Help us start our self-sustainable Project & food forest in National Park Serra de Estrela, Portugal



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    within 4 days

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 Min stay requested: at least a week

  • Description


    July 2022, Lars, our dog Athos and me (Ayla) moved from the Netherlands to Portugal.
    We found our dream home in de Gouveia area.
    There are two big houses that we have to renovate and 4.5 hectares of land. The land is surrounded by boulder rocks to climb and go on hikes. There is a stream and three big wells.

    We are starting a food forest and permaculture garden. There will be sheep, chickens, and pigs to maintain the garden, feed the soil and to have good company.

    This is the very beginning of our big project. We have always wanted to live a self sustainable life, and now it's finally here! Our new home is completely off the grid, but still a short walk to the little villages Vila Franca Da Serra and Vila Ruiva. Also, just a 15-minute ride to Gouveia, a small big city :)

    We are both still young, love to have fun and meet new people. We want to share this beautiful place with workawayers from all over the world.

    Our dog Athos was born in 2021. He is very kind, smart, and gentle with everyone.

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    Language practice
    Help with Eco Projects
    DIY and building projects
    Animal Care
    Farmstay help
    Creating/ Cooking family meals
    Help around the house
    General Maintenance

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    You will experience a self sustainable project from the very beginning. How do you start and what do you need to become self-sufficient? Maybe this gives you inspiration and the tools to start your own project one day.
    Lars is an ecological gardener in the Netherlands and can teach you a lot about the land, soil, trees, and everything you need to know.
    Ayla is a yoga teacher and virtual assistant. She will provide yoga classes, free to join.

    We would love to learn some Portuguese!

  • Help


    Starting July 1st 2022:
    Our project can start now. Ayla will need help with clearing the land (it is overgrown now). We will start with pointing/filling the outside of the houses. Gardening and building will be the focus for the next few months.
    We will make a small vegetable garden and clean out the spring and wells.
    Making a compost toilet is also high on our to do list.

    In august it's time to make the roof waterproof! This is a big project.

    Year 1 – 2023 :
    Renovation of off grid house and volunteer/guest room.
    Rough clean up area:
    Remove blackberries
    Dredging the stream
    Pruning trees.

    From year 2 – 2024:
    Renovating studios and camping
    Build shower/toilet cabin
    Herbs/flower meadows
    Lay out green fertilizers
    Creation of food forest 1 and 2 (trees)
    Building an eco swimming pool
    Construction of a raised terrace with pergola and bridge
    Build stables for chickens, pigs and sheep
    Construction of the driveway

    We will have big (vegetarian) meals together. So we will need help with cooking. We would like to have big BBQ's as well.

    (We will need to work a maximum of 4 hours a day, weekends are off. We are not strict at all, but like to have volunteers that like to work and make a change.)

  • Languages

    Languages spoken
    English: Fluent
    Dutch: Fluent
    French: Beginner
    Portuguese: Beginner

    This host offers a language exchange
    We want to learn more Portuguese! We are still beginners.

  • Accommodation


    We have a big safari tent for our volunteers to sleep in, we provide sleeping suplies. There is more than enough space to stay with us with your own camper van or tent.

    It will be really down to earth and basic accommodation, since we still have to begin to renovate the houses. We have outside solar showers, and we'll make a compost toilet. The spring and river beaches close by will also be a nice refreshment.

    After the house renovations have finished:
    The main house has two floors. Upstairs, our family will live. Downstairs we have a big floor where we will make bedrooms for the volunteers and guests. There will be a kitchen and bathroom, and a big living area as well.

    Update June 2022:
    Because of the drought in Portugal our wells and spring have dropped down. This means we cannot swim on the terrain. We have a small pool for some refreshment and like to go to river beaches in siesta time.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    We will have a lot of fun. The area is beautiful and located next to the national park Serra Estrella.
    You can visit Torre, the highest mountain of Portugal. In the right season, you can ski here.
    There are river beaches close by and the beach is an hour drive away.

    The land is surrounded by boulder rocks to climb and make hikes. There is a stream and three big wells.

    We like to go on hikes with our dog, make fires at night, play games and of course enjoy a well deserved siesta!

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • Can host digital nomads

    Can host digital nomads

    This host has indicated that they love having digital nomads stay.

  • Space for parking camper vans

    Space for parking camper vans

    This host can provide space for campervans.

  • Can possibly accept pets

    Can possibly accept pets

    This host has said they are willing to accept those travelling with a pet.

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    Maximum 4 hours a day, 5 days a week

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Accuracy of profile: (5.0)

Cultural exchange: (5.0)

Communication: (5.0)

Host ref number: 994217828924