Set in the picturesque Algarve countryside and commanding incredible views, Villa Rocha Branca is peaceful and remote yet central enough to enjoy everything the region has to offer. Hundreds of incredible beaches and hidden coves, the mountains of Monchique and historic Silves are all just a short journey away. Closer still are picturesque riverside walks with numerous opportunities to view the region’s wildlife in its natural habitat.
Set in its own orange grove surrounded by a variety of fruit trees and grapevines, Villa Rocha Branca is far from any neighbours yet only a short drive to all amenities and attractions.
Villa Rocha Branca is located 2 km from the medieval town of Silves. Set on a rural hillside overlooking the river Arade and surrounded by 5 acres of land, it commands some of the most stunning views in the Algarve. And the sea is just a 20-minute drive away.
After 8 years of travelling back and forth form London, we have now made Villa Rocha Branca our permanent home and our son Oskar will start school in Silves this autumn.
We have completely renovated the original villa inside and out and have in recent years added a new extension with two mezzanine apartments. We now rent out the apartments to families and small groups of friends.
Villa Rocha Branca consists of the original, fully renovated building and a new extension we have recently added. The new building has two self catering apartments, both with mezzanine bedrooms. One of the apartments has two single beds and the other a double bed. Both have super comfy sofa beds downstairs, which can be perfect when kids sleep upstairs.
The apartment with single beds has a bathroom with a bathtub and shower and the other has a small bathroom with a shower. Both apartments have huge sliding doors that open up to the new decking. They are each equipped with blinds to ensure privacy and to keep out the sun.
Our terrace affords extensive views of the 'Fruit Garden of the Algarve’ where all the birds of the delta fly by – about 80 different species, including a large stork colony. The villa is surrounded by 5 acres of land, which is largely taken up with orange and mandarine trees. Nearby we also have guava, fig and avocado trees. A short walk up the hill to the highest point of our property reveals the full extent of the surrounding countryside in all its spectacular glory.
Just in front of the villa there is an irrigation canal that runs all the way through the surrounding hills and is used to water the citrus groves, including ours. We are very lucky the canal runs in front of our house. It enables us to water our trees in the summer when things can get quite hot and dry. The canal men who come to open and close the water channel takes care of it all year around.
There is a public footpath running alongside the canal which meanders through the sublime and unique beauty of the surrounding landscape. A short walk along the canal brings you to a small boat marina where it is possible to rent a kayak or have a beer in the bar at the weekends.
The Villa Rocha Branca extension is rented as one and sleeps up to 8 people across the two apartments, one with a double and the other with a twin mezzanine bedroom. Both units have bathrooms and a downstairs lounge with comfortable sofa beds. The extension has its own outside sun deck with luxurious garden furniture and a large dining table.
The apartments can be rented all year around, depending on availability. Check our online booking pages now.
“Stunning holiday home set on it's own hillside overlooking the countryside and river valley. Beautifully restored and recently extended to include 2 brand new apartments with mezzanine sleeping areas and full height patio doors and decked terrace. Peaceful, secluded with amazing rural walks along canals and riverside - only 20 mins drive from Carvoeiro. I have lost count how many times I have holidayed here now - it is my home from home.”
Christine King, visitor in 2015-current
"I can't think of a better place for a quiet holiday! We've been back a few times now and every time has been amazing. The villa is remote enough to be quiet and peaceful, but still close enough to go sightseeing around the Algarve. Every visit we find new things to do. At the same time, it offers a peaceful hideout where we can really relax and enjoy the view and the wildlife. The local stork colony for example never ceases to amaze. We can’t wait to go back.”
Gil & Jinne Stiksma, visitors in 2016 & 2017
“Beautiful villa in an outstanding location, ideally suited for exploring the Algarve. The views and setting within orange groves overlooking the Arade river valley are 2nd to none! Mick and Kasia have gone to great lengths to make sure their villa is well equipped and you have all the information you need to enjoy your holiday. We will be back!”
Harry Blackhurst, visitor in 2019
“Amazing place to relax, perfect spot to enjoy the Algarve to the max! Would love to go back!“
Luana Giaveri, visitor 2018
“We had a brilliant week out here. Orange juice just doesn't taste the same from a carton. ;-)"
Rob Baggs, visitor 2017
Villa Rocha Branca in located near the centre of the Algarve and offers many options for day trips and sightseeing with a relatively short journey time.
The nearest town is Silves, the historic capital of the Algarve. The town has a rich history and offers a castle with stunning views, a cathedral and many shops and restaurants.
This part of Portugal is famous for its coastline. There is a wide variety of stunning sandy beaches as well as high cliffs and amazing caves.
Silves is located on the Arade River which runs close to our land. You can take a boat trip on the river and there is a marina nearby which offers kayaking.
Other stunning towns to explore not far from Villa Rocha Branca are Alvor, Lagos, Sagres, Aljezur, Monchique, Loule, Carvoeiro, and a bit further: Faro, Fuseta, Tavira. Each offer their own unique things to do, including traditional markets, museums and shops.
Mount Fóia is the highest point of the Algarve (902 metres). The mountain is part of the mountain range of Serra de Monchique. You can reach the peak of Fóia by foot, by mountain bike or by jeep. Mount Fóia offers phenomenal panoramic views over the Algarve and right down to the coast.
The West Coast is considered to be the most scenic part of the Algarve. It's made up of rugged cliffs, a national park, and numerous small, often empty, and incredibly beautiful beaches.
The number of exquisite beaches seems infinite! We have been coming to our villa for five years now and we have only seen a fraction of them! Each time we come we make certain to visit a new one.
Before our son was born we were proper explorers and loved trips to some of the hidden beaches on the west coast, where the water is icy cold but crystal clear. Praia da Amoreira, Praia da Arrifana and the one we will never forget: Praia da Odeceixe. They call it The 9th Wonder of the World and they aren’t kidding. It’s like heaven for families, romantic escapes, surfing and very few visitors makes it a quiet paradise. Here we first tried Percebes, goose barnacles, which is considered a delicacy by some. To be honest, to us it was like eating dinosaur’s fingers! But you have to try these things at least once.
Once we had Oskar we had to choose the beaches with easy access, like the long Alvor one, with easy access for dragging the buggy along, Meia Praia or Porto de Mos in Lagos and the little cove in Carvoeiro, with all the bars and restaurants touching the sand.
Now Oskar is four and loves to run and explore and we only have to take all the digging equipment with us, we often go to Praia Grande in Ferragudo. There is a beach playground where Oskar meets other kids and improves his Portuguese. You can rent a beach umbrella and loungers and pedalos! There are three restaurants to choose from. Our favourite, Escondidinho, is cheap but has great service and is beautifully situated next to a stunning rock formations. Good food, amazing seasonal dishes like sardines or calamari, with music on Fridays and Tuesday.
Our latest discovery is Praia Dos Tres Irmaos, Alvor. We have been to the beach before, but didn’t realise that the rock formations along the beach are continuous caves to be explored when the tide is out. We couldn’t believe our eyes; kids and friends were enchanted. It is a snorkeling paradise. There are a few good cafés and restaurants on the way. Canico won our hearts, simple salad and toasts and a beer in the sun looking down on the beach. We can’t wait to be back.
The Algarve is a region of Portugal with a rich culture, where you can see people’s way of living through their arts and music. Nowadays, you can still clearly see the Moorish influences in the culture of Portugal and the legacy of five centuries of Arab rule.
The culture of Portugal is also famous for its pottery and ceramics, particularly hand-painted pottery and azulejos (tiles). There are numerous ceramics and pottery outlets throughout the Algarve where you can join workshop and try it yourself!
One of our favourite tile painters Maria Keil, was born in Silves. Please read more about her and the tile art here.
If you are into different types of art, perhaps more modern or street art, for example, you are in luck. Just in Silves you will find a few world class examples of murals and graffiti as seen here, here and here.
There is so much to do around our villa if you are looking for entertainment.
For an amazing night of Fado (uniquely traditional Portuguese blend of jazz and folk music), travel to nearby Ferragudo and visit Wine Bar Casa Grande. Relaxed atmosphere, fine wine and traditional food and authentic Fado on selected evenings. Check out their website for details. Booking recommended.
You will find many festivals in the Algarve during the summer as well. In our gorgeous city Silves alone you will find:
A colourful and vibrant festival for 10 days in August, that takes place in the center of Silves. Visitors from all over the world come and dress in medieval costumes, eat and drink medieval fare, cheer on jousting knights and dance to medieval music.
Delicious food and drink, dance performances and relaxing massages are the highlights of events at the Medieval Castle in Silves during held from June to August.
For one weekend in June or July, the main square in Silves transfers into an artisan beer heaven, with over 50 varieties of lager, ale, etc., accompanied by traditional food, street food, market, music and entertainment. This festival is popular with locals and doesn’t attract many tourists.
”Ilha de Rosario”, a beautiful walking trail passes right in front of our villa.The starting point is usually a nearby restaurant Mira Rio, but you can just start from the villa, go on the trail to the restaurant, stop for a coppo do vinho and continue with the trail back to the villa. Use this link to very detailed route and pictures by David from On Foot In The Algarve.
If you’re feeling really adventurous and are looking for a much longer walk with the most stunning scenery, head to the West Coast. There the 400 km long Walking Trail Rota Vincenta won golden spot among leading European trails.
We have a few favourite restaurants in the town that we often go and take friends to. Those below have never let us down!
N124 | Mercado Municipal de Silves Lj. 21 e 22, 8300-165 Silves
The best grilled chicken in the world, probably. Cheap and basic and you will have to reserve a table.
Closed on Sundays.
Rua 25 De Abril, N.0 13
With fresh fish and seafood. A very authentic Portuguese restaurant.
Closed on Tuesdays.
Rua do Castelo N.O 11
Very good pizzas!
Sunday roast till about 4pm. Music at 6:30pm on Saturdays and 2pm on Sunday. Must book ahead!
Venda Nova 8300-054, Silves
Stylish restaurant, with a beautiful setting and gorgeous food for every pocket.
Closed on Wednesdays.
We are easy to find just two kilometers outside the historic city of Silves in the Southern Portuguese region of Algarve.