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Hilltop Self Contained Cottage For Two

Bedrooms 1
Property type cottage
Minimum Stay 7 nights


Minimum Stay
7 nights

About the property

Cottage near Moncarapacho, Algarve - Panoramic Sea View, Stunning View To San Miguel

The sun is shining! Special offer availability 24th March on with a bottle of bubbly!

Owners Direct first Portuguese property has now come of age and has downsized to provide respite for couples in serious need of battery recharging, with a wonderful 6ft bed. You have a 60 sq.m. pool, air conditioning, WiFi, DVD and Bose CD. Relaxation is guaranteed in this self-contained haven. Nestling into the brow of a foothill of Sao Miguel, the eastern Algarve's highest peak, with breathtaking panoramic views of the sea (15 minutes distance), your cottage extends to private covered areas which include gas or charcoal barbecue, extra cooker and giant marble table. The views are stunning, both from the cottage and round the swimming pool, it is panoramic view of the Atlantic and the mountains.

You have wine, beer, chicken, Hummus, chicken liver pate, mayonnaise, or what ever else I decide to make. I am a Cordon Bleu cook and it is all home made, freshly squeezed orange juice, etc.

More Details

Joan Murray
Member since: 2000
Speaks: english
Calendar last updated:
January 18, 2017

About Joan Murray

My main criteria is for guests to relax, very easy going atmosphere, but high standards as far as accommodation is concerned, friends welcome to come and visit. You are totally private in the cottage, but have the use of lawn and pool, at all times, which are both large! It has been likened by guests to renting a large villa. I always put in a large welcome pack, with wine and beer, so no shopping when you first arrive. There are wonderful simple fish/meat restaurants in Moncarapacho. And one superb restaurant. Antonio's.

Eastern Algarve is totally unspoiled, and long may it stay that way. Beaches unspoilt and even in August, walk about 10 minutes along the beach, and you are on your own. There are small island, along the coast. Small ferries take you there. I just want you to go home with your batteries charged.

Hope to see you


Why Joan Murray chose Olhao

We bought a complete hilltop and built the villa and cottage. It has a panoramic view of the Ocean from Spain to Faro. These sites are no longer available. Not boasting but it is completely unique.

What makes this cottage unique

Swimming pool, lots of areas to relax. Only one other villa, on the hill, which you cannot see, because of loads of trees. More and more people seem to be coming out, and liking 'no clothes' bathing.... No it is not a nudist camp! Relaxing is everything, however you want to do it. No music or loud music, it is entirely down to you.

Guestbook comments from the owner

Comments for 2009

Another relaxed stay, we never want to go home, 2nd visit in two years. Jane and Joe Ellison.

Thanks you for another great stay, you always make us so welcome. Don't forget we are coming for our honeymoon next year. Gary and John. PLEASE LOOK ON GUESTS REMARKS FOR UPDATE COMMENTS.
Feb 2000
  • 1 of 1


Wonderful! 4.9/5 -
(37 traveler reviews)

Hilltop Self Contained Cottage For Two
average rating of 4.9459457 based on 38 reviews

A bit surprised by the distance from town and the small size of the unit

  • 3 of 5

View was stunning but wouldn't rely on TV or internet access. The internet access including TV is dated to say the least. Unit is quite small and very cluttered. On the positive side cooking facilities are exceptional Overall we enjoyed the place and Joan is very hospitable and a very nice lady

  • Submitted: Jan 13, 2017
  • Stayed: Dec 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: Hello Nicole ..... let's start with the distance from Moncarapacho 10 minutes in a car, and I am sorry you found the cottage too small, (I don't usually have any complaints, as you can see by all my 5* reviews, so it is good for me!) unfortunately I cannot change the shape of the cottage. I am glad you enjoyed the cooking facilities. It was very unfortunate I was ill while you were here, otherwise I would have entertained you far more. Hope you are enjoying the rest of your time in Europe, before you return to Canada. Safe Journey
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A great place to relax in a homely atmosphere

  • 5 of 5

Joan was brilliant at making us feel at home and the welcome pack was a feast! Perfect central position to explore the quieter side of the Algarve.

travel was easy as roads quiet and returning to the cottage after a day out really felt like going home. Great to get visits from Joans dogs ( only if you want them) great views, great weather. Good facilities, ( didn't use pool too cold for us but fine for the dedicated ) very good information to help you plan your time in the area. If you dont' mind a walk the town has a great restaurant Antonios, and get a taxi back to the door. Joan is happy to help with any problems and give advice so you don't waste time 'finding things' Will definately be going again.

  • Submitted: Nov 6, 2016
  • Stayed: Oct 2016
  • Source: Owners Direct, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: You came in both stressed, and left really relaxed, this is my main criteria with all my guests, you were both great fun, and relaxed down on your sunlougers outside the cottage. Yes you walked down to Antonio's Restaurant, very sensible to get a taxi home!! You know you are MORE than welcome back. Just look up on Owners Direct, for the availability.
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Return to Paradise

  • 5 of 5

This was our 4th visit to paradise! For my wife and I this is our perfect place, it's got privacy, wonderful surroundings, gorgeous weather but most of all it has Joan. What can I say about Joan, she is the perfect hostess, she's caring, loving, wonderful company but best still she as become one of our dearest friends. We feel so lucky to have found her and her little piece of paradise.

As for the cottage it as everything you need, the outside area is ideal for chilling and relaxing, you can quite happily spend all day there without wanting to go anywhere. The pool and the pool area is our favourite spot, the views are stunning and the pool is just at the right temperature to cool you down after you bake in the gorgeous hot Portugal weather, plus you can chill on a night with either a cool beer or a glass of red and listen to Joan's great story's, she is wonderful company.

The roads around Moncarapacho make a great link to explore the lovely areas of the Algarve, that's if you can tear yourself away from the cottage.

We would also like to mention Joan's dogs who are very friendly and all are their own individual characters. We have met more of Joan's friends and family this time and we will look forward to seeing them all again over the next few years.

The best way I can sum it up is that we have always wanted family who live in another country and now we feel like we have. We have already booked again for next year.

Love you Joan XXX

  • Submitted: Oct 23, 2016
  • Stayed: Sep 2016
  • Source: Owners Direct, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Wow! What a review, you are such fun people, I so look forward to you coming every year. You both have a great sense of humour, and you are always up for a good laugh, Jay has already said, 'I hope they are coming back next year'. Of course you are........ as I have said to you before, I love what I do. And you and Jill, make it fun for me. You were both very tense when you arrived.........but within 3/4 days you both started to relax. Take great care my friends, one thing completely holding us together, (with others as well), my adopted family, 'LIVERPOOL MUST WIN THE CHAMPIONSHIPS!!
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Eastbourne U.K.

The delight we expected. Private Peaceful.

  • 5 of 5

Beautifully elevated positioned, in beautiful surroundings and gardens.

Joan had filled the fridge with lots of tasty goodies for us on our arrival.

The cottage had all the facilities we required and was very private and homely.

We had a great stay and loved it so much we hardly went out. The pool area was spacious and private. Although Joan was on the premises she stayed invisible unless we needed her. We enjoyed a lovely evening with Joan, she was kind enough to invite us to the pool area for one of the evenings for drinks and nibbles and a chat which we enjoyed. Her daughter happened to be staying at the time and joined us for the lovely evening.

We would highly recommend this cottage to anyone looking for a relaxed and pleasant holiday that is close to Moncarapacho village with its fresh vegetable fruit and fish market and local shops.

We should also mention we took our small dog which had the freedom of the enclosed and safe environment of the grounds. We hope to return someday. We arrived as guests and left as friends. "Thank You Joan"

  • Submitted: Oct 16, 2016
  • Stayed: Sep 2016
  • Source: Owners Direct, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Well... what wonderful guests to have in your cottage. Mary was so glamorous and such fun at the same time. George serenaded my friends and me, on his guitar and his singing. George never stopped serenading his lovely wife, and my daughter Tiffany. Oh! And sometimes me. Please come back if you can one day. Just say Mary, I will get on that plane! You will get a wonderful welcome.
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A perfect retreat on the Eastern Algarve

  • 5 of 5

We travelled in search of rest and relaxation and found it in abundance at Casa Alegria. The cottage is in a rural location with panoramic views to the coast and easy access to local towns and the wonderful island beaches of the Eastern Algarve. You can get the 5-minute ferry across to Fuzeta or catch the little train to the beach at Barril and enjoy lovely walks along the seashore or relax on the beach.

Joan is the perfect hostess and creates a welcoming, relaxing and supportive ambience in a very well equipped, clean and comfortable cottage. Previous reviews say it all... the welcome pack of food and drink is delicious and sustained us for the first two days allowing us to relax from day one. The lovely pool and gardens have many sunny or shady places to sit on comfortable, quality furniture and we especially enjoyed the super lilos for casting adrift on the pool. Joan is very sensitive to your needs, her mission is for you to totally relax and have fun and her local knowledge of the area is invaluable. Although we were already familiar with this area of the Algarve, we found new places to eat and Antonio's in Moncarapacho is well worth a visit. You also have a choice of BBQs at the cottage to enjoy al fresco dining. Thank you Joan for inviting us to share a glass or two of wine or beer; we enjoyed your company and conversation together with your daughter, Tiff and feel we have made new friends.

We have travelled all areas of Portugal over the last sixteen years and can honestly say that Joan offers travellers the perfect retreat to enjoy an authentic Portuguese holiday in this lovely unspoilt area of the Algarve.

Thank you Joan! We will be back!

Jane & Ian

  • Submitted: Sep 23, 2016
  • Stayed: Sep 2016
  • Source: Owners Direct, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Wow! I must do something right, to have such a glowing report, I think what it is, I really enjoy what I do, I love seeing people such as Jane and Ian come over fairly stressed, and then when you left, you were really very relaxed. You were very easy guests, and were just here to enjoy yourselves and chill out. I still have not seen the sketch Ian did which is in the visitor's book. And Jane you went back with a beautiful tan. You are so welcome back anytime, love to see you again. Spring Summer and Winter. We will definitely keep in contact.
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wonderfull holiday

  • 5 of 5

What can we say about Hilltop Cottage, we loved every minute we were there for the two weeks, Joan the owner is such a lovley person,it is an holiday to remember going there.

So peacefull and to chill-out and the lovley hot weather there.

We will go back but Joan's cottage is already booked for next year, that alone says it all !!

If you want an holiday to get away from work/everyday life come to hilltop cottage to chill out and get away from the madding crowd come here it is beautiful.

Our thanks to lovley Joan and the lovley cottage xxx

Lynda and Tom

  • Submitted: Sep 4, 2016
  • Stayed: Aug 2016
  • Source: Owners Direct, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thank you, I am so glad you enjoyed your time here...... Without a doubt Tom loved the pool, and Lynda loved the blow up bed in the pool, and you were very good at getting on and off. And you had some excursions your second week, so you really made the best of your time here. Until we meet next time, it is a shame you have to come in the school holidays as I still have May and September free, but you are right JUNE....JULY...AUGUST ARE ALREADY BOOKED. Take care of yourselves. And we will keep in contact. Love J xx
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Nearest Airport
20 Kilometres
Nearest Barpub
1 Kilometres
Nearest Train
5 Kilometres
Nearest Motorway
5 Kilometres
Nearest Restaurant
1 Kilometres
Nearest Beach
5 Kilometres
Car: necessary


15 minutes drive to Fuzeta,which has a beach on the Ria Formosa. Also the ferry to Fuzeta Island (15 mins). Or you hire one of the Water Taxis, they will take you to virtually deserted beaches even in August! There are other beaches within 25 mins of the cottage. If you are willing to walk 10-15 mins along these beaches, they are empty even in August. Good information in cottage on all beaches etc.,


Airport: 30 minutes (Faro)

Car hire essential.


7 minutes drive to Moncarapacho, where you have a local Market, and small supermarkets. 10 mins Estoi - Roman temple, C19th palace. Tavira 20mins, venetian atomsphere, Spanish border 30 mins. Olhao cubist town with fantastic fish and fruit market. Seville 1 hr 40 mins Lisbon 2-3hrs.

Further Details:

Moncarapacho has everything a market town fish vegetable market, very good restaurants, small supermarkets open 7 days a week. Or you go down to 125 road and you have ALDI, LIDL. Sea fishing trips, bird and dolphin spotting and diving expeditions can all be arranged.Visit to the Ria Formosa park centre (many rare birds). IN FUSETA, you have water sport such as Kite Surfing, Boat Tours, Stand up Paddle, kayaking, Water skiing. Also,there is another Water Taxi, he has so much local information, and will take you to all the different Islands, off the coast. Or there is also ferries and water taxi in OLHAO, ALSO TAKING YOU TO ALL THE ISLANDS.

TAVIRA is a beautiful town, and well worth exploring, reminds me of a faded Venice. The architecture is very unique. It is the unspoilt side of the Algarve, and is very Portuguese.


Rates & Availability

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Additional information about rental rates

Fees No additional mandatory fees

Booking Notes:
50% with booking form, balance 6 weeks before arrival.

Changeover Day:
Flexible, but must be one week minimum in high season.

Notes on prices:
Prices are for property per week in pounds (Sterling).

Owner's Cancellation Policy

Please ask the owner or check their rental agreement when booking the property.
Available arrival
Available stay (no arrival)


Moncarapacho Cottage Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • cottage
  • Guests provide their own meals
  • Housekeeper Optional
Location Type:
  • Beach
  • Mountain
  • Near The Ocean
  • Ocean View
  • Rural
  • Village
  • Adventure
  • Away From It All
  • Historic
  • Romantic
  • Sports & Activities
  • Tourist Attractions
  • Air Conditioning
  • Ceiling Fans
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating
  • Internet
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Room ...
  • Parking ...
  • Towels Provided
  • Washing Machine
  • Coffee Maker ...
  • Dishes & Utensils
  • Dishwasher
  • Freezer
  • Kitchen ...
  • Microwave
  • Oven
  • Pantry Items ...
  • Refrigerator
  • Stove
  • Toaster
  • Dining ...
  • Dining Area
  • 1 Bedroom, Sleeps 2
  • Description of sleeping capacity: Sleeps 2 (1 Bedroom) Notes on bedrooms: 1 bedroom with emperor size bed. (6ft) with ensuite bathroom Additional renting (NEVER LET, TO ANYONE OTHER THAN YOUR FAMILY OR FRIENDS) 1 en-suite bedroom with 6ft bed or 6ft bed can be split into two singles.
  • Books
  • DVD Player
  • Music Library
  • Stereo
  • Television ...
  • Video Library
  • Balcony
  • Boat ...
  • Deck / Patio ...
  • Golf ...
  • Kayak / Canoe ...
  • Lawn / Garden
  • Outdoor Grill ...
  • Porch / Veranda
  • Water Sports Gear
Pool / Spa:
  • Communal Pool ...
  • Heated Pool
  • autumn foliage
  • churches
  • cinemas
  • marina
  • museums
  • nude beach
  • restaurants
  • ruins
  • theme parks
  • water parks
  • waterfalls
Leisure Activities:
  • beachcombing
  • bird watching
  • eco tourism
  • gambling casinos
  • horseback riding
  • outlet shopping
  • paddle boating
  • scenic drives
  • sight seeing
  • walking
  • whale watching
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • fitness center
  • groceries
  • hospital
  • massage therapist
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • deepsea fishing
  • fishing
  • golf
  • mountain biking
  • paragliding
  • snorkeling
  • sound/bay fishing
  • surfing
  • swimming
  • tennis
  • water skiing
  • wind-surfing
Notes on accommodation: Automatic heating, WI FI, Air-conditioning. Ceiling fans. Private car parking. COTTAGE COMPLETELY PRIVATE. (Bedroom and bathroom that can be rented for family or friends, is about 50 yards from the actual cottage.) It is a very relaxed atmosphere. Everything is geared to my guests. Outside: Large garden, (10m x 6m) heated (solar) swimming pool 2 covered areas. Barbecue and giant marble table. Lots of loungers, both by the pool, and down at the cottage. All areas are for the use of the guests. Utility Room: Washing machine. Dishwasher. Cleaning / Towels / Linen / Maid service: Everything supplied, including towels for around the pool. Sheets and towels are changed every week. You can have the villa cleaned, but this is €8 an hour. You will have all cleaning products supplied. Other: 2 covered areas - breakfast terrace and outdoor living room with huge marble table, large built-in barbecue (charcoal) + gas barbecue.

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