Explore the fascinating history of Lisbon and charming Old World towns such as Porto, then enjoy a seven-night cruise of the Douro River, stopping off at vineyards and villages along the famous wine trail. 

Starting at: $5,790 * Price includes special offer Make a Reservation Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 The city of Porto and the Douro River
 Sherry boats on the Douro River, Porto
 The scenic Douro River valley
 Monument to the Discoveries in Lisbon
 Belem Tower, Lisbon
 Jeronimos Monastery, Lisbon
 Fishing boats in the harbor at Cascais
 Lighthouse near Cascais
 The town of Sintra, with the National Palace at center
 The town of Coimbra, featuring the university, a World Heritage site
 The scenic Douro River valley
 Harvesting grapes along the Douro River
 Vineyards along the banks of the Douro RIver
 The town of Guimaraes, along the Douro River
 Typical <i>azulejo</i> or traditional decorative tiles, Pinhao

Portrait of Portugal: Lisbon, Porto and a Douro River Cruise

Aboard the (2024) 130-guest Douro Queen or (2025) 132-guest Gil Eanes or Amalia Rodriguez

12 days from $5,790

Explore the fascinating history of Lisbon and charming Old World towns such as Porto, then enjoy a seven-night cruise of the Douro River, stopping off at vineyards and villages along the famous wine trail. 

or Call 855-330-1542

Tour Details




While our group was on a small ship with other groups, we felt very fortunate to have our own subject matter expert and logistics facilitator to make our trip special and rich.

- John, S.


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Save $250 per person when you book by April 5, 2024!

No Single Supplement for solo travelers! (Limited availability, book early to ensure your space)

Special Air Rates & Services: As part of our special air program, FlexAir, available with this tour, you can choose from a wide variety of flight options. Visit the Tour Details tab and click on "Special Air Rates/Services" drop down. 


Portugal is renowned for the Age of Discovery, Old World towns and centers of learning, rabelo (sailboats) loaded with casks of port plying the Douro, and distinctive blue azulejos (tiles). Encounter all of this and more during our land and river cruise program featuring seven nights aboard an intimate riverboat.

Highlights Include

  • Lisbon to Coimbra: Explore the treasures of Lisbon, including the Jeronimos Monastery, Tower of Belém, and Monument to the Discoveries, and enjoy a performance of traditional fado music. Then travel to the ancient town of Sintra, the fishing village of Cascais and the fashionable seaside resort of Estoril. Visit medieval Obidos and the stunning university city of Coimbra, where you'll gaze upon the spectacular university library. 
  • Seven-Night Cruise on the Douro River: In Porto, discover sites on a city walking tour or tram tour, and savor a taste of the area’s port wine. Then board your river ship for a seven-night cruise of the Douro River. You'll visit the town of Guimarães or take a hike along the river and cruise along the meandering Douro River to Barca d’Alva, stopping off at traditional towns and vineyards along the famous wine trail. And on a day excursion, explore the glories of Spain’s Salamanca.
  • Small Ship Experience: You’ll explore the Douro aboard an upscale small ship that features sophisticated staterooms and public spaces, superb amenities, excellent cuisine, and an informal ambiance. 2024 Departures: All dates sail aboard the newly refurbished Douro Queen2025 Departures: we will sail aboard the Gil Eanes on April and May cruises and aboard the Amalia Rodriguez on September and October 2025 cruises. Each voyage will also include other leading cultural and educational institutions, which will add new perspectives and energy to the experience.  

While our group was on a small ship with other groups, we felt very fortunate to have our own subject matter expert and logistics facilitator to make our trip special and rich.

- John, S.


Days 1 & 2 — Depart the U.S. for Lisbon, Portugal

Depart the U.S. for Lisbon via overnight flights. Arrive at Lisbon’s Portela International Airport, and transfer to the upscale Hotel Dom Pedro Palace. Your Smithsonian Journeys Travel Director will be on-hand to help with information for independent activities. In the early evening, meet fellow Smithsonian Journeys travelers at a welcome talk and reception at the hotel. (R)

Day 3 — Lisbon

Explore Lisbon on a panoramic tour that will highlight historic and cultural points of interest. Visit Jeronimos Monastery, burial place of Vasco da Gama, and see the Tower of Belém, both designated as World Heritage sites.

Following Portugal’s seafaring tradition, see the Monument to the Discoveries, built for the Portuguese World Exhibition of 1940. The monument is designed in the form of a ship with a statue of Prince Henry the Navigator standing on the bow looking out to the horizon. Also see the Church of Santa Maria and the Cloister. Continue your introduction to Lisbon with a drive through the green and spacious Estrela neighborhood, highlighting the idea that neighborhoods in Lisbon used to act as their own self-sustaining towns before uniting into what is now greater Lisbon. This evening, dine in a cozy Fado restaurant where you’ll enjoy regional favorites, local wine and hear soulful songs accompanied by dual guitarists. (B,D)

Day 4 — Sintra / Cascais and Estoril

After breakfast, depart for the historic town of Sintra where you’ll visit the Main Square and the National Palace of Sintra. Enjoy a luncheon of local specialties in Sintra, then continue along the coastal road to the quaint fishing village of Cascais.

After a guided walk through town, continue to the elegant resort of Estoril, a gathering place for Europe’s “glitterati.” In the late afternoon, a local expert will offer a talk on Portugal’s role in key events during the 20th-century. (B,L)

Day 5 — Obidos / Coimbra / Porto

This morning, depart Lisbon and drive to the charming medieval walled town of Obidos, renowned for narrow winding streets, whitewashed houses covered with bougainvillea and its well-preserved 17th-century architecture. After a guided walking tour, explore the town on your own before continuing the drive north to Coimbra. Coimbra is a World Heritage site famous for its University, one of the oldest in Europe. Enjoy lunch in Coimbra then continue on to see Saint Michael’s Chapel and the Royal Palace including the Ceremonial Hall. After touring the University, you may want to explore the Old Cathedral commissioned by King Afonso Henriques on your own.

Afterward, continue to Porto where you’ll embark your ship. Once on board, there’s time to relax and get settled before gathering for a welcome reception and dinner. (B,L,R,D)

Day 6 — Porto

Today choose from two included shore excursions.

Porto City Tour: Begin exploring Porto with a visit to the Stock Exchange, built in 1842. Continue on to the Igreja de Sao Francisco, a church originally built in the Gothic tradition, and through successive renovations, has become a Baroque masterwork. Porto is world renowned for its fine port wine. Visit a local wine cellar, where you’ll have the chance to sample!

Porto Tram Trek: Travel to the town center where you’ll board a city tram and begin a unique experience in urban sightseeing to see Porto’s points of interest. The excursion will include a stop at the Tram Museum, housed in a former power plant. The museum collection includes the oldest horse-drawn cars and the last trams in operation dating from the 1950s and 1960s. The excursion ends with a tasting of Porto’s local specialties before returning to the ship.

The balance of the day is at leisure for exploring on your own. Shuttles from the ship to the town center will operate this afternoon for your convenience. Later, gather for a talk from a local expert who will introduce you to the Alto Douro Wine Region. After dinner, enjoy a special musical performance by a local Tuna Band; a talented group of university students, in medieval costume, who perform in the tradition of the historic balladeers. The ship will overnight in Porto. (B,L,D)

Day 7 — Porto / Guimarães and Regua

Enjoy local cultural and historic highlights with a choice of one of the following included shore excursions.

Guimarães: With an expert local guide, explore this university town on foot and discover its historic treasures. The maze of lanes and picturesque plazas are evocative of how life was lived in the past. A World Heritage site, the town is considered Portugal’s birthplace. Discover Nossa Senhora de Oliveira Church, the most important religious landmark in the city. Stop at the Sacred Hill to admire the Castle of Guimarães then visit the Palace of the Duques de Braganca.

Hiking Along the Douro: Set out with a local guide for a comfortable hike along the Atlantic coastline and the Douro River. On the walk, pass through the fishing village of Sao Pedro da Afurada. Enjoy beautiful views of Porto and the renowned Ribeira Square. Visit the town of Vila Nova de Gaia, where the local wine is aged in its world-famous cellars. Sample the wine in a local quinta or wine cellar.

This afternoon, cruise toward Peso de Regua. This region of Portugal is known as the Alto Douro, a World Heritage site and the world’s major producer of port wine. Late this afternoon, gather with fellow participants in the Smithsonian Journeys Travelers Corner to talk about the day’s experiences. (B,L,D)

Day 8 — Regua / Barca d’Alva

Enjoy an excursion to the Mateus Palace and Vila Réal, The Mateus Palace, built in the 18th-century, is considered one of the most beautiful manor houses in northern Portugal. Stroll through the perfectly manicured formal gardens, and see a 115-foot tunnel of old cedar trees. Continue to Vila Réal, a pleasant town set among picturesque vineyards and known for the diversity of its religious architecture. Your guide will lead you through narrow streets to the Clerigos Chapel, a baroque church decorated with blue Azulejos tiles. Stroll through parallel shopping streets and stop to sample the local pastry. Afterwards, there will be time at leisure to discover the town on your own. Before dinner, get together in the Smithsonian Journeys Travelers Corner for lively discussion. After dinner, attend a performance of Sevillanas dancers; influenced by the Spanish art of Flamenco. (B,L,D)

Day 9 — Barca d’Alva / Salamanca

Depart the ship and transfer to Salamanca, Spain where you’ll have your choice of one of the following included shore tours.

Salamanca City Tour: This morning, depart the ship to visit the historic Old Town of Salamanca, a designated World Heritage site. Discover the Plaza Mayor and visit the Cathedral that has, over time, evolved in style from late Gothic to Baroque. Visit the University, one of the world’s oldest which first opened in 1218. 

Salamanca Bike Ride: Take a bike ride accompanied by a local guide along the Tormes River before seeing the historic and cultural highlights of Salamanca’s Old Town and some points of interest off-the-beaten-path.

Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant in Salamanca before returning to the ship. Also, onboard the ship, spend time sharing experiences with fellow travelers in the Smithsonian Journeys Travelers Corner. The ship remains in Barca d’Alva this evening. (B,L,D)

Day 10 — Barca d’Alva / Ferradosa / Pinhao

Today, relax and enjoy a morning cruise from Barca d'Alva to Pinhao with a stop in Ferradosa. Depart the ship and set out to explore the wine trail of Porto to see San Salvador do Mundo and Sao Joao da Pesqueira. These small towns are situated amidst the lush vineyards of the Rio Tinto Valley. In Sao Joao da Pesqueira see the arcade of the Main Square, the town Chapel, and quaint white-washed houses. Visit a quinta to sample the famous port. Return to the ship in Pinhao. This evening enjoy a traditional Portuguese folk show onboard. The ship will overnight in Pinhao. (B,L,D)

Day 11 — Pinhao / Lamego / Porto

This morning the ship makes a short operational stop in Folgosa. From there, travel to Lamego, a charming town, where you’ll visit the 18th-century Nossa Senhora dos Remedios Sanctuary, known for the 686 stairs that lead up to the shrine. It is one of the most important pilgrimage churches in Portugal. Afterward, make a stop to sample local cold cuts and the port wine. Before returning to the ship, visit the regional Lamego Museum that showcases some of Portugal’s finest examples of religious art. This evening, gather for a farewell reception and dinner. The ship will depart for Porto after dinner. (B,L,R,D) ​

Day 12 — Depart for home

After an early breakfast, transfer to Porto Airport for your flight home. (B)​

Included meals are denoted as follows: Breakfast (B), Lunch (L), Reception (R), Dinner (D)

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