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Portugal River Cruises 2024/2025

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Portugal Travel Guide

A river cruise in Portugal is your gateway to exploring the country's soul. Glide along the Douro, the river that cuts through the rolling vineyard-clad hills of the north, and discover the hidden gems of Porto's historic center. Or, navigate the Tagus in the south, where Lisbon's monuments glisten in the sun. Portugal's riverbanks boast golden beaches, quaint old towns, and historical landmarks, like the Belém Tower and Jerónimos Monastery. What's more, Portugal offers a chance to indulge in unique regional wines and traditional Fado music, creating a rich, sensory experience. A cruise here isn't just a holiday — it's a storybook of adventures waiting to unfold, with each stop bringing its own flavor and flair. With river cruise volume buys plus our low everyday prices you can save up to 50% versus the brochure price! Book your Portugal river cruise today with AffordableTours.com, your discounted river cruise headquarters.

Portugal Travel Guide
Showing 1 - 40 River Cruises

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Showing 1 - 40 River Cruises

Sail Date Operator Ship Departs Returns Length Price
Apr 20, 2024EmeraldEmerald RadiancePortoPorto8$11,190
Apr 20, 2024EmeraldEmerald RadiancePortoNice15$22,780
Apr 20, 2024EmeraldEmerald RadiancePortoMarseille15$22,780
Apr 21, 2024Avalon WaterwaysAlegriaLisbonPorto11$5,048
Apr 21, 2024UniworldSS Sao GabrielPortoPorto8$5,999
Apr 24, 2024Avalon WaterwaysAlegriaPortoPorto8$4,099
Apr 25, 2024ScenicScenic AzureLisbonPorto11$15,140
Apr 25, 2024ScenicScenic AzureLisbonMadrid14$16,595
Apr 25, 2024EmeraldEmerald RadianceMadridPorto10$10,355
Apr 25, 2024EmeraldEmerald RadianceMadridLisbon13$11,080
Apr 27, 2024EmeraldEmerald RadiancePortoPorto8$9,590
Apr 27, 2024AmaWaterwaysAmaVidaMadridLisbon14$6,099
Apr 27, 2024EmeraldEmerald RadiancePortoLisbon11$10,315
Apr 28, 2024Avalon WaterwaysAlegriaLisbonPorto11$5,248
Apr 28, 2024ScenicScenic AzurePortoMadrid11$15,545
Apr 28, 2024UniworldSS Sao GabrielPortoPorto8$5,999
Apr 28, 2024ScenicScenic AzurePortoPorto8$14,090
Apr 30, 2024AmaWaterwaysAmaVidaVega de TerronPorto8$4,299
May 01, 2024EmeraldEmerald RadianceLisbonPorto11$11,515
May 01, 2024EmeraldEmerald RadianceLisbonMadrid13$12,280
May 01, 2024VikingViking TorgilLisbonPorto10$9,499
May 01, 2024Avalon WaterwaysAlegriaPortoPorto8$4,299
May 04, 2024EmeraldEmerald RadiancePortoPorto8$10,790
May 04, 2024EmeraldEmerald RadiancePortoMadrid10$11,555
May 05, 2024UniworldSS Sao GabrielPortoPorto8$5,999
May 06, 2024VikingViking OsfridLisbonPorto10$8,999
May 08, 2024TauckMS AndorinhaLisbonMadrid12$8,990
May 11, 2024AmaWaterwaysAmaVidaMadridLisbon14$6,099
May 12, 2024Avalon WaterwaysAlegriaLisbonPorto11$5,248
May 12, 2024ScenicScenic AzureLisbonPorto14$16,540
May 12, 2024ScenicScenic AzureLisbonMadrid17$17,995
May 14, 2024AmaWaterwaysAmaVidaVega de TerronPorto8$4,299
May 15, 2024ScenicScenic AzurePortoPorto11$15,490
May 15, 2024ScenicScenic AzurePortoMadrid14$16,945
May 15, 2024EmeraldEmerald RadianceLisbonPorto11$11,515
May 15, 2024Avalon WaterwaysAlegriaPortoPorto8$4,299
May 18, 2024AmaWaterwaysAmaVidaLisbonMadrid14$6,099
May 18, 2024EmeraldEmerald RadiancePortoPorto8$10,790
May 19, 2024Avalon WaterwaysAlegriaLisbonPorto11$5,098
May 19, 2024UniworldSS Sao GabrielPortoPorto8$5,999

Portugal Travel Guide

Portugal River Cruises Highlights

  • Porto - The Northern Gem: Porto's port is as charming as the city itself, nestled along the Douro River. It's a place where traditional boats used to transport wine barrels now share space with cruise ships. Right from the dock, you're a stone's throw away from the Ribeira District, famous for its colorful houses and winding streets.
  • Dom Luís I Bridge, Porto: This iconic metal arch bridge spans the Douro River, linking Porto to Vila Nova de Gaia. It's not just a feat of engineering but a symbol of the city's heritage.
  • Ribeira District, Porto: A UNESCO World Heritage site, Ribeira is famous for its historic buildings and riverside promenade. The district's vibrant atmosphere is palpable day and night.
  • Lisbon - The Capital's Gateway: Lisbon's port offers a modern facility within reach of the city's historic sites. Step off and find yourself in a city where trams rattle up steep hills to stunning viewpoints like the Miradouro da Senhora do Monte.
  • Belém Tower, Lisbon: Standing at the mouth of the Tagus River, this fortified tower has guarded Lisbon since the 16th century. It's a monument to Portugal's Age of Discoveries.
  • Jerónimos Monastery, Lisbon: Near the Belém Tower, this monastery is a masterpiece of Manueline architecture. It's also the resting place of explorer Vasco da Gama.
  • Régua - The Heart of Wine Country: Docking in Régua puts you in the epicenter of the Douro wine region. The town itself provides access to numerous Quintas (wine estates), where tasting the local port and Douro wines is a must.
  • Pinhão - A Picturesque Stop: In Pinhão, the port is a gateway to some of the most beautiful vineyard terraces in Portugal. The vintage train station adorned with azulejos (tile panels) depicting the region's wine-making tradition is just a short walk away.
  • Douro Valley Vineyards: The terraced vineyards are not only a source of the region's famed Port wine but also a breathtaking sight to behold. Many estates offer tours and tastings.
  • Lamego: A small town known for the baroque Sanctuary of Our Lady of Remedies. A dramatic staircase leads up to the church, offering stunning views.
  • Coimbra: Home to one of the oldest universities in Europe, its historic buildings and baroque library are a deep dive into Portuguese culture and education.

Portugal River Cruises Travel Tips

  • The euro is the currency you'll need, and it's wise to carry some for small shops or local markets that might not take cards.
  • Make sure to try out new things while you are there, you might be able to find a hidden gem.
  • Evenings can be cool, especially on the river, so pack a mix of light clothing for sunny days and a jacket for the night. Comfortable shoes are a must for cobblestone streets and historic site explorations.
  • many churches and religious sites require modest dress, so bring clothes that cover your shoulders and knees.
  • Don't forget a hat and sunscreen for daytime adventures.

Portugal River Cruises Things To Do

  • Park and National Palace of Pena
    Park and National Palace of Pena

    This Romanticist castle is one of the most beautiful places you can find yourself. The castle is large, colorful, and has plenty of things to look at while you are walking through it inside. The 19th-century look stands out from the other structures in the area. It is a protected place of interest through UNESCO.   

    Best Time To Visit

    The best time to go see this attraction is at any time. You can go when the weather is nice, or even when it is not so nice. You will be inside for most of the time there, so it is easy for you to look at everything.  

     

    You Should Know

    It is recommended that you take a shuttle bus to the castle, as it can be quite the trip from the waterway. Go to the top of the castle and look over, because the views from the top are some of the most beautiful. Purchase tickets ahead of time if you want to skip the line and go through.  
  • Jeronimos Monastery
    Jeronimos Monastery

    This Monastery is still standing even though it was built in the past for those who wanted to practice religion. Monks would find themselves in this building from time to time. Used as a Chapter House and Cloister, the pieces of the past are still inside the building. You can cruise through the hallways on your own, or you can opt to have a guide walk you through and tell you more.   

    Best Time To Visit

    The best time to see this attraction is when it is raining out because mostly all of the monastery is inside. You can walk through the hallways regardless of what is happening outside.  

     

    You Should Know

    Bring a sweatshirt with you, the building is old and drafty. Purchase tickets in advance if you want to stop and see this because you might be in line for a while if you don't.  
  • Cabo da Roca
    Cabo da Roca

    This cape is perfect to look over the sides of the rocks, but you can also go down and feel the cool, clear water below. A lot of times, the cruises will flow right by this area, so you might notice a lot of the cruise ships while standing on the cliffside. It is a great point of interest for those who are coming through the area.   

    Best Time To Visit

    The best time to go to this attraction is when it is warmer and sunnier out. This is because the water is warmer during this time, and you can enjoy the cape more when it is warm.  

     

    You Should Know

    You shouldn't go full out swimming in the water but getting in the shore is ideal. There are no lifeguards and a lot of times, there might not be people, so you need to be careful. There are lighthouses you can check out while on the side of the cape.  
  • Santa Justa Lift
    Santa Justa Lift

    Also known as the Carmo Lift, this elevator is one of the most looked after pieces of interest that is situated right at the end of Rua de Santa. It was built years ago, but it provides you with a way to get lifted up into the air, so you can see all of the area from high above. As a high tourist attraction, you can expect to share the elevator with a lot of other tourists.  

    Best Time To Visit

    The elevator is glass, so you can see through it, which means even in the rain, you can still be fine. However, when it is clear out is the best so you can better see the land below.  

     

    You Should Know

    If you are afraid of heights, then this might not be the best place to find yourself visiting. Make sure to buy a one-day ticket for this, because you get extras along with it. It is the best value.  
  • Belem Tower
    Belem Tower

    This is known officially as the Tower of Saint Vincent, and a place worth visiting if you want to come closer to religion. It is a 16th-century building that was built and continues to stand. It originally was a point of interest for those who are embarking or disembarking from the water. It has many of the original pieces inside, and outside of the building.  

    Best Time To Visit

    Many people who have seen this attraction recommend that you go during sunrise or sunset because this is one of the most beautiful times. Warmer weather, no rain, and during one of these times.   

     

    You Should Know

    You can walk to this area from many of the other attractions throughout the area. This makes it easy to get to. You can go inside the building; you don't have to just view the spot from the outside. You should wear comfortable, waterproof shoes, as the water does get up on the ground pretty high in this area.  
  • Livraria Lello
    Livraria Lello

    This is one of the most beautiful and prolific bookstores that you can visit in the area. It is located in the civil parish of Cedofeita. It is one of the oldest bookstores in Portugal and one that you don't even have to buy anything in. Just visiting the store is worth the time spent inside. The beautiful ornate beauty inside is worth viewing.  

    Best Time To Visit

    You can go and visit this bookstore at any point in time. When the weather is wet and cool, you can find respite inside this bookstore.   

     

    You Should Know

    Make sure to look up while you are in the bookstore because this is where a lot of the beauty lies. There are both new and old books inside the store, so you can walk through the aisles to find something that interests you.  
  • Sao Bento Station
    Sao Bento Station

    This 20th-century railway station is a terminal in the civil parish of Cedofeita. You can find that the station is located right in the center of the historic Porto. If you are visiting this building, then make sure to visit the others around the same square. Used by royals and those of distinguished positions in the past, you can be a part of this history when you are walking through the streets.   

    Best Time To Visit

    You can go to this station at any point in time, though if it is not so nice outside, then it could be nice to visit this attraction and get out of the outside elements.  

     

    You Should Know

    The inside of the station looks like a museum or a place that houses art pieces when in fact, the train station is still running. There are also marketplace shops inside and outside of the station, so if you bring some cash with you, you can grab some local items.  
  • Carmo Convent
    Carmo Convent

    The Convent of Our Lady of Mount Carmel is a former Catholic convent that you can walk inside and outside of. The beautiful medieval convent is one that was constructed with a lot of thought. There is a part of the convent that was destroyed during an earthquake that happened in 1755.   

    Best Time To Visit

    You can visit this at any time, but they do a light show at night time so if you show up during this time when it is a bit warmer out, it can be worth it to see it.  

     

    You Should Know

    The museum for the convent is small with just 5 smaller sized rooms so you don't need a lot of time to get through the area. There is a sound and light show, as mentioned above that is put on by Lisbon by Night.  

Portugal River Cruise Packages

  • Getting There

    You'll likely fly into a major city like Lisbon or Porto to start your Portuguese river cruise. These cities have international airports with good connections from various parts of the world. From the airport, it's easy to get to the cruise ports either by taxi, bus, or sometimes even by metro. Cruise ships in Portugal typically dock at well-equipped ports that are close to the city centers. For instance, in Porto, the port is right on the Douro River, near the heart of the city, giving you immediate access to its charming streets. In Lisbon, the port is also centrally located, which allows for a quick transfer from plane to ship and gets your adventure started without a hitch.

  • The Perfect Time for a Portuguese River Cruise

    A Portuguese river cruise is an exceptional way to explore the country's stunning landscapes and rich cultural heritage, with the timing of your cruise playing a crucial role in the experience. The ideal months for river cruising in Portugal are late spring and early fall, particularly in May, June, September, and October. During these periods, the weather is typically warm, providing a comfortable environment for enjoying the views from the deck and participating in various excursions at the ports. This weather is ideal for river cruising, as it allows for pleasant exploration without the discomfort of excessive heat.

    The summer months, especially July and August, bring much warmer temperatures to Portugal. While the sunny and vibrant atmosphere is appealing, it's also the peak season for tourism, resulting in crowded attractions and busier river routes. River cruising during the summer in Portugal offers a lively experience but be prepared for higher temperatures and more company.

    For those who prefer a quieter river cruising journey with potentially lower costs, cruising in the off-season is a viable option. Although winters in Portugal are milder compared to other parts of Europe, they can be rainy, and some river cruise services might be limited or not operational. Therefore, late spring and early fall are the most recommended times for a Portuguese river cruise, striking a perfect balance between pleasant weather, fewer tourists, and the opportunity to fully enjoy the beauty along Portugal's rivers.

  • Experience the Flavors of Portugal

    Portugal's cuisine is a treat for foodies, known for its rich flavors and fresh ingredients. Seafood lovers will rejoice in dishes like 'bacalhau à brás,' shredded salt cod with onions and fried potatoes, and 'cataplana,' a seafood stew. Meat enthusiasts must try 'cozido à portuguesa,' a hearty mixed-meat stew with vegetables. Don't skip on 'pastéis de nata,' the famous Portuguese custard tarts, for a sweet fix.

    For drinks, there's the refreshing 'vinho verde,' or green wine, and of course, the various ports and Madeira wines. To truly savor the local flavors, a meal at a riverside restaurant in Porto or Lisbon is a must. For a unique experience, visit the food markets where locals go, like the Mercado da Ribeira in Lisbon, to sample a variety of dishes. And if you're cruising through the Douro Valley, a visit to a vineyard for a wine tasting is an experience you won't forget. Each meal in Portugal is a celebration of taste, tradition, and the joy of sharing good food.

  • Immerse Yourself in Portuguese Culture

    Portuguese culture is rich with time-honored traditions and a calendar full of festivals. Warm and inviting, locals often share stories and food with travelers. If you're lucky enough to cruise during June, you might catch the lively Festas de Lisboa, where the streets come alive with music and dance to honor Saint Anthony. Across the country, the Holy Week before Easter is observed with solemn processions and sacred rituals. In Porto, the São João Festival fills the night with joy, fireworks, and flying lanterns. To really understand Portugal, engage with its culture: learn a few Portuguese words, try the local coffee shops, 'pastelarias,' and don't miss a live 'Fado' performance, the soulful music that's a deep expression of Portuguese sentiment. Embracing these experiences will give you a genuine connection to the enduring spirit of Portugal.

  • Why Book a Portuguese River Cruise?

    Booking a Portuguese river cruise is a smart choice for travelers who want to see the best of Portugal with ease. It's a cost-effective way to enjoy a range of experiences without the stress of planning every detail. Your cruise fare typically includes accommodations, transportation, and meals, which might cost more if arranged separately. Cruises offer unique views of Portugal's stunning landscapes and cityscapes that you just can't get from land. Plus, they often dock in the heart of cities like Porto and Lisbon, giving you direct access to historical sites and charming neighborhoods. Some cruises provide exclusive experiences such as private tours of landmarks, special onboard entertainment, and visits to wineries that might not be as easily accessible to the general public. With the convenience of a floating hotel, you unpack once and wake up to a new adventure each day, making a river cruise one of the most relaxing and rewarding ways to explore Portugal's rich culture and beautiful scenery.

  • Ready to Book Your Portuguese River Cruise?

    Are you looking for a holiday that combines relaxation with cultural discovery? A Portuguese river cruise could be just what you need. Picture yourself sailing down the Douro, past terraced vineyards, and through historic cities. You'll have the chance to taste world-renowned wines, sample delicious Portuguese cuisine, and soak up the local culture at every stop. Onboard, you can unwind with stunning views, knowing that each day brings a new adventure. With excursions designed to deepen your understanding of Portugal's rich heritage and the ease of traveling from one beautiful destination to the next without the need to repack, this is more than just a getaway—it's a journey through the soul of Portugal.

    So why wait? Book your Portuguese river cruise today and set sail on an unforgettable experience.

Portugal River Cruises Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is a Portugal River Cruise?

    A Portugal river cruise is a cruise you would take through Portugal and Spain. You will stop at various ports of interest. You can take time off the ship or take some time to do things while on the ship. Cruise down the rivers that all come together and meet one another. There are different ports you can depart and dock at, so this is important to look into if you are choosing where to embark from. 

  • What’s Included on a Portugal River Cruise?

    You can find that your meals, cabins, and transfers are all included on the cruise ship. This is a hotel that you would be able to take to those ports of interest. You can do many things while on the ship and generally gifts and alcohol are the only things that are not covered while on the ship.

  • What’s the Best River Cruise for a Portugal River Cruise?

    There are many cruise lines that are always running and available. However, not all can provide you with the specifics you want. Many who have taken these cruises recommend a number of specific cruises. Tauck River Cruises, Viking River Cruises, Crystal River Cruises, and Scenic River Cruises all provide competitive rates, differing cruising lengths, and more to make use of when you are looking to cruise down the river, see Portugal, and more. 

  • How Much Do Portugal River Cruises Cost?

    Portugal river cruises can cost anywhere from $2,995 to $5,699 depending on the length of stay, the type of cabin you choose, and any extras you are going to add to your trip. You can customize the price based on the things you can remove and add on. Make sure to check out the extras of these cruises. 

Learn More About Portugal Cruises

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