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Unforgettable Douro with Lisbon & Madrid 2019
(National Geographic Cruise)

17 days with Scenic  Rating: Deluxe

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  • Fly for free in premium economy from select gateways in certain cabin categories or save $3,000 per couple on this sailing. Expires December 31. Click here for eligible departures.
  • Fly for free in economy from select gateways or save $2,000 per couple on this sailing. Expires December 31. Click here for eligible departures.
  • Fly from $395 in economy from select gateways on select 2018 Europe river cruises. Click here for eligible departures.

Offers subject to change or withdrawal, availability is limited. Some discounts are not combinable.

River Cruise Itinerary
Day 1
On arrival at Lisbon Airport you’ll be escorted to your hotel for the next three nights. Tonight, enjoy a welcome dinner with your Tour Director and fellow guests. A truly wonderful experience awaits you. (Dinner)
 
Day 2 Lisbon
This morning, take part in a guided exploration of Portugal’s pretty capital.
 
Freechoice
Journey to Lisbon’s seaside suburb of Cascais and enjoy a picturesque and informative tour of this former fishing village. Alternatively, climb to the hilltop town of Sintra and visit the Sintra Palace. (Breakfast)
 
Day 3 Lisbon
Enjoy time at leisure to take advantage of everything that Lisbon has to offer. This evening you’ll get to experience Portuguese cuisine at its finest. (Breakfast, Dinner)
 
Day 4 Lisbon > Porto
Our journey via Portugal’s medieval capital, Coimbra, will see you travelling to Porto where you’ll board the luxurious Scenic Azure to begin your cruise of the idyllic Douro Valley. (Breakfast, Dinner)
 
Day 5 Porto
On a walking tour of Porto’s historic old town, explore medieval treasures, examine famous azulejo tiles, and stroll the waterfront.  Visit the Palácio da Bolsa, the city’s old stock exchange, and gaze at the gilded Moorish motifs coating the walls of its Salão Árabe—or Arabian Room. This afternoon we begin our cruise along the Douro, tracing the river through the rural landscapes of northern Portugal. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
 
Day 6 Guimarães/Douro Valley
Glide into the stunning Douro Valley this afternoon and stop in Peso da Régua to visit the Douro Museum for an introduction to the area and its wine-making history.
 
Freechoice
Delve into history at the Palace of the Dukes of Bragança in Guimarães, Portugal’s first capital and the birthplace of its first king, Afonso Henriques; or venture to the stunning Quinta da Aveleda winery and gardens in the Vinho Verde wine region, where we’ll sip on this producer’s famous sparkling whites. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
 
Day 7 Douro Valley
We continue our exploration of the Douro Valley at the skeletal ruins of the 12th-century Mosteiro de São João de Tarouca, Portugal’s first Cistercian monastery.
 
Freechoice
En route to the site, stroll the Ponte de Ucanha, a fortified medieval toll bridge, then wander the abandoned monks’ quarters and restored church. Alternatively, choose to tour the elegant town of Lamego, home to a stunning baroque staircase leading to the Senhora dos Remédios pilgrimage church; or join a guide to explore the opulent Mateus Palace, famously featured on bottles of Mateus rosé. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
 
Day 8 On the Douro
Take in scenes from the Douro Valley from the comfort of the ship lounge as we wind our way past the charming terra-cotta-roofed towns and vine-striped hillsides that earned the region its World Heritage designation. Enjoy the amenities on board, including a plunge pool, fitness center, and expansive sundeck. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
 
Day 9 Salamanca, Spain
Cross into Spain for a visit to Salamanca. Take in the city’s Renaissance splendor on a guided city tour, then enjoy some time to explore on your own. Gaze at façades of golden sandstone, soak in the grandeur of the Plaza Mayor, and see the pair of cathedrals that crown the city. Enjoy lunch in town, with live entertainment from flamenco dancers before a visit to the historic university in the afternoon. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
 
Day 10 Côa Valley, Portugal
Tonight, local musicians join us on board to perform traditional Portuguese songs.
 
Freechoice
Venture into the Côa Valley and visit the Côa Museum to learn about the prehistoric rock art at the World Heritage-listed Foz Côa, where thousands of stone carvings created over thousands of years have been found.  Opt to ride a 4x4 vehicle to the archaeological site, and set out on a hike to view these fascinating carvings. You may instead choose to paddle a canoe along the pristine Sabor River, a rugged tributary to the Douro that has remained virtually undeveloped. Or set out on a culinary excursion to the Casa Painova estate and taste their delicious almond and olive products. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
 
Day 11 Provesende
Drive into the hills of the Douro Valley to the time-locked town of Provesende, perched high above the river. Wander the stone streets of this quaint village, and get a glimpse into daily life here while meeting with local residents. Pop into the town bakery, enjoy a special recital in the church, and sip on wine at the charming Morgadio da Calçada manor house.
 
Freechoice
Later, visit the Quinta da Roêda estate to try their famous ports and, if you wish, walk among the vines for a special al fresco tasting. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
 
Day 12 Porto
Relax on board today and enjoy a tasting of Douro Valley wines as we sail back toward Porto.
 
Enrich
This evening, head to Porto’s Igreja de São Francisco for a private concert in this baroque church’s spectacular gilded nave. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
 
Day 13 Porto
Cruise just beyond the city to the Douro Estuary, home to a nature reserve harboring an array of birds, including kingfishers, cormorants, and several species of heron.
 
Freechoice
Set out on an extended walking tour from the edge of town into the reserve, spotting birdlife amid the salt marshes. Meet fishermen returning with the day's catch along the way, and sample fresh sardines grilled on an open fire. There are also options today to visit Porto’s oldest canning factory, or go for a tasting in one of the city’s most celebrated port cellars. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 14 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. (Breakfast)
 
Day 15 Madrid
This morning, enjoy a tour of Madrid, including the 17th century Austrian Quarter, the Sabatini Gardens and the famous Cibeles and Neptuno Fountains.
 
This evening, enjoy fine Spanish cuisine in a superb local restaurant.
 
Freechoice
This afternoon, you can choose between the exceptional Prado Museum, or the equally delightful 18th century Royal Palace of Madrid. (Breakfast, Dinner)
 
Day 16 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. (Breakfast)
 
Day 17 Madrid
After breakfast, with memories of a truly unforgettable journey, you’ll be  transferred to Madrid airport. (Breakfast)
Tour Map
All This Included
These departures will be accompanied by a National Geographic expert who will give talks throughout the week and join guests on off-ship excursions. Additionally, a National Geographic photographer will be on board to share techniques and help guests hone their photography skills. We've added extra choice excursions as well, from hikes and bike rides to in-depth learning experiences that focus on the natural world, culture, and history.
  • 5-star Scenic Space-Ship featuring Scenic Sun Lounges
  • 1 exclusive Enrich experience
  • Your choice of 16 Freechoice activities
  • 1 Sundowners event
  • 38 meals – 16 breakfasts, 9 lunches and 13 dinners
Accommodations on this Tour
Lisbon: To be determined
Cruising: Cabin onboard 
Scenic Azure
Madrid: To be determined
Notes
  • Itineraries are subject to change.
  • Cabin upgrades are available.
  • Please ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information.
Terms and Conditions

* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines. Sorry, we are unable to offer air from countries other than the U.S. However, for those international customers who are able to arrange their own transportation to the trip origination city, we are able to offer the land/cruise portion of the package at the price quoted.



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