Douro River Cruises through Portugal to Spain

The Douro valley combines delightful scenery with rural, unspoilt villages and towns and an opportunity to visit the great cities of Porto and Salamanca

The River Douro, now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is one of Europe's most untouched and beautiful rivers. The River of Gold (D'Oro) meanders through northern Portugal through gorges terraced with thousands of vineyards to the ocean and the fascinating city of Porto. Along the way, visit restored palaces, places of pilgrimage, cultural centres and vineyards.

Porto is Portugal's second largest city and one of the most beautiful cities of the Iberian Peninsula. Its charm stems from its dramatic position above the river, with little gabled houses closely terraced down the hill. Porto owes its wealth and fame to Port wine, first discovered and exported by the British in the early 17th century.

Birthplace of the navigator Diego Cap who discovered the mouth of the Congo, Villa Real is an attractive old Episcopal town surrounded by fruit orchards and vineyards Nearby is the little village of Maters with a beautiful Baroque country house and gardens belonging to the Counts of Villa Real, and featured on labels of Mateus Rosé wine.

Situated south of the Douro, Lamego is a major market centre, and is charmingly set amid vineyards and lush, fertile countryside. The town boasts several fine Baroque buildings including the 18th century pilgrimage church Nossa Schrum, a Gothic cathedral, and an 11th century castle where in 1143 Don Alfonso Henriques was elected first King of Portugal.

On certain itineraries you will visit Salamanca, Spain's ancient seat of learning with its grand buildings and the Plaza Mayor, the country's most magnificent square. One of the loveliest and best preserved of the old Spanish cities, Salamanca justly deserves its place as a World Heritage Site. With a tumultuous past, the city has been conquered, influenced and shaped by Hannibal, the Romans, the Moors and the French. Today it is a city of golden stone architecture, narrow cobblestone streets and beautiful plazas.

NEW: Read our diary of a Blue Water Holidays River Douro cruise

Douro Highlights

Cadiz
Cadiz is surrounded on three sides by the sea. The city is dominated by the gold dome of the Baroque Cathedral Nueva, and there are several historic buildings including the mansions around Plaza San Antonio, the Admiral's House and the Tavira Tower. Classical flamenco singing can be heard in the Santa Maria District, and recently opened to the public is the large Roman theatre discovered following a fire in the 1980s.
Jerez (Spain)
Jerez is famous for its cattle and horses, and for flamenco and sherry. The city is very attractive, with a fine cathedral and jacaranda trees edging broad streets and squares. The Alcazar is a Moorish fortress which now contains a park, and the town houses most of the key sherry producers.
Lamego (Portugal)
Overlooked by two hills, Lamego is an impressive and picturesque town lying in the fertile Upper Douro region. At the top of one hill and reached via sweeping steps is the magnificent baroque Sanctuary of Nossa Senhora dos Remedios, and on the other, the remains of a 12th-century castle. The town has a pretty square laid out as a garden, and many fine 17th-century buildings.
Pinhao (Portugal)
Pinhao has a spectacular position at the confluence of the Douro and Pinhao rivers, surrounded by steep, rocky vineyards. It is famed for its old station, wonderfully decorated with blue painted tiles depicting the history of this port-producing region.
Porto
Oporto's sea port is located in Leixoes at the mouth of the River Douro and five miles north of the city, whilst river cruise vessels can access Oporto directly. Oporto is the hub of the port wine trade, and vineyards line the shores of the river upstream. Old Oporto is a World Heritage Site with houses dating back to the 15th-century, a grand cathedral, a train station decorated with fine examples of Portugal's blue and white tiles and the remains of Roman city walls.
Regua (Portugal)
Regua is backed by the Serra do Marao mountains and is at the heart of the Port wine region. It is a pretty town to stroll and is home to the Solar de Vinho do Porto which offers tastings and port-related exhibitions.
Salamanca (Spain)
The old city of Salamanca is a World Heritage Site with many Renaissance buildings of golden sandstone. The central square of Plaza Mayor is bordered by graceful arcades, and other highlights include the Romanesque Cathedral, the Augustinian Monastery and the Art Nouveau and Art Deco Museum of Casa Lis. <i>Salamanca is reached by a day long optional excursion</i>.
Seville (Spain)
The city of Seville on the Guadalquivir River can be reached by river cruise ships. Passengers aboard larger sea-going vessels can visit Seville from the ports of Sanlucar de Barrameda or Cadiz. Dating back 2000 years, its architecture spans Moorish, Mudejar and Gothic periods. Tapas bars and restaurants are spread across this very attractive city, and sights include the magnificent cathedral, the nearby 9th-century Alcazar and gardens, Plaza d'Espana, the Bull Ring, and the Torre del Oro beside the river.
Vila Real (Portugal)
This typical Portuguese town has many interesting buildings, but the chief draw of the town is the baroque Mateus Palace of the Counts of Vila Real. Featured on the famous wine label, and recognizable by its ornate façade and stairways, its gardens are considered to be amongst the most beautiful in Europe.

Douro River Cruises

All of our Douro cruises are shown below. Tick the boxes to filter by date, company, duration and type.

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All: AMA Waterways APT Amadeus River Cruises Avalon Waterways CroisiEurope Emerald Waterways
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All: 4 - 6 Nights 7 - 10 Nights 10+ Nights

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Viking River CruisesViking River Cruises

  • Includes travel from UK
  • Includes shore excursions
  • Wine, beer and soft drinks with meals on board
  • Open seating for meals
  • Informal dress code
  • Mainly UK/US/EUR passengers

PRICE MATCH GUARANTEE

Golden River of Portugal

9 Nights - Lisbon to Porto

Viking Hemming and Viking Torgil Viking Hemming and Viking Torgil

Enjoy a hotel stay in Lisbon before joining Viking Hemming or Viking Torgil in Porto and uncovering the highlights of Portugal's port wine region. Includes excursions and travel package from the UK River Cruise

2014 - Sep, Oct, Nov, Dec
2015 - Mar, Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov, Dec

Golden River of Portugal Douro River Cruise
From £1495pp
Book by 31 Aug 2014 for an exclusive discount of up to £800pp!

CroisiEuropeCroisiEurope

  • Cruise only, package possible
  • Fixed seating for meals
  • Informal dress code
  • Mainly European passengers
  • Unlimited complimentary house wine, beer, mineral water and soft drinks on board (1 April – 31 Oct departures only)

PRICE MATCH GUARANTEE

Porto and the Douro River

5 Nights - Porto and back

Vasco de Gama Vasco de Gama

See the steep vineyards along the Douro in the spring and autumn on this short break from Porto with plenty of opportunity to visit the highlights on optional excursions River Cruise

2014 - Oct
2015 - Mar, Apr, Nov

Porto and the Douro River Cruise through Portugal
From £530pp
Book any 2015 departure and receive our exclusive 5% discount!

Kingdom of the Golden River

5 Nights - Porto and back

Infante don Henrique Infante don Henrique

Journey through Portugal's untouched picturesque Douro valley on this short break from Porto, home of the Port wine trade, upstream to the Spanish border River Cruise

2014 - Sep, Oct
2015 - Sep, Oct

Kingdom of the Golden River short break Douro river cruise
From £648pp
Book any 2015 departure and receive our exclusive 5% discount!

Golden River Douro in Portugal

7 Nights - Porto and back

Infante don Henrique Infante don Henrique

See why the World Heritage listed Douro is so popular on this week long voyage from Porto through Portugal's port wine region. Optional excursions available include Lamego, Mateus and Salamanca in Spain River Cruise

2014 - Sep, Oct
2015 - Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct

Portugal's Golden River Douro Cruise from Porto to the Spanish border
From £823pp
Book any 2015 departure and receive our exclusive 5% discount!

APTAPT

  • Includes travel from UK
  • Includes shore excursions
  • Includes gratuities
  • Wine, beer and soft drinks with lunch and dinner on board (and at all times on some itineraries)
  • Informal dress code
  • Open seating for meals
  • Casual dress code
  • Mainly UK/AUS/US passengers
  • Home-to-airport transfers within 75 miles of chosen airport

PRICE MATCH GUARANTEE

Enticing River Douro

7 Nights - Porto and back

AmaVida AmaVida

Explore the beautiful Douro Valley and port wine region on this superb itinerary along the River Douro on brand new ship AmaVida. Includes travel package from the UK and drinks on board River Cruise

2014 - Sep, Oct, Nov
2015 - Mar, Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov

Enticing River Douro Cruise Through Portugal
From £2045pp
Book by 31 Oct 2014 for an exclusive discount of up to £300pp!

Douro Delights

8 Nights - Porto to Madrid

AmaVida AmaVida

Explore the beautiful Port wine region and breathtaking World Heritage listed Douro Valley on this luxury holiday along the River Douro, with Signature Experiences and Freedom of Choice Touring River Cruise

2015 - May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep

Douro Delights Cruise with stay in Madrid
From £2945pp
Book by 31 Oct 2014 to save an exclusive £300pp!

AMA WaterwaysAMA Waterways

  • Cruise only, package possible
  • Includes shore excursions
  • Wine, beer and soft drinks with lunch and dinner on board
  • Open seating for meals
  • Casual dress code
  • Mainly UK/US/AUS passengers

PRICE MATCH GUARANTEE

Enticing Douro

7 Nights - Porto and back

AmaVida AmaVida

Discover the terraced vineyards and sleepy fishing villages along the Douro on this round-trip from Porto on brand new AmaVida with included shore excursions River Cruise

2014 - Sep, Oct, Nov
2015 - Mar, Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov

Enticing River Douro Cruise through Portugal to Spain
From £1517pp
Book now to save 10% on 2015 departures!

Port Wine and Flamenco

7 Nights - Porto and back

AmaVida AmaVida

Join AmaVida at the Spanish border in Vega de Terron and explore the Douro Valley along one of Europe's most unspoiled waterways, lined with hillside terraved vineyards. Includes shore excursions River Cruise

2014 - Sep, Oct
2015 - Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Oct

Port Wine and Flamenco Douro River Cruise
From £1630pp
Book now to save 10% on 2015 departures!

UniworldUniworld

  • Includes travel from UK plus home pick-up service
  • Includes shore excursions
  • Unlimited beverages on board (excludes premium wine and premium spirits)
  • Open seating for meals
  • Informal dress code
  • Mainly UK/US passengers
  • All gratuities onboard and onshore

PRICE MATCH GUARANTEE

A Week on the Douro

7 Nights - Porto and back

Queen Isabel Queen Isabel

Highlights of this voyage through Portugal include the spectacular Mateus Palace in Regua, the charming town of Pinhao and the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Guimaraes. Includes home pick-up and return flights from the UK River Cruise

2014 - Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov
2015 - Mar, Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov

A Week on the Douro River Cruise
From £1799pp
Book by 30 Sept 2014 to save up to £400pp!

Lisbon and the Beautiful Douro River

10 Nights - Lisbon to Porto

Queen Isabel Queen Isabel

See the beautiful terraced vineyards, medieval cities and World Heritage Sites on this voyage from Porto, beginning with a 3-night pre-cruise stay in historic Lisbon. Includes home pick-up and return flights from the UK River Cruise

2014 - Sep, Oct, Nov
2015 - Mar, Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov

Lisbon and the Beautiful Douro River Cruise
From £2099pp
Book by 30 Sept 2014 to save up to £400pp!

Jewels of Spain and the Douro River

12 Nights - Lisbon to Madrid

Queen Isabel Queen Isabel

Discover the enchanting towns and celebrated wines of Portgual and visit the legendary Spanish cities of Madrid, Toledo and Salamanca on this unique holiday combining a Douro cruise with hotel stays in Lisbon and Madrid. Includes home pick-up, return flights from the UK and unlimited drinks onboard River Cruise

2015 - Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct

Jewels of Spain and Portugal's Douro River
From £3299pp
Book by 30 Sept 2014 to save up to £400pp!
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Blue Water Holidays Information
CroisiEurope
CroisiEurope

Book any 2015 departure and receive our exclusive 5% discount! Ends 30 Oct 2014

CroisiEurope
Viking River Cruises
Viking River Cruises

Save up to £2100 per couple on all 2015 departures! Book by 31 Aug 2014

Viking River Cruises
Emerald Waterways
Emerald Waterways

Save £500pp on all 2015 departures! Book by 1 Sep 2014

Emerald Waterways
Scenic Tours
Scenic Tours

Save up to £2000 per couple on 2015 departures! Book by 15 Oct 2014

Scenic Tours

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