Vila Pouca da Beira sounds like a lost village in the mountains, but it is in fact very accessible for those coming from Lisbon or Porto. Reserved but not hermit, it guarantees you the rest and quiet that you wish for, without forcing you to face bad roads or more than a two hours' drive. So, when you reach the junction leading to the village and the Pousada at 2 km, you take your first contact with a village road. Descend between houses and fields to find the fabulous building of the Pousada de Vila Pouca da Beira, comprising of the convent, the church and the Bishop's home.
45 minutes of Coimbra, for perfectly signposted roads, taking a dip in the mountainous and proud Portugal, interesting and historical, where Roman and French have left traces of their passage. Near of Oliveira do Hospital, of Arganil and of Coja, an area known for its stunning natural beauty and its proximity to the Serra da Estrela and the Açor, you can make your days absolutely unforgettable.
Amid the most emblematic mountain ridges of Portugal, in a region as rich for its history as for its wine production, you find a unique work that has withstood the centuries by pure faith and willpower of those who delight in it. Here you will find a space in perfect recovery, surrounded by a beautiful forest of fir trees, by planting vines representing all varieties of the Dão region and an extensive olive grove which runs between oaks and orange trees, the path of the valley.
Upon entering the Pousada, you will start to have contact with the delicate balance between the presence of religious art that belongs to the Foundation's estate and the dispossession of the Convent, which urges its visitors to contemplation, tranquility and reflection. Perfect to rest for a few days with a view of the fields and the mountains, it offers you all the comfort you could wish in a contemporary spiritual retreat - with excellent access to the internet.
If you are coming on a weekend or holidays, the Desagravo Convent welcomes you with all the calm you are looking for and all the room that your children need. The whole area is perfect for strolling without any problem and the olive grove, just like the Pátio das Clarissas, promises hours of successful hid and seek and tag games.
MEETINGS AND EVENTS:
Don't be fooled by the calm and serenity that stick to your skin and soul. The Desagravo Convent is perfect for large events and familycelebrations. Meetings of the Confraria do Queijo da Serra da Estrela, the readings of poems with the support of the Rotary Club; from art exhibitions, to concerts of choral groups; from ethnographic representations, to the yoga and pilates retreats; from tennis tournaments; to congresses, all cultural expressions find a space to manifest themselves in the Convento do Desagravo.
And as the Convent Church has worship permit – from here go out the processions of the two major annual and local festivals – the Desagravo Convent is also an idyllic setting for the realization of civil and religious marriages in deep communion with the surrounding nature. Intimate and unique in the winter, encompassed by fireplaces and stonework, or relaxed and romantic in the summer, inspired by the woods and the elegance of the terrace and the pool, the weddings that take place here are blessed in many ways.
The Convento do Desagravo appeared in this quiet and lovely space in Vila Pouca da Beira, by the sheer force of will of a local resident who needed to "repair" the sacrilege committed with the theft of a saint in the village Matrix Church. Legend or reality, the truth is that it was a peasant who collected alms and funds, both in Portugal and Brazil, to be able to lay the foundation of the convent in the Sítio de São José. The license was granted in 1780 and the Poor Clare sisters settled in the area from 1791 onwards.
The custody of the convent has applied jewelry, granted by Queen Carlota Joaquina, which was the first to grant a license for the foundation of the Convent. With the extinction of religious orders in 1834 and the non-renewal of vows and novices, the last nun that lived in the convent until her death, in 1889. Since then, the building has had the most diverse uses: from a civil hospital to an agricultural station, from a college to a tenament hall. After becoming property of the Bissaya Barreto Foundation, the Convent began to receive children from holiday camps; inhabitants of the former Portuguese colonies and finally guests seeking peace, tranquility and a truly different experience.
Pestana Tip: the Pousada do Convento do Desagravo is attractive in all seasons. In the spring, the gorse and hydrangeas fill the fields around and adorn the Pousada in a festival of colors and inspiring scents. In the summer, the pool, the shades, the barbecues and river beaches around are not to be missed. In the autumn, with the warm colors of the leaves and the ripeness of the grapes, you can experience the grape harvest to another rhythm. And in winter, with a guaranteed access to the Serra da Estrela, you can enjoy the snow to the fullest.