This charming village is surrounded by idyllic countryside, in the Welsh county of Powys. It is best known for its castle, little of which remains apart from the enormous motte, which you can’t miss as you approach the village. Holiday cottages in Painscastle are roughly three miles from the English border, and near the town of Hay-on-Wye. The village itself is little more than a couple of quiet roads, lined with trees and hedgerows, and dotted with farm buildings and homes. A stroll from your holiday cottage in Painscastle, the Roast Ox Inn is a welcoming pub with roaring fires, a bar stocked with regional ales and a reputation for serving excellent food, prepared with the finest local ingredients.

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Rhulen Old Chapel sits nestled in a quiet valley at the foot of Rhulen Hill near the Welsh village of Paincastle, Powys, a former chapel converted in the 1990s to a four-bedroom countryside cottage perfect for family and friends on holiday, featuring two open fires and cottage-style garden.

On the village’s doorstep, some of Powys’ most spectacular scenery awaits discovery. North of a sweeping bend in the course of the Wye Valley, the Begwns cover more than 1,000 acres of rugged uplands. Managed by the National Trust, the area’s hills and woods are scattered with ponds, and crisscrossed by streams and footpaths, many of which provide far-reaching views toward the Brecon Beacons. There are several ancient monuments to look out for, including a Bronze Age ritual site. Not to be missed on self-catering holidays in Painscastle, Hay-on-Wye lies a couple of miles southeast of the village. Famous for its annual literary festival, it is best explored by foot, with a historic centre packed with book shops and other independent businesses. It lies on the banks of the River Wye, and has a cinema, boat hire, and the Globe Institute of Art and Ideas. Painscastle is also near Builth Wells, a traditional market town with fine architecture, including a stone bridge over the River Wye. The wild hills and moorland of the Brecon Beacons National Park are a scenic drive southward from Painscastle.