Country homes embody luxury, helping combine home amenities and the ones you'd love to have. It’s time to spend some time wandering through beautifully manicured gardens, relaxing in ornate bedrooms, tucking into home comforts and recreating your own Downton Abbey fantasy. Here are the highest rated country houses on every continent, according to international travellers. *
White Water Farm in Cape Whale Coast, South Africa
White Water Farm in South Africa
A tranquil refurbished farmhouse in the Kleinrivier Valley, the White Water Farm’s interiors take inspiration from the gorgeous mountain scenery surrounding it. Inside, woodland-inspired furniture and soft-natural shades create a sense of luxury and tradition, while crittall windows give the space with some industrial flair. Pamper yourself in the rooms' clawfoot tubs or take in the landscape while enjoying a glass of local wine on the porch.
Hameiri Estate in Rosh Pinna, Israel
Hameiri Estate in Israel
The 19th century stone house on the Hameiri Estate overlooks the Hula Valley and the lava plateau of the Golan Heights. While the houses’ hilltop location and seemingly endless views might be hard to tear yourself away from, the Hameiri Estate interior is a visual spectacle of its own. The exposed stone walls and intricate mosaic floors create a distinctly Mediterranean atmosphere, a perfect place to cool down once you’ve taken in enough of the Israeli sunshine. A spacious hot tub housed in a tiled room, complete with soft towels and ambient lighting, makes for a personalised spa retreat.
Hazel Manor in Harrogate, UK
Hazel Manor in the United Kingdom
Hazel Manor is the quintessential English country house, with a few humorous twists like the silver-plated deer heads to replace the traditional taxidermied version. Built in 1857, Hazel Manor features the dove grey stonework favoured by 19th century architects and inside visitors will find deep sofas and soft beds to sink into after a long day scoping out the grounds. Afternoon tea – using the local blend from Bettys Café Tea Rooms – is served in the drawing room, where large bay windows overlook the carefully tended garden and vases of homegrown sweet peas sit on every surface.
Wendy’s Eco Guest House in Sarapiquí, Costa Rica
Wendy’s Eco Guest House in Costa Rica
A marvel of symmetry, surrounded by gloriously chaotic countryside, Wendy’s Eco Guest House uses natural materials to harmonise with its surroundings. Reclaimed wood is used throughout the building, lending all the bedrooms a golden hue that even compliments the floating white mosquito nets (as aesthetically pleasing as they are practical) and the brilliantly verdant trees visible from every window. For an unimpeded view of the nearby mountains, spend a morning on the wrap-around terrace followed by a horseback ride through cinematic wilderness.
Bellthorpe Stays in Queensland, Australia
Bellthorpe Stays in Australia
Bellthorpe Stays is surrounded by 120 acres of the eponymous Bellthorpe National Park, which places waterfalls, hiking trails and indigenous wildlife practically on its doorstep. Travellers who are happy to admire the countryside from a distance can relax on the well-situated, hillside balcony, while adventurous types will find plenty of hiking and biking opportunities to satiate their adrenaline fix. When you’re all worn out, come home to the property’s crackling modern fireplaces, filling the open-plan houses with warmth. And courtesy of Bellthorpe Stays relatively remote location, you’ll be guaranteed a quiet night’s sleep.
La Codorniz B&B in Villarrica, Chile
La Codorniz B&B in Chile
While La Codorniz may be listed as a country house (the most popular one in South America, no less) at first glance it seems to have more in common with an enchanted fairy grotto. An abundant herb and wildflower garden presses up against the wooden walls of this deceptively spacious house. Inside tables are laden with organic, homegrown meals, flowers, traditional Marraqueta bread and rustic pottery. These idyllic and thoughtful touches are enhanced by the surrounding scenery, with Lago Villarrica, Volcán Villarrica and the Villarrica National Park all on the horizon.
** The data scientists at Booking.com looked at the highest reviewed country houses in every continent (except for Antarctica, we haven’t got any properties there).