Douro River (The River of Gold) Portugal
The Douro River (Río Duero in Spanish) flows westwards across the Iberian Peninsula from Duruelo de la Sierra, in northern-central Spain, to the Atlantic Ocean at Porto, Portugal’s second largest city after Lisbon.
The city and countryside views are stunning. You can see from this photo why it is nicknamed the River of Gold.
A 7-day Douro River cruise, on board one of the small, luxury cruise ships that are purposely-built for navigating rivers, is a unique way to see parts of northern Spain and Portugal that can’t be reached by car. It’s also a great way to sample local cuisine and for some wine tasting, of course.
If seven days is not long enough for you to enjoy Portugal and Spain and you want to immerse yourself in the culture, you can bookend your cruise with a hotel or bed and breakfast stay in Lisbon and/or Madrid.
Some cruise lines offer a 3-day land tour component as optional extras giving you the chance to explore both Lisbon and Madrid.
Alternatively, I can help you arrange transportation, accommodations and excursions for an independent pre and post stay in both cities. That way you can explore each city at leisure on foot, bicycle or by hopping on one of the many forms of public transport.
If you’re feeling even more adventurous, plan to stay for longer and rent a car to explore even more of the sites and scenery in each region.