Blue Water Holidays
Blue Water Holidays - ABTA - ATOL - CLIA
Experts in River and Small Ship Cruising Holidays since 2002
01756 706500 +44 1756 706500
Blue Water Holidays - ABTA - ATOL - CLIA
01756 706500
+44 1756 706500
Douro River Cruises

Douro River Cruises

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.

Douro Cruise Collection 2020

About Douro River Cruises

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.

Terraced vineyards on the river DouroVineyards on the Douro Mateus PalaceMateus Palace

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

Highlights of the Douro River

Here are a few highlights of a cruise along the Douro:

  • Sanctuary of Our Lady of Remedies in the beautiful town of Lamego
  • Portuguese capital of Lisbon, home to the famous Belem Tower
  • Tranquil town of Pinhao, renowned for its tiled railway station
  • Port wine tasting in the colourful city of Porto
  • Peso da Regua, overlooked by the breathtaking Serra do Marao mountains
  • Incredible architecture in the World Heritage-listed city of Salamanca
  • Mateus Palace and stunning gardens in the town of Vila Real
  • Pretty village of Barca d’Alva, close to the Quinta do Seixo
  • Vega de Terron, gateway to World Heritage-listed Salamanca
  • 11th-century Benedictine Monastery in the village of Bitetos

River Douro Ports







Vila Real

Douro Cruise Reviews

An amazing trip from start to finish. Blue Water are exceptional at getting you where you want to be and helpful from start to finish. The Viking Hemming was our river boat. The crew were fantastic and couldnt do enough for you. Within a day my cabin carer Maria was my new best freind , kept me organised and checked my outfits and appearance. That part of Portugal has so much to offer from ancient history , magnificent buildings ,churches, universities, amazing scenery and don,t forget food and wine tasting. My only wish was more time to explore but the outings are well thought out its just there is so much to see and do which can't be bad.

From the moment we landed at Porto Airport our trip was one of the most relaxing we have ever had. We arrived early at the ship but the Pursar made us very welcome, she arranged for our luggage to be stored until our cabins were ready and a taxi was ready and waiting to take us into Porto to do some early sightseeing. My husband and I were travelling with my 87 year old Mum and nothing was too much trouble at all. The crew were all very friendly and spoke excellent English. The food and wine were exemplary. We only went one one trip but it was excellent. The tour guide was very knowledgable. I would highly recommend cruising on the Douro with Croisi.

We had a brilliant holiday cruising the Douro, in September 2016 on the Scenic Azure. This was our first river cruise, and I would thoroughly recommend Scenic and the Douro, as well as our agents, Blue Water Holidays. Timing in mid September was ideal, just at the start of the grape harvest, with temperatures in the mid twenties. The Douro is beautiful, and the excursions from the ship were very interesting and informative. The ship carried 94 passengers, and had a very friendly and homely atmosphere. It was very well staffed, and the service was superb. All crew members were Portuguese, all making it their job to ensure everyone had an unforgettable holiday. The cruise director and guides were very knowledgable, providing some great insights into life in the Douro region. A brilliant holiday!

Total Reviews: 32 Read More Reviews...