A sombre moment

We are now looking at our original list of properties in central Portugal, but there is a problem, the area that we really like is where all the big fires were last year.

We are hoping to have a B&B or holiday rental and in an area where the forests have been burnt for as far as the eye can see, will people still be coming on holiday? But more importantly will we be able to live knowing when the siren sounds our world could disappear.

In 2017 the fires in central Portugal were horrendous and killed a number of people, this was where we had originally planned to move, But now the idea of having the grandchildren in the car when we hear the sirens is a terrifying thought.

Our thoughts are with the people who lost their homes and lives in the disaster, we had made some good friends when we stayed there last year. Portugal was not the only area hit by the fires, France, Spain and Italy suffered dreadfully as well in 2017 and hopefully now that all the new safety measures have been put in place such as land clearance and all the trees being cut back from the roads 2018 will not have the same problems.

This photo does not do justice to the scenery, but it is like a horror move set where as far as you can see is devastation.

Fire devastation in Central Portugal

We had looked on the Algarve and although we loved the area towards Spain we found nothing in our price range, and central is the area we had really wanted before the fires.

We decide to extend our search a little further and head more towards Tomar and Fatima, both of these places are absolutely stunning and extremely popular with tourists so a good place for a tourism business.

But first we are going to view a stunning house with its own vineyards and a couple of acres of land, this was a house I had fell in love with on the internet, I think I told every body I knew about it and it was the number one favourite before the coastal properties.

When we get there I could cry, why do estate agents put clever photos up, the vineyard which looks amazing on the photo is very small, the terrace in front of the house where I had planned my pool would be lucky to fit a car, the extra building is a shack and never would be additional housing, but worst, at the back of the house the land was on a steep slope of burnt forest, the fire had stopped at the property. Why did they not think to tell us this bit of information.

I do not want to look inside, I want to leave as soon as possible and never come back.

This is not what I had dreamt of, the estate agents are not providing anything we want. We are not getting honest answers I really am getting to the stage where I have had enough, I miss France , though I have not  got rose tinted glasses the agents in France were very similar.

We just have to keep looking and asking far more questions than we are, though to be honest I couldn´t really ask any more questions, we just need realistic answers

Top tips

  1. Don´t become to disheartened there will be something out there, you just haven´t found it yet
  2. Not all estate agents are useless (this can be used as a mantra)
  3. Be realistic about where you want to be, our dream area was hit by fires, could you relax in an area that has experienced disaster
  4. Be realistic, would the same disaster happen twice?
  5. The wine in Portugal is very cheap, it helps immensely


We are Jenny and John, currently living in Portugal and renovating an old manor house, which should be finished soon and open for holiday lets. We also manage a website for accommodation and information on Portugal at portugalholidays4u.com

2 comments on “A sombre moment

  1. Anne Arthur

    I am so sorry your dreams were so rudely shattered. I can understand you wanting to go back to France, I would too, but then I am a francophile, once I got there I would never move. For us it did not work out and its now far too late.

    I am keeping my fingers crossed that you find something in your price range and are able to get things sorted within your time frame.


    • thank you, I´m sorry it didn´t work out for you in france, but never say never. I loved france but once we are settled here I know I will be happy, it just seems tobe taking longer than we expected


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