Mountain accommodation, Monchique, Algarve

Writing holidays are offered for 2 - 3 people from 250 euros per person for one week. See Writing holidays.

About Casa Mira Montanha

Please note that the house will not be available for rent as from July 2012. Due to a change in circumstances the house is up for sale - 268.000 euros. This includes both houses (attached) each one with one reasonable size bedroom and one small bedroom, beautiful kitchens, bathrooms, small swimming pool, garden etc., 1 large garage and 1 stable.

Casa Mira Montanha is situated in the Monchique mountains in the Algarve, Portugal (1 hour and 15 minutes approx. on good roads from Faro airport) in a small hamlet called Chilrão at 468 metres above sea level. Stunning hill views surround the house stretching up to Fóia, the highest peak at 902m. Part of the renovated farmhouse is available to rent (ideal for 2 people but can sleep 3-4). The self-catering accommodation comprises of a large loft bedroom with twin beds and en-suite wc, a lounge/dining room with a view to the mountains, a smaller second bedroom with a small double bed, a bathroom with a whirlpool bath and a well equipped kitchen. There is also satellite TV, DVD and a washing machine. Outside is a terrace, barbecue area and small swimming pool (5m x 2.5m). The side of the house available for rent has its own entrance and the terrace is separated by arches and wooden gates, making it fairly private.

Chilrão is remote (the nearest restaurants are 7km away), therefore own transport is recommended (although it would be possible to collect you from the airport if you prefer). The mountain town of Monchique and the thermal baths (Caldas de Monchique) are approximately 20 mins. drive away. To reach the coast, either to the south (Alvor/Portimão/Lagos) or the west (Aljezur), takes between 30-40 mins. by car. It takes approximately an hour and a half to walk up to Fóia where there is a cafe and viewing point and the house is situated along the route of a 3½ hour walk around Fóia as described in the Sunflower Books on the Algarve. The recently opened Via Algarviana is a 240 km footpath which traverses the Algarve from Alcoutim to Cape Saint Vincent and passes near the house.

There is also the new race track, the Algarve Motor Park, Autódromo International Algarve which is only 20 mins drive from Casa Mira Montanha.

As well as for writers, it is also a good base for walkers, birdwatchers, artists, cyclists and anyone else who enjoys the mountains and likes to escape the summer chaos of the coast. For those interested in astronomy, the skies at night are some of the clearest in Europe and there is a telescope which you are welcome to use. Lisa is based at Mira Montanha most of the time and can provide information about events in the area and answer any queries.

Images of Casa Mira Montanha. Below centre is the side of the house available to rent.

More images of the terrace and pool:

The lounge (below) and kitchen (below centre) and stairs.

The bedrooms - the upstairs loft bedroom (below left), downstairs second bedroom (below centre) and bathroom.

And the house from a distance, the mountains and the snow! Click to enlarge but click 'BACK' to return to this page.

It is possible to rent the house for however many nights you require (minimum stay 3 nights).

This property is also on (property reference P2773). Two week holidays can also be combined with an apartment in Salema (property reference P1426) - a beautiful coastal village - or a small house in Figueira (P4961) from 400/£300. For more information see below and to check availability, please visit the owners direct website or email Lisa ( or call 00351 962887680.

Accommodation in other parts of the Algarve.

 Beautifully renovated house in Figueira, nr Salema   1 bed apartment in Salema with fantastic view.


The Algarve has one of the most temperate climates in Europe but, as with most places, we can never guarantee a week of perfect sunshine. The weather in the mountains is particularly variable. It can be cooler, wetter and windier than by the coast, and even snowed in January 2006 (the first time in 28 years). In contrast, temperatures in December 2006 and January 2007 soared to 30 degrees during the day. Similarly, it rained almost continuously in October and November 2006 while October, November and much of December 2007 has seen deep blue skies and full sunshine every day with temperatures well into the twenties.

Although the winter sun is still hot, the night times can be cold (sometimes dropping to 4 or 5 degrees). The best time for hiking is during the winter months. The hottest months generally are June - September when temperatures are a pleasant 25-35 degrees (day) cooling to 18-22 (night). We do, occasionally, get spectacular storms - particularly in spring and autumn.

Mira Montanha is south facing (215° west of south) so when the skies are blue the sun shines on the house and terrace all the year round. The clouds drifting through the mountains is also a beautiful sight. During the winter, the house is heated by an efficient wood burner (wood provided).

Getting there

Faro airport is just over an hour’s drive away. EasyJet flies to Faro daily from Stansted, Gatwick, Luton, Bristol and East Midlands. There are also many chartered flights flying into Faro from Birmingham, Exeter, Manchester and Glasgow – as well as the London airports. Check for an overview of prices at the time you are coming. Monarch airlines and bmibaby often have good deals. Air Berlin also flies Stansted-Faro and BA flies from Gatwick-Faro. Prices range from anything between €50 - €500 (£35 - £350) return depending on when you book and fly but the average cost should be between £100 - £150 from the UK.

From elsewhere Ryanair flies from Dublin to Faro. Air Berlin flies from most destinations in Germany. There are also flights from Aarhus, Helsinki, Oslo, Stockholm, Zurich, Palma de Mallorca, Paris, Amsterdam, Brussels, Vienna, Salzburg and Torronto… and more. See

If you have more time and are coming from the UK, a ferry sails from Portsmouth to Bilbao. Again prices vary enormously but if there are two of you in a car expect to pay between €500 - €800 return including cabin. The journey takes 36 hours to get there and about 26 hours to get back. For more information try P&O Ferries Driving non-stop from Bilbao to Mira Montanha will take 10 -13 hours. 

There is no public transport to Chilrão but there is a good bus and train network from Faro to the towns and cities and around Portugal. For more details please see and

Getting to Mira Montanha, Chilrão - Chilrão is on most maps and we advise having one handy (although they don't always correspond with the actual roads!). If you are coming from Faro airport, the easiest way (though not the quickest) is to follow the signs from the motorway to Monchique (get off at Junction 3) and this will take you up a main road for about 20 mins. You will pass Caldas de Monchique (the thermal baths) and then just before you get to Monchique, turn left at Nave (opposite a granite quarry) towards Casais, Marmelete and Aljezur. Continue along the windy road for about 20 mins, through Casais and Corgo de Vale. The wind turbines should be just above you on the right. Take the next right turning (heading up the mountain) signposted for Portela da Viuva, Pe do Frio and Chilrão (if you reach Marmelete you have missed the turning). From here it is an 8 - 10 minute drive on a good tarmac road with stunning views. Pe de Frio is the first hamlet, followed by Chilrão. When you reach Chilrão, turn left towards Selão and Casa Mira Montanha is on your left.

GPS coordinates N37º 19.355' W008º 37.254'


Cost per night based on 2 people (minimum stay 3 nights)

Prices are in euros. We are happy to accept pounds but the exchange rate is currently about 1:1. Towels and linen provided and there is no extra charge for end of stay changeover.

November - March 1 night - €50 1 week - €300 2 weeks - €500 1 month* - €550
April - June 1 night - €60 1 week - €380 2 weeks - €680 1 month - €750
July - August 1 night - €70 1 week - €450 2 weeks - €860  
September - October  1 night - €60 1 week - €380 2 weeks - €680 1 month - €750

 *Monthly rentals are available for a maximum of 2 people and do not include cleaning/laundry service.

There is a supplement of 8 euros per night for another person.

Airport pick-ups: €70 (including a stop at a supermarket on the way if required)

Car Hire

If you need car hire we recommend Luz cars (based in Lagos) as their cars are fully comprehensive. This means that you do not have to pay the first 500-800 euros of damage if you do have an accident, or scratch the car, as you do with most of the seemingly cheap car hires. If flying from the UK or elsewhere you will be met at Faro airport. Payment can be made on arrival.

The prices they have quoted for 2009/10 for one week in euros are:

Group Jan-Feb-March Nov-Dec April-May-June Oct July-Aug-Sept
A        Daewoo Matiz 130 (£100 approx.) €150 (£150 approx.) €190 (£145)
B        Ren. Clio, C3 (5 doors) €140 €160 €200
C       Clio C3 or similar with AC €160 €200 €250
D       Megane/Xsara or similar with AC €225 €275 €320

More groups are available. We would be happy to make the reservation for you if you want at no extra charge (subject to availability), or you can contact them directly on 00351 282761016 or visit

For more information please email  Lisa ( or call 00351 962887680 (mobile)

Please note that the house will not be available for rent as from July 2012. Due to a change in circumstances the house is up for sale - 268.000 euros. This includes both houses (attached) each one with one reasonable size bedroom and one small bedroom, beautiful kitchens, bathrooms, small swimming pool, garden etc., 1 large garage and 1 stable.

Please note that you must have your own travel insurance and we will not accept liability for any costs incurred as a result of  delays, closure of airports, natural disasters, technical problems with transport, loss of, or damage to, personal property, or any other event beyond our control. While we aim to ensure that all the information on our website is correct, in the case of an unforeseen event, some of the amenities and/or services may be unavailable.



Last updated 5 January 2012