Guest Reviews and Comments

"When we planned our stay at Lightwood we had a full week-long itinerary planned. Who could have guessed our trip would be altered by the covid-19 outbreak. We are grateful for how this turned out because it allowed us the extra time to enjoy the enchantment of Lightwood! The history and beauty of the house and property have drawn us in and we are already planning another visit. The rest and relaxation we enjoyed were medicine for our souls! Thank you! Thank you for opening up this labor of love for guests. Thank you for anticipating our every need. Thank you for taking the time to talk with us. Thank you for all the extra touches that made my son feel extra special...the books, the toys, the 'secret hideouts' and the treasure hunt! Child and adults thoroughly enjoyed our stay and it will be a lasting memory of my son's childhood. We wish you both the best and anxiously await our next visit!"


"'Safe Harbor in a Storm.' Our family planned a trip to Williamsburg, March 14-20, 2020. We did not expect to be caught up in the coronavirus storm. Fear not, we had a safe harbor in the storm. It's name is Lightwood. Surrounded by a beech forest, this charming c. 1760s restored home has something interesting in every nook and cranny. There are quiet porches in which to sit and garden benches where you can meditate and relax. We went on a fairy treasure hunt. We truly reconnected with nature."


"Dear Cliff and Joy, This has been a wonderful time of relaxation and connecting with nature. We came with the anticipation of visiting the historic areas of Williamsburg, but found so much more at Lightwood House and Forest. You both have given us a memory of a lifetime. The house gave us all the comforts of home plus a history lesson. The forest gave us connection with nature and the faeries' treasure hunt and the faerie tree. My grandson loved the hidden staircase, a closet of toys and books and the great playground."

"this is Scarlett July 2722 and Jude we like to thank you for let ing us stay at this house we liked it a lot we even toke a video of the house and we found the treasure from the faeries we even want to stay at this house a gen and we plade Dres uq. from Jude now I mis you M.r Cliff we hope we see you agen"

"We had such a lovely, magical time at Lightwood, despite the rain and everything. The highlight was the wonderful diversity of mushrooms around the property in so many colors, shapes, and sizes. Thank you for your stewardship of such a wonderful place."

"Dear Cliff and Joy, We had an absolutely wonderful time at your home. Thank you for all you do to make it a special place. It was the ideal home base for our travels through the area, matching and often exceeding the sense of charm and adventure we found in this historic region. And the Fairy! This will be a lifelong memory of wonder and joy for our kids. Thank you!"

Dear Cliff and Joy, Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for letting us stay in your beautiful home. This home, and the grounds, were the perfect place to spend quality family time with our son stationed in Norfolk. I felt almost like I travelled in time or to a magical place for a week. This was our first time being in the beautiful state of Virginia. Seeing the deer on our walks was amazing. We made friends with a cute little toad, whom we named Thaddeus. Love your book selection, especially the James Herriot books. Again, thank you for this amazing, beautiful, and peaceful time. Best wishes always."


Dear Cliff and Joy, What a delightful house! I've sent many photos back to my family and friends in England and to one in particular who is enamored of faeries. We loved the house and family story, so eloquently written. Our dogs loved the grounds and we enjoyed the space tremendously. Truly an idyllic retreat from the hustle and bustle of day-to-day life. We will definitely be recommending this cosy home to friends and hope to be back again soon. With thanks for your hospitality."


"What an amazing experience! We all thoroughly enjoyed our stay in this beautiful and historic home. In addition to our outdoor and driving explorations, we enjoyed exploring the antiques and the house! My seven-year-old daughter was especially impressed with all the work people had to do to live back then. She thought about it while holding one of the irons--so heavy! Our family really needed a break and this trip to stay in your home was just the perfect one."

"The week certainly went by too quickly to thoroughly enjoy your home and estate. What a wonderful and unique property. We enjoyed the ambiance that allowed us to come and go from the colonial period on a daily basis. We were especially entertained one night as we traded hoots with an owl out back."


"You certainly have a beautiful home! We enjoyed a peaceful and cozy several days here. The autumn light, birdsong, and ample walking trails do the soul good. And our collie loved exploring the property. Thanks!

"Thank you so much for welcoming us into your home this weekend. As always, Lightwood is absolutely beautiful. I loved seeing it as the seasons changed. Thank you for your wonderful hospitality and generosity; truly you made the weekend absolutely perfect. We hope to be back soon."

"Dear Cliff and Joy, Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful home with us. We were all able to appreciate the significance of what you all have accomplished. You preserved a gem to share with others. To be able to go into Williamsburg so easily and then return to the peacefulness of Lightwood is an amazing combination. And, as another figure in more recent history said: 'We shall return.'"

"We thoroughly enjoyed our Covid Thanksgiving at Lightwood!! Not only is it a lovely property filled with beautiful antiques, but it is a cozy gathering place for our family. Thank you for your lovely attention to detail and for allowing us to spend a peaceful Thanksgiving during these turbulent times."

"We love to come to Surry! As always, we are sad to leave Lightwood. Your home is so lovely. Enjoyed seeing all the acquisitions and and admiring your taste. Hopefully, we will return for our 9th Christmas stay in December 2021."

"It was a pleasure to return to Lightwood to celebrate our first anniversary. My husband and I were married here on October 12, 2019. Thank you for the lovely stay and all of the special little touches around the house. Cliff and Joy had kept the top of our wedding cake frozen this whole year, and I can't think of any other venue owners who would be so thoughtful. Best wishes for the rest of 2020--we will see you again!"

“Lightwood House was a wonderful getaway for our family and will be remembered by our kids for a long, long time. They were in awe of the stories of Faeries in the woods and the opportunity to visit the Grandfather Tree to tie on wishes. The house was a great space for our family to enjoy and feel taken back in time. Thoughtful touches were present throughout and the hosts made sure we had everything we needed. I was worried before going that there might be fragile items or breakable antiques in the house, but we found everything to be sturdy enough for the exploring hands of kids, ages 6 and 4. We loved having ample outdoor space to explore and a great yard for the kids to play. Highly recommend a stay at Lightwood.”


"This was the best vacation in the history of the whole entire world!!!"

"Who needs Colonial Williamsburg when one can stay at Lightwood House?! Our stay in your fabulous home was utter perfection....We've already made plans to return."

"I loved this house and [forest] path....This place made me feel like I was a child in the 18th century."

"I loved this house and trail. I loved how you prepared this house for us. I loved the trail and the Fairy Tree."

"I can't even begin to explain how wonderful our stay here was."

"We so enjoyed the beauty and peace of being away from city life. Being in a Colonial-era home made Williamsburg come alive for our boys."

"Had a wonderful stay in such an unforgettable place! The toys and books were an unexpected surprise and the kids had a blast."

"Wow! What an awesome time we've had at Lightwood House. This place is just amazing. We loved exploring the house and grounds. We used the backyard and firepit. The kids enjoyed finding all the toys and games. Loved all the little touches, like the fresh flowers everywhere!"


"Your beautiful Lightwood home has enlivened our imaginations and our conversations about those who have crossed its threshold for over 200 years. The beauty of the architecture, the nostalgic touches in each room, the loveliness of the grounds, all combined to capture a place in our memories that will live on in our family when we gather and reminisce about our season here."

"We have enjoyed our stay in this very special historic home. It has very special features to each room of the house. We have enjoyed the antiques. We loved visiting and reading the fairy book called 'The Faeries of Lightwood and Doon Hill.' We loved the hike in the woods for the beautiful fairy tree. We took lots of pictures that we will enjoy for the rest of our lives. Thank you for this historic beauty you gave us."

"We are so grateful you have made this home and property available for others to enjoy and come to love. The solitude was ever so precious to our family as we slowed our pace of life and enjoyed the time we had with one another. Most of us are too busy and Lightwood was our way to reconnect, slow down, and breathe. We loved our time here!"

"Lightwood has been a haven and a refuge to us this past week! We love your home so very much that we spent the last day of our vacation enjoying just Lightwood. There is a serenity to this place that immediately refreshes mind, body, soul, spirit, and heart! Everyone, including our young grandchildren, was captivated by the beauty of your home, the surrounding forest filled with special treasures and wonderment, and the richness of history that permeates every piece of your home and property. This has been the best vacation we have ever had!"

"Another terrific break at Lightwood! We brought my mother this time, and her dog, who is usually very tense, but at Lightwood she is relaxed and quiet. Our other dog was his majestic self and enjoyed walking in the woods. Two happy dogs! My son and daughter played chess, blocks, and had great fun on the playground. Two happy kids! My mother loved the grounds and the house as we knew she would. 'Williamsburg' is her favorite aesthetic and she lives in a home that is about 230 years old, so she felt at home immediately."

"The most peaceful place on the Earth! So serene and calming. Loved listening to all the sounds in the surrounding woods. Absolutely loved this place with its immense history. The kids loved playing with all the period toys and hiding in all the nooks and crannies. This house gave them a peek at living in another time period. Thanks Cliff and Joy for providing us this chance to relive the past and for your gracious hospitality."

"Lightwood House is the most serene, peaceful place on Earth."

"Lightwood House is the most magical, peaceful place."

"It felt like a privilege to occupy for a short time this place that has such a long history. The historical details-such as the nail-studded doors, the latches and locks, captured my imagination and curiosity. I walked the trail in the woods both days, and that too was  an experience of pleasure and discovery. Our party of five found your home to be relaxing, a sensual feast, and a step back in time."

"This plantation will forever stand out as a sublime destination."

"There was talk among our guests that our wedding was the BEST WEDDING EVER! Lightwood House will forever be a magical, special place for us."

“Lightwood House is a true treasure.”



“The beauty of the house and grounds is breathtaking.”


“Lightwood is a total enchantment.”


“The house is welcoming and the grounds are gorgeous.”


“Beautifully set in its own hundred acre wood.”


“From the moment we passed through the entrance gate, we knew this place was special.”


“Your house is magical.”


“Everything about this exquisite home is unique and elegant.”


“Lightwood is quietly beautiful and mystically peaceful.”


“It was such a treat to come ‘home’ to Lightwood’s treasured history and architectural splendor.”


“We were in awe from the moment we drove up to the house.”


“Pleasant times soon become cherished memories.”


“Lightwood was a dream come true.”


“Lightwood is as close to heaven on earth as you can get.”


“We have enjoyed the serenity and beauty of the Lord’s handiwork displayed in his creation all around us.”


“There is a serenity to this place that immediately refreshes mind, body, soul, spirit, and heart! ”


“We were captivated by the beauty of your home filled with special treasures and abundant in the richness of the history that permeates every piece of your home and property.”


“There is a gentle, humane, and beautiful spirit that reigns here.”

"Our children's imaginations were sparked the moment we entered the property."

"The kids loved exploring all the nooks and crannies and pretending to live in another time period! They loved finding the secret staircase and the hidden door in the attic."

"This was our 6th family vacation here and we enjoyed it more than ever. We love hiking to the fairy tree with the kids every year!"

"The house is so beautiful and charming, you just want to stay here forever!"

"We had a wonderful stay at this great retreat into history and faeries. You have created a great aesthetic here and a singular experience."

"The Treasure Hunt...was the highlight of the trip for our six-year-old son."

"We went on a fairy treasure hunt on one of the many beautiful trails. I believe the adults enjoyed this as much as the four year old!" 



We hope you enjoyed reading these reviews and comments. For more, please visit:

Tie your wish on the majestic old Faerie Tree

Mossy Path through the Woods

Main Staircase

Great-Grandfather William keeping time by the Hour

A Spring Visitor

Welsh Dresser made from Lightwood Forest Oak

Across the Fields and through the Woods

Frost and Snow

Look for the White Gates...

And then for the Wagon Wheel...

Down Lightwood Lane you go. Don't stop, you're nearly there.

Drive around to the front gates

Welcome to Lightwood

Having lots of fun

It's Teatime at Lightwood.Theodora and Rabert waiting for their friends to arrive.