Best Places to Visit in Douro Valley. The Douro Valley, situated in the heart of Portugal, is a beautiful destination that offers a perfect mixture of natural beauty, rich history, and superb wines. This scenic area is famous for its terraced vineyards, lovely villages, and gorgeous river views.
Accept the views from O Carrascalinho Lookout
Complete the half-hour drive south of Mogadouro, via the village of Fornos, to this distant yet stunning viewpoint managing the Douro River in the Douro International Natural Park. The Douro is the highest-flow river on the Iberian Peninsula, driving for 897km (557 mi) from the Spanish town of Duruelo de la Sierra to Porto, Portugal’s second city. Remember to look up over the valley to stain eagles encircling overhead.
Connect with nature at A Congida Beach
See one beach and you’ve visited them all, right? Wrong. It’s not usually you slip across a river beach and specifically not one enveloped by the dense nature of the Douro International Natural Park. A Congida Beach sits as an outcrop on the big pool formed by the Saucelle Dam, not distant from the Spanish border. There’s an afloat swimming pool, a jetty to sunbathe on, and a bunch of fish and birds to spot as you cool off in the water.
Kayak the Douro River and Best Places to Visit in Douro Valley
A few years ago, English teacher Jack Atkinson teamed up with Rui Calado, who has floated the entire Portuguese coastline as well as 120 rivers worldwide, to make sufferable Douro Kayak Expeditions. Select from 10 days (Itinerary I, bringing in three Unesco World Heritage sites) and six days (Itinerary II, including endings at Porto and Foz Coa). This is the only tour that travels the whole 209km (130 mi) of the Douro right across Portugal. Groups are limited to 12.
Go more in-depth into wine at the Museu do Douro
Visit this restricted museum to catch the true history, culture, and identity of the Douro wine region, currently a Unesco World Heritage location. The permanent Memory of the Wine Region display follows the tradition of the grape yield, and there are regular cultural affairs and lectures inside the villa house, once the middle of the General Company of Agriculture of the High Douro wines. There’s a cafe, a library, and a wine bar watching the Douro River.
Cruise the Douro River by boat and Best Places to Visit in Douro Valley
The outstanding specialty about a boat cruise is your day is taken care of for you. All you have to do is enjoy the best of the Douro River and the landscapes that bound it from the balcony. You will finish a full day on the river tasting port wine and olive oil at estates along the way, wanting a delicious locally sourced lunch and a reel on a traditional wooden Rabelo boat. Trips can run anywhere from an hour-long tour to a two-day journey with you repaying by train.
Sample local wines at Quinta do Pôpa
The story of Quinta do Pôpa began with the dream of Francisco Ferreira (known as Pôpa) that was realized by his son Zeca when he bought Quinta do Vidiedo vineyard in Adorigo, Tabuaço. Zeca changed the name in honor of his father. Visit this lovely spot to enjoy wine tastings, basement tours, and grape treading. Three wines are produced here utilizing traditional methods including Curtimenta, an amazing white made with skin contact. It’s even designed with suitcase-friendly inflexible boxes so you can bring some home.
Take a tour of Quinta do Panascal
This vineyard and tourist center is held by Fonseca Port, one of the most famous wine producers in the area. There is a vineyard walk attended by a self-guided audio tour available in nine languages. In the guest’s room, three Fonseca wines are available to test. During the harvesting season, you can manage grape treading in the classic granite tanks, a view worth visiting if you’re interested in the wine-making method.
Visit the Parque Natural do Douro Internacional
One of Portugal’s 13 natural parks, this site travels several cities and a long stretch of the Douro River. The “international” part of the name arrives from the fact that it works as the border between Portugal and Spain. Driving via the park is allowed, and definitely worth doing, but visiting parts of the park on foot is a better way to participate in the region’s flora and fauna. A rich combination of animal species lives here, as well as more than 170 various species of bird.
Explore Parque Arqueológico do Vale do Côa
The Côa River is a branch that operates into the Douro River. For thousands of years, the rock builds blazing the river banks have been impressed by innovative humans. Dating back 25,000 years, this gallery provides us with records of ancient humans up to figures carved by local children a few decades ago. The group of engravings can be viewed as part of organized visits, but these must be booked in advance.
Rise to see the Santuário de Nossa Senhora dos Remédios
In the city of Lamego, there is a staircase with 686 stages. Up this hill and these stages is a shrine for the worshiping of Nossa Senhora dos Remédios. The temple looks high in its seat at the top of the hill, counting to its brilliance. The highlight of the climb is the Pelican Fountain on the first dock, but the shrine itself is also worth the rise.
Visit the Museu de Lamego
Housed in a 1700s castle, this is perhaps the best museum in Portugal, besides those in the central cities. It features many parts of art and tapestry, including five conferences that were once part of the Lamego Cathedral altar. It’s a mixed collection, featuring gold crafts, vehicles, and sculptures alongside the craft.
The Douro Valley beckons with its timeless beauty, captivating history, and the allure of its renowned wines. From the terraced vineyards to the charming villages, every corner holds a story waiting to be discovered. Whether you’re an avid wine enthusiast, a history buff, or simply seeking a serene escape, the Douro Valley promises an unforgettable journey.