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River Island: luxury waterfront villa; private pool; boat; kayaks; river bar

People6
Bedrooms 3
Bathrooms3
Space 2,142 sq. ft.
Property type villa
Minimum Stay 1 - 7 nights

Overview

About the property

Waterfront Villa with private pool, sundeck, boat, kayaks, in Serra da Lousã, Silver Coast, Portugal - On Island In Warm, Clear River, 4 Mins' Walk To River Bar, 10 Mins' Drive To Town

This is an area for individualists. If you cannot bear to be more than two metres from another tourist, if you enjoy lager louts, noisy bars, tacky shops, rip-off restaurants, burger gases, traffic jams and impossible parking, then this is not for you.

But why be stampeded into an overcrowded, overpriced tourist ghetto? Instead, treat yourself to a dreamy slice of a watery Eden, Europe's 'forgotten' paradise. Look around you and you might find it hard to believe you are in Europe, never mind just a two-hour flight from grey skies and rain-soaked streets. Try wild swimming in the tree-lined river. We have a 200-mtr stretch of calm water, about 1.2 mtrs deep, not as warm as the pool but still very pleasant, and full of little fish. If you stay still they will come and nibble at your skin – a recognised spa therapy! You might spot a kingfisher while swimming downstream to the river bar (open May – Oct),

Once a watermill, the villa has been stylishly restored without cutting corners, to make a roomy home of uncommon charm and elegance.

On the ground floor are a walk-in shower room; big sitting room with two-sided wood-burning stove, satellite plasma TV, and a door to the walled courtyard (with pool and sundeck); a large, modern fitted kitchen and dining area, with door to the riverside kitchen garden.

From the entrance hall, steps lead up to the first floor, where there are three spacious bedrooms. Two of them share a good-size shower room with two-person walk-in shower. The master bedroom has an en-suite bathroom and large covered veranda (with outside steps down to walled courtyard with pool). Take a lazy breakfast here, or just lounge with a good book and barely a sound, except, perhaps, for the sighing trees and the children’s shrieks of laughter from the river below.

In the private walled courtyard is an exceptionally pretty swimming pool with lounge shelf and sundeck. Under the large sundeck is the pump house, with washing machine.

Oil-fired central heating and double glazing throughout.

It is a simple delight to walk along the canal and over the river bridge to the river bar (takes about four minutes), to pick up your warm bread and cakes in the morning, and maybe take a leisurely coffee at the water's edge in lovely surroundings. Of course you could also row or even swim there! This river bar also serves snacks all day. Close by is a simple children's paddling pool and a diving board into the only deep part of the river.

The town of Lousã, which has several supermarkets, restaurants and one of Portugal's best beauty spots (at Arouce Castle), is less than 10 mins by car, in the Serra da Lousã. The medieval university city of Coimbra is barely half an hour. Also within easy reach are the vast golden beaches of the Silver Coast, gorgeous mountain scenery, warm rivers and lakes (far warmer and safer than the ocean).

British / Belgian owners

OTHER THINGS TO DO

*Kayak/boat on the river;

*Lovely walks and drives through the hills and the 'lost' mountain villages;

*'Portugal Pequinitos' - a fantasy model village with Portugal's great buildings in miniature, but still large enough to walk through, plus humbler houses accessible only to children;

*Conimbriga - the ancient Roman capital with some of the best mosaics in Europe;

* World Heritage Tomar, a lovely old town with Knights Templar castle and convent;

*Horse-riding;

*Open-air zoo plus farm zoo;

*Gondola rides on the canals of Aveiro;

*The Holy Shrine at Fatima and nearby beautifully lit caves;

*The medieval university city of Coimbra with its big shopping malls.

The infrastructure is excellent, English widely spoken and restaurants amazingly cheap. This is the real Portugal, not a tourist ghetto rip-off.

NOTE THAT DESPITE THE WATERY LOCATION, MOSQUITOS ARE NOT A SPECIAL PROBLEM. IN FACT THE ISLAND SEEMS TO BE LESS TROUBLED BY FLYING INSECTS THAN PROPERTIES WELL AWAY FROM WATER.

Tourism licence nº 63970/AL

More Details
Registration Number : 63970/AL

Owner
James
Member since: 2006
Premier Partner

This partner has demonstrated and is committed to fast response times, the best rates, and a great guest experience.

Speaks English, French, Portuguese, Dutch
Response time:
Within an hour
Response rate:
100%
Calendar last updated:
16 September, 2018

Why James chose Municipality of Lousã

It is very, very rare to find good properties next to a river - there is a total embargo on building - and this happens to be the best stretch of swimming river in the region.

What makes this villa unique

.The adventure of swimming in a warm river, right from your door.

Guestbook comments from the owner

What a week! What a property! Fantastic facilities and welcome. Lousã area is great, the river swimming a must. The owners have excelled in creating such a relaxing atmosphere. We recommend a row down to the river bar, Burgo Restaurant at Lousã Castle is a must. We will be back!"



Kevin and Janet, Cambridge, UK.



"We had a wonderful time on River Island. The house was lovely and well decorated. The kids liked to go to the river bar by boat or dive from the platform. The interior of Portugal is extremely beautiful and the people friendly. We surely recommend this place!"



Achien and Guy, Netherlands.



"Do we have to leave? Once again the sun is shining, the pool is calling. We had a fantastic, relaxing holiday. Everything we could possibly wish for and more."



Simon and Karin, Surrey, England



"We enjoyed our week here very much. The villa is gorgeous, both in decoration and location. We also enjoyed the pool, and the Blue Book was invaluable in guiding us to places to visit. We particularly recommend the Roman ruins at Conimbriga."



Deborah and Jamie, England



"What can we say? We have absolutely loved staying here. It's been the perfect end to our trip. We're just sorry we could not stay for longer. It is a beautiful villa, so beautifully designed. We visited the Arouce Castle in Lousã and it's just amazing. We will definitely be back!"



Amy and Anthony, England
Jan 2013
  • 1 of 1

Facilities

Accommodation and facilities for this holiday villa around the Municipality of Lousã around the Coimbra District

Property Type:
  • villa
Meals:
  • Self-catering
Floor Area:
  • 2142 sq. ft.
House Rules:
  • Check-in: Flexible / Check-out: Flexible
  • Max. occupancy: 6
  • children welcome
  • pets not allowed
  • non smoking only
Location Type:
  • river
  • rural
  • waterfront
Theme:
  • Adventure
  • Away From It All
  • Family
  • Historic
  • Romantic
  • Sports & Activities
General:
  • Air Conditioning ...
  • Fireplace
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating ...
  • Internet ...
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Room ...
  • Parking ...
  • Towels Provided
  • Tumble Dryer ...
  • Washing Machine
  • Wood Stove
  • Free Wifi
Kitchen:
  • Coffee Maker
  • Dishes & Utensils
  • Dishwasher
  • Freezer
  • Kitchen ...
  • Microwave
  • Oven
  • Pantry Items
  • Refrigerator
  • Hob
  • Toaster
Dining:
  • Child's Highchair
  • Dining
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 6 people
Bathrooms:
  • 3 Bathrooms
  • Bathroom 1 - Toilet , Bath (no shower) , Bidet , En-suite to master bedroom
    Bathroom 2 - Toilet , Shower Enclosure , Hand-held shower in toilet serves as bidet
    Bathroom 3 - Toilet , Shower Enclosure , Hand-held shower in toilet serves as bidet. Grnd floor
  • The en-suite bathroom has a bath, toilet, bidet, washbasin in vanity unit. The shower room has a walk-in shower, toilet with hand-held shower, wash basin. There is a further shower room on the ground floor, near the pool. Toilet also has hand-held shower to serve as bidet.
Bedrooms:
  • 3 Bedrooms, Sleeps 6
  • Bedroom 3 - 1 Double Bed
    Bedroom 2 - 2 Single Bed
    Bedroom 1 - 1 Large Double Bed , 1 Cot , En-suite bathroom, large veranda
  • Description of sleeping capacity: Sleeps 6 (3 Bedrooms) Notes on bedrooms: Master bedroom has en-suite bath, large veranda. Second (even larger) bedroom has double bed. Third bedroom has twin beds, and shares shower room (with one access door from corridor) with second bedroom.
Entertainment:
  • Books
  • DVD Player
  • Games
  • Satellite / Cable
  • Stereo
  • Television
  • Toys
  • Video Library
Outside:
  • Balcony
  • Bicycles
  • Boat ...
  • Terrace
  • Golf ...
  • Kayak / Canoe ...
  • Garden
  • Barbecue
  • Veranda
  • Tennis ...
  • 2 bicycles
Suitability:
  • Long-term Renters Welcome
  • wheelchair inaccessible
Pool / Spa:
  • Private Pool ...
Onsite Services:
  • Massage
Attractions:
  • autumn foliage
  • churches
  • forests
  • library
  • museums
  • playground
  • pond
  • restaurants
  • ruins
  • waterfalls
  • winery tours
  • zoo
Leisure Activities:
  • bird watching
  • horse riding
  • paddle boating
  • scenic drives
  • sight seeing
  • walking
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • fitness centre
  • groceries
  • hospital
  • massage therapist
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • fishing
  • freshwater fishing
  • hiking
  • mountain biking
  • swimming
  • tennis
Notes:
Notes on accommodation: The house is roomy and airy, with a special atmosphere of calm and elegance. The meter-thick walls make for coolness in summer, cosiness in winter - much better than noisy air conditioning!. Furnishing is in most cases brand new and of good quality. Outside: Dreamy location on an island, between an enchanting canal and tree-lined river. Large lawned garden with pond; riverside kitchen garden with barbecue and dining table; walled courtyard with pool and sun deck. Utility Room: Washing machine - free use. Cleaning / Towels / Linen / Maid service: All linen and towels included. The house is cleaned weekly and after each visit. Other: Dining room open plan with kitchen.

Reviews

Exceptional! 5/5 -
(21 traveller reviews)

95% Complete
4% Complete
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River Island: luxury waterfront villa; private pool; boat; kayaks; river bar
average rating of 4.952381 based on 22 reviews
5

Beautiful villa, great hosts, incredible location!

  • 5 of 5

We have just returned home after a magical week at River Island. We are a family with three boys so finding that balance between relaxation and adventure can be difficult, but this week was absolutely perfect!

James and Heidi were the perfect hosts and have created a beautiful home and space, and they made it so welcoming for us on arrival. Others have talked in earlier reviews about the villa and we agree with every word.

The "Little Blue Book" full of suggestions on what to do in the area was incredibly useful, and there is so much to see and do. The highlights for us were the beautiful river beaches at Gois; the canal boat ride and old fish market in Aveiro; the character of the beach resort and the great waves at Costa Nova; the stunning Lousa Castle with an amazing river pool and great restaurant; and the drive through Serra da Lousa to the mountain village Talasnal. We all highly recommend all of these and there was much more that we hope to experience another time!

So overall a great property, fantastic hosts, beautiful location, plenty of opportunity to relax as a family by the pool, explore the river on kayaks, and find adventure in stunning central Portugal.

We can't recommend River Island highly enough!

  • Review Submitted: 02-Sep-2018
  • Date of Stay: August 2018
  • Source: HomeAway
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5

A blissful, rural retreat in unspoilt Portugal

  • 5 of 5

We are recently home from a fabulous stay at River Island; a beautiful, spacious villa in a beautiful unspoilt area of Portugal that leaves us desperate to return! Having stayed in one of James and Heidi's villas before, we were not surprised to find the standard of accommodation so high. River Island is decorated beautifully throughout with the flow of the property carefully considered. There was plenty of space for our family of 5, inside and out. The interior is so tasteful and extremely hard to beat. Small touches - such as the abundance of towels for a large family swimming non-stop - are so helpful. The welcome you receive on arrival is also just what is needed after, admittedly, a relatively short drive from Porto (2 hours max, with Lisbon also an option). The fridge is stocked with some delights to get you through the first night and James is always very kind to offer you a drink on arrival to ensure you feel like your holiday has started the moment you arrive. The area is just perfect for a get away from it all holiday. There is absolute quiet with the house being nestled on a wide but shallow, and very pretty river. The boat and kayaks provided at River Island allow a brilliant, immediate way to escape the house if you need to, though it is very hard to tear yourself away from the sun deck and pool! For those that like to relax on holiday, you can get out on the river (even more restful) to feel you have done something without having to venture far. It is such a treat to be afloat, drifting down a river hardly passing a soul, and without having to drive to a hire venue as is often the way. The river cafe downstream also offers relaxed coffees, ice creams and snacks and a good local vibe for an early evening drink. There is plenty to do if you like to venture further; we returned to the excellent Pombal waterpark - loved by our children, and explored Coimbra which provides further insight into this wonderful, very real area of Portugal. Figuera de Foz also offers a huge sandy beach. James and Heidi, and their daughter, could not have been more welcoming throughout our time. Living next door, they offer privacy alongside advice and hospitality. At the end of our stay they were also kind enough to note that we had left some items behind, going above and beyond to return these items to us. Without a doubt, we WILL be back! We thoroughly recommend the hospitality, surroundings and accommodation offered by this villa for families of all ages.

  • Review Submitted: 29-Aug-2018
  • Date of Stay: July 2018
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: Wow! Thank you, Bridget for taking a lot of trouble over a long review - and such a positive one. We were delighted to welcome you all back and really hope you can return next year - maybe to our new riverside villa? Best wishes from me and H
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5

Fabulous villa in an amazing place!

  • 5 of 5

We have just returned home after a magical week at River Island. We are a family with three boys so finding that balance between relaxation and adventure can be difficult, but this week was absolutely perfect!

James and Heidi were the perfect hosts and have created a beautiful home and space, and they made it so welcoming for us on arrival. Others have talked in earlier reviews about the villa and we agree with every word.

The "Little Blue Book" full of suggestions on what to do in the area was incredibly useful, and there is so much to see and do. The highlights for us were the beautiful river beaches at Gois; the canal boat ride and old fish market in Aveiro; the character of the beach resort and the great waves at Costa Nova; the stunning Lousa Castle with an amazing river pool and great restaurant; and the drive through Serra da Lousa to the mountain village Talasnal. We all highly recommend all of these and there was much more that we hope to experience another time!

So overall a great property, fantastic hosts, beautiful location, plenty of opportunity to relax as a family by the pool, explore the river on kayaks, and find adventure in stunning central Portugal. We can't recommend River Island highly enough!

  • Review Submitted: 27-Aug-2018
  • Date of Stay: August 2018
  • Source: HomeAway
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5

A wonderful place to stay

  • 5 of 5

This property lived up to our expectations of a dreamy, luxury and quiet place to say. the facilities were excellent and all our needs were catered for even down to James providing the charcoal for the barbeque. The river bar was lovely and did a good burger and even a Veggie burger for our daughter. There was lots to do from visiting places, dramatic walks, kayaking and some impressive places to eat.

James and Heidi were very welcoming and made us feel at home immediately. This location will give you a true taste of the real Portugal.

Thank You

  • Review Submitted: 04-Aug-2018
  • Date of Stay: July 2018
  • Source: HomeAway
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5

A Gem of a Find in Portugal

  • 5 of 5

Directions to River Island were very accurate, which without them, one would have some reservations about driving down through a forest for 2km on man made tracks. Owners, Heidi & James, who live next door were exceptional hosts, and very genuine, making us feel very relaxed. An excellent welcome of tapas and wine greeted us along with our hosts who showed us round. The property was immaculate, homely and very well furnished to a high standard. A fully equipped kitchen with a full pantry of food, wine, pasta, frozen food, tea, coffee milk etc was available for our use, with just an honesty box if we used what they had provided. The downstairs kitchen/diner, sitting room, entrance hall was very well laid out giving us plenty of room. Upstairs the three double bedrooms were spacious and cool. The beds were very comfortable, however the pillows could be improved. Towels for the poolside supplied plus large fluffy towels for the two lovely large bathrooms. Both were stocked with toiletries, and hairdryer, for guests to use. The double room with veranda was ensuite but only had a bath, with no shower head, however the main bathroom had a large shower area, and had plenty of hot water, so this was not a major issue. Outside, the pool was compact but perfect and had a lovely wide shallow shelf which made access very safe, and suitable for small children. Outdoor seating areas were plentiful with comfortable cushions and well positioned around a very well maintained garden with lots of nooks to sit in the shade. The river was great fun - and although brown - it was gentle and safe. A rowing boat plus 2 kayaks were moored at the bottom of the garden for our use, with life jackets supplied. Messing about on the river, and rowing downstream to the café/pub was a real treat - and as a party four adults, we instantly reverted back to our childhood. The 'blue book' with local activities, attractions and restaurants were honest and appropriate selections for guests. Our week went by so quickly we would have definitely like to stay for our second week if it had been available. Definitely worth renting if you are looking to relax by a pool, mess about on boats on the river, go kayaking for bigger river adventures, or take in the local restaurants and towns. A very green region with spectacular views. A stay here is definitely a must!

  • Review Submitted: 16-Jul-2018
  • Date of Stay: June 2018
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thanks, Linda, for taking the trouble to write such a fulsome review. We are very glad you enjoyed your stay, which we remember with fondness. We are sorry that the normally clear river was brown, which as you know was due to dredging work upstream. Apologies also that you were not 100% satisfied with the pillows. We normally put six on each double bed to give guests a choice, but new ones are now at the top of our shopping list. Bedding is always a bit tricky, as it is so personal. We'll always be pleased to welcome you back - thanks again to everyone in your party.
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Christchurch, New Zealand
5

fantastic!!!

  • 5 of 5

absolutely fantastic! this place is amazing and all the details and extra's were just great. The owners were fabulous and even had some yummy food prepared for us at our arrival and some fresh baked goods while we were there. The pictures do not do this place justice. Truly fabulous place

  • Review Submitted: 23-Jun-2018
  • Date of Stay: May 2018
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thanks, E and C. You were truly delightful guests and we were sorry to see you go. We admired your fortitude in the face of such freakish weather and hope that one day you will come back for some of the normal solid sunshine!
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Location

Nearest Barpub
0.3 Kilometres
River Bar
Nearest Golf
65 Kilometres
Montebelo, Viseu
Nearest Motorway
20 Kilometres
A13
Nearest Restaurant
5 Kilometres
Burgo, Lousã
Nearest Beach
0.3 Kilometres
River Beach
Car: necessary

This is an area noted for its clear rivers and lakes (the best stretch of swimming river runs right past the villa), almost tropically warm in summer - far warmer (and safer) than the open ocean. Some have beaches with cafe/restaurant; others you might have all to yourself, even in summer. It is a pure delight to swim in these warm waters, surrounded by nature.

Other things to do: kayak/boat on the river; lovely walks and drives through the hills and the 'lost' mountain villages; 'Portugal Pequinitos' - a fantasy model village with Portugal's great buildings in miniature, but still large enough to walk through, plus humbler houses accessible only to children; Conimbriga - the ancient Roman capital with some of the best mosaics in Europe; World Heritage Tomar, a lovely old town with Knights Templar castle and convent; horse-riding; open-air zoo plus farm zoo; gondola rides on the canals of Aveiro;

Travel:

Porto is about 1hr 45mins, Lisbon about 2hrs, and it's motorway most of the way. There are inexpensive flights from several UK airports and Dublin, and from other northern European countries.

Distances:

The nearest shops/restaurants are c. 8 mins by car. The medieval university city of Coimbra, regional capital and Portugal's third city, is c. 25 mins. World Heritage Tomar is also c. 45 mins. The Roman ruins at Conimbriga (with some of the best preserved mosaics in Europe) are c. 30 mins. Riding stables, a zoo and big lido are all about 15 mins by car. Lousã Castle, in one of Portugal's leading beauty spots, is about 10 minutes.

Gorgeous green countryside is right on your doorstep.

Further Details:

Restaurants are amazingly inexpensive and serve huge portions. The better ones have menus in English. Wine is absurdly cheap and very drinkable. English and French are widely spoken.

Locals are genuinely friendly, the roads empty. This is the REAL Portugal, not a rip-off tourist ghetto! You'll return home wondering why this paradise isn't better known, but very glad it isn't!

English, French, Dutch and Portuguese spoken.

Photos

Prices & Availability

Prices for this holiday villa around the Municipality of Lousã,

Rental Basis:
per property
Owner accepts payment in:
GBP
Convert Currency
Rental Period Minimum Price Additional Nights Weekend Night Weekly Monthly Event Price
 
Late summer
1 Sep 2018 - 21 Sep 2018
3 night minimum stay
£420
for 3 nights
From
£140
£895
 
 
Autumn
22 Sep 2018 - 27 Oct 2018
3 night minimum stay
£360
for 3 nights
From
£120
£795
 
 
Low season
28 Oct 2018 - 4 Apr 2019
1 night minimum stay
£100
for 1 night
From
£100
£650
 
 
Easter
5 Apr 2019 - 23 Apr 2019
4 night minimum stay
£560
for 4 nights
From
£140
£895
 
 
Spring
24 Apr 2019 - 25 May 2019
4 night minimum stay
£480
for 4 nights
From
£120
£795
 
 
Early summer
26 May 2019 - 29 Jun 2019
4 night minimum stay
£560
for 4 nights
From
£140
£895
 
 
Shoulder season
30 Jun 2019 - 23 Jul 2019
7 night minimum stay
£1,595
for 7 nights
£1,595
 
 
Peak season
24 Jul 2019 - 31 Aug 2019
7 night minimum stay
£1,850
for 7 nights
£1,850
 
 
Late summer
1 Sep 2019 - 28 Sep 2019
4 night minimum stay
£560
for 4 nights
From
£140
£895
 
 
Autumn
29 Sep 2019 - 26 Oct 2019
4 night minimum stay
£480
for 4 nights
From
£120
£795
 
 
My Standard Rate
4 night minimum stay
£480
for 4 nights
From
£120
£700
 

Additional pricing information

Fees No additional mandatory fees

Booking Notes:
30% non-refundable deposit requested with booking, the balance 30 days before arrival, please. Payment may be in sterling or euros.

Ask about our special rates for long term stays, November - April. Escape the northern winter!

Changeover Day:
Flexible. Departure by 10:00am, arrival after 3:00pm - but we try to be flexible about this too.

Owner's Cancellation Policy

  • 50% refund for cancellations more than 30 days before check-in date.
  • 100% refund for cancellations more than 60 days before check-in date.
  • Service Fee fully refunded on cancellations that qualify for 100% refund.
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