Natural Building Course, Portugal

Join us for a Natural Building course and learn about all aspects of sustainable building with natural materials. Live in and explore the natural builds around our farm, enjoy off-grid permaculture living deep in nature, eat nutrient-rich organic food and attend some yoga classes.

Natural Building Course dates

Join us for a Natural Building course and learn about sustainable design, straw bale building, cordwood, earthbags, natural stone and wattle & daub. The course is based in central Portugal on an off-grid Permaculture farm with many natural building examples.

Cost 400 EUR

This course is run straight after our Summer Permaculture Design course, allowing you to join both courses or just one of them. Join both and get a 100 eur discount, free accommodation on the second course plus two days downtime between the courses with food included.

Tuesday 2nd -8th July 2024Book Now

What to expect?

Please check out this video from our 2022 course so you can get an idea of what our course is like.

Youtube video link


This course is ideal for anyone who would like hands-on experience with natural building. It is considered an introductory course as you will get experience in various building techniques.

  • Tour of natural buildings using all techniques
  • Morning theory on sustainable building and design
  • 1 day practical on each of the following techniques
    • Harvesting materials from the land, making earth bricks
    • Cordwood
    • Earthbag
    • Wattle and Daub
    • Earth Plastering
Straw Bale House
The straw bale community house at Keela Yoga Farm. This was completed in Sept 2019 and is used as a space for visitors to cook, eat, hang out and learn. Click for more info on this build.

What is included in the Natural Building Course?

  • Tour of our permaculture farm and natural buildings
  • Three Yoga classes per week
  • Three healthy organic meals per day, most of the produce coming from the farm
  • Working on real-life projects using various natural building techniques
  • Free camping (or option to hire a caravan, tipi or tent)
Straw Bale course portugal
Our first building: a straw bale house in which Laurence and Kimberly live. Completed in 2018

Facilitator: Laurence Manchee

Since starting Keela Yoga Farm and with the help of volunteers, the local community and course participants, Laurence has completed a straw bale house which he now lives in, the straw bale community house, a wattle and daub chicken house, a long drop compost toilet using stone and wattle and daub, a straw bale greenhouse, a cordwood & wattle and daub barn and a cordwood yoga room and much more. Each time he builds, he manages to decrease the carbon footprint of the building and use more natural materials, bringing the cost down of the building. A sustainable building would use all local natural and recycled materials at zero cost.

Laurence is also on the Board for WWOOF Portugal, a writer for Permaculture Magazine UK and manages an agroforestry and reforestation program. He has managed over 500 volunteers at Keela Yoga Farm and also runs Permaculture Design Courses.

Yoga Portugal
Yoga room made with various methods during the May 2022 Natural Building Course. Check out the video.
Wattle and Daub
Wattle and Daub wall completed with bottles during our October 2022 course. Click here for course photos.
Wattle and Daub Chicken House
Wattle and daub chicken house in construction all materials used from our land. Finished in February 2020
Stuffing the cordwood wall with some homemade sheep wool insulation from our sheep in the livestock Barn. Completed in 2021 and featured in Permaculture Magazine
Long Drop Compost Toilet
Our long drop vermiculture dry compost toilet. Featuring natural stone, recycled materials and wattle and daub. Completed in Sept 2019 and featured in Permaculture Magazine
Straw Bale Greenhouse
Strawbale greenhouse – completed 2021. This has since been transformed into a tropical greenhouse shower.
Cordwood kitchen island in the big straw bale house

Tuesday 2nd -8th July 2024Book Now

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