Olive Oil Vats. Ladoeiro, Idanha-a-Nova, Central Portugal

Olive pressing at the Lagar- Central Portugal

In Central Portugal it is olive picking season. Last week we helped several people in our community to pick their olives. This week, it was time to gather up our bounty and take the olives to the Lagar to be pressed. The behemoth and giant of olive oil production, Spain lives right next door to […]

Tractor ride with the olives!

Olive Picking in Portugal 

Olive picking starts early in Portugal, as the season begins in November. We have now picked olives in France, Portugal and Spain. Each experience has been very different. In France olives are raked with small hand combs into the nets below.  In Southern Spain olives aren’t picked until after Christmas, and generally involve tree shakers […]

Medieval Music at Idanha-a-Velha Festa, Castelo Branco, Central Portugal

Medieval Festa in Idanha-a-Velha

Last weekend we went to a Medieval Festa (festival) in the nearby historic village of Idanha-a-Velha. There are a network of villages throughout Central Portugal that have been designated as historic (Aldeias Históricas de Portugal). The twelve historic villages host annual festas to celebrate their rich history. Idanha-a-Velha’s event celebrated the life of their very […]

Chaos and his Lego Caravan, Penamacor, Castelo Branco, Central Portugal

Living Off Grid in Central Portugal

Never in our wildest dreams did we ever imagine that our family would live in a caravan, without mains running water or electricity but here we are, living off grid in Central Portugal! When we first came to Portugal housesitting in 2015 we were surprised to find one of our neighbours, a family of five, […]

Casa do Ramalho, Penamacor, Castelo Branco, Central Portugal

Walking in Penamacor Central Portugal

We have discovered some wonderful walking trails in Penamacor, Central Portugal. Penamacor itself is very remote, you are free to wander without interruption. Penamacor is so far inland that you are almost in Spain, only 12km from the border.  Portugal is fantastic for walking, particularly inland in Central Portugal due to the more temperate climate, […]

Fun Times at Idanha-a-Nova Lake, Castelo Branco, Central Portugal

Idanha-a-Nova Lake

Idhana-a-Nova in Central Portugal is a remote and ancient part of Portugal and home to a spectacular lake.  Idhana-a-Nova lake is within the perimeters of the Geopark Naturejo, which forms part of the Global Network of National Geoparks created by UNESCO.  Geoparks are a  place where geological heritage is connected to broader aspects of the natural […]

Atmospheric Skies, Penamacor, Castelo Branco, Central Portugal

Stunning Sunrises and Sunsets

Living on the land provides some rich rewards and reminds us daily that there is nothing more beautiful and good for the soul than nature itself.  Mother nature’s greatest achievements must be the gorgeous sunrise and sunsets that we are able to witness regularly in Portugal. 

A Pig's Life, Penamacor, Castelo Branco, Central Portugal

Pigs and Acorns on the Portuguese Quinta

The acorns are falling in abundance here in Portugal; some are eaten by birds and small mammals, but they make an amazingly tasty treat for the quinta’s resident pigs! Portugal and Spain are renowned for acorn fed pigs, as it is supposed to enhance the flavour of their meat (ssh, don’t tell the pigs!). Pigs […]

Caravan in the Woods, Penamacor, Castelo Branco, Portugal

Cork Oaks in Portugal

The cork oak tree is a beautiful statuesque tree that is Portugal’s national tree.  Before living in Portugal we had no idea how cork was produced, or that it was Portugal’s main industry.  Fossilised remains of these ancient trees have been found dating back over ten million years!  The oldest cork oak in the world, […]

Exploring, Fonte do Pego, Castelo Branco, Central Portugal.

Fonte do Pego, Portugal

Set inside a gorge full of fossils, a short walk from a preserved traditional millers house with a working watermill stone and overlooked by Penha Garcia castle you will find the most spectacular natural swimming pool.  Fonte do Pego has to be the best way to cool down ever.  A beautifully crafted swimming hole utilising the […]