"Spring and early summer in the vineyards is when the wine is truly made. Springtime for a viticulturist is like fighting a war, or like surfing a huge wave, depending on whether you’re a man-against-nature type or you tend to eat mushrooms and marvel at its magnificence. Either way there is no question that it is the most intense time in the vineyards."
My favourite quote about what we're heading into!! We have space immediately until September 7th, then from September 23rd onwards. We *much* prefer couples at this time of year as there's so much to be done, and we ask for a minimum 2 week stay, and hopefully longer. Work at this time of year is lots of weeding, carrying sticks from the pruned vines, and tying the newly pruned canes to the trellis, then shoot thinning once the vines start growing. It's hard, but rewarding work especially if you enjoy being outdoors!
I'm a 41 year old Englishman who's lived in Chile for 9 years and, with my Chilean wife, have a lovely 4 hectare property in Chile's best wine region- the Colchagua Valley. We're located about 2.5 hours south of Santiago (by car- the bus takes a little longer).
In 2013 we planted about a hectare of vineyard and we farm it organically. It's fantastic to work the land and great to see all our hard work pay off. We've been making wine for the past 3 years and we'll keep on increasing production until we hit capacity of around 20,000 bottles 2020 or 2021.
The property has an organic fruit orchard and organic vegetable garden. We're about 30 minutes from the town of Santa Cruz and a few minutes from the small village of Poblacion, where you can buy basic provisions.
We also have 6 dogs (plus chickens and ducks), so if you're not a pet person, we're definitely not the place for you. The dogs are extremely friendly and will follow you around all day! They're all indoor-outdoor animals and have free run of the place. We also have bees, but we tend to leave them to their own devices.
We live in an awesome community of people from all over the world and the Colchagua Valley is beautiful, full of wineries and vineyards. We're about an hour from Pichilemu, Chile's top surf spot as well. There are almost always other volunteers a couple of minutes down the road, as our neighbours are also on workaway.
Accommodation is in an independent, fully equipped house. The house has 2 bedrooms and is shared with our permanent volunteer/contracted couple from Germany. Vegetarian food is included, you prepare your own meals. There's cable tv (with all the football). Internet is limited as we're in the middle of the countryside on a 3G connection. It's for basic browsing and sending emails, not for downloading or streaming. Bring a book and disconnect for a while. We all work really hard, but we have lots of fun as well.
*️️️️️️️️️️️Important note: If you're allergic to bees or wasps, you'd be taking a big risk coming here...we have bees everywhere (we now have a hive but there are already lots of local bees as we have lots of lavender planted on the property), and wasps are a problem here in some years. We can't be responsible if you get stung (unlikely, but always possible), so please take that into consideration!*️️️️️️️️️️️
Help in the house
Process of making wine, what it takes to run an organic farm, basic construction, how to grow veggies and some Spanish practice...basically, general life skills!
Gardening, tidying up the property in general (vineyard and gardens need constant attention!), tending the vineyard, looking after the dogs, some basic housework from time to time, lots of digging and some serious weeding...We all work really hard here and expect everyone to pull their weight...but we have a lot of fun in the downtime, though!
English, Spanish, some French
Independent 2 bedroom, fully-equipped house on-site. Satellite tv & wifi access. Vegetarian food included.
Be prepared to work quite hard! But in your free time, there's plenty to do in the area- wineries to visit, one of South America's best surf spots less than 1 hour away, Santiago 4 hours on the bus.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
More than two
max 25 hours/week