Welcome to PORTO and the legendary DOURO VALLEY!
This region has Porto for capital, which was known for its artisanry, and today reemerges as a design hub, gastronomy spot and architectural attraction.
Facing the Douro bank Ribeira historic quarter, Vila Nova de Gaia houses impressive aging caves of the biggest wineries, spreading over decades of hectares, and you will visit it.
Fourty-five minutes north of Porto, you will discover the historic cities of Braga and Guimarães, listed at the World Heritage. One has been founded by the Romans and expanded at the Middle-Age, as the other one was the birth place of King Alfonso Henriques (1109-1185).
A hundred miles east, you will explore the majestic Douro Valley with vertiginous riverbanks sculpted by centuries of vineyard cultivation. This is the oldest wine region in the world, founded by the Marquis of Pombal in 1756. You will explore the valley by the wine route meandering through the schistose hills covered with vineyards, and by boat for a recreational cruise. You will succumb to the charm of the valley’s sunny terraces. You will be pleased by the wine growers warm welcome. You will enjoy the comfort of luxury Quinta and boutique-hotel accommodations. You will experience the Portuguese cuisine through a gourmet tour and a cooking lesson. You will visit top-ranked wineries to improve your oenological knowledge in Port wines. You will love Portugal for sure!
CHIC BOUTIQUE-HOTEL ACCOMMODATIONS
Our original program includes a two-county exploration and two boutique-hotel accommodations.
PORTO A.S 1829 BOUTIQUE-HOTEL
The Porto A.S. 1829 Hotel was born in the heart of the historic city of Porto after the recovery and revitalization of a building of great architectural and heritage value, the former “Armazém de Papel ao Murinho de S. Domingos” that would later become one of the most important and respected stationery in the country – Araújo & Sobrinho – had stayed in the same family for five generations. Here you can live and breathe history, a unique vibe of the historic centre of Porto.
Porto A.S. 1829 Hotel offers standard rooms, city view, superior, family or unique; each with a private bathroom. Some include a classic in-room bathtub, other benefit from panoramic views over the city of Porto. All rooms are air conditioned, have flat screen televisions and free Wi-Fi access.
The Galeria do Largo restaurant, formerly an Art Gallery, although in a very limited timeframe, where local artists exhibited their work, is now a showcase of traditional Portuguese cuisine flavors with a contemporary preparation and presentation.
We have chosen this hotel for its comfort, elegance and location, steps to Largo de S. Domingos, the Douro River banks & Ponte D. Luís, and the historic S. Bento Station. Your adventure in Porto starts here, at the Porto A.S. 1829 Hotel!
CASA PESO DA REGUA BOUTIQUE-HOTEL, DOURO VALLEY
Casa Peso da Reguá is a family-run charming boutique-hotel centrally located in the legendary Douro Valley, in a quiet environment just outside the city center. It offers a 13 bedrooms accommodation in the main house with a city view from the balcony, and the modern designed new construction overlooking the pool. Each of the air-conditioned rooms and suites have its private bathroom with a walk-in shower. Amenities include a flat-screen TV, hairdryer, toiletries and coffee/tea facilities. WiFi access is free of charge. Daily buffet breakfast is served in the dining room. Refreshments can be bought at the snack bar and guests can seize this perfect opportunity to enjoy a glass of local Douro wine at the bar. The nearby hiking trails and river fishing sites offer plenty of options to explore the region.
Peso da Reguá is an alive town with very good restaurants. It’s also surrounded by many wineries including legendary Quinta do Crasto and Quinta do Vallado which achieved national and international acclaimed levels of quality and recognition.
Ready for a relaxation and a head-to-toe pampering ? We’ll take you to the Six Senses Douro Valley for a couple of hours to treat yourself in the outstanding Spa offering full-body massages, facials body treatments, rituals, beauty fitness, etc.
NORTHERN PORTUGAL GASTRONOMY
Land of sea, plains and mountains, Porto and the North of Portugal’s gastronomy is as diverse as the landscape where its food and wine are produced and tasted. With four demarcated wine regions, the North of Portugal offers high quality wines including the internationally well-known Port wines.
The Douro Valley wine region, with its 250.000 hectares marked by numerous microclimates, is divided in three sub-regions which vary greatly in terms of temperature and rainfall: Baixo-Corgo, Cima-Corgo and Douro Superior. It’s here, in poor and schist soils that the Port and liquorish wines are produced but also – and increasingly more – red and white wines of superior quality.
Back to the kitchen… you will see that the Portuguese cuisine is straightforward and hearty, matching the best of the sea with meat and quality-fresh ingredients from the fertile land. Spices including piri-piri, black pepper, vanilla, cinnamon and saffron… are very used and it’s a remembrance to the influence of Portugal’s former colonial possessions. Olive oil is also the basis of the Portuguese cuisine as garlic and herbs flavor lots of dishes.
Bacalhau (codfish) is more than a traditional dish, it’s a national obsession. There are hundreds of different recipes and versions of this classic, including Bacalhau à Gomes de Sá, Bacalhau à Zé do Pipo, Bacalhau à João do Buraco but Bacalhau à Brás is one of the best… combining onions, chips, olives, parsley, egg and, of course, cod. From octopus salad to codfish croquettes, sautéed clams with herbs and garlic, caldo verde vegetables and chorizo soup, cataplana fish stew, chicken in the pot, custard pastry…there is a long list of specialities, and you will have the chance to cook some of it.
In visiting Porto, you won’t miss to taste a Francesinha, a meats and cheese sandwich served with a spicy sauce, and accompanied with a Fino local beer served in a thin and tall glass. But before that, you will certainly enjoy a Porto Tónico, a cocktail made with a dry Port wine, tonic warter, ice and a lemon slice and served in a tall glass… another way to taste Port wines! In Gaia, you will order a Broa de Avintes, a kind of corn bread which matches well with the typical Caldo Verde soup…
VISITS & CULTURAL TOURS
Aside to the tribute paid to the Port wine production and tastings, this program also features a region and country’s rich history, traditions and culture.
You will explore the city of Porto through a food & history walking tour, but not only. You will discover the picturesque towns of Braga and Guimarães. You will visit several Douro Valley wineries (here called quintas) including Quinta Do Panascal, Quinta do Crasto, and Quinta do Vallado. You will experience a recreational river on the Douro river to admire the exceptional beauty of the valley with its vineyards planted terraces. The visit to Graham’s cellars in Vila Nova de Gaia (Porto) will be one of the tour’s highlight.
DAY 1 (Thursday) : Welcome to Portugal !
Welcome to Porto airport. Morning transfer to the Douro Valley.
Check-in at the hotel.
Lunch in Régua. Resting time.
Afternoon visit to Quinta Do Vallado winery.
Dinner in Peso da Reguá. Overnight.
DAY 2 (Friday) : Morning visit to top-ranked winery – Afternoon cruise on the Douro river
Breakfast at the hotel.
Visit to Quinta do Crasto which is one of the highlights of this tour. Located on the right bank of the Douro river, Quinta do Crasto, has been Leonor and Jorge Roquete family estate for more than a century. Walking tour through the vineyards, visit to the winery with its beautiful warehouse barrels maturing table wines and premium Port wines. You will enjoy a 5 wines tasting. Quinta do Crasto has been awarded the 3rd best wine in the world by Wine Spectator for its 2008 vintage, giving the 95 rating in 100 points.
Afternoon 2-hour cruise on the Douro river aboard a traditional boat to admire the most emblematic wine estates between Régua and Valeira’s locks.
Transfer to the hotel.
Dinner in a Michelin restaurant.
DAY 3 (Saturday) : Morning Cooking Class – Afternoon visit to Quinta Do Panascal winery
After breakfast, morning cooking class at Quinta Da Pacheca. You will learn to prepare and cook a 3-course menu including a starter, a main course and a dessert. Tasting lunch accompanied by wine follows.
Afternoon visit to Quinta Do Panascal located in the charming Távora river valley in the heart of the Douro region. This is the most important winery of the prestigious company Fonseca named by James Suckling, as the “Bentley” of Port wine. Dinner in Pinhão. Overnight.
DAY 4 (Sunday) : Morning transfer to Porto – Afternoon visit to Port wines cellar in Vila Nova de Gaia Port
Check-out after breakfast. Transfer to Porto (about 1h30).
Lunch in a gourmet restaurant offering a classic Portuguese cuisine while enjoying the stunning panoramic view all over Porto historic quarter.
Afternoon visit to Ferreira or to Graham’s.
Check-in at the Hotel. Resting time.
Dinner in a typical restaurant nearby. Overnight.
DAY 5 (Monday) : Full-day excursion to Braga & Guimarães World Heritage towns
After breakfast, transfer by van to Braga (45mn).
The 2h30 walking tour starts with a coffee and a traditional pastry and then proceeds through the historic Roman and medieval quarters. It highlights the main buildings and points of interest such as the ancient castle’s keep, the cathedral, Santa Barbara’s gardens, Porta Nova Arch, among others.
Lunch in a traditional restaurant.
Afternoon transfer (30mn) to Guimarães, a old city founded over a thousand years ago. You will explore the city by walking, enjoying iconic monuments, lower-filled squares, and relaxing pavement cafés. Beautiful artisans shops in Guimarães for shopping addicts ! Transfer to Porto (45mn).
Dinner at Cantinho Do Avillez restaurant (by a wellknown chef). Overnight.
DAY 6 (Tuesday) : Morning gourmet & cultural walking tour – Afternoon free for shopping or visiting
After (a light) breakfast, join your local tour guide for a unique walking in Porto featuring the food, wine and culture. While strolling through Porto off-the-beaten paths, you will enjoy at least 10 food tastings (a perfect balance of sweet and savory delights) paired with tea or coffee and wines. You will visit the bustling Bolhão authentic food market, and learn about the food culture.
Afternoon free for shopping and for enjoying Porto as you wish.
Gourmet dinner at “Pedro Lemos” Michelin-starred restaurant in Fos (Porto). Overnight.
DAY 7 (Wednesday) : Check-out – Transfer to Porto airport.
After breakfast, check-out, and transfer to Porto airport by private van.
End of the tour.
US$ 4,500 per person (DBL occupancy)
SGL occupancy supplement: $490
All taxes and VAT included.
Price includes :
7-day escorted tour, airport round-trip transfer and ground transportation by private luxury van,
3-night Douro Valley chic boutique-hotel accommodation,
3-night Porto A.S. 1829 elegant boutique-hotel accommodation,
Daily breakfasts, lunches and dinners as detailed in the itinerary,
Visit to top-ranked wineries as detailed in the itinerary,
Traditional boat Douro river cruise,
Half-day gourmet & cultural walking tour in Porto,
Full-day excursion to Braga and Guimarães,
And all which is listed in the above itinerary.
Not included : airfare from/to your country, wine in restaurants, personal insurance, personal expenses.
2021 TOUR DATES
September 16-23 (4 space left)
Another date can be added upon request (4 people minimum). Please contact us. Thank you.