In beautiful Sligo countryside, Ross House – the home of retired farmers and infectious smilers – Nicholas and Oriel, is a haven for weary travellers. She’s a passionate cook and gardener, he’s a born storyteller. Their 1890s farmhouse has been in Oriel’s family for generations, it feels warm, lived-in, loved-in. Enter through the flower-decked porch to discover a down-to-earth, unpretentious interior; Nicholas will keep you entertained over homemade scones and cake in front of the peat fire in the snug little sitting room. Bedrooms (some up, some down) are simple and old-fashioned with beautiful linen and the occasional antique piece. Breakfast on freshly baked brown bread and preserves at the large mahogany table in the dining room. Your hosts can help plan your day and let you in on some of Sligo’s hidden treasures: the unsung archæological site of Carrowkeel with its elaborate passage tombs, Strandhill’s beaches, horse-riding, surfing spots, good eateries, traditional live music. Idyllic surroundings and unaffected peace on a proper Irish farm, run by very dear people.