Experience Portuguese rural life at Quinta da Fornalha
The Eastern Algarve is less known to tourists and a great place to discover some holiday secrets. A hidden gem in itself and also a perfect starting point for exploring the region is Quinta da Fornalha. This organic family farm welcomes you to spend your holidays, have a nice meal or visit the lovely shop. If you like a rural paradise, put this on your bucket list now!
The farm and concept
For over 250 years, Quinta da Fornalha is run by one family. They have been able to combine traditional farming with a contemporary approach, focussing on three areas: sustainable farming, local, fresh food and travel experiences.
On the estate you will find a multi orchard of figs, almonds, carobs, quinces, pomegranates, lemons, oranges, olives and apricots. Dogs and cats relax in the shades of the trees, chickens and hens walk around satisfied in a huge chicken run and a black Iberian pig enjoys the friendship of a friendly pony called Joana.
Spending the night
Amidst of all this wonderful nature, several traditional built houses offer comfortable accommodation for the guests. They all have an original, rural Portuguese design and a private terrace surrounded by beautiful plants and flowers.
The really great thing about staying here, is that you’re allowed to pick and try all the fruits and herbs on the farm. You can make the best fresh orange juice, lemon tea or fruit salad with everything that grows here.
The swimming pool is also amazing. The view is breathtaking, especially during sunrise or sunset.
Fresher than fresh
Quinta da Fornalha is not just a holiday resort. The restaurant Taberna Remexida is open for everybody who wants to have an excellent fresh meal. The menu is based on ingredients from the farm, accompanied by local products. The specialty are platters filled with different bites and flavours. Meat and fish are on the menu, but especially vegetarians and vegans will have a great experience here.
If you don’t have time to stay the night or for dinner, try and make a stop at the Quinta da Fornalha shop. You can buy excellent products here like ecological sea salt from their own salt pan or their homemade marmelades and olive oils. It’s a great place to find that special souvenir for a loved one.
My own experience
I have stayed at Quinta da Fornalha in the apartment called Casa da Yuka. I loved every minute of my stay there, especially the tour around the estate I got after check in. It’s great to be able to ask questions and hear stories about the farm. The breakfast and dinner were a real treat, and the staff very friendly.
Quinta da Fornalha is located just outside of the pretty town of Castro Marim. The closest beach is Praia Verde (but if that’s too posh for you try Altura beach), which is only 4 kms away. Castro Marim is famous for the Sapal Natural Reserve, the home of many birds. It’s also very close to the town of Vila Real de Santo António, the Guadiana River and Spain.
More details are available on the website of Quinta da Fornalha. This is also where you can make your reservation.