Jo’s Monday walk : Moinho do Bengado

Just occasionally a walk throws up a delightful surprise. We’d done the walk around Mesquita a time or two before. Often enough to know of the well, hidden among the long grasses, and of the windmills at the summit of the hill. It was a beautiful day and we took our time, chatting and catching up with each other’s lives as we went along.

The Moinho do Bengado stands proudly on the top of the hill, catching the breeze, as windmills do. No sooner had we reached it than a jeep pulled into the open space behind us. We hadn’t expected company, but were happy to share the beautiful old windmill. We were even happier when we realised that the newcomer had a key, and had come to show us the workings of the mill. Raymond Hilbers was a miller by trade in his native Holland. With an enduring interest in all things mechanical, he built a home in the Algarve 20 years ago, close by the windmill. In the interim years he became involved in the restoration of the mill and, with justifiable pride, he explained its workings to us.

Built in stone, in 1850, the windmill is of the Mediterranean type. It’s a halter mill, the oldest form of traction system, using rope and millstones to rotate the roof. I really hadn’t given much thought to how these things work, but was genuinely interested in the explanations. I won’t spoil it for you by giving away too many of the details. You might just find yourself there one day? The mill now opens to visitors twice a week, on Wednesday and Saturday mornings. Access is from the EN270, 4 km south of São Brás de Alportel, and arrangements can be made via the tourist office on camara@cm-sbras.pt. There’s a downloadable map, here.

Mr. Hilbers is a very charming man, and was happy to spend time with us. A former sailor amongst us remarked on the new addition of sails to the mill, since our last visit (pictured above). The millstone is currently lodged in one position and must be freed to enable the sails to one day turn. What a wonderful sight that will be! Just one thing I should add. Space inside the mill is obviously confined, and there are narrow circular steps to the upper level. Not suited to everyone, but please don’t let that put you off a visit to this beautiful old mill.

We continued on our way, back down the hill, and up several more, in the way of walkers. The area around São Brás is cork oak territory and there were many lovely specimens on view. Beautiful villas grace these hills too, which would account for the large school, with its reminder of the times we live in. And I’m always smitten by poppies.

 

I really can’t leave a miller without at least one image of cake, now can I? This chocolate cheesecake was very delicious. Maybe one day there’ll be a little shop/cum café to sell the produce from the mill.

 

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I realise my walk posts are a little erratic at present, but I really couldn’t wait to share this one. I hope you enjoyed it. Please find time to visit my fellow walkers this week. Happy to share on Jo’s Monday walk.

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There are people you could just hug, aren’t there? Well, if it was allowed I would, Jude :

Another Monday Spring Walk

Meg has found signs of Spring too :

A Walk in May

Anyone know Sleningford? Margaret does!

A window on our local country houses

What else would you expect from Janet?

Monday walk… elegance

Might as well finish that walk with Mel. Wish the titles were shorter, though 🙂

Exploring the Sydney Coastline – Bondi to Manly Path – Stage 7, Spit Bridge to Manly Wharf

Sarah has some snappy friends waiting for us on this week’s walk. Fabulous wildlife!

A walk on Palm Island : Hippos, hogs and crocs

Happy to have Terri join me from her new neighbourhood :

Sunday Stills: #Water in the Details

But there are some places you don’t mind being taken back to. Thanks, Drake!

All over again

There’s always something beautiful to see when Jesh is around :

Enjoying the view

And Lady Lee just likes to have fun :

The Cosmic Photo Challenge – My green world

Just because we can, let’s go bluebell hopping, with Emma :

Littlehaven Bluebell ‘loop’: 9.95m/16km

And finally, lovely Teresa shares her Mother’s Day with us :

An Afternoon Walk on Mother’s Day

Thanks for your company, everyone. Have a great week! And I’m adding my miller to Just One Person from around the World.

148 comments

  1. The windmill looks fascinating. how wonderful to have a tour and learn about the workings of it. Almost as wonderful as that chocolate cheesecake. I shall now require a snack and don’t have anything half as delicious in the house. Have a great weekend Jo.

    1. He’s a lovely man, Yvette, and passion about a subject always holds my attention. You know I’m not good at people shots but he is such a large part of this project. I asked. He said yes 🙂 🙂 Thank you!

      1. Glad he said yes! And keep doing prone shots because that is how e get better (even tho it seems like you are pretty great with it already)
        Have a great day

      1. We walk for pure enjoyment, yes, and to learn and see new things. But also, ’cause we get that piece of (fill in the blank) cake/pie/candy in the end. 🙂

    1. Sounds good to me, Marsha. I’m sitting on a windy station platform waiting for a train right now but I’ll catch up with you later. Thank you 🤗💕

      1. It was an interesting day, Marsha, and I’m glad I went because the lady is going back to Belgium soon for 3 months. And the best news- I had a phone call from my neighbour, still in hospital, but sounding so much better. 🙂 🙂

  2. What a fascinating piece of history, Jo. The windmills were a complete surprise. I would never have placed them in the Algarve. What a beautiful walk you enjoyed. 🙂

  3. You are a lucky duck – a beautiful walk AND a history lesson AND cake! Life does not get better! 🙂

    Thanks again for the link to my Sydney strolls and apologies for the long title! Only one stage to go and that is yet to happen. Perhaps I will get to Sydney in the next month or so for a Winter walk. Have a great day, Melx

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