Europe & Baltic Cruises
(Douro River Cruise)
Embark on a journey through the wonderfully scenic Douro River Valley. It is one of Europe’s most pure and unspoiled rivers decorated with deep cleft gorges, lush vineyards, and sleepy fishing villages. Begin in the capital of the North, Porto, and continue to the ancient and picturesque city of Lamego. Enter Spain to visit Salamanca, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, located at the center of the Castilla y León region. Travel inland and on to the beautiful countryside of the Trás-os-Montes Region to visit the palace and gardens of Mateus. Explore the 14th-century Alpendurada Monastery before concluding your vacation in historic Porto.
Available Cruise Departure Dates
2014: Jun 17,24, Jul 15,22, Aug 12,19, Sep 9,16, Oct 7,14, Nov 4
2015: Mar 24,31, Apr 21,28, May 19,26, Jun 16,23, Jul 14,21, Aug 11,18, Sep 8,15, Oct 6,13, Nov 3
*Please note cruise itinerary and activities may be subject to slight modifications based on seasonality.
Meet your driver for a private airport transfer in Lisbon. Please note drivers may or may not speak English as their sole responsibility is to transfer clients from one location to another. If you would like to have the presence of an English speaking Assistant or Guide for your transfer this can be pre-arranged upon request and would be subject to an additional supplement.
With a private driver, discover the wonderful city of Lisbon. Visit the heart of the city, Rossio Square, then spend some time in Alfama, the Old Quarter. See the Lisbon Cathedral, and then walk up to St. George’s Castle, where you will pass by the Roman Theatre Ruins. You will then depart to Belém, the city's most monumental and historical area where you will visit the Patrimony of Mankind Jerónimos Monastery, and Belém Tower. Enjoy a short stop at the Monument to the Discoveries before a transfer back to your hotel. No entrance fees included.
Enjoy a train ride from Lisbon to Porto. The regular trains take around 4 hours, while the highspeed trains take around 3 hours.
Private train station transfer with vehicle and driver.
Welcome aboard!Take some time to get settled in to your cabin and explore the length of the ship. The welcome dinner tonight will provide an ideal opportunity to meet some of your fellow cruisemates.
Port charges are included in your multi-day itinerary.
Spend a leisurely morning soaking up the beauty of the Douro River as you cruise to Régua, a Portuguese town renowned for its utterly spectacular scenery. After arriving this afternoon, enjoy a group port wine tasting at Quinto do Seixo, a lovely 108-acre country estate that offers an interactive wine museum and breathtaking views of steeply terraced hillside vineyards, the Douro River and the nearby village of Pinhão. All port made here is destined for Sandeman, a company known around the world for its quality wines. Later, you may choose to visit the Douro Museum, which offers a comprehensive and fascinating in-depth look at the unique Douro wine-growing region. Your ship moors in Régua overnight.
This morning, you will have a group excursion to ancient and picturesque Lamego, home to one of the most important pilgrimage sites in all of Portugal, the Nossa Senhora dos Remédios (Sanctuary of Our Lady of Remedies). The shrine features a staircase of nearly 700 steps, beautifully decorated with white and blue tiles. Other attractions include a Gothic cathedral, a museum, and charming cafés. This afternoon, enjoy the wild, rugged scenery as your ship cruises through the dramatic gorges of the Douro river valley en route to Barca d’Alva.
Drive to Salamanca today for a full-day group tour of this UNESCO World Heritage Site, located at the center of Spain’s Castilla y León region. Built of golden sandstone, Salamanca is known as a “living museum,” an opportunity to step back in time to the Middle Ages. During your guided tour, you will see the city’s elegant university buildings, the twin-towered Cathedral, the intriguingly decorated House of Shells, as well as Plaza Mayor, considered the most magnificent main square in Spain.
Tonight, enjoy a Flamenco show by four traditional female dancers performing to an array of popular Spanish songs. You will rejoin the ship in Vega de Terrón, where the ship moors overnight.
After breakfast, tour Figueira de Castelo Rodrigo, a small fortified village perched high on a hilltop with 16th-century walls and steep, narrow streets. Stop to admire the Chafariz dos Pretos, a striking and very unique fountain decorated with black faces. Return to the ship for lunch and cruise onward to Pinhão. This evening, you will be treated to a wine-tasting and dinner at a local “quinta.”
This morning, cruise to Régua for a group morning excursion to the Baroque-style Palacio de Mateus and its gardens, located in the beautiful Trás-os-Montes region near the city of Vila Real. Inside the house, you’ll see exhibits of religious images and beautiful furnishings, paintings and ceiling of intricately carved wood. The gardens here are considered some of the most beautiful in Portugal. Return to the ship for lunch while the ship cruises to Entre-Os-Rios, arriving this evening. Tonight, you will enjoy a traditional home-cooked meal at the Alpendurada Monastery. Savor a glass of port as you take in the gorgeous view from the monastery’s terrace.
Your ship arrives back in Porto, the capital of northern Portugal, early this morning. Your guided group tour of the historical quarter, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, includes a number of iconic sights: the Porto Cathedral, one of the city’s oldest and most impressive monuments; the bustling main square; and the Sao Bento Railway Station, renowned for its magnificent blue and white tile panels depicting scenes from Portuguese history. You’ll also enjoy a tasting of port wine, which derives its name from this very city. The ship moors overnight in Porto.
Your cruise journey comes to an end as you disembark from your ship and bid farewell to your cruisemates.
Your private driver will pick you up from your hotel and chauffeur you to various stops on your full-day tour of some of the main religious sites in Portugal. In Coimbra, you will visit two late 13th century accomplishments: the gothic Convent of Santa Clara, as well as the historic University of Coimbra. Spend some time in Fatima, a pilgrimage centre, where you can visit the grand Basilica, commemorating the reported 1917 appearance of The Virgin of the Rosary. Your day will finish with a return transfer to your hotel. No entrance fees included.
Meet your driver for a private airport transfer. Please note drivers may or may not speak English as their sole responsibility is to transfer clients from one location to another. If you would like to have the presence of an English speaking Assistant or Guide for your transfer this can be pre-arranged upon request and would be subject to an additional supplement.
Tivoli (5*) located on Avenida da Liberdade, right in the heart of Lisbon. This 1933 hotel is a block from a subway station, five blocks from Edward VII Park, and about two km (one mile) from majestic Saint George’s Castle. The 329 guestrooms blend traditional and modern decor and feature electronic Venetian blinds, marble baths, minibars, bathrobes, large desks, and high-speed Internet access. The 12th-floor grill provides sweeping views, the lush garden harbors a swimming pool and bar, and the elegant Beatriz Costa restaurant hosts a breakfast buffet.
The AmaVida brings distinctive standard of excellence to the Douro River in Portugal. This grand 108-passenger vessel features balconies in the majority of its spacious staterooms and suites, which range up to 323 sq. ft. Guests on the AmaVida enjoy fine dining in the main dining room, plus al fresco dining for up to 32 guests. The AmaVida also features a Sun Deck swimming pool; fitness center and spa; complimentary in-stateroom Internet access on a 42” flat-screen and ship-wide Wi-Fi.
Pestana Porto Hotel (4*) located in the heart of historic Porto, in Praca da Ribeira. This Porto hotel is built in a magnificent building that belongs to the UNESCO as part of the world heritage site. Its privileged location allows beautiful views of the Douro River. There are 48 guestrooms including double, single, superior double and Suite. Rooms are fully fitted and nicely decorated, all of them featuring views overlooking the river or the city. Guests can dine at the Vintage Restaurant, serving Potuguese and International cuisine in a comfortable atmosphere. Bar Heritage is the ideal place where guests can have a drink and relax after a long day visiting the beautiful city of Porto.
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