Lisbon & The Douro Explorer
10 nights. August 2021. From £2489.00.
The Golden River and Portugal’s capital
Combine a cruise on the sun-kissed River Douro with three nights in historic Lisbon. Stay in a centrally located hotel, and get to know this colourful city - once a maritime powerhouse responsible for opening up the New World, and still nicknamed the Queen of the Sea. Soak up the atmosphere of the Baixa’s cafés and restaurants, wander the ancient streets of the Alfama, and perhaps take a ride on an lovingly restored tram. An optional tour will bring the city, and its elegant neighbours Estoril and Cascais, to life before you travel north along the Atlantic coast to Porto to begin your cruise aboard A-ROSA ALVA. From Porto you'll sail east, through steep gorges and past the vineyards and picture-book towns and cities that line the meandering Douro, to Vega de Terrón. Explore Régua, Bitetos and Barca d’Alva, and spend two nights in Pinhão before returning to Porto for an included tour of the city and a last night aboard.
What's IncludedThree nights’ bed and breakfast accommodation at a four-star hotel in Lisbon
The services of a friendly, professional Tour Manager in Lisbon
Seven nights' Premium Inclusive cruise accommodation
Return travel from the UK to Lisbon (unless you select our Tour Only option)
Included coach transfers to the ship (unless you select our Tour Only option)
Free Wi-Fi on board
On-board activities and entertainment
Gourmet buffet dining with live cooking stations
A FREE unlimited Premium Inclusive drinks package including water, soft drinks, speciality teas and coffees, beer, wine, spirits and cocktails throughout the day and evening
Occasional regional treats and specialities to complement your destination that day
Afternoon tea with freshly prepared cakes and pastries
15 per cent off on a range of beauty and wellness treatments in the on-board spa, SPA-ROSA
The services of a Cruise Director and experienced English-speaking crew
All port taxes and surcharges
Holiday HighlightsNine visits and tours
Four days to explore and enjoy the Portuguese capital
The riverside havens of the Douro, including Pinhão and Barca d’Alva
The charming Spanish river port of Vega de Terrón
Explore the world of port wine in Régua
Enjoy an included guided tour of Porto
Embark A-ROSA ALVA on Porto
PLEASE NOTE: Price is per person and based on two people sharing a twin/double room. Single room supplements and upgrades are not included.
Day 1Fly with us to Lisbon, or make your own way to the Portuguese capital, and check in to your four-star hotel in the heart of the city.
Days 2 and 3Spend the next two days exploring Lisbon. Don’t miss the ornate Manueline architecture of the Belem quarter, or the Baixa, a grid of wide tree-lined avenues fringed with cafes and restaurants, and some striking modern buildings. Rossio Square buzzes with streetsellers and pavement artists, while the narrow streets of the Alfama seem at once timeless and filled with the echoes of history. During your stay you'll also have the chance to join an optional excursion to Estoril and Cascais. Home to Europe’s largest casino, Estoril remains a stylish, genteel resort with charming seafront cafes and a sandy beach. Heading along the coast, we’ll visit Cascais a former fishing village on a sweeping bay, before returning to Lisbon.
Day 4Today we'll travel north to Porto, and board A-ROSA ALVA, your home-from-home for your cruise on the Golden River, at the quayside. As the ship does not sail until the morning, you'll have the chance to step ashore after you've settled in to your cabin, and before or after you’ve enjoyed your first dinner on board.
Day 5This morning, A-ROSA ALVA slips away to begin your journey up-river, passing through the gorges beyond the city and out into the countryside. This morning you’ll cruise past the dams at Crestuma/Lever and Carrapatelo, make a short call at Régua for those joining shore excursions, and meander on through ever more beautiful scenery to tiny, picture-book Pinhão, which stands on the Douro's north bank surrounded by vineyard-covered hills. Step ashore to explore, then enjoy a second night aboard.
Day 6Pass a relaxed morning on board or enjoying a shore excursion - perhaps to see the Baroque glories of the Palácio de Mateus, depicted on millions of bottles of the ubiquitous rosé wine produced by the surrounding estate. In the afternoon A-ROSA ALVA will continue her cruise towards the Spanish border, where the Douro becomes the Spanish Duero, and you spend the night in sleepy Vega de Terrón, at the easternmost point of the cruise.
Day 7This morning brings an opportunity to enjoy a shore excursion, perhaps to hilltop Castelo Rodrigo or Salamanca, said to be the most beautiful city in Spain, to see its Baroque sandstone buildings and two sumptuous cathedrals. Later, A-ROSA ALVA begins her languid downstream journey towards the tiny hamlet of Barca d’Alva, for an afternoon spent among its almond trees. If it’s a clear night, don’t miss the opportunity to stargaze from the top deck this evening, taking advantage of the famously unpolluted skies.
Day 8Slipping away from Barca d’Alva at breakfast time, you’ll cruise back downstream, pausing briefly at Pocinho and its dam, to arrive once more in idyllic Pinhão by early evening. Don’t miss the the town's lovely railway station and its exquisite tiles depicting the grape harvest, as you spend another night beneath Pinhão's rolling hills.
Day 9An early morning cruise brings you to bustling Régua, not only one of the centres of the port-wine trade and surrounded by vineyards for over two thousand years, but also gateway, on an optional shore excursion, to exquisite Lamego, with its achingly beautiful Igreja de Nossa Senhora dos Remédios shrine, known colloquially as the ‘Stairway to Heaven’. After the chance to go ashore to explore, enjoy a last afternoon’s cruise to Bitetos, a former Roman settlement nestled beneath a 13th-century Benedictine monastery. Spend your last evening ‘upriver’ in this beautiful location.
Day 10A last morning’s cruise sees you sail back past the Crestuma-Lever reservoir dam, and make a short call at Cais da Lixa, before passing once again through the gorges to Porto. Here an included tour will introduce Portugal’s wondrous second city. Built on granite bluffs high above the river, which is crossed by several vertigo-inducing bridges, Porto is a city of cobbled passageways lined with restaurants, bars and speciality shops, quaysides where you'll still see ancient, flat-bottomed barcos rabelos waiting for cargo, and the historic, often British-named port lodges of Vila Nova de Gaia on the Douro's south bank. Make the most of your time in the city, then enjoy a last night on board or ashore, alone or with new-found friends.
Day 11Bid “Adeus" to your ship and her crew, as you begin your journey home. Back to top
Special requirementsIf you have notified us of any special requirements, please check that they have been noted and acknowledged. This is especially important with any dietary needs you may have.
Optional shore excursionsOptional excursions are available on all cruises. If the number of bookings needed to operate any excursion is not reached, the excursion may be cancelled.
TippingTipping is not compulsory, but from experience we know that many passengers like to leave gratuities for the crew. At the end of the cruise you will find a tip box for the entire crew at the reception and the suggested amount is five Euros per guest per day. Of course, you are free to tip individual crew members at any time, should you wish.
Disabled guests and guests in need of assistanceAll ships have stairs, are not equipped with lifts, and may not be suitable for passengers with restricted mobility. Wheelchairs cannot be used on board.
Dress codeThe dress code on board and ashore is comfortable and casual; we recommend that you bring sturdy footwear for excursions. For the restaurant we recommend smart casual dress. Please remember to bring warmer clothes for evenings out on deck.
Wi-FiWi-Fi is provided free of charge in accordance with A-ROSA's conditions of use. You can request a login and password from reception. Internet reception is limited and will vary from location to location.
LuggageWhere possible, we recommend non-rigid suitcases as these are easier to store within your cabin.
PoolA heated pool can be found on the sun deck of the following ships: A-ROSA DONNA, FLORA, SILVA and STELLA.
WhirlpoolA heated Whirlpool can be found on the following ships: A-ROSA AQUA, and VIVA.
Cabin facilitiesIn your cabin you will find a safe installed in the wardrobe, a hairdryer, bathrobes and slippers, insect screens and pool towels. The power supply in your cabin is 220 V/50 Hz. All sockets are European two-pin, meaning you will need to bring an adaptor.
Air-conditioningAll A-ROSA vessels are air-conditioned throughout, with individual climate control in each cabin.
Drinking waterThe water on board is potable and bottled water is provided in your cabin.
Itinerary changesOn rare occasions, the Captain may need to alter the Cruise Itinerary. If this happens, the Cruise Manager will keep passengers informed.
Foreign Office travel adviceVisit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice to find out the latest Foreign And Commonwealth Office travel advice for your holiday destination, as well as information about passports and visas. Back to top