Luxury Farms Are The Hottest Summer Travel Trend

Reconnecting with nature is in.

by Alexandra Owens
luxury farms

Cozying up next to a herd of cattle might not seem like the most alluring way to spend your next vacation — but don’t pack up for the city just yet. With agricultural tourism on the rise, more luxury properties than ever before are jumping onboard the trend, cultivating their own farms and gardens and expanding their existing amenities to appeal to savvy travelers. Today, it’s not unusual for working farms and ranches to offer award-winning restaurants, chic wellness retreats, artisan cooking demonstrations, and five-star accommodations. Even Eva Gabor in Green Acres would have to approve.

In spite of their rustic glamor, the best of these resorts remain refreshingly (and quite literally) down to earth. Each one immerses guests in their unique terroir and gives them the too-often undervalued gift of ample space, fresh air, and quiet, whether you’re learning how to make preserves, horseback riding in the Andes, or forest bathing in the foothills of Tennessee’s Smoky Mountains. Here are some of the best farm stays around the world where you can reconnect with nature, from The Resort at Paws Up in the heart of the American West to South Africa’s Babylonstoren.

Blackberry Farm


The gold standard of rural retreats, Blackberry Farm rests on a 4,200-acre estate in the foothills of Tennessee’s Smoky Mountains. The Relais & Châteaux resort’s impressive culinary team — including a master gardener, baker, cheesemaker, forager, butcher, preservationist, and sommelier— have turned the James Beard Award-winning Barn at Blackberry Farm into one of the country’s most renowned restaurants. Immerse yourself in the local bounty through a Farmstead Tour, join an artisan cooking demonstration, or enjoy a game of fetch with the property’s truffle-hunting Lagotto Romagnolo dogs. Those looking for a little pampering will love the forest bathing program and Wellhouse spa, located in a quaint 1870s farmhouse.

The Resort At Paws Up


Live out your Yellowstone fantasy in high style at The Resort at Paws Up, found on a 37,000-acre working cattle ranch just outside Missoula, Montana. Choose from cozy pine cabins or, during the summer, glamping tents pitched along the Blackfoot River. Travelers seeking more luxurious accommodations can post up at The Green O, an onsite sister property with Pritzker-worthy treehouses and eight-course dinners cooked by acclaimed chef Brandon Cunningham. No matter where you sleep, there’s plenty of outdoor adventure at a resort so big it could be a national park. Join guided activities from dog sledding and skiing to river rafting and fly-fishing.

Rosewood Cape Kidnappers


Home to a 6,000-acre working sheep and cattle farm at the end of New Zealand’s celebrated Hawke’s Bay wine trail, Rosewood Cape Kidnappers overlooks Cape Sanctuary, the country’s largest privately-owned wildlife restoration project and a reserve for juvenile kiwi birds. Join conservation guides on night tours, visit the world’s biggest and most accessible gannet colony, and soak up a breathtaking sunrise perched atop the Cape’s towering cliffs. Guests can also taste their way through the spectacular landscape of Hawke’s Bay during meals featuring locally sourced produce and just-picked vegetables, fruits, and herbs harvested from the resort’s own garden.

Octant Évora


Nestled in south central Portugal’s Alentejo bucolic countryside, less than two hours away from Lisbon, Octant Évora invites travelers to escape the pressures of city life. The 25-acre agricultural estate — complete with an olive grove, a vegetable garden, and an orchard — supplies its onsite restaurant, À Terra, with organic, seasonal ingredients. Experience the beauty of the surrounding plains while stargazing, birdwatching, hiking, bike riding, or horseback riding. Octant Évora also offers workshops in nature photography, grape harvesting, and prickly pear picking.

Tenuta Di Murlo


Discover la dolce vita at Tenuta Di Murlo, an exclusive estate in the rolling green hills of Umbria, Italy that’s been owned by the same family for generations. Situated on 10,000 acres of centuries-old olive groves, woodland, and valleys, the farm at the heart of the property houses goats, hens, rabbits, pigeons, and ducks, as well as bees that produce raw honey. Don’t miss the property’s organic vineyard, which supplies wine for the onsite restaurant Il Caldaro. All of the hotel’s accommodations are located in medieval stone buildings that were once the home of farmers, and have been lovingly transformed into contemporary villas and suites with private gardens and pools.

Hacienda Zuleta


One of the top hotels in Ecuador, Hacienda Zuleta has prestigious roots; it’s belonged to the family of former President Galo Plaza Lasso for more than one hundred years. Located in the Andes north of Quito, the colonial-era farm makes much of its food using its own products, including homemade jam, cheeses, milk, and freshly-caught trout. Hike to hidden mountain lakes, go birdwatching in hope of spotting a rare Andean condor, or explore the grasslands on the Hacienda’s own breed of Zuleteño horses.



Home to what was once described as "the Versailles of vegetable gardens,” Babylonstoren ranks among the oldest and most stunning of South Africa’s historic Cape Dutch farms. Inspired in part by the mythological hanging gardens of Babylon, the 12 acres of fruits and vegetables supply two onsite restaurants which serve seasonal offerings such as fire-roasted beetroot with plum vinegar and homemade gnocchi with farm-cultivated mushrooms. (Then there’s also the deli, bakery, butcher, cheese room, olive groves, and winery). Guests here can kick back and eat or get more hands-on with expert-led workshops on making their own charcuterie or growing plants from scratch.

Le Soleil d’Or


You might not expect to find a 20-acre farm in the Caribbean, but Cayman Brac’s Le Soleil d’Or centers around the organic estate. Access to fresh produce on such a remote island is more than just a welcome amenity; it helps provide the community with nurturing food. Indulge in an ever-evolving menu of fresh juices and cocktails, like a sorrel margarita, made from ingredients on the farm, as well just-picked heirloom peppers, okra, and eggplant that complement local fish and lobster. In addition to cooking classes and farm tours, the hotel’s concierge can arrange days full of snorkeling, diving, cycling, hiking, and rock climbing along Cayman Brac’s unspoiled cliffs and beaches.