Exploring the Douro, plus Lisbon & Madrid - Westbound Aboard ms Andorinha

A New 2020 Douro River cruise, plus Lisbon and Madrid! Join us for an enchanting 12-day journey through one of the oldest wine regions in the world… including a culturally rich 7-night riverboat cruise along the Douro River aboard our new riverboat purpose-built for cruising Portugal's “river of gold'… plus two-night stays in timeless Lisbon and Madrid!



Centuries of wine-growing history and timeless Port traditions along an enchanting “river of gold'… white-painted quinta estates lined with terraced vineyards… art and architecture royally inspired and the joys of tapas in Madrid… Lisbon's treasures from the Age of Discovery and beyond… Cruise through the heart of one of the world's oldest and most beautiful wine regions on a 12-day journey between Lisbon and Madrid, featuring a 7-night cruise aboard Tauck's new riverboat ms Andorinha, custom designed for exploring Portugal's “golden' Douro River. Visit quintas for wine tastings, hike through vineyards and villages, and discover the UNESCO World Heritage city of Porto, where the Douro kisses the Atlantic and timeless Port traditions steal your heart. Spend two nights each in Madrid, Spain's bigger-than-life capital, with its bar culture and bevy of baroque and belle epoque architecture - and Lisbon, gate to the “New World,' enticing with palaces aplenty and azulejos chronicling life from Moorish times to present day...

Centuries of wine-growing history and timeless Port traditions along an enchanting “river of gold'… white-painted quinta estates lined with terraced vineyards… art and architecture royally inspired and the joys of tapas in Madrid… Lisbon's treasures from the Age of Discovery and beyond… Cruise through the heart of one of the world's oldest and most beautiful wine regions on a 12-day journey between Lisbon and Madrid, featuring a 7-night cruise aboard Tauck's new riverboat ms Andorinha, custom designed for exploring Portugal's “golden' Douro River. Visit quintas for wine tastings, hike through vineyards and villages, and discover the UNESCO World Heritage city of Porto, where the Douro kisses the Atlantic and timeless Port traditions steal your heart. Spend two nights each in Madrid, Spain's bigger-than-life capital, with its bar culture and bevy of baroque and belle epoque architecture - and Lisbon, gate to the “New World,' enticing with palaces aplenty and azulejos chronicling life from Moorish times to present day...

Traveling Well Includes:
  • TAUCK EXCLUSIVE - Tour and private dinner in Queluz National Palace in Lisbon
  • 7-night cruise aboard a brand new riverboat custom designed to sail on the Douro River
  • A choice of excursions that include active hikes, a port cocktail-making class, a tour of wine caves, bicycle rides and more valued at $3,156!
  • In-depth exploration of 7 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Spain and Portugal
  • Private wine tastings in quintas along the Douro River

  • Day 1 - Arrive Madrid

    Tour begins: 5:30 PM, The Westin Palace Madrid. A transfer is included from Madrid-Barajas Airport to The Westin Palace, Madrid, commissioned by King Alfonso XIII in 1912 and located in the heart of the city's renowned art triangle with easy access to its three most famous museums, El Prado, Reina Sofia and Thyssen-Bornemisza. Settle in and join your fellow travelers for a welcome reception and dinner tonight at the hotel.

    Lodging: The Westin Palace, Madrid

    Meals: D

    Day 2 - Palatial Treasures of Madrid

    Take a guided one-mile walk - or a short drive - to Madrid's 18th-century Royal Palace, home a succession of Spanish kings from Charles III to Alfonso XIII, and reigning today as the official residence of the Spanish Royal Family in name only. Your visit to this 2,000+ room jeweled palace, by square feet Europe's largest palace, takes you on a journey through history and time-honored splendor with a local guide as you view rooms and salons overflowing with art treasures and antiques, and gilded, floor to ceiling, with fine fabrics, magnificent mosaics, crystal chandeliers and more. Highlights may include the Reception Room, the State Apartments, the Armory, the Throne Room, the Banquet Room and the Royal Pharmacy. Head-turning art welcomes you to the Museo del Prado, one of the world's premier art museums with over 4,000 works of art masterpieces, including works by iconic Spanish artists Goya and Velazquez, many of them acquired by kings through the ages. Tapas tantalize with small bites of local culinary fare on a tasting walk with an expert guide who knows where to find the best samples of this regional specialty.



    Lodging: The Westin Palace, Madrid

    Meals: B

    Day 3 - Salamanca Sights & Your Riverboat Hotel

    Drive to the UNESCO World Heritage City of Salamanca for free time and a guided walking tour of its ancient heart, viewing the “living room of Salamanca,' the elegant arcaded Plaza Mayor, its stunning 12th-century Romanesque Cathedral, and its esteemed 800-year-old university, one of the oldest in the world. Cross the border into Portugal, where Tauck's brand new riverboat, ms Andorinha, is docked on the Douro and awaiting your arrival. Settle into your cabin and enjoy dinner onboard at your leisure tonight.



    Lodging: ms Andorinha

    Meals: B, D

    Day 4 - A Medieval Castle & Cave Art on the Douro

    The Douro River cuts a 200-mile path through rugged wilderness on the Spanish frontier and one the world's most beautiful and prolific wine regions as it courses through Portugal and the city of Porto on the Atlantic Ocean. Along the way, it passes the castle ruins hidden in the hills; disembark for a visit to Castelo Rodrigo, standing watch over the medieval village of Rodrigo since the 13th century when its defensive battlements were built and fought over by both Spain and Portugal. A walking tour reveals remnants of its storied roots, before your cruise continues along the river. 20,000 years ago prehistoric man called the nearby Coa Valley home, leaving evidence of their residence on rocks in the Coa Valley. Visit the Coa Museum to learn more about the history of the valley and its ancient sites. Enjoy the chef's signature dinner onboard ship tonight.

    Lodging: ms Andorinha

    Meals: B, L, D

    Day 5 - Pleasures of Pinhao

    A choice of shore excursions today includes a walk in pretty Pinhao, nestled in the heart of port wine country, with a visit to its historic tile-covered train station, a vision of blue and white Azulejo tiles, or an active hike through the sloping terraced vineyards that surround this town. Return to your riverboat for an afternoon cruise to Folgosa where dinner tonight entices with a special culinary experience at DOC, an acronym for “Degustar Ousar Comunicar' (translated: “Taste, Dare, Communicate'), savoring gourmet cuisine by acclaimed Portuguese chef Rui Paula who delights in marrying traditional dishes with contemporary fare along with the Douro's famous wines.



    Lodging: ms Andorinha

    Meals: B, L, D

    Day 6 - A Rendezvous in Peso da Regua

    Its historic role in the production of port wine is written on the landscapes you'll see today when you step off the boat into Peso da Regua for a day of discovery. An important transport junction, this is where barrels of wine were boarded onto traditional rabelos bound for Gaia in the 18th century, where the wine was aged in local lodges. Learn more about the history and cultural treasures of the Douro Wine Region, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, on a locally guided visit to the Douro Museum; or, join a local guide for an active walk through the vineyards to a local wine-making estate called a quinta, rewarding with a port cocktail making class. Then take your choice of shore excursions. Embark on a guided tour of 18th-century Casa de Mateus, a Baroque masterpiece you may recognize from the label on bottles of Mateus Rose, and its fantasy garden of manicured hedges and dignified statues. Or visit the 12th-century Monastery of St. John, resplendent with tiled tableaus, with an opportunity to learn about Portugal's sparkling wines during a tour of wine caves of a local producer.



    Lodging: ms Andorinha

    Meals: B, L, D

    Day 7 - The Charms of Guimaraes

    Spend a leisurely morning cruise on the lower Douro through a region known for its Vinho Verde wines. Disembark for a choice of excursions that includes a visit to the UNESCO World Heritage city of Guimaraes, regarded as the birthplace of Portugal and renowned for its well-preserved medieval buildings and national monuments. As an alternative, you can join a local guide for a bicycle ride that entices with scenic views of terraced vineyards.

    Lodging: ms Andorinha

    Meals: B, L, D

    Day 8 - Vinho Verde Wines

    The wine growing regions of the Douro surprise visitors with an array of vintages, young and old. Discover them at a wine tasting at a quinta in a Vinho Verde vineyard where they specialize in green wines uniquely produced here. Green refers to its age not its color; the grapes they use for these wines are typically consumed within three to six months after bottling and can be red, white, or rose. Chart a course for Porto this afternoon.



    Lodging: ms Andorinha

    Meals: B, L, D

    Day 9 - Discover Porto, Your Way

    Culturally rich and historically charming, Porto's pleasures are diverse and delightful, blending old and new to reveal a fascinating portrait of the city through art and architecture, wine and food, and waterfront views that take your breath away. Explore the city by land, river and air when you ride a historic tram from Foz Quarter through the upper part of town and board a water taxi that takes you across the river for a cable car ride to the top of the Luiz I Bridge, rewarding with panoramic views. If you prefer, join a local guide for a tram ride and a robust walking tour of Porto's historic center with stops to taste local culinary treats. Your day concludes with a tasting visit to a port wine cellar in Gaia.



    Lodging: ms Andorinha

    Meals: B, L, D

    Day 10 - Captivating Coimbra & On to Lisbon

    Disembark your riverboat in Porto this morning for a drive back in time to Coimbra, Portugal's medieval capital for more than a century. A walking tour along the tiered cobbled lanes of this hilltop city brings you to its esteemed university, founded here in 1537, where its caped students evoke images of Harry Potter's Hogwarts School, its majestic buildings line squares steeped in history and cloistered arcades lead to architectural showpieces beautiful to behold. Learn about student life, past and present, and university traditions still in play today. Enjoy free time for lunch and exploring before continuing on to Lisbon for a two-night stay.



    Lodging: InterContinental Lisbon

    Meals: B

    Day 11 - City Sightseeing & a Palace Dinner

    Crafted atop seven hills over centuries, Lisbon is home to cobbled lanes, castles in the clouds and maritime monuments that pay lasting tribute to Portuguese explorers like Vasco da Gama who changed the world. City sightseeing today discovers landmark places steeped in history, including Eduardo VII Park. Trade Square, the Monument to the Discoveries and Jeronimos Monastery where Vasco da Gama and Portugal's kings are buried, and visits the National Coach Museum. After enjoying time at leisure, join us for an exclusive royal dinner at 18th-century Queluz National Palace, a blend of Baroque, Rococo and Neoclassical architectural designs graced with gardens inspired by French styles.



    Lodging: InterContinental Lisbon

    Meals: B, D

    Day 12 - Journey Home

    Tour ends: Lisbon. Fly home anytime. A transfer is included from the InterContinental Lisbon to Lisbon Airport. Allow a minimum of 3 ½ hours for flight check-in.

    Lodging:

    Meals: B

    Call 206-412-1032 for more information or to book today! Mention code 15013632

    Cruise Line
    Tauck River Cruising
    Offer
    Offer valid through 9/30/2020
    Duration
    12 Days
    Cruise Ship
    ms Andorinha

    Click for more information on this ship.

    DayPortArriveDepart
    Day 1Madrid  
    Day 2Madrid  
    Day 3Salamanca  
    Day 4Castelo Rodrigo  
    Day 5Pinhao  
    Day 6Peso da Regua  
    Day 7Guimaraes  
    Day 8Porto  
    Day 9Porto  
    Day 10Lisbon  
    Day 11Lisbon  
    Day 12Lisbon  
    Disclaimer
    * Land / cruise price per person in U.S. dollars, based on double occupancy, includes cruise fare, most meals, port charges, shore excursions, applicable fuel surcharges, and gratuities to Tauck Directors, Tauck Cruise Director, ship staff, local guides & drivers, and on all included meals.

    Itinerary Changes - 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. Further, museums and attractions may be subject to closure due to state, local or religious holidays.
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