Just Back: Villages and Vintages, cruising the Duoro

We are just back from the 9/25 sailing. Overall it was a wonderful trip -- there were only 29 guests on the ship and the group along with the crew made the trip fun. The service was top notch. They are working out the kinks with this trip in terms of excursions/timing/spacing, etc. The last two days are extremely active (which we liked - we hiked and biked) being off ship all day (more or less) but the up front is not at all - it leaves a lot of things squeezed into the last 2 days that would have been nicer to have spaced out. The ship is gorgeous - do wish there was at least a treadmill or bike on board (sentiment shared by many others with us). We really enjoyed this region of Portugal. It is stunning and the wine and port are delicious.


  • I'm so happy to hear that you had a wonderful trip! We can't wait for ours in a few weeks. Did they offer yoga or any other exercise activities on board since they didn't have a bike or treadmill? Do you have any other suggestions for things to do when arriving early and staying late? Anyone else sailing late October?

  • They offer no exercise at all on the ship and the excursions early in the trip are not all that active. This is certainly an area of needed improvement. People walked laps on the ship but as you will see the deck is very small. If you are active, don't be scared off the bike ride - it is mostly down hill and on a paved path (part gravel, which was eh but everyone managed) and not with cars.

    We stayed in Porto before the trip. Check out the golden church - that won't be on your tour and it is gorgeous inside. Also the tiles at the train station. Castros for the Pasteis De Nata --- it is all they serve other than coffee and it is absolutely delicious - we enjoyed the cinnamon and sugar on top. If you want to go to any of the old port cellars in porto - go before or after the trip - you only get to one n porto and there is not an opportunity to buy.

    You do not needs days in porto - one or two extra full days is enough. You will tour it with Tauck as your day 1 activity. You can go to Fatima from there, if that is of interest. Others spent time in Lisbon before or after the trip.

    The day of the port cocktail making - that vineyard is the only place you will go to on tour where you can order and ship wine/port to the US. Some of the wine was incredible - we went straight to the shop to taste and buy after the cocktail making thing. They don't give you much time - so if you are a wine collector - or want to bring some home - this is your chance.

    Lastly - dinner at arthurs is tapas. Our group did not love it --the cold items were good but the hot items are all deep fried and many are spicy.

    Enjoy your trip! It is absolutely a stunning landscape.

  • Thank you for the info!

  • I've used the gym a few times on river cruises and never had anyone in there with me. Given the small ship size I suspect they decided to do without. I've also done some stretching classes on cruises but only offered on mornings when you cruised til about mid day.

  • Thanks for taking the time to post about your cruise and your excellent tips.

Leave a Comment

BoldItalicStrikethroughOrdered listUnordered list
Align leftAlign centerAlign rightToggle HTML viewToggle full pageToggle lights
Drop image/file