We require a fluent French speaker (not necessarily native) with perhaps either German or Spanish?
Singles and couples are welcome. No short stays sorry: 6 to 8 weeks ideal would be ideal.
Simon speaks English, German, Spanish and French. Ashley speaks English and French, Sophia speaks English and French and is learning Spanish and German.
To see more about the help and accommodation, see the 'Help' and 'Accommodation' sections lower down.
We live in the mountains at the foot of Mount Canigou, 1hr from the Mediterranean on the French-Spanish border, in a truly beautiful wild setting. We are approximately 2 hrs north of Barcelona, and 1 hr south-west of Perpignan. We have a large old farmhouse with several outbuildings, a swimming pool and 11+ acres of land, forest and river.
And we've no neighbours to see or hear of!
We have a small campsite, with two 16m2 bell tents on wooden platforms in a forest near the stream: there is also a summer kitchen with hammocks and tents, an outside shower and dry toilet and large camp fire. This accommodates a maximum of 6 people in the summer months. Just friends, family and workawayers.
We have solar hot water for three of our buildings and the main house. We use water from the stream, gravity-fed, and are installing a new storage tank with purification and filters. We heat almost entirely with our own wood.
We grow our own vegetables, and plan to install our own hydro-electric generator with water from one of the old aqueducts that once fed the land when it was an apple farm.
We have chickens and sheep, a Border Collie called Blue, three cats and a pond with fish … and there is plenty of local wildlife in our forests: wild boar, roe deer, foxes, griffon vultures ...
We have lived in this southern-most region of France, overlooking the Spanish border, since 2005. Ashley is a trained classical singer, Simon a lapsed anthropologist, who owned and ran an IT company in Edinburgh. Simon worked in WWOOF farmsteads in the mid 90s (WWOOF - World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms). We also ran guided mountain walking holidays for small groups in May and October.
We love having down to earth, friendly, intelligent and multilingual guests!
If you play fiddle, guitar or piano you are really welcome!
Types of help and learning opportunitiesLanguage practiceHelp with Eco ProjectsTeachingGardeningDIY and building projectsAnimal CareBabysitting and creative playCreating/ Cooking family mealsHelp around the houseGeneral Maintenance
UN sustainablity goals this host is trying to achieve
Cultural exchange and learning opportunities
You can improve your language skills. We are native English speakers, but Simon speaks English, German, French and Spanish. Ashley and Sophia speak English and French. Sophia is also learning Spanish and German.
You'll experience a way of life that is quite different from how most modern urbanites live, and hopefully really enjoy it.
So if you are a multi-lingual musician you are very welcome - especially fiddlers, guitarists and singers!
Projects involving children
This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.
After almost 15 years there is a certain routine::
During April, May and June - your help will include planting the vegetable garden, weeding, minor maintenance, painting, small building projects, strimming fields, fencing repairs, tending the animals.
During July and August the work has no maintenance or building element. Help with gardening, cleaning, and cooking. As well as language support for our daughter is required (helping maintain her French and improve her German and Spanish, of those are some of your languages).
During September and October - your help will include, making minor repairs, painting, small building projects, strimming, tending the animals, foresty clearing, field tidying and fencing repairs.
As this is an exchange, any skills that you can pass onto us will be much appreciated! We are acquiring new ones all the time! Language - music?!
This host offers a language exchange
I speak English, German, French and Spanish in order of fluency. Looking for native speakers to help our daughter improve her French and learn German and Spanish.
You would have use of one of our apartments/gites or a room in the house with us.
What else ...
Having your own transport would be useful for your days off, but it is possible without, as we could drop you off when necessary. Public transport also begins 6km from our farm, where buses will take you to Perpignan for 1 Euro. The next village is 3km: a 15 minute bike ride.
The coast is not far away (1hr) and there are many small towns to visit in the area (in Spain and France). There are also plenty of mountain walks.
To truly take advantage of being in the mountains and so near to the Mediterranean, and of being so close to Spain (Figueras 1hr, Girona 1.5hrs, Barcelona 2hrs), having your own transport would be a bonus.
Bikes of course are also a possibility!
A little more information
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
Can host digital nomads
I've two internet connections now for reliability. One data modem router and one standard landline router. I work on Salesforce projects myself, so connection is imperative. I've a dedicated office and a be hot desk area in the main. Speeds aren't super fast but adequate for video meetings and working
How many Workawayers can stay?
Standard workaway 20 hrs a week for board and lodging. Except during July and August: approx 18 hrs per week for lodging - 3 hrs per day 4 days a week, full day on Saturdays.
He was great to have around, he chipped in with everything and did not shy away from hard graft! He picked up things really quickly and did a wonderful job of everything he was asked to do.
He was good company in the evenings and heartily enjoyed sharing a meal and a glass of wine, with good banter.
Sam, you are
All the silly clichés aside: tending your own land, growing your own vegetables, building your business from scratch, earning
The work is really varied and they gave us lots of responsibility. We helped with everything from growing
Ziggy is a charming guy, with maturity and common sense well beyond his years. He was always helpful and hard working, and happy to turn his hand even to things that he didn't necessarily like
I can't thank you all enough for the great stay I had in Montferrer. You were all incredibly welcoming from day one and I certainly felt like part of the family by the end of my stay. The house is in a beautiful location and was just the sort of place I was looking for. I enjoyed getting to know all of you and
They were an absolute joy to be around. Positive, cheery, full of humour and not afraid of hard work.
We had loads of fun with them over meals, good banter, good hard work and good craic ...
Can't recommend them more highly. And Sophia misses them soooo much! Please come
Glenn is a hardworking chipper kiwi, with a sense of humour to die for, literally! Ann-Soph a thoughtful, genuinely lovely French lass able to turn her hands to many
We had a great time with you all, thanks especially to Sophia for looking after Liam and sharing your toys, what a little princess you are.
The accommodation provided was fantastic and we had a wonderful first workaway experience.
Great people in a beautiful environment , wishing you
In my time in the Pyrenees, I learned to love, love, love walking in the mountains, listening to the wild river right below the house and swimming in
She arrived at a difficult time for us as a family. My wife Ashley was very ill (now thankfully completely cured) and I was in the middle of a very large building project with a ridiculous deadline.