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Porto, Portugal

Porto & the Douro Valley

An epicurean's haven

Tailor-made holidays to Porto & the Douro Valley

Introduction

With even its name predicated on its rich trading past, Porto’s merchants have seen the vineyard delights of the picturesque Douro Valley attract everything from Moorish palaces to Baroque grandeur. Our tailor-made self-drives and river cruises take in the best of this spellbinding region. Speak to our specialists to start planning your perfect Portugal holiday.

A rich history in Porto

As the country’s second city, Porto has a charm all of its own. Centuries of a hands-off approach to town planning have resulted in a maze of historic alleyways that twist among a tumble of terracotta rooftops. They lead down, past grand squares, to the glittering good looks of its waterfront, where riverside cafés look out to that great architectural marvel – the Gustave Eiffel-inspired Dom Luís I Bridge. Its double decker construction brings railway passengers, motorists and pedestrians alike to Gaia, a district on the city’s southern banks where centuries-old merchant houses still host port tasting sessions.

But, it’s on the northern side that you’ll find Porto’s centrepieces. Highlights include the golden Baroque glam of the Igreja de São Francisco, the neoclassical severity of the city’s cathedral and the 17th century blue-and-white tiles of the Igreja da Misericórdia, depicting grand, classical artwork.


Porto's Old Town, Portugal

Portugal's Douro Valley

The same river that flows through Porto carved the Douro Valley – a route mapped by scenic railway journeys, drives and cruises. And, as you swap city bustle for World Heritage verdure, you’ll be greeted by row upon row of rolling hills. It’s all host to nearly three millennia of winemaking heritage, found across vineyards carved right into the region’s green undulations.


The Douro Valley

This spectacular scenery is punctuated by an equally appealing human history. Culinary traditions still thrive among backcountry villages and banquets laid out in 300-year-old aristocratic houses while medieval fortifications line rivers and perch atop cragged escarpments.


 

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Top itineraries in Porto & the Douro Valley

Pousada Castelo de Óbidos

Pousadas of Portugal Routes

Tailor-made self-drive routes from £465 pp incl. flights

From castles, palaces, fortresses and monasteries, Portugal's Pousadas are spread throughout the country. The Explorer Passport provides five nights accommodation and breakfast using 17 of the most famous Pousadas throughout the country.

Douro River at Porto, Portugal

Porto & the Douro Valley

5-day tailor-made break from £640 pp incl. flights

Spend two nights in the majestic Pestana Palacio Do Freixo – an 18th century palace on the Douro River, just upstream from the historical old town of Porto and two nights in your choice of luxurious Douro valley hotel.

Douro Valley, Porto

Porto & the Douro Valley: Wines & Vines Fly-Drive

5-day tailor-made break from £485 pp incl. flights

Spend two nights in the majestic Pestana Palacio Do Freixo – an 18th century palace on the Douro River, just upstream from the historical old town of Porto and two nights in your choice of quinta winery accommodation.

Algarve, Portugal

Porto, Lisbon and the Algarve

9-day tailor-made self-drive from £1,270 pp incl. flights

Combine Portugal's two greatest cities, Porto and Lisbon, with five days relaxing by the beaches of the Algarve. The UNESCO city of Porto has a rich and varied history, seen in everything from its Romanesque cathedral to its neoclassical Stock Exchange.

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Top places to stay in Porto & the Douro Valley

Infinity Pool, The Yeatman, Porto

The Yeatman, Porto

3-night luxury holiday from £710 pp incl. flights & transfers

Between private balcony views of the city and a Michelin-starred restaurant, it’s not difficult to see why the Yeatman is an exalted member of the Relais and Châteaux collection of luxury hotels.

Infante Sagres, Porto

Infante Sagres Hotel, Porto

3-night luxury holiday from £695 pp incl. flights & transfers

Perhaps Porto’s most resplendent and theatrical hotel, the Infante de Sagres exudes glamour and the feel of an old manor house. It comes complete with fine-dining restaurant and a World Heritage location to die for.

Palacio / Pousada das Cardosas

Intercontinental Palacio das Cardosas, Porto

Grand & elegant hotel

In fine dining, chandelier-lit rooms and a spectacular location, this is among Porto’s finest properties; it truly deserves its palace moniker.

Pestana Palacio do Freixo

Pestana Palacio do Freixo, Porto

Guide price from £720 pp

Boasting Leading Hotels of the World status, Pestana Palácio do Freixo offers unmatched luxury on the tranquil outskirts of Portugal's beguiling world Heritage Site city of Porto

When to go to Porto & the Douro Valley

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Porto & the Douro Valley articles

  • Madeira, Portugal

    Top 10 driving holidays in Spain & Portugal

    From wild coastlines and beach curves to mountain peaks and rolling countryside, the charms of the Iberian Peninsula are seemingly endless. To help point you in the right direction our destination experts have put together the following self-drive routes that showcase the best of it all.

  • Douro River, Porto

    Porto, Douro Valley & the Algarve: our favourite Portugal routes

    Portugal’s national holiday, Portugal Day, falls on 10 June. To celebrate, we’ve chosen our favourite places to stay in Portugal's stunning regions of Porto, the Douro Valley and the Algarve to help you make the most of this region of rolling hills, riverside palaces and fantastic gastronomy.

  • Lisbon

    Our favourite Portugal routes through Lisbon, Madeira & the Azores

    Every year on 10th June, Portugal celebrates its annual national holiday, Portugal Day. In honour, we’ve picked our favourite routes through Portugal to immerse yourself in the historic pousadas, cobblestone villages and world-class gastronomy of this Iberian gem.

  • Best Food and Wine in the World

    The best food and wine holidays in the world

    From nectorial white wines to ambrosial game meats, we have hand-picked our favourite food and wine holidays around the world, including highlights from South Africa, Chile and France.

See all articles

Meet our Porto & the Douro Valley experts

Speak to a tailor-made specialist on 020 7664 2268

Meet the team

Why book with Wexas Travel?

At Wexas, we specialise in bespoke travel experiences. Our itineraries are just samples of what we can arrange, and can be changed depending on your precise needs, finances and ideas by our experienced destination specialists.

Contact one of our consultants on 020 7664 2268 to discuss how we can tailor your holiday.

Learn why Wexas is the leader in creating luxury holidays. What is tailor-made travel?

Expert advice & support

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Every step of the way

Every step of the way

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