Heaven on earth.
No trip to Portugal is complete without a visit to Porto. Add to that a cruise from Porto on the Douro River and you have ‘heaven on earth’.
The Douro River river is one of the major rivers of the Iberian Peninsula running from its source in northern Spain through Portugal to its outlet in Porto. The river forms part of the national border line between Spain and Portugal in a region of narrow canyons. These canyons have a microclimate perfect for growing grapes, olives and almonds. The canyons of the Douro River are lined with port-making wineries/ ‘quintas’, olive oil mills and terraced vineyards making for spectacular scenery. This postcard-pretty valley has fast become one of Europe’s leading wine destinations. The Douro River Valley was named by Travel + Lesiure, as one of the ‘Best Places to Travel in 2016’.
On our tour, PORTUGAL NORTHWARD TO SPAIN, June 13 – 25, we will spend a day on a cruise from Porto upstream on the Douro River (‘river of gold’). We’ll leave Porto in the morning, board the boat and spend a leisurely day taking in the valley, the calm water and the dramatic landscape. Then, we’ll stop at a select quinta for a tour of its port and wine making facilities, walk their vineyards, enjoy lunch on the patio and taste their port and signature wines.
We’ll take the train back to Porto which has scenery of its own. The destination will be the Bento Rail Station in Porto where we will find an architectural delight. The interior of the rail station is covered in 20,000 hand-painted Portuguese blue and while tiles detailing the history of Portugal.