A Magical Night in Redondo

Posted by Christine moghadam

As I sit here and gaze up at the stars, I can’t believe I am actually basking in the beauty of over 500 acres of land filled with cork trees, olive groves and vineyards.

It’s unbelievable. Surreal actually.

While my husband drove our SUV through the scenic road from Spain to Portugal, my heart began to pound with excitement as soon as we crossed the border to Portugal. My 9 year old son says traveling feels like Christmas because you never know what you’re going to experience or what the hotel will look like, it’s all a special surprise!

I agree. So true.

I couldn’t wait to see this beautiful place. I loved Spain, but Portugal has charmed me more than anything and I couldn’t wait to experience a night in the countryside surrounded by vineyards, cork trees and endless acres of land in a town called Redondo with the population of a little over 7,000 people. With a little off roading and being misled by our iPhone GPS, we finally arrived to Herdade da Maroteria.


Our host led us to our cute little cabin surrounded by Cork trees. My boys were filled with excitement when they saw the owner’s dog come out and greet us. They nearly jumped out of the car before my husband turned the engine off.


A farm, dogs, sticks and a lot of land to run around…- it’s heaven for them.

We unpacked our belongings and were then escorted to a Land Rover for a fun drive through the forest. Our host, David led us through the entire forest of cork trees giving us the history of the 5th generation family owned property. He explained everything from the cork harvesting to extraction. What an intense laborsome job! Yet the workers have the highest paying salary in Portugal. If the extraction is not done properly, the entire cork tree may not be able to harvest cork again.

 

David stopped at a 100 year old water well to give us some water. The purest water we could drink. Our boys LOVED it!


They kept asking for more and later suggested we should just move here.

We drove to the highest view point overlooking the property’s endless land of cork trees and even caught a glimpse of the Spanish border in the far distance.


Down the hill spread acres of vineyards. We later learned the owners have produced award winning wine which they only sell to their guests and local restaurants. Before coming, I had no idea of all the history that filled this place. As David continued to tell us stories, it felt like we were driving back in time.


Before settling down in our lodge, David took us to a local family owned restaurant for a traditional Portuguese dinner that consisted of fresh tomato soup with bread, grilled black pig, tomato salad and delicious traditional desserts. It was to die for simply because every bite tasted like we were sharing a home cooked meal at the owner’s dining table.

As I turned around to look at the decor behind my chair, I saw this…

I am happy. VERY happy!!