Newsletter July 2021
The summer has begun and the holidaymakers have made their way into our accommodations. Luckily, Diana arrived to join our team in April. Then we have French Stephanie, who helps us at the weekends. This means that we have a full team now with Arupa, Om Shanti, Virendra and Prem included.
Diana is Hungarian but familiar to Maravilhas. In the past, she’s been helping us whenever we needed it. Also in the garden, she knows how to do her part.
In the last months, we’ve mostly been finishing off the yurt. The toilet and outer kitchen have been constructed and are ready to use. This means that you will no longer have to go to the communal kitchen if you’d like to serve your group a little drink or snack.
We are ready to accommodate your participants and activities. Get in contact with us if you’d like to know more about our available packages.
Besides the yurt, we’ve done more of our usual painting, wood-staining, planting vegetables, and similar tasks.
Don’t believe us? Come and find out for yourself. Take a look at our calendar to see if there are still some suitable dates available.
We’ve already mentioned it in our last newsletter, we’ve been working on something else as well — our new website was ready for renovation, and is now online!
The content stays the same, of course. You can still have a look at the houses and you can still see images of the environment. The biggest change is in the layout. This has been adjusted and it’s now easier to browse the website.
For our mobile viewers, it will also be a lot easier to explore our website. The site was adjusted in such a way that it’s now also suitable for the smaller screens.
Go and have a look, and maybe you can fill out our new contact form as well!
Hiking week: 18th – 25th of September
Late summer is an amazing time to hike in Portugal. Throughout the years, many of our participants have experienced this. And this is why we keep on doing it!
These hiking weeks are ideal for hikers who’d like to walk with some company and guidance. Monika, our guide, does this job perfectly. Her knowledge of plants and trees is enormous and if you want, she’ll share it with you. Breakfast and dinner will be served by one of our chefs. These meals are well-balanced and great for vegetarians. This is also how we like to contribute towards a better climate.
During your stay, you’ll have the option to stay in one of our houses. But if you like a real adventure, you’ll be able to rent a caravan or bring your tent. Our camping site has some marvelous spots available.
Rynk, one of our participants, had the following to say about our hiking week:
In one word: fantastic! It was our first time in a group setting, but for sure not the last one as our experience was amazing. A fun group under the great guidance of our guide Monika. There was a great variety in the programme and very doable. Besides the amazing hikes, we also enjoyed the tranquillity, the lovely pool to cool down and the delicious cuisine of John.
You reap what you sow: fruit
Those who have known Maravilhas for a while already are aware that there are many trees on the property. And we continue planting them. A couple of years back we planted some new apple trees. Those trees are now bearing fruit. This year we’ll have many apples from our garden.
Very often we put a lot of time and energy into our vegetable garden. And often we forget to mention that we also have other things besides vegetable beds. Maravilhas has so much to offer that sometimes we take it all for granted.
The figs are still not ripe enough. But they too will be picked soon to make our homemade fig jam. We also have plums, they’re being harvested at the moment.
As you can see, when you choose to stay at Monte Maravilhas, you won’t have to buy too much fruit.
Yoga weekend June 2021
In June we decided it was about time to hold a retreat again. As it’s been a while that we organised one, we decided it was best to start with a weekend. Just to see if we still have the hang of it.
We were delighted to see our yoga teacher Atul again. This time we primarily had Portuguese people that wanted to escape the city for a bit.
The programme was also a little bit different than usual. During these two days, we had a couple of different workshops. Atul included a Thai Yoga massage group, a meditative walk, and of course yoga in all of its aspects.
Because of this successful weekend, we hope that you’ll be able to join us in September. This time not just for the weekend, but for a whole week! We already have some people registered, so let us know something as soon as you can.
And if you aren’t such a big fan of yoga, we also have some other activity weeks too. In September we also have our painting week. William will come back to guide you and bring out your inner Picasso.
Contemplation spots at Maravilhas
In addition to the peace you can experience at Maravilhas, we’d like to add the numerous contemplation spots as well. Maravilhas is a highly contemplative place, and for those who wish, you can reflect and meditate in all serenity.
These special spots are missed sometimes, as they are a little hidden. But this makes them the perfect place to sit for a while.
We are not talking about the yurt and the meditation platform, as you all know how to find those already.
And if you’d like a bit more guidance, we also have other activities available like yoga, sound baths, and more. These activities are organised by people outside of Maravilhas and can’t be guaranteed during your stay.
Watersport activities in the area
So many times we have written about restaurants in the area. So we thought: why don’t we talk a bit about some more local activities. That said, this time, no restaurants, but let’s get a bit more active!
The following tips might be useful for those who are looking for something more active during their holiday.
Kayaking or Canoeing
The South Alentejo has a well-known river, the Mira. This means that there are many water activities to do in the area. Like kayaking for example. At the seaside, you’ll find Milfontes, where you can discover a couple of options.
Areias do Mar for example is a very good choice. You can rent kayaks by the hour, or you can decide to do an entire tour. They have three different trips to choose from.
If you’d like a shorter tour and stay a bit on the beach afterwards, you can take the short trip. This one’s about 5 km long and will take you about two and a half hours.
The mid-length tour is about 13 km and will take you around four hours.
And our true adventurers can make a trip of 31 km! This will take the entire day. It’s worth it though, because the valley of the river Mira offers some stunning views.
If kayaking is a bit too plain for you, then you can decide to take the canoe! At Ecotrails you can choose to rent a canoe, rather than a kayak.
They too have different trips available. What we can recommend is the family trip. This one starts and finishes in Odemira. From here you’ll be sailing a couple of km in the valley of Odemira. This will give you amazing views of the lush nature.
They also have some other tours available. So be sure to take a look at their website. The family trip is the shortest, but there are more options available. They even have other activities, such as horseback riding and a guided boat trip.
Unfortunately, their website is only available in German at the moment. But don’t let that stop you from getting in touch with them.
Surfing at the West Coast
Something a bit rougher than going paddling is surfing. If you want something a bit more energetic, you can choose to rent a board and ride the waves. The west coast is quite wild, making it ideal to go into the water with your surfboard.
There are numerous surf schools present in this area. The closest one is Carvalhal Beach Nature. Which is about a one hour drive away from Maravilhas.
At this school, you’ll be able to take group classes or learn privately if you’d like.
If you are alone in this and your companions don’t want to join, they’ll be able to stay at the beach, or have a drink at the bar.
For something a bit more special, you can also decide to go SUP-ing. In recent years this sport has gained in popularity. And you can even do it in the Alentejo!