached)
  • Guests provide their own meals
Floor Area:
  • 300 m²
Location Type:
  • Mountain
  • Rural
  • Adventure
  • Away From It All
  • Family
  • Farm Holidays
  • Historic
  • Romantic
  • Sports & Activities
  • Tourist Attractions
  • Activities Guide
  • Basic Soaps
  • Filtered Water
  • Fireplace
  • Firewood
  • Heating
  • Internet
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Room
  • Local Maps
  • Local Restaurant Guide
  • Paper Towels
  • Parking
  • Toilet Paper
  • Towels Provided
  • Washing Machine
  • Wireless Internet
  • Wood Stove
  • 4 Ring Stove
  • Blender
  • Coffee Grinder
  • Coffee Maker
  • Dishes & Utensils
  • Grill
  • Kitchen ...
  • Oven
  • Pantry Items
  • Refrigerator
  • Stove
  • Toaster
  • Child's Highchair
  • Dining ...
  • Dining Room
  • seating for 10 people
  • 4 Bathrooms
  • 1 Half Bath
  • Bathroom1 - toilet , combination tub/shower
    Bathroom2 - toilet , shower
    Bathroom3 - toilet , shower
    Bathroom - toilet
    Bathroom 5 - toilet , shower , Barn
  • 4 Bedrooms, Sleeps 6
  • Bedroom 1 - 1 double
    Bedroom2 - 2 twin/ single
    Bedroom3 - 2 twin/ single
    The Barn bedroom 4 - 1 double , 2 child bed , 1 baby crib , The Barn is available for 2 extra people
  • Books
  • Books for Adults
  • CD Player
  • DVD Player
  • Games
  • Music Library
  • Radio
  • Stereo
  • Toys
  • VCR
  • Video Library
  • Balcony
  • Bicycles
  • Child's Swing
  • Deck / Patio
  • Golf ...
  • Lawn / Garden
  • Outdoor Grill
  • Patio
  • Porch / Veranda
  • Tennis ...
  • Terrace
  • Unscreened Porch / Veranda
  • 5 bicycles
  • 10 garden chairs
  • Groups
  • Long-term Renters Welcome
  • Singles
  • children welcome ...
  • non smoking only ...
  • pets considered
  • wheelchair inaccessible
Pool / Spa:
  • Outdoor Pool
  • Private Pool
Onsite Services:
  • Housekeeper
  • churches
  • festivals
  • forests
  • live theater
  • museums
  • pond
  • restaurants
  • ruins
  • winery tours
Leisure Activities:
  • bird watching
  • eco tourism
  • horseback riding
  • paddle boating
  • photography
  • scenic drives
  • sight seeing
  • walking
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • groceries
  • hospital
  • massage therapist
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • equestrian events
  • fishing
  • freshwater fishing
  • golf
  • hiking
  • hunting
  • mountain biking
  • mountain climbing
  • mountaineering
  • sailing
  • swimming
  • tennis
  • wind-surfing
Horse riding in Caceres, bike hire, donkey trekking, wonderful hikes in the sierra. The finca is great for bird watching and has some very interesting species, e.g. bee eaters and eagle owl nesting. We can also provide interesting itineraries for exploring the countryside and the 4 world heritage towns, Caceres, Trujillo, Guadalupe and Merida, all with great atmosphere, cultural events, nightlife etc. We can also arrange property viewing in our beautiful area if you are thinking of investing in Spain away from the coastal areas in the peace and quiet of the countryside.

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