Government restrictions on free movement and assembly put in place in response to CoViD-19 very regrettably meant we had to cancel all our courses in 2020, some quite literally only at the last minute.
After 2019's great start to the quinta's career as an education centre and its ongoing recovery from the 2017 wildfires, this has been quite a considerable blow, not least in the resources invested in preparing for courses which could not then take place.
For 2021, we are resuming (circumstances permitting) our programme of Permaculture Design Certificate courses in partnership with Circle Permaculture. We've chosen July and August as being the months most likely to feature the least restrictions. July's PDC is now fully-booked and we have scheduled another for August.
We also hope to organise a rocket mass heater build and more natural building and vermicomposting toilet workshops, but for the moment are adopting a stance of watching and waiting to see how events unfold.
Keep an eye on this page for further developments or sign up for our newsletter below if you're interested in joining us.
Permaculture Design Course August 2021
August 8 - August 22
After 2019’s shiny beginnings to Quinta do Vale’s partnership with Circle Permaculture and last year’s big disappointments (fully booked courses cancelled at the last minute thanks for CoViD-19 restrictions), I’m delighted to be bringing the crew back to the quinta in 2021 to offer the full 72-hour certificated PERMACULTURE DESIGN COURSE! Endorsed by the Permaculture Association UK, George Christofis and team’s PDCs get enthusiastic reviews wherever they’ve held them (in Spain, Portugal and Sweden).
The course will run August 8th to 22nd 2021, with the option to stay on a further week for our Post-PDC Practical Course immediately afterwards.
Permaculture Design Course program
The 72-hour certificated Permaculture Design Course follows the curriculum as laid out in Permaculture co-founder Bill Mollison’s Permaculture – A Designer’s Manual, integrating co-founder David Holmgren’s Seven Domains of Permaculture Action. It covers subjects ranging from ethics and principles of permaculture, natural systems, aquaculture, sustainable design methods, patterns in nature, land restoration, water harvesting, grey water recycling, natural building, food forests and guilds, energy conservation, appropriate technology, renewable energy, urban permaculture and invisible structures.
The course teaches how to develop sustainable human settlements, and how to extend and preserve natural systems. The content will be covered between theoretical lectures and practical applications. The courses aim to utilise the collective intelligence of the group with engaging participatory classes.
You can view a schedule of 2019’s course here. The schedule gives a general idea of what to expect but will vary course to course.
PDC June 2019
“Super interesting course. Beyond all expectations. Thank you guys! I loved the atmosphere in general, the perfect balance between practical and theoretical classes, the location, the wide range of topics touched, having space for everyone to express themselves, all the laughs!, food!, People’s Kitchen and getting in touch with the local community.”
PDC June 2019
“I loved the site, context, beauty and diversity, teachers and the different parts they brought to the course, Wendy’s insight and wisdom, the hope and vision that was presented and the intellectual background, the harmony between people of all kinds of backgrounds, food (obviously!) and the camping.”
PDC June 2019
“I loved … the food … the fermentation workshop … the people and diversity (teachers and attendees) … talks with Wendy and general evening hangouts … social permaculture … using the knowledge and skills of the group … almost everything! You’re great!”
PDC June 2019
“I loved the enthusiasm of the facilitators, their diversity and how they were inclusive in their teaching methods – especially because we all came from different knowledge backgrounds. It is not easy to create an environment and a course where people can be as comfortable as it happened here, but you guys (as well as the context) made it possible. Thank you!”
Accommodation is camping on designated pitches. Please bring your own tent and bedding. Alternatively, there is a comfortable caravan for 2-3 people and 2 pitches for camper vans. Bedding is not supplied for the caravan so please bring your own.
We have hot (solar-heated) showers and composting toilets. There is abundant off grid electricity for phone/tablet/laptop charging, free wifi onsite and course participants have the use of refrigeration/kitchen facilities/laundry plus the social/hang out space in the communal building and any evening activities (movies, etc) we might put on.
Phone signal is reasonable for all networks which can make use of Altice MEO’s infrastructure. Vodafone doesn’t get signal here, but you can connect from the village above us. There is also free wifi in the nearest village below us, along with a river beach and outdoor café.
Beyond the quinta, there’s a lively international social scene in summer revolving around the river beach and local cafés. There’s lots of music, local markets, events, workshops, parties and lots of opportunities to meet locals and the sizeable community of eco-immigrants in the area.
What to bring
- comfortable clothes and clothes you don’t mind getting dirty
- sturdy shoes
- a swimsuit for the nearby river beach
- tent (if camping), bedding and sleeping bag
- ecological body care products
- note taking (blank pages recommended) and drawing materials
- musical instruments!
€700 camping (please bring your own tent or camper van). Early bird discount price of €650 valid until April 15th.
€800 caravan twin or triple share (must be booked at the same time). Early bird discount price of €750 valid until April 15th.
There is a special non-resident rate of €550 for people living locally ONLY . We encourage you to consider staying onsite though as evening activities are an integral part of the course … not to mention good fun.
Prices include all meals (breakfast, mid-morning break, lunch and dinner). Please be sure to let us know of any special dietary requirements on the registration form.
Anyone who was booked to come on last September’s cancelled course who would like to come to this one, we will honour the prices you booked at last year. Please either reregister or let us know by email.
To sign-up for this course, please fill in the registration form and pay a deposit of €100. Please note that if you have to cancel for any reason we will refund 75% of your deposit provided we can fill your place. The refund can only be made once we’ve done so. If you would like to stay on for the Post-PDC Practical course, you can apply on the same form. Please note the deposit is then €25 extra.
Please note that I make learning opportunities and the facilities at the quinta available in good faith, but at your own risk. Accidents happen so please make sure you have adequate and appropriate health and travel insurance and are covered against injury to others as well as yourself.
Getting to Quinta do Vale
See the Getting here page.
If you would like to be collected from the nearest long-distance bus stop at Catraia de Mouronho, which is half an hour’s drive from the quinta, we ask for a contribution of 15€ per journey. Please mention this in the comments section of the application form. We’ll give you the opportunity to arrange to share journeys (and hence cost) with other course participants nearer the time.
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