32 independent reviews for Yoga holiday in Portugal

Reviews for Yoga holiday in Portugal

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review 12 Sep 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Beautiful location in the mountains with lots of uber tasty delicious nourishing food.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

This trip blew my expectations of what a yoga holiday was. The yoga was very accessible so its great for those who are totally new. Also, if you didn't want to do yoga then that was OK too. I tended to skip the evening classes as I was happy by the pool. The nights are early so I would bring some good books and possible a diary to jot down your thoughts - its hard not to feel reflective while surrounded by such beautiful surroundings. Oh and you have to get some of the massages - the folks there really know how to get all the stresses and aches and pains out of your body.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes I did. There was compost toilets (they also had normal toilets) so they would use that for the veggies, local girls and staff working and helping out in the farm.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

This holiday allowed me to totally unwind and reflect on a difficult year. I feel I have found some much needed clarity about what I want from life as well as a long list of destinations to visit because of the good friends I made.

review 12 Jul 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

For me it was the real sense of retreating in a beautiful and remote valley. Waking up to the sound of birdsong , great classes, superb colourful food. and a lovely genuine team that helped create a gentle, kind and caring atmosphere. It was also a good mix of people - different nationalities and ages, some couples, some people on their own or travelling as friends and everyone got on really well.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Go! In terms of packing, you don't need much. It was only on the last night that people changed for dinner.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes. The team grow a lot of their own produce, employ local people and use a mix of flush and composting toilets.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Fantastic!

review 13 May 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

All of it, environment, food, classes, people etc.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Luggage - don't take too much with you - its not needed!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, the resort encompasses local environments by way of providing work opportunities, supporting local villages, offering outlets for homemade organic items for sale.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

10/10 - Superb!

review 2 Apr 2017

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The scenery was fantastic with so much green everywhere and opportunities for walks. The food was amazing and the high point because it was so well prepared and tasty!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

It's not essential to have done yoga but it helps. It's a great place to leave all the modern gadgets behind and take time to be with yourself and either read, sketch or mix with others..

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes. Those running the yoga centre have to employ a number of people to keep the place going: builders, gardeners, cleaners, a local guide etc

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

It was just what we needed.. An escape from the city to experience a breather for ourselves, get back to looking after our bodies with the yoga and eat carefully selected vegetarian food. It was good to mix with like minded people too and we have made some new friends as a result.

review 14 Aug 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

This is a tough one, there were so many things that enchanted me and caught my imagination: the fabulous group of people, the location, our fantastic yoga teacher, Kat, Raul's cooking, the owners and their staff, so many more things to list. If pushed, I'd say it was the River Trip on the Friday, an idyllic setting indeed. I can't think of a better way to celebrate the joy of a yoga retreat in such a beautiful setting with such lovely people. We were like explorers who stumble upon a piece of heaven, our inner child taking delight in the sensory array around us. We swam from one side to the other, lathered mud on our bodies for a bit of fun (we looked AMAZING!), saw an eagle grace the skies above us... I could go on. What a joyous time. PS There was even a meteor shower when we there one night! (Not a guaranteed option in the brochure, I know.)

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Like any destination in this part of the world, be prepared for the heat in the summer. It's perfectly manageable - sun cream, hat, drinking water, etc. Having a plunge pool and a river on site to swim in to cool down was wonderful.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Definitely. 10/10. The owners hired local staff where possible, they traded with local businesses and have impressive ways to minimise their impact on the environment. Virtually all the ingredients for our meals were home grown in a responsible and sustainable way. Other items were purchased from within the locality.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Although cliché, I would say this was one of the best holidays I've been on, hand on heart. Why? All the categories that I can think of which make for an enriching and joyous experience were there: excellent quality of the treatment, yoga lessons; the beautiful location, the friendly and committed ethos of the staff and owners; wonderful and eye-opening food; outstanding company of fellow travellers; the vision of the project and its execution - everything had heart and we all felt blessed for having gone there. Personally speaking, my abiding memory was the tangible sense of community we all felt. Thank you so much guys and I wish you many years of fun and adventures. 1,000,000 points!!

review 9 Aug 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Every day was perfect. I would say the last day was the most memorable.. Swimming in a beautiful river and having a mud bath! Followed by a visit to the local cafe/bar and the most amazing supper!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

You don't need to take much - comfy clothing, a good pair of walking shoes and maybe a bit of insect repellent.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

I loved my holiday and I am very thankful to have shared this experience with a brilliant group of people. I highly recommend this retreat.

review 23 Jul 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The whole holiday at was memorable. Really lovely warm hearted hosts and a great yoga teacher and the best vegetarian food we have ever eaten!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Take mosquito spray and good shoes with grip as you walk up and down the paths which are rough and ready.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes in that we were eating local food and every effort was made to be sustainable.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent!

review 12 Jul 2016

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

There were so many things that made this holiday memorable; the beautiful valley in which the retreat sits, the fantastic vegetarian and vegan food cooked by chef Raul, the Yoga classes themselves with Vonetta and feeling like I had made progress in my practice and lastly the atmosphere, supportive and nurturing. Like a warm hug.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

I stayed in a soul pad tent which was surprisingly spacious and warm as heaters were provided so don't shy away from staying in one of those, even in April. It does get chilly in the evenings so do bring a warm fleece.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, very much. We were all given a tour of the property and told of the different ways they wanted to work to enhance the valley and their environment from waste disposal to restoring old stone cottages, local people were very much part of the team and everyone was encouraged to take the bus from Lisbon or Porto to reach them.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Fantastic, would heartily recommend the yoga retreat. It works for practioners at all levels and is a wonderful relaxing holiday in beautiful surroundings.

review 3 Sep 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

I miss the rising sun slowly warming up the valley in the morning. I miss waking up to chirping birds. buzzing bees. the smell of trees. I miss joining hearts and hands on the rhythm of ‘Stacks’, and ‘Lullaby’. I miss walking home to my pad, under the starry August sky with a belly full of ridiculously tasteful deliciousness, and a body stretched to the core. I miss how we talked, cried, listened, but laughed so much more. I miss the moonlight on my tent in the night. and falling asleep to the sound of wind, traveling through the valley. up the hills. my head is full. full of blooming daffodils! and some memories are stored, not in the mind, but in the heart. a bushfire, destroying all the old… making space for a brand new start. thank you Andrew Winter, Vonetta Winter, dynamic yoga teacher Fleur Van Hille (you taught and inspired me so much!), and each and every single one of the team. your vivid and heartfelt energy is highly contagious. I feel like Moses, transformed back into a puppy on his Friday afternoon swim. in fact, I do not miss. I take along with me. all we have shared. xx

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


review 21 Apr 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The trip was definitely one of most memorable and exiting holidays I have ever had. Nothing was short of wonder! Adventure started in Lisbon as the bus trip to Oleiros became a small excursion to Portugal's villages, nature and landscapes. Upon arrival to Vale I met a very welcoming family of Winters together with around 20 lovely and interesting people I was going to spend my retreat with. All of them, yoga teacher Tashi, masseur Marco, volunteers Ines and Danny, John, Andrew, Vonetta, my retreat counterparts were very kind, professional and engaging companions. It was a pleasure to meet them all! During the week I walked in the mountains, did a lot of revealing yoga, ate healthy, had time for myself sitting in the ruins of closest abandoned house or by the river. I had a lot of meaningful conversations and some funny ones. I enjoyed my reunion with nature and with real values. Finally it was a week devoted to myself, my mind, my body. The week where I learn so many things but best of all to appreciate my existence, the possibility to breathe, move, see, speak, hear, love... When the time came to an end I was ready to come back to my regular life...Full of energy and new ideas, motivated and encouraged by myself and people who I met a week ago but whom I really want to call my friends :)

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Just go! You will not regret! And of course follow the tips you will receive from Andrew when you book your retreat :)

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

I believe yes because we eat a lot of delicious local products.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

That what you call "experience" and it was a great one!

review 6 Oct 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Gorgeous hosts, gorgeous place, great food, great yoga. ALL highlights!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Watch out for travel sickness if you get the bus to Oleiros. Bring warm jacket for the evenings Try really hard to avoid/minimise your technology and devices for the week. It makes a huge difference to the ambiance in the place and getting to know your fellow yogis.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

I feel it had minimal negative impact on our local environment in comparison to resort holidays. Loved the dry loos! Andrew and Vonetta wok really hard to get all the food supplies (and entertainment supplies!) from local people. They really are at the heart of their community and are generous in including us there.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

When a week feels like a month ( in the best possible way), you know you have struck holiday gold! I'm a bit reluctant to tell anyone about them, as I loved it so much I kind of want to keep it for myself! ;)

review 19 Aug 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Where do I start? The holiday was so memorable on many levels and I believe anyone going on this yoga retreat will take something very precious away with them. Andrew, Vonetta and the team at Vale de Moses are very warm and welcoming. There is a beautiful energy about the place and the environment is so natural and stunning. The yoga is tailored to suit your ability and it has given me a renewed enthusiasm and optimism about life!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Don't be afraid if you have never done a yoga retreat before or are unsure whether your yoga practice is "good enough" or whether you will keep up. We were all abilities, ranging from complete beginners to those who have been practising for 20 years and our yoga instructor, Fleur was brilliant at making us feel us at ease and supported and you were able to go at your own pace.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, definitely. Everything about the retreat was very natural, such as the compost toilets we used and encouragement to be mindful of how much water we were using and only using organic and natural skin care products. The food we ate was either grown in the garden or sourced locally. We also visited the local town and met local people and also had a visit from one of the locals who makes soaps and other natural products.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

This holiday was very special and nourished body, mind and spirit. I believe the retreat detoxes on many levels and it has been a blessing to have had this experience. This is what holidays should be like and I would recommend this holiday to anyone looking for something nourishing, peaceful and uplifting. The information and welcome pack we received before the retreat was very helpful and we were all put in touch with each other beforehand, so those of us travelling by ourselves could meet up in Lisbon and travel on the bus together. This was very helpful. Overall, it is a very well organised retreat from start to finish and I am so pleased I did it.

review 18 Aug 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Making new international friends.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Pack as light as possible.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, local people were employed in various ways through the retreat. Excellent efforts to reduce environmental impacts and run sustainably.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Very happy.

review 10 Jan 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

One of the most memorable parts of my holiday was staying in a beautiful odega! Away from the call and drive of modern technology! Secreted in our own romantic stone retreat in the hills of Portugal.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Take your smile and willingness to give in to relaxation and yoga!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

All three for sure. But definitely the local community is cared for and given opportunity to grow and share in this beautiful hideaway!

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Wouldn't change a thing!

review 9 Jan 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

It's difficult to choose - so many highlights - the yoga of course, the food, the treatments and the landscape - and perhaps the relaxed atmosphere fostered by the team.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Don't underestimate the bus journey - it's quite long so when you factor in a flight from say Dublin, it can a long day's travel.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes - in fact, there was an element built into the week that specifically addressed that - we travelled to a local river to swim and cover ourselves with sparkly mud (yes, such a thing does exist!) and on our way back, stopped at the teeny tiny village and had a sherry with the local villagers - average age 76 - which included a dance in the village square and much laughter - despite, or perhaps because of, the language barrier!

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Fantastic - exactly what I needed and a lovely, relaxed atmosphere - to be recommended.

review 16 Aug 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The best part of the retreat was the positive energy surrounding most of the staff! The yoga instructor and massage therapist were particularly great at sharing their joy and happiness with the retreatees.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

A bit chilly overnight and in the morning, don't forget to pack layers.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Absolutely! The green initiatives being tried and implemented at Vale de Moses are inspiring.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


review 12 Aug 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Many. I loved the meditation walk every morning, every single yoga class, delicious food and the of course the mud bath! They have three wonderful dogs that you'll fall in love with!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

It's very well organized and structured, you'll find no trouble. Staff are very friendly. Just email and ask them if you have any questions.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Absolutely. Everything's environmentally friendly.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Incredible experience.

review 31 Jul 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

I booked this holiday very last minute, but it definitely exceeded expectations with only the accommodation letting it down, for me. The whole holiday was extremely good value, very good quality and very well thought out, in terms of the activities, food and yoga. All the scenery was beautiful, and the activities and the holiday organisors all encouraged the group to come together. The only down-side, which unfortunately was a big one for me, was that the accommodation varied from luxurious for some guests, to basic/camping (very small cave with bugs, very basic toilet, no warm shower, no electricity) for others (me!!), but prices were standard. The issue I had, was that I booked and had e-mail communications beforehand, and thought I would be in a shared cottage. Though all incredible value, I would have paid more, or maybe gone to another retreat, to be given the option of more comfortable accommodation, as it was cramped, with no electricity where I stayed and it meant I didn't get some much needed sleep. Each of the other guests were allowed to choose their rooms on arrival, so I'm still puzzled by the whole thing. Though I'm certain it came from a good place, this was a very bad choice for me, and I don't feel it's right somebody else made the choice on my behalf, as I needed rest/comfort after a very stressful few months. Overall, it was a brilliant holiday, the atmosphere and positive energy that was created helped soothe, and I came back home feeling satisfied and really happy with my first experience of a yoga holiday, and with some new friends.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Incredible value, and experience, go with an open mind/heart, as this holiday is intended as an education as well.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent. The only need for improvement is to properly set people's expectations beforehand. Some people may want adventure, and to sleep in a cave, others may need rest, and therefore need more comfort.... I've already recommended this to 2 friends.

Read the operator's response here:

Thanks so much for this review Anna and for recommending us to your friends. Very sweet of you! We are so sorry you didn't enjoy your stay in the little room in our Monastic Adega. Sleep is such an important part of your restorative stay, we would have moved you to another room if we weren't fully booked that week. We've had a couple of 5 star reviews on Responsible Travel and on Trip Advisor from guests who stayed in the same room and have specifically suggested it to others wanting a completely different, more wild experience. But as you say, being enclosed by a mountain in a small cave-like room without electricity, is not for everyone! So we plan this winter to raise the roof on that room, add electricity and hide some of the mountainside inside by plastering the walls with lime and clay. We're also very grateful for your suggestion to make it clearer to people where they are staying before they come. We'll be working on how we can do that for next year, perhaps giving individual names for each sleeping area in the 2 shared cottages and make them available for booking separately on our site, rather than the 7 shared spaces we currently show, allocating guests only on arrival. If only you hadn't missed the bus from Lisbon with the others, we would have been able to put you in one of the other rooms instead. Thanks again for your review. 4 stars was most kind considering that the Adega was not the best place for you to have stayed. We hope we can make it up to you if you return for another retreat with us. At the very least, you can stay in one of our "luxurious" private rooms with a big discount! Andrew & Vonetta

review 22 Apr 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The peace and tranquility of the setting. The acceptance of everyone as a friend within the retreat and a genuine desire by the owners to 'make you better' ..if you needed it! ( I did!)

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Go, although out of the way, it is easy to get to , the travel was fine. The benefits are deeply felt, either when you are there but certainly when you are back. The yoga was well paced so don't worry if you haven't done too much before.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes , the owners have made a definite effort to positively impact on the local economy by their presence. They have been able to show what can be done within the area in a sympathetic and enviromentally effective way. They are part of the community and have a mutual respect for their neighbours as friends and supporters.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent...it does what it says on the tin! ...and the food and massages were amazing!

review 24 Mar 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The wonderful people, delicious food, the stunning natural surroundings, warm welcome and the stories shared.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Arrive with an open mind and a good pair of walking boots.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes very much so. There was a great emphasis on sourcing produce from local suppliers, using environmentally friendly methods around the grounds such as compost toilets.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Absolutely brilliant! It was better than I could have imagined and has left me with renewed energy and positivity (and apparently a new natural glow I've been told).

review 13 Feb 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

I loved the laid back peacefulness of this holiday. My experience was a bit different than most as I joined the Winters, and a small group of others, while they were on their summer working holiday of sorts at Cerca do Sul in Sao Teotonio on the Alentejano coast. (Which is run by the delightful Sara and her staff and well worth checking out if you are in the area!) We spent the mornings doing yoga and enjoying a leisurely breakfast before heading to the beach in the afternoons for surf lessons and sun.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Go! The Winters are a lovely family, kind and gracious. You are guaranteed interesting conversations, relaxation, quiet & alone time if you so desire. Stretch your muscles, let go of your tension, breathe and take it all in! Spend a couple of days in Lisbon, especially in the old area of the city and take a few day trips to Cascais and Sinta- easily, and inexpensively accessible by train.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes. Again, I was not at the Winters' home in the mountains but by the beach so cannot speak to the typical benefits and conservation efforts. At Sara's B&B, our meals were consciously prepared, our surf instructors local and we spent two nights "out on the town" dining at local establishments and experiencing live music in an area park.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Wonderful! I am hoping to make my way back to Portugal in the near future and spend a week with the Winters in their home environment.

review 28 Apr 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

I really enjoyed meal times sitting outside eating with the other yogees

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Take some time on either side of the retreat to visit Lisbon

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes on all counts

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Really great - warm welcome, great food and overall great atmosphere and setting!

review 10 Sep 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Where to start! One personal highlight that I can't promise others will experience is the amazing lighting storm we witnessed in the middle of the night. It approached us through the valley until it was right overhead lighting up the sky, blinding us temporarily with no gap between the flash and the clap of thunder! Experiences others can enjoy are the outdoor shower, the fabulous Bhajan chanting (I was sceptical at first but once you relax into it its so relaxing and a lot of fun) and the food! Oh the food!!! Its just delicious and plentiful (and even amazing when the cooks had to work with out electricity or water!)

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Fly into Portugal the night before. We spent Friday night and all day Saturday in Lisbon which is beautiful and the pastries are to die for! We also had the following Saturday to wander about as our flight wasn't until the evening which was really nice. Whilst on retreat take the opportunities to go walking in the forest, pop to the river to swim etc...its a good way to see the surrounding areas. Take a torch for getting about the grounds at night, but also be sure to turn it off and look up every now and again as the stars are incredible. Other than that I'd just recommend turning of your phone and forgetting about home, work and reality for a few days.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

There is literally nothing at property that doesn't benefit the locals or protect the natural environment. You'll find all the compost toilets (extremely clean, comfy and odour free!), recycling, natural building materials and local produce that you would expect from any 'eco' lodge / resort but what these guys have done is gone that one big step further. Everything has been built to comply with local tradition. With a little help from local stonemasons, carpenters and builders Andrew, Vonetta and the kids have preserved the old buildings they originally bought and hope to be able to pass these skills on to newcomers moving to the area to ensure that these skills aren't lost and the landscape remains unchanged. By learning the language,attending and working at the local school, offering treatments to the elderly and becoming friends with those who have lived in the villages for generations the whole family have become an integral part of the community and they benefit from this as much as the locals benefit from the retreats.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

It was amazing and fabulous and life changing. One of the best holidays I have ever been on, I just wish it could have been longer!!

review 30 May 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

There were so many memorable parts...the setting in the forest & doing yoga in the beautiful shala with the sound of the river & birds, the silent morning walks, the ayurvedic and delicious food every day, the amazing treatments and acupuncture, the evening chanting session, partner yoga, the trip to the river and village on the last day, the Friday night pizza party and jamming session and of course all the lovely people including the perfect hosts the Winter family, Tashi, Oli, Katherine & Jude

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Have a day or so in Lisbon before the retreat because it is a great city. Other than that just relax and enjoy it, you will be very well looked after.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

These guys are a model of responsible tourism. They have restored their buildings with original materials using their own hard work and the skills of many local people. Everything here is done in an environmentally conscious way from the compost toilets to how they water their gardens. They have become an integral part of the community bringing much needed fresh life and income into this part of Portugal where many young people have left for the cities. They support the local community by employing people to help on their land and to clean the rooms as well as by taking guests to meet the local people and support them by buying wine, handicrafts and other locally produced things. They are showing that there is another way to live in this region and will hopefully encourage young people back to the countryside to set up similar responsible tourism businesses.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

I cannot recommend a retreat here highly enough! Without a doubt the most relaxing and inspirational holiday we have been on. Our week here has left us with lots of new ideas and things to put into practice back in the 'real' world. Thank you to Tashidawa for your incredible yoga classes, Vonetta for your magical massages, Andy & Ellie for the great food, Josh for serenading us with your piano playing and to Oli Katherine and Jude for looking after us so well. Anyone looking to get away from it all and reconnect with your self and nature should come to this retreat. We will definitely be back!

review 26 Apr 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The love and warmth of the Winter family made you directly feel at ease and at home. The yoga classes were of good quality and inspiring. Loved the silent walks in the morning.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

This would be a perfect and highly recommendable holiday if you're: interested in nurturing your mind and body by yoga and healthy tasty food, would like to be outside your daily environment, are looking for a place where you can be you and are valued for being you, an intense but accessible yoga experience.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

One of the beauties of this holiday was knowing that local people have been involved in rebuilding the properties and are still involved in the daily business of the yoga retreat.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

An A+, definitely

review 3 Apr 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

So many memories and amazing times. Probably the most exciting was swimming in fast flowing rivers and waterfalls around the house!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Book it! Was an amazing relaxing time away with excellent food, brilliant yoga teacher and lovely family in a spectacular location.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, it was a very environmentally friendly house, the food was as far as possible sourced locally (neighbouring farms), household emissions were minimal. The air was so clean and fresh and there were good relationships with the local people- we often visited the tiny cafes in the area, supporting their businesses. From speaking to the family, they planted almost whole forests and also cultivate some of their own vegetables with the intention of expanding their self-sufficiency in the future.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

A brilliant holiday and I'd definitely go back.

Read the operator's response here:

And you'd be welcome here anytime Laura. We are all very touched by your kind words. Thank you so much. Love Andrew, Vonetta, Josh, Eloise, Olly and Ashley.

review 29 Sep 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The whole week was memorable, i had a great week, it was so relaxing and refreshing. The food was amazing and the yoga was excellent. The setting was stunning, it will all be memorable im so glad i booked it. I cant fault it in any way. The Winters and they're team also really made it special.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

If booking id recommend staying in Lisbon for a couple of days before going on the retreat as Lisbon is a great place to see and there is loads to do.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, 100% as the retreat is pretty much self sufficient and all food is locally sourced in the local villages.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Relaxing, refreshing and just what i needed. I would definitely recommend this holiday.

review 24 Sep 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Besides the fun yoga sessions and lovely warm spirited people looking after us, our daily dip and wallow in the natural river pool after a morning yoga session was my fave part of the week. Plus the trip to the local river was brilliant. We were really fortunate to be at Yoga Moses on the night of the local villiage family fiesta so visiting that and being past of the festivities before a moonlit walk home was pretty special. Olly's laughter yoga session was very memorable too!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Be prepared to feel very relaxed and full of inspiration for a healthy /healthier life at the end - you won't regret it.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Sourcing locally grown good where possible. The compost toilets were better than most water ones! Recognising the sustainability can involve compromises and a longer term plan to reach the vision they want. - I'll look forward to seeing of hearing about the maturing trees and lush valley in a few decades time.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Vonnie & Andrew with Kat and Olly have made a wonderful warm and welcoming place that they share so openly with all their guests! This holiday hit the spot for me. Active, relaxing, invigorating and a wonderful way to feel 'earthed' and reconnected. Just what the doctor ordered! Thank You! xx

review 5 May 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

It was all fantastic, but the setting is extraordinarily beautiful and will be hard to forget.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Bring enough warm clothes as it gets very cold at night (I was there in May)

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Absolutely - Andrew, Von and the family are very involved with the local community in many ways - both socially and by helping financially with local projects etc

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

10 out of 10

review 19 Apr 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

I was very pleased to be in an environment that supported my inner growth...through the yoga/meditation and personally, by allowing me come to accept my present circumstances, both good and bad.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Pack light, for a change of clothes aren't really necessary in this environment, and to be open minded to the fickle weather.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, definitely.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Very good!

review 16 Apr 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The hosts, Andy and Von, really made the holiday memorable. They are incredibly warm and generous.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Great for those looking to get away from everything and be closer to nature. Not for those wanting 5 star luxury.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

The retreat does its best to reduce the environmental impact, by using solar energy, having compost loos and sourcing locally and providing delicious vegetarian only meals.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Highly recommended

review 2 Apr 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The massage and acupuncture therapy. Meeting wonderful, caring people. Incredible food - sometimes it felt there was more eating than asanas!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Come to this retreat to get away from it all and be pampered in a family environment. Bring layers, it can get hot and also very cold in the evenings - especially early in the season. This is a rustic and wonderful experience - do not expect a luxury hotel-style retreat. Bring walking boots and a swimsuit. Bring eco-friendly wash products and extra money in case you choose additional therapy sessions,

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, the family have built (with their own bare hands) a fantastic ecologically sound home - compost toilets, local produce - food from the garden as much as possible. I didn't hear a motor vehicle during my whole stay. (opps apart from the trip to the river for swimming)

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent. A great set up - the family open their home up to everyone and give you the chance to be part of their rural existence in splendid isolation. The facilities are good - Tonnes of amazing food, you can chip in with everything at any stage. Yoga really makes you think back to the essential elements. Then the massage therapy and acupuncture to tackle all the things that need to be tackled!

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