Douro River Cruise: Into the Heart of Portugal with Madrid

Over 14 days, discover the delights of the picturesque Douro Valley from Porto to Madrid. Visit the award-winning Côa Valley Museum & tour elegant Lamego.

14 Days
Porto to Madrid
From (AUD)
$ 16,430
Dates & Pricing

2020 Porto > Madrid

Tour Map
Tour Code:
DOMO
Duration:
14 days
Departure City:
Porto
Return City:
Madrid

Selected Itinerary

Meet the experts

Krista Rossow

National Geographic Photographer, Krista Rossow

Departure date: 22 September, 2020
For more than a decade, Krista Rossow has worked as a photographer, photo editor, and educator for National Geographic. She began her career as a photo editor at National Geographic Traveller magazine, where she shaped compelling stories from world-class imagery. In her freelance career, she has shot feature stories for Traveller in South Africa, Costa Rica, New Zealand, Japan, and various U.S. cities. Her images are represented by the National Geographic Image Collection, and she regularly judges Instagram contests for @NatGeoTravel and photo edits for National Geographic Books. Krista also travels with National Geographic Expeditions teaching photography around the world–from the Galápagos Islands, Patagonia, and Morocco to Alaska, Antarctica, and the Arctic. She enjoys photographing throughout Europe and the Iberian Peninsula as well, drawn to the way of life in Portugal and Spain. Krista sees the camera as a passport to exploring new places and cultures, and she looks forward to sharing insights on how to tell the story of people and places through images.
Frank Knight

National Geographic Expert, Franklin Knight

Departure date: 22 September, 2020
Historian Franklin Knight is the Leonard and Helen R. Stulman Professor Emeritus of History and Academy Professor at Johns Hopkins University. His research interests focus on social, political, and cultural aspects of Latin America and the Caribbean, especially after the 18th century, as well as on American slave systems in their comparative dimensions. His analyses of Latin American and Caribbean issues have been aired on National Public Radio, the Voice of America, the British Broadcasting Corporation, the McNeill/Lehrer Report, C-Span, and elsewhere. Franklin has held fellowships from the Social Science Research Council, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioural Sciences, the Ford Foundation, and the National Humanities Center. A past president of both the Historical Society and the Latin American Studies Association, Franklin served as academic consultant to the television series Columbus and the Age of Discovery, The Buried Mirror, Americas, Plagued: Invisible Armies, Crucible of Empire, and The Louisiana Purchase. He was elected Corresponding Member of the Cuban Academy of History in 2012.

14 Day Itinerary

  1. Day 1 - Porto, Portugal

    Arrive in Porto, a World Heritage-listed city straddling the Douro River. Embark the Scenic Azure and enjoy a welcome reception and dinner on board.

    Meals Included: Dinner

  2. Day 2 - Porto

    On a walking tour of Porto’s historic old town the following morning, explore medieval treasures, examine azulejo tiles, and visit the Palácio da Bolsa—the city’s old stock exchange. Later, we begin our cruise along the Douro.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  3. Day 3 - Guimarães/Douro Valley

    Delve into history at the Palace of the Dukes of Bragança in Guimarães, or venture to the stunning Quinta da Aveleda winery and gardens in the Vinho Verde wine region, where we’ll sip on sparkling whites. Cruise into the stunning Douro Valley this afternoon and get introduced to the history and culture of the region at the award-winning Douro Museum in Peso da Régua.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  4. Day 4 - Douro Valley

    Today, explore the Varosa Valley, home to the elegant town of Lamego and a rich Cistercian heritage that dates back to the 12th century. On an afternoon excursion, choose to delve into the region’s past at the ruins of the Mosteiro de São João de Tarouca, Portugal’s first Cistercian monastery, and at the Monastery of Santa Maria de Salzedas’ historical collections. Or visit the opulent Mateus Palace, famously featured on bottles of Mateus rosé.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  5. Day 5 - On the Douro

    Take in scenes of the Douro Valley as we wind our way past charming terra-cotta-roofed towns, through towering locks, and past the vine-striped hillsides that earned the region its World Heritage designation. Watch the terroir transition from granite outcroppings to slate-terraced vineyards, and spend time documenting these picturesque scenes with your National Geographic photographer; or listen to an afternoon lecture given by your National Geographic Expert.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  6. Day 6 - Salamanca, Spain

    Cross into Spain for a visit to Salamanca, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Two options for exploration await you in this fabled city. Visit the storied hallways and classrooms of the University of Salamanca, founded in 1218, and enjoy a discussion with students and professors about their studies and research. Alternatively, take in the city’s Renaissance splendor on a guided city tour, then enjoy some time to explore on your own. Have lunch in town with live entertainment before returning to our ship.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  7. Day 7 - Côa Valley, Portugal

    Explore notable tributaries of the Douro River today, choosing from adventures on the Côa and Sabor Rivers.  Venture into the Côa Valley to learn about the prehistoric rock art at the World Heritage-listed Foz Côa. Opt for a thrilling ride in a 4x4 vehicle, and then hike to the archaeological site to witness these fascinating carvings. You may instead choose a canoeing excursion along the pristine Sabor River, a rugged tributary of the Douro. Or, for those more interested in the flavors of the region, set out on a culinary excursion to the Casa Painova estate and taste their delicious almond and olive products. Tonight, local musicians join us on board to perform traditional Portuguese songs.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  8. Day 8 - Provesende

    Drive into the hills of the Douro Valley to the time-locked town of Provesende. Wander this quaint village and get a glimpse into daily life during visits to the town church and the local bakery, and enjoy a glass of port wine at the charming Morgadio da Calçada manor house. This afternoon, experience a tasting at a winery along the river, opting for a walk through the vineyards, if you choose.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  9. Day 9 - Porto

    Enjoy a relaxing day onboard as we sail back toward Porto. Expert talks, wine tastings, and handicraft workshops are all options as we cross back over the coastal range. Upon arrival in Porto, head to Igreja de São Francisco for a private concert in this opulent church.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  10. Day 10 - Porto

    Tour the Douro Estuary on foot, spotting birdlife and then tapping into the rhythms of a nearby fishing village. There are also options to visit Porto’s oldest canning factory, or go for a tasting in one of the city’s most celebrated port cellars.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  11. Day 11 - Porto > Madrid

    Today you’ll board your included flight from Porto to Madrid. On arrival transfer to your luxurious hotel, your residence for the next three nights.

    Meals Included: Breakfast

  12. Day 12 - Madrid

    Enjoy a tour of Madrid, including the 17th century Austrian Quarter, the Sabatini Gardens and the famous Cibeles and Neptuno Fountains.

     

    Freechoice

    This afternoon, you can choose between a visit of the exceptional Prado Museum, renowned as one of the best museums in the world or a visit of the equally delightful 18th century Royal Palace of Madrid.

    This evening, enjoy fine Spanish cuisine at a welcome dinner with your fellow travellers.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

  13. Day 13 - Madrid

    Today is yours to enjoy at leisure in Spain’s largest city. Stroll the fashionable boutiques that adorn the city centre’s many plazas, relax in one of Madrid’s manicured gardens or simply explore the surrounding area.

    Meals Included: Breakfast

  14. Day 14 - Madrid

    After breakfast, transfer to Madrid airport with memories of a truly unforgettable journey.

    Meals Included: Breakfast

Pricing & Availability