Quirky mountain top paradise in north Portugal
Quinta Rural FarmStays offers you a quirky home away from home, located in one of the most authentic & rustic areas of North Portugal. Vacation in a family-like atmosphere, with a real sense of freedom, amazing views, good food, child friendly, fun guests, vast offer of activities, and all the space and peace you need to recharge your battery or reconnect. Whether you’re looking for a romantic getaway, a family holiday or an adventurous holiday with friends, expect a cosy atmosphere and all the inside information you need.
Volunteering at Quinta Rural Monte de Burras – North Portugal
We’re a couple of Dutchies doing camping and glamping up in the (North) Portuguese mountains and we always welcome GOOD help from volunteers. We insist on your volunteering, besides being fun and a special experience, being fair trade for both parties.
We come with 5 hectares, an old 1673 farm, a toddler and a herd of donkeys, horses and cattle dogs. We speak Dutch (of course), and (sort of) English, Portuguese, German and at one point French (it’s still in there..somewhere). We started in 2012 and have had our fare share of experience with volunteers, workers,workshops, guests and of course, a lot of hard (yet fun and satisfying) work to turn this place into an ideal nature holiday retreat for our guests, and a good life for ourselves, the land and our animals.
SKILLED & PRACTICAL VOLUNTEERS FOR MARCH – JUNE 2019
We are building our 3rd round log cabin. We could really do with some skilled help such as electricians,plumbers, tilers, and..carpenters! (making the kitchen and furniture ourselves). We’re quite handy and can do it ourselves (and for the first time ever, we have a team of constructors on site!), but some extra hands will definitely make it easier.
Of course, regular daily tasks also ask our attention. Someone taking care of our donkeys, chopping wood, helping with regular tasks, would be just as welcome.
We hope we’ll meet some passionate people wanting to be part of this project.
“THE REGULAR STUFF” 2019
* Building, plumbing, carpentry
* Helping with Tourists
* Mounting Tents
* Animal care (clean stables)
* Child care
* Help in the house
* Clearing and preparing the land
* Wood chopping
* Making furniture
* Fixing fences
* General Maintenance,
* Kitchen help
During summer we concentrate on our guests; cooking, cleaning, serving guests, bar, camp fires, activities, donkey walking, hiking, preparing lunch, barbecues etc. Mounting (june) and dismounting (sept/oct) all tents & furniture and utensils.
WHAT WE EXPECT OF YOU
we ask for 30 hours a week, divided over 5 or 6 days a week. In return, there’s a place to live, sleep, drink and eat (some joined meals, some self cooking with provided groceries).
We’re flexible on the division of the hours e.g. you prefer working more hours a day to have more days off.
The more self-sufficient you are, the less we have to provide, so the same goes for you. E.g. if you bring your own camping gear (tent, camper,caravan), less hours you have to put in.
People intending to put in more hours, if skilled and/or experienced and/or hands on in needed areas, can get a little pay as compensation.
Those intending to put in less hours, can choose for a mix volunteering/holiday, then we get a little pay as a compensation.
Depending on weather and availability; small pop up tent or shared group tent, caravan, sometimes strawbale house.
We very much welcome volunteers bringing their own camping equipment (tent, camper, caravan)
OUR (REMOTE) LOCATION
The farm is situated in, what I call, a pristine, rugged paradise! At 865 meters, you get to enjoy an all day long beautiful view and all the calmness and serenity you need.
However, this altitude also implies that the nearest town/shops are located at 8 kms, that all the social life is limited to the simple (yet everso kind) village bars (nearest at 4,5km), and that it can get foggy, windy and cold in the winter. (The landscape however, turns into a mysterious spooky fairy tale land) It’s amazing!! But only for those accepting and appreciating the farms unique location.
THINGS YOU MAY ENJOY DOING DURING YOUR TIME OFF
This all depends on whether or not you came with your own transport.
The little village of Juguelhe only has 15 inhabitants…you can imagine public transport isn’t all that present. This means that, should you want to visit one of the lovely towns or cities such as Braga, Amarante, Barcelos, Vila Real, Porto, Guimarães, that you will need an entire day to travel, visit and enjoy.
For those loving nature, old granite villages, old customs, mountains, simple life, making new friends etc., they will be just fine here! Loads of hiking trails, existing and new ones to be discovered, it’s also a paradise for horseback riders, mountainbikers, climbers, outdoor sport lovers, 4×4 drivers.
We always welcome GOOD help and insist on volunteership, besides being fun and a special experience, being fair trade for both parties.
We’ve had ‘golden’ volunteers, (hard working people which we could never repay what they’ve done for us, and who we thankfully reward with a little extra, e.g. canyoning activity, mini break, some pay, to restaurants etc. All came back for a 2nd,3rd,4th and one even 7th time. You can say they’re part of the family. Some even stay for months in a row, some plan moving here).
But, unfortunately, we’ve also had quite some volunteers thinking it is a free holiday, sitting at the dinner table waiting for me to serve them first, and for me to take care of them.
As well as people running away from their problems, not realizing they’re personal and they will not magically go away upon arriving here. Staying here, in this environment and nature, doing honest hard work, pure air, amazing views, nice guest or solitude (depending on the month) will certainly be good for anyone, but it will not solve anything. It’s just a small part of your process.
But, as said, volunteer-ship has to be fair trade. So we cannot offer a free therapeutically holiday. We can only offer a good place to stay and temporarily live in return for your good help.
So, when thinking of coming here, please be honest to yourself and to us about what you can bring to our place. And what you expect to take from our place.
We’ve learned to start with a one week trial and see how it goes. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.
Nearest airport is Porto (O Porto, Sá Carneiro)
Bus couple of times a day to Cabeceiras de Basto. We will pick you up there for the last 9 kms.
Great hikes, so a lot by foot.
You can use our rental mountain bikes whenever available.
Public transport in the area is available only at the village (9kms).
Taxi to the village costs about 8 euros.
And of course, whenever I need to go to town or any other place, I can give you a ride.
If you come with your own car, we can also indicate great places for a day off or even a mini-break.
Welcome to Quinta Rural farm Glamping
And welcome to the wonderfully wild Serra da Cabreira area, where the wolves howl and the only traffic jam comes from cows, goats and sheep finding their way home after a day in the fields. If you're looking to spend your holiday in Portugal, see yourself experiencing rural life, enjoying nature, wandering through medieval villages, hiking the old mountain trails, go on an outdoor adventure, swim in natural bassins and sniff some local culture, you've found the right spot.
FAMILY-RUN NATURE RETREAT
At Quinta Rural you’ll be welcomed by the three of us, Natascha, Timo and our 2015 toddler Tiago (and some donkeys, horses, dogs, cats & whatever the cat dragged in). When staying with us, you can always count on a warm welcome from passionate owners, loving their life & home and going to great length for you to experience the best their place has to offer.
We invite you to experience the beauty of our mountain life. Slow down, take a moment and relax. Whether you’ll discover this rural area by foot, on adventure or by car. Maybe even choose to participate in some old fashioned hard farming work, be invited into a local’s hospitable house or help us take care of the donkeys … we are sure you will appreciate this #slowlife feeling and hopefully even take it home with you.
but big in space! We purposely choose to keep Quinta Rural small scale and exclusive, even though our domain size isn’t. 50.000 M2 in total : 2,5 hectares camping grounds and 2,5 donkey & horse farm.
FARMSTAY GLAMPING WITH DONKEYS - ‘feel at home tourism’ & ‘fun-farming’
We participate in a national breeding program to avoid the extinction of the Burro Mirandes, a big sturdy and gentle donkey breed. Because of the wolf threat, we regularly opt to put a donkey and her baby under ‘your protection’ on the Quinta Rural camp grounds. In return, our cattle protection dogs will happily take some time off to be your local guide on walks. We hope you share our love for animals & nature.
* 1 Eco-Lodge The Straw Bale Hut
The Straw Bale Cabin is the perfect back to basic country holiday cottage; peaceful, relaxing and environmentally friendly. The curvy, clay plastered walls, wooden beam and deep, wooden windowsills give the cabin the feel of an old country cottage. It is located on the low end of the sloping terrain, overviewing the mountainous landscape and the hundreds of years old granite stone dry stacked walls dividing the terrain into layers. Read more…
* 3 Sturdy Mountain Lodges
Our mountain lodges have been designed & tuned for the ultimate nature experience. Built with sturdy logs, we’ve managed to maintain the amazing view with lots of windows and a big front porch. The cabins offer a comfy stay throughout the year, thanks to natural building materials and good insulation. As such, we’ve been able to lower our ecological footprint.
* 5 TENT CAMPING PITCHES WITH An Amazing View
For those really wanting to go back to basic, we have 5 spacious camping pitches, or which only 1 is suited for (small!) camperbusses, type VW e.g.
During school summer holidays, Quinta Rural is traffic-free (loading and unloading only) and we can only allow tents. Open 1st of May till 30th of September. Reservation required during high season & upfront contact (mail or phone) during off season. Find out more…
* 6 Furnished Farmers Tents A.K.A. Back To Basic Glamping
Camping is still the best way to enjoy Portugals sense of freedom, surrounded by nothing but space, rural life and nature. However, tagging along all equipment and utensils needed for camping, from air matras to cooker, is not all that! Especially if you want to travel light weight, e.g. when flying to Portugal, or when traveling with kids.
Our furnished farmers tents give you the best of camping, without the hassle. A 27 m2 tent, with beds for four (5th is possible), a small cooking area and indoor and outdoor seating, placed upon a wooden platform and with the best view ever. Mounted from May till the end of September.
We’re set in the ‘Serra da Cabreira’, an authentic mountain area in Northern Portugal. Just outside a near-abandoned medieval village, where space, peace and amazing views make for a real sense of freedom. Pure, rugged and full of adventure. Located at 865 meters altitude, thus a good climate for both relaxing and active holidays. Several playful and adventurous hiking trails start at our farm, with many more in the direct area. We also have a vast offer of outdoor activities such as canyoning, horse back riding, wild lifeswimming, wolf spotting, mountainbiking, rafting and adventure parcs. Natural parks the Alvao and Peneda de Geres are well within an hour’s drive. When in need of some city-energy, we will happily point out the historical cities to discover within an hours drive, such as Porto, Braga, Guimarães and Barcelos.