Feast your eyes on these tall and curvaceous countryside retreats, says Niki O'Callaghan

Longbarrow Windmill, England

This 200-year-old whitewashed Devon windmill is cradled by the rolling countryside of South Hams. With room for just two guests, the three-room dwelling is a secluded hideaway with nothing but fields and cows as far as the eye can see. On the ground floor, the sitting room/kitchen features polished wooden floors and modern fittings. Upstairs, the snug bedroom has a Victorian brass bed, while two floors above a viewing room provides vistas of Devonshire farmland.

Longbarrow Windmill, Moles Lane, North Whilborough, Devon (01803 316 191; www.devonwindmills.co.uk). Three nights from £250.

Clairmont Mill, Virgin Islands

The largest of the US Virgin Islands, St Croix was once home to more than 90 cotton, sugarcane and indigo plantations. The 19th-century Clairmont Mill sits on a former sugarcane plantation and has been beautifully restored and embellished, with a grand villa adding bedrooms, a sitting room and a pool. Within the stone mill itself is a kitchen laden with Creole spices and tropical fruit; upstairs are two en suite bedrooms overlooking St Croix's North Shore. The surrounding six acres of greenery provide plenty of privacy.

Clairmont Mill, East End, North Shore, St Croix, Virgin Islands (book through: 001 514 393 3003; www.caribbeanway.com). Double rooms start at US$540 (£318), the whole villa (sleeping 10) starts at US$1,003 (£590), room only.

Windmill, Greece

As well as cliff-hugging villages, the island of Santorini features gentler terrain. Located on the flat, north-east coast, this typically Cycladic whitewashed windmill boasts 360-degree views of surrounding vineyards and the Aegean sea. Decorated in simple, earthy tones, there are two cosy bedrooms, a bathroom stocked with natural Korres products, a kitchen and living room. There is also a hydro-massage pool in the grounds and a garden full of organic fruit that is presented in a basket on arrival.

Windmill, Imerovigli, Santorini, Greece (00 30 210 897 6016; www.windmill.gr). Rental starts at €280 (£200) per day. Sleeps five.

Le Moulin à, Vent France

A wooden staircase spirals up to the top of this converted 18th-century mill in the lower Lot river valley, leading guests through a kitchen and dining room, living room and bedroom with the original wooden beam framework. What the property lacks in space it makes up for in character and location. The lawn can be used for a game of boules or a barbecue, or guests can cool off in the large private pool. Situated on a hill, the mill has views of orchards and lavender fields.

Le Moulin à Vent, Lot, France (book through: 020-7738 8772; www.dominiquesvillas.co.uk). Rental starts at £745 per week, including a car ferry crossing. Sleeps two.

Windmill of the Sun, Portugal

Don't be fooled by the rustic appearance of this old stone windmill - look through the shuttered windows and you'll find a stylish retreat with a Moroccan-inspired bathroom, circular sitting room and two large airy bedrooms, each individually decorated with antique furniture, rugs and objets d'art. Daytimes might be spent sunbathing by the private pool or heading to local markets or artisan fairs in nearby Tavira. The windmill is also located in a natural conservation area.

Windmill of the Sun, near Tavira, Algarve, Portugal (book through: 01752 551 500; www.soundlets.co.uk). Rental starts at £350 per week. Sleeps four.

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