Douro Valley: Wonderful Wines and Outstanding Natural Beauty

Douro Valley: Wonderful Wines and Outstanding Natural Beauty

Experience award-winning wineries in a stunning natural setting during a wine tour of Douro Valley in northern Portugal

Tour Highlights

Availability:

This is a bespoke wine tour, available throughout the year. Minimum number of guests is two. To check availability for specific dates, please get in touch. Our itinerary can be altered to suit your flight schedude and duration desired.

Pricing:

The price for a 4 days (3 nights) tour: Euro 925,- per person sharing a double room.

Inclusions:

  • 3 nights’ accommodation excusive hotel / winery
  • 3 breakfasts
  • 2 restaurant dinners Douro – including wines and soft drinks
  • 1 tour & tasting at winery, with dinner – including wines and soft drinks
  • 2 tours & tastings at wineries, with lunch – including wines and soft drinks
  • 1 restaurant lunch Amarante – including wines and soft drinks

Not included:

  • Air fare
  • Car rental
  • Travel insurance

Overview

From the handsome old city of Porto, Porto, follow the Douro river inland and you will discover the magnificent countryside of the Douro Valley. This area may well be Europe’s most spectacular wine region, offering the visitor stunning scenery.

The deep gorge that the Douro has carved through soft salty soils allows for dramatic vistas. Steep hillsides are covered from top to bottom with terraced vineyards. They are so steep that to this day grapes can only be handpicked. Whilst the valley is historically famous as the producer of port wines, for the last decade some of Europe’s best table wines have also been made here. The best wine estates make both port and table wines and, in a few instances, the estate owners take their unfortified wines more seriously than their port wines.

The vineyards are mostly planted with the local varieties like Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinta Roriz and Tinta Amarella. Reflecting the dramatic variations in both the orientation and altitude of the land, the characters of the wines produced in neighbouring vineyards can be quite different. The style of the wines also varies enormously depending on the provenance of the grapes and the intentions of the winemaker – from Burgundian to schistose solidity. These days grapes are frequently cultivated organically, with a keen focus on sustainability.

There is a real air of excitement in the Douro Valley about this extraordinary terrain’s ability to express itself in such a diverse range of wine. The Bordelaise have been moving in, buying vineyards or setting up joint ventures with some of the local estates. No wonder that the leading wine magazines like Decanter and Wine Spectator have been given high marks to a number of Douro wines.

Your Itinerary

  • Arrival at Porto airport. Depart for the Douro Valley – it is around 2 hour’s drive.
  • Arrival and check-in at your hotel in the heart of the Douro Valley; this is an exclusive hotel situated in the heart of a family-owned wine estate
  • After checking in, there will be a tour of the winery followed by a comparative wine tasting and dinner. The food here brings some the best of the Douro region. Here you will enjoy tasty country dishes like cold cured meats, game on the spit, chestnuts and wild mushrooms. The food will be paired with the wines from this top-estate.
  • After breakfast, time to enjoy the beautiful surroundings
  • Late morning a visit to one of the Douro’s top estates in the Cima Corgo sub region in the heart of the Douro valley. The wines of this quinta have deservedly been awarded the highest marks from magazines like Decanter and Wine Spectator. You will tour the splendidly located winery, which dates back to the 17th century. That said, the family owning the place is decidedly modern, there is a keen focus on sustainability here.
  • Tour and tasting will be followed by a rustic yet refined country lunch, with each course paired with various signature wines from the estate. After lunch return to the hotel, with time to relax and enjoy the splendid surroundings.
  • Dinner at a charming local restaurant centrally in the Douro Valley. Here the chef prepares high quality rustic food, with a strong emphasis on dishes from the region. The wine list is extensive, focussing on wines of the Douro region.
  • After breakfast, a visit to one of the best wineries in the Douro sub region Baixa Corgo. It is a lovely historic place with a beautiful manor house typical for the region. The 18th century buildings, while preserving the original baroque features of its architecture, also contain an excellent – and striking – modern wine making operation. Wines are superb, receiving frequently high accolades from domestic and international wine journalists. The tour of the Quinta will be followed by a wine tasting of their signature wines, accompanied by some local delicious food, serving as a light lunch.
  • After lunch more time to relax and enjoy the splendid surroundings.
  • Dinner at a beautifully designed modern restaurant on the banks of the Douro river – you will enjoy the signature dishes of a famous Portuguese chef, with matching wines as you will have become accustomed to. Dishes will be light and pure, with the freshness of the ingredients shining through. The wine list here is both long and excellent.
  • After breakfast, check-out of the hotel.
  • Depart for the town of Amarante, located halfway between Porto and the Douro valley, in the Vinho Verde region. This is a charming medieval town situated on the banks of a tributary of the Douro river. Farewell lunch in a historic palace in the heart of the old the city, which now houses an excellent restaurant. The restaurant serves Portuguese food with a French twist, using ingredients from the Douro / Minho regions. Again, the wine list here is exceptional.
  • After lunch depart for Porto city / Porto airport.

You will be staying 3 nights’ at a working winery in the heart of the Douro Valley.

The 18th century Quinta (manor house), the centre of the winery, has been extensively restored and turned into an intimate and exclusive hotel. The Quinta is located on a slope, allowing for the most spectacular views over the countryside. There are around 20 comfortable rooms, each of which is tastefully furnished and is air conditioned.

The property, situated within a 400 acre estate, has spacious gardens and terraces as well as a swimming pool. It is a very special place.

There are many direct flights into Porto airport from Europe, and some from the Americas. For trans-Atlantic flights, it may be easiest to connect in Lisbon.

The Douro Valley is around 2 hours east of Porto by car. Hiring a car may be the most practical option, in particular if you enjoy driving in beautiful countryside. It is easy too to get to Douro Valley by train from Porto, it is a beautiful train ride, and trains run regularly. The local travel in Douro can be organised too by local taxis (taxis are relatively inexpensive) or by us organizing a transfer service for you.

If you would like Paladares Travel to assist with car rental services or to organize transportation, please let us know. Kindly note the pricing on our website does not include transportation, since the cost is largely dependent on the number of people requiring such service. Paladares Travel does not offer flights. 

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Paladares Travel

Paladares Travel is an international travel company specializing in travelling in Portugal and Spain. In these two countries we curate bespoke culinary & wine travel experiences with a sense of place.

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