Quinta da Bazágueda
If you want to have a good experience of day to day life in a traditional farm and learn how to take care of tasks that are almost not in use anymore in "industrial" farms!
We are a young Portuguese family who is very interested in maintaining ancestral knowledge: we enjoy preserving these farming techniques and we are happy to pass them on to the next generations. We maintain a minimum stay of 23 days so that you can get a full scope of how things go. Throughout your time you will work in different areas of farm life: There is the taking care of the animals — we have indigenous cows (that you almost don’t find anywhere!), a herd of sheep, chickens, a few geese and other farm animals. Then there is looking after the vegetable/fruit garden, which is different every season. Finally we are working on the reconstruction of barns and houses, using very old techniques. This means you can learn a lot: building with clay, stones and wood! But, stones can be heavy (and usually they are heavier than they seem!).
Quinta da Bazágueda is a very ancient farm. It's a farm in its true meaning, not a house with a garden or a little field with crops. Which also means that the farm is very ISOLATED and it has NO INTERNET access nor any cell phone connection — if necessary you can walk 30 minutes up the mountain to get signal. Being an ancient farm, we offer basic accommodation and you share a room together with the other volunteers. The houses are from the 16th century or older — which means that in winter it will be cold! If you arrive on a rainy day, the farm will still need to go on as most tasks cannot be delayed. In summer it gets really warm so we start the working days very early. As mentioned, the farm is isolated, and it is 12 km from the nearest village! You can walk in or out of the farm as you want (it is two hours walking through an abandoned area), the farm only provides car rides to volunteers in the previously agreed days of arrival and departure. Also, please note that it's not possible to prepare specific food for you in case you have a very different diet from "most" people. We always have vegetable soup, so if you're vegetarian you're welcome to come, but if the rest of the team is having meat with plain rice, you can have soup with rice but there will not be a specific dish just for you, unless you provide it.
Having all of this in mind, please read everything carefully, including the REVIEWS. If you have any questions or doubts, we are happy to answer them. And if you decide to come we will look forward to welcoming you! We can assure you, this will be a true experience that you cannot find in many places!
Please make sure to bring a sleeping bag and working gloves.
The work is sometimes hard, but somehow adaptable to your best skills. You'll be explained about the reasons and importance of your tasks and you're alway welcome to ask if in doubt.