Casa Azul 1997

Casa Azul 2017

Casa Amarela 1997

Casa Amarela 2017

Newsletter November 2017

About us

It took a while, but here is another newsletter from Maravilhas. As you may have heard, it was a long and dry summer. Portugal was ravaged by forest fires. Fortunately, we have been spared and welcomed the first rain in October.

The Maravilhas team currently consists of Muriel and Hugo from the Netherlands, Virendra from Belgium, and My from Sweden. In the spring and summer, there was much cleaning of the houses and camping facilities to be done. Now we can focus again on maintenance, painting, repairing the water tank, restyling the vegetable garden, and taking care of the land.

In addition to the 3 caravans we have available for rent, on the hill, a 4th caravan has been added. This one has a nice view and spacious veranda. The meditation/yoga platform is often in use. Now there are 2 sofas where guests can relax, read a book, or have a siesta.

As they are every year, the autumn months are also harvesting months. This year there were many grapes, so we made plenty of grape juice. Our neighbors from Monte Sahaja came to help with harvesting and took a pickup truck full of grapes home. The Bella Louise, also known as lemon verbena, was harvested, so we can make herbal tea from it all year round. Delicious!

Monte Maravilhas 20 years!

In the summer of 1997, Navino and I first came to Monte Maravilhas and we soon decided to realize our dream here. A place where people can enjoy nature, silence and the climate. Also a place where we could offer various activities, such as hiking, painting, yoga, massage and meditation.

When we came here there was no running water and electricity. We took water from the wells on the land, had a small generator and a compost toilet. We lived in tents and life was very simple. We learned to speak Portuguese and wondered about the Portuguese ways of doing and living!

In the spring of 1998 we began renovating the houses: Casa Azul, Amarela and Mimosa. The construction was done by a Portuguese contractor and we took care of the electricity, the tiling, the installation of the kitchens, the wooden floors and the painting work.

The valley was overgrown with blackberries. Once we had cleared it, a beautiful valley appeared. Trees were pruned, cistus roses were cleared from the land, terraces renovated, flowers and trees planted, wells cleaned etc.

In July 2001 we received our first guests in the houses. Navino decided to step out of the project. I went on, helped by family and friends.

In 2002, we were connected to the electricity grid.

In 2004, the saltwater pool was constructed and then the barn in the valley was converted into accommodation: Casa Mula. In 2014, the building that formerly housed the generator and batteries was converted into a studio for Prem: Casa Joana.

Because there was much demand for camping facilities, we built a kitchen and sanitary facilities for campers in the valley in 2013. We bought some caravans and made tent spots. As more and more guests came for caravans and camping, Lakshmi was built on the hill in 2015, with a second kitchen and sanitation facilities. We also built an open yoga/meditation platform.

And now… 20 years later… I still have fun at Maravilhas and in Portugal. It has really become my home. It is nice to be able to receive so many guests, and a joy to work together in an enthusiastic team and enjoy this beautiful piece of land.

Regular guest about Maravilhas anniversary

Ina Golsteijn is one of our regular guests. She participated several times in both hiking and painting weeks at Maravilhas:

“A thriving place and a flourishing business, because it is the ‘child’ of owner Prem and her staff. From an old, decayed farmhouse, she built it with her own hands, creating a great place to live.

Yoga, painting, hiking or just staying, located in the beautiful raw, authentic Alentejo countryside, Maravilhas is a place for me to return to. Count on the delicious climate, warm welcome and – in the case of the group weeks – delicious cuisine and good care. You have found a place to enjoy and feel at home.

I wish Prem all the best for the next 20 years, so we guests can continue enjoying this great place.”

Indispensable buggy

About a year ago our electric buggy arrived. It is so popular now, that we could not manage without it. Carrying suitcases for guests, bringing laundry, garbage bags, garden equipment, you name it… the buggy makes work so much lighter and easier.

Last winter we built a garage/carport, where we can charge the buggy and park our jeep and bikes.

We also made a workbench for all the repair jobs.

Christmas hiking week 23-30 December 2017

Every year we organize a Christmas hiking week. Because Portugal is more southern than the northern european countries, there are more daylight hours and temperatures vary from 15-22 degrees. In December, nature is super green, the mimosa begins to bloom and the fields are full of yellow flowers. The many cork oaks, olive trees, orange trees and eucalyptus trees never lose their leaves.

The 8.5 acre Monte Maravilhas estate is located in the midst of the Alentejo hills. There are four walks in the immediate area, one along the Atlantic west coast and one trip to Santa Clara Lake. You can walk along goat paths and sandy roads, passing mills, streams and orchards, and through woods and authentic local villages.

There is still a place available on the next group hiking week from 23-30 December 2017. You can sign up and  join us to enjoy spring in wintertime!

Would you like to hike here, but not during Christmas? There are more group hiking weeks in February, April, June, September and December 2018. See our hiking calendar for the exact dates.

Guests about the hiking weeks

“Monte Maravilhas – a special place – unforgettable. I was there for Christmas for the hiking week. A beautiful setting where you can walk beautifully. Hats off! We were lucky with the weather, with sunshine and lovely temperatures every day. Prem and her team are fantastic. A warm welcome, delicious food and drinks and a relaxed atmosphere. Thank you for this beautiful week.”

“On the land of Monte Maravilhas it is a pleasure to be. I stayed there 10 days the last week from December to early January, first as a participant in a hiking week and then for a few days as a “loose” guest. The scenery is breathtakingly beautiful. The area of Maravilhas itself has been designed and maintained with great expertise, attention and love, with an eye for quality and detail.

The accommodation is good and clean. Prem and her crew took care of me very much, the food was always delicious, the walks were nice and varied. Where else is it still so quiet and so dark at night? Hopefully I’ll be back. Thank you!”


Group hiking weeks in December & February
Do you want to take a winter break, and visit the warmer south? There is still a place to join the group weeks from 23-30 December and 17-24 February!

Wintering at Monte Maravilhas
In the months from November to March we have special wintering prices. There are still several weeks available at Casa Amarela and Mimosa!

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