Douro Discovery: A Family River Cruise in Portugal
8 days with Tauck Rating: Deluxe
Tauck Offers for this River Cruise
Single travelers pay no supplement on river cruises in Category 1 cabins. Click here for eligible departures.
Young travelers ages 12 and under receive $500 per person off this cruise. Click here for eligible departures.
Offers subject to change or withdrawal, availability
is limited. Some offers are not combinable.
River Cruise Itinerary
Day 1 Arrive Lisbon
Tour begins: 5:30 PM. A transfer is included from Lisbon International Airport to the Four Seasons Hotel Ritz Lisbon, a luxury landmark in the heart of Portugal's capital city. Settle in, then join us for a drive to the National Palace of Queluz, built in the 18th century, once the residence of the royal family. Steeped in Baroque opulence and history, the palace features frescoes, gilded carvings, walls of mirrors, paintings, and a landscaped garden of lakes, fountains, and statues, including a canal lined with lavishly decorated azulejos (painted tiles). A private tour of the palace is followed by a welcome reception in the garden and dinner in the Throne Room. (D)
Day 2 Dazzling sights of Lisbon
Seaside Lisbon is a hilly city of dazzling architecture – an eclectic mix of medieval monasteries, Moorish castles, Baroque palaces and churches, and modern towers – tucked amid a labyrinth of colorful historic neighborhoods. Ride a tram this morning on a tour of Bairro Alto, a bohemian enclave of narrow medieval streets, and Baixa, a district of grand Baroque plazas and monumental buildings and boulevards, lined with boutiques and cafes; take a guided walking tour of Alfama, the city's oldest neighborhood, a charming maze of streets, stairs, alleys, cafes, and artisans' shops below the hilltop Castle of São Jorge. Enjoy free time to explore as you please, then join us for a guided visit to the National Maritime Museum, where you'll learn how tiny Portugal once ruled the seas, with an empire that reached around the world; the museum's exhibits include scale models of ships, paintings, navigational instruments, and Queen Maria's royal barge, a stunning ship with gilded ornaments and long oars, built in 1778. Spend the evening as you wish; your luxury hotel on the Avenida da Liberdade is in easy reach of landmarks, museums, and restaurants. (B)
Day 3 Romantic Coimbra / Embark riverboat
This morning, drive to Coimbra on the Mondego River. Coimbra was Portugal's capital city during the Middle Ages, and the preserved city center teems with monasteries, churches, plazas and monuments of a romantic history and culture, a home of poets, troubadours, and Fado music. A walking tour includes the university – where students still wear black capes as they have since medieval times – and its Palace of Schools, royal chapel, breathtaking library, and botanical garden. After lunch on your own, continue on to the city of Porto beside the Douro River, where your riverboat awaits. Embark and join us this evening for a welcome reception followed by dinner and entertainment. (B, D)
Day 4 Pleasures of Porto
Rising on staggered hills beside the river, colorful Porto beckons you to its medieval streets and alleys, Baroque churches, bell towers, Beaux-Arts buildings, and bohemian neighborhoods where houses clad in painted tiles and street art are around every corner. Choose a guided walking tour or a bicycle tour of Oporto, the town's historic center, then return to the riverboat to begin your cruise. Porto is famous for Port wine, shipped in barrels from the Douro River Valley, and today you'll sail deep into the valley and its astonishing mountain landscapes. Along the river, conical mountains and shale hills carved by vineyard terraces and estates tell of a winemaking heritage thousands of years old. The land here is inhospitable to most kinds of farming, but perfect for Portugal's indigenous wine grapes, whose roots can reach down 30 feet or more in search of water. Dock overnight in the winetown of Peso da Régua. (B, L, D)
Day 5 Peso da Regua and Pinhao
Peso da Régua was once a busy hub where small wooden boats called rabelos, laden with barrels of wine, sailed downriver to Porto and Vila Nova de Gaia. At the Museo do Douro, housed in a renovated 18th-century mansion, a guided tour and multimedia exhibits offer a history of viniculture in the Douro Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage site. This afternoon, sail to the idyllic little village of Pinhão, nestled at a dramatic bend in the river, where a walking tour includes an exquisite early 20th-century train station adorned with blue-painted tiles illustrating scenes of everyday life in the region. Dinner this evening is followed by onboard entertainment. (B, L, D)
Day 6 Hiking or kayaking in Pinhao
Your choice of excursions this morning includes a hike through the scenic hilltop vineyards with striking views of Pinhão and the valley, or kayaking on the tranquil Douro River. Join up with your riverboat in Peso da Régua to begin the return trip towards Porto. After an afternoon of sailing and onboard activities, dock overnight in a region famous for Vinho Verde, a "Green Wine" made from grapes indigenous to Portugal. (B, L, D)
Day 7 Bicycling or a visit to Guimaraes
Take a bicycle tour through picturesque Vinho Verde country, ending at the romantic, storybook town of Amarante; the town was once home to Sao Gonçago, Portugal's St. Valentine, and famous Portugese artists and writers, but it's also known for its cozy cafes and enticing local cuisine. Or discover the medieval town of Guimarães, known as the “Cradle City;” the kingdom of Portugal was born here after a famous battle in 1128. The city center offers a wealth of architectural treasures; including the ruined Castle of Guimarães, with its tempestuous history and sweeping views, the opulent Dukes of Palace of the Dukes of Braganza, and the 13th-century Church of São Miguel do Castelo. Return to the riverboat and arrive late afternoon in Porto. We invite your family to join us for a final reception and farewell dinner aboard ship. (B,L, D)
Day 8 Journey Home
Tour ends: 8:00 AM. Disembark and fly home anytime. A transfer is included from your riverboat to Porto Airport. Allow at least 3 hours for flight check-in. (B)
All This Included
Dine at a sumptuous royal palace, ride a vintage tram, and hear stories of maritime glory in Lisbon... breathe romance and heroic legends in Coimbra... navigate mazes of colorful streets on a bicycle in Porto.... kayak on the Douro River... learn the origins of azujelos and Fado... cycle through enchanting vineyards in Vinho Verde country, and sail to postcard villages, winetowns, and vineyards in the Douro Valley, a winemaking region unlike any other in the world.
This unique eight-day tour of Portugal includes Lisbon, Coimbra, Porto, and a riverboat cruise deep into the Douro River Valley for an authentic taste of life in a seldom-visited region steeped in a wine-making culture thousands of years old. Begin in maritime Lisbon, Portugal's capital city, where you'll enjoy an exclusive dinner at a lavish royal palace, explore bohemian districts on foot and by tram car, and discover historic ships from the nation's sea-going heritage at the National Maritime Museum. Explore the medieval university-town of Coimbra, steeped in poetry and Fado music, and the city of Porto, an enticing labyrinth of winding streets and stairways, baroque palaces and colorful bohemian enclaves, where port wine is a mainstay of the economy. Board a luxury riverboat and trace port-wine to its source, the quintas and picture-postcard villages of the Douro River Valley, the world's oldest demarcated wine region, where you'll find miles of mountains and hills carved into vineyard terraces. Discover medieval towns, castle ruins, and palaces, and immerse yourself in local history and culture, kayaking on the Douro River, bicycling through Vinho Verde country, and evenings of onboard entertainment by local performing artists.
TAUCK EXCLUSIVE – Dinner at the National Palace of Queluz
TAUCK EXCLUSIVE – Choice of a vineyard hike or kayaking on the Douro River
TAUCK EXCLUSIVE – Bicycle tour through Vinho Verde wine country
Five nights on the Douro aboard a new riverboat designed for Tauck
Tauck’s private shore excursions and distinctive inclusions valued at $1,798
Vintage tram ride and guided walking tour of Lisbon's colorful historic center
Walking tour of medieval Coimbra and its university, founded in 1290
Visit to the Museo de Douro, a museum of local viniculture in Peso de Régua
Guided visit to the opulent Palace of the Dukes of Braganza in Guimarães
Airport transfers upon arrival and departure as noted
Unlimited complimentary beverages aboard ship include regional wine, beer and premium spirits in addition to specialty coffee, water and soft drinks.
17 meals; service charges, gratuities to local guides, mission fees, taxes and porterage
Accommodations on this Tour
Lisbon: Four Seasons Hotel Ritz Lisbon
Cruising: Cabin onboard ms Andorinha
Cabin upgrades are available.
Children under 18 must be booked in a cabin with at least one adult. Accommodations for families of 3 or 4 in Categories 1 through 6 consist of two adjacent, but not connecting, double cabins. Triple and quadruple accommodations in Category 7 consist of a double-bedded suite featuring a full-sized pull-out sofa; these are not available for more than three adults over the age of 18 or older sharing a cabin.
Recommended age: 8+ – minimum age for our Tauck Bridges river cruises is 4 years.
Gratuities to Tauck Cruise Director, Tauck Directors, local guides, drivers & ship staff included.
This cruise includes a fair amount of walking in each city.
Although not expected, Tauck reserves the right to alter the sequence of ports or omit or substitute scheduled ports or attractions at any time without prior notice. Museums and attractions may be subject to closure due to state, local or religious holidays.
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.