Welcome to Portugal. Enjoy a warm welcome reception on board the luxurious Scenic Azure. Tonight, as an introduction to Portugal you will be seduced by a soulful Fado performance on board.
Freechoice: Discover the historic treasures of Porto, including a visit to Palacio da Bolsa, a neoclassical style building which started construction in 1842 and took over 65 years to complete. Instead, if you’re feeling more active, join a walking tour that includes a cable car ride allowing you to see Porto from a different perspective.
Enjoy a relaxing afternoon of cruising as your luxurious Scenic Space-Ship meanders its way to Entre-os-Rios.
Freechoice: Guimarães was the seat of the first King of Portugal and is dominated by the impressive Ducal Palace, which dates back to medieval times. Alternatively, you could choose a tasting at the fairytale property of Quinta da Aveleda. Located in the famous Vino Verde region and a renowned regional sparkling wine producer, the incredible gardens alone make the excursion worthwhile.
Later, enjoy a blissful cruise to Regua where you have the chance to explore the Douro Museum at your leisure. Learn about the culture, history and identity of the people living in this wine growing region of the Douro Valley.
This morning, discover the captivating Varosa Valley and visit the charming village of Tarouca where you’ll explore the restored Monastery of Saint John of Tarouca (St John not available all departures and will be replaced with visit to Villa Real). En route, walk the fortified bridge of Ucanha, Portugal’s first toll bridge, spanning the crystal-clear waters of the Varosa River.
Freechoice: Tour the elegant town of Lamego, with its many fine Baroque structures such as the Sanctuary of Nossa Senhora dos Remédios and the Lamego Museum, or enjoy a guided visit of Mateus Palace, the historic icon depicted on the labels of Portugal’s famous Mateus rosé wine.
Enjoy a full day cruising the Douro Valley’s Vinhateiro wine growing region. A World Heritage-listed Site, Vinhateiro has a history of wine production that stretches back for 2,000 years. In fact, its impeccable port wines have been world-famous since at least the 18th century.
Today you have the opportunity to cross the Spanish border.
Freechoice: Take your time absorbing the architectural splendour of Salamanca, a city as visually striking as it is historically intriguing. From humble beginnings during the Iron Age to darker times, such as the economic crises and the War of the Spanish Succession, Salamanca has been shaped over time to become the fascinating beauty it is today. Explore the city on a guided tour before free time to explore at your leisure. Alternatively, you may choose to visit the Portuguese village, Freixo de Espada à Cinta for a guided tour and visit to their silk museum. Freixo de Espada à Cinta is the only municipality where handcrafted silk is still processed entirely by hand.
Freechoice: Visit the award-winning Côa Valley Museum and enjoy a pre-historic workshop, or if you’re more adventurous at heart, take a canoeing excursion on the Sabor River. Alternatively, you could join the ‘Tastes of the Côa Valley’ excursion and visit Casa Painova for a sweet almond workshop and a tasting of their almond, olive and fruit products.
Tonight, be entertained by a traditional Portuguese musical performance on board.
Visit the remarkable village of Provesende, showcasing the Portugal of yesteryear, and wander the quaint streets with locals as they proudly introduce you to their way of life – including their local bakery. This is a specially choreographed experience exclusive to Scenic guests. You’ll also visit the church for a special recital, and enjoy wine tasting at the restored manor house of Morgadio da Calçada.
Freechoice: Top off a truly unforgettable day with a visit to a local estate for a tasting of their famous export, or if you’re feeling energetic, you could choose a walk through the hillside vineyard for a tasting among the vines.
Having spent the previous eight days discovering the treasures of the Douro, Varosa and Côa Valleys, enjoy an exclusive Douro Valley Wine Review. Otherwise, simply enjoy the beauty of the region as you cruise back into Porto.
The sheer beauty of São Francisco Church is sure to impress. The façade is a mix of Gothic and Baroque architecture, while the interior glows with intricate wood carvings swathed in gold. Immerse yourself in the heart and soul of Portuguese music as you witness a spectacular private concert in these wondrous surroundings.
Freechoice: Step outside of Porto and join an excursion to Aveiro for a guided tour including a cruise on the waterways that meander through this historic and colourful city. Alternatively, visit a local corking factory and learn how cork is produced as well as its multitude of uses, or visit Vila Nova de Gaia, the historic district set on the banks of the Douro River, for a tasting of the region’s famed drop in one of Porto’s most renowned port wine aging cellars.
You have the opportunity to explore Porto at your leisure this afternoon, or simply make the most of the remainder of your time on board Scenic Azure.
Board an included flight from Porto to Bordeaux where you will be welcomed on board by the friendly crew of the Scenic Diamond.
Soak in the vistas as you cruise along the Garonne river into Cadillac.
Freechoice: This afternoon, learn about Lillet, the refreshing French aperitif, during a visit to a renowned local producer. Alternatively, visit a truffle farm and sample this delicious regional delicacy, or visit Roquetaillade Castle.
Freechoice: Venture into the Sauternes region for a delicious wine tasting at the prestigious Château Rayne Vigneau. Alternatively, cycle through the rolling vineyards of Sauternes to taste the exquisite Grand Cru Classé wines of Château Lafaurie Peyraguey.
Tonight, enjoy a sumptuous welcome dinner created using regionally sourced truffles.
As you cruise to Libourne, your Cruise Director will host an enjoyable game of blind wine tasting, featuring wines produced in the region. Spend the afternoon in the nearby town of Saint-Émilion. Explore the underground catacombs of the Monolithic Church, before visiting the estate of Château de La Rivière for a cocktail and tasting experience. Sample regional delicacies such as soft creamy cheeses served with crunchy bread and fresh local charcuterie.
Freechoice: Enjoy a guided tour of Libourne, or travel by coach through the Pomerol region, famed for its red wines, and visit one of its acclaimed estates for a wine tasting. Alternatively, take one of our on board e-bikes out for a cycle through the region, including a wine tasting, or discover the eclectic city of Bergerac during a guided walking tour.
Set in the spectacular surrounds of the Médoc countryside, Château d’Agassac is truly enchanting. Dating back to the 13th century, the Château is one of the oldest winemaking establishments in the region and tonight it is the venue for your unforgettable exclusive classical concert.
Freechoice: Travel the scenic Médoc wine route by coach and sample the region’s finest at a local estate. Alternatively, cycle through the region to a grand château and sample delicious wine produced on site.
Back on board this afternoon, we’ve organised a Cheese of France experience. Taste the country’s celebrated cheeses, matched with bread and wine.
Freechoice: Shop with a Chef at a local food market and cook up a storm in Scenic Culinaire. Or, enjoy a guided tour of Bordeaux and her many attractions. For the more energetic, see the sights by e-bike. Alternatively, stay on board for a food photography class and learn the tricks and techniques of taking incredible pictures of food.
During exclusive after hours access be welcomed with a glass of champagne as you visit Les Bassins de Lumières, Bordeaux’s former submarine base which has been transformed into an impressive digital art installation.
Freechoice: Journey to Arcachon and join a walking tour including a visit to the local Baltard market, or stay in Bordeaux and take a tram to the Cité du Vin museum and enjoy an interactive journey of wine discovery. Alternatively, you can visit a local producer at Moon Harbour Whisky.
Later, indulge in a tasting of fresh oysters with champagne, before your highlight dinner of seafood, sourced from the waters of Arcachon Bay.
Freechoice: Spend a full day exploring the fortified town of Cognac, renowned for its fine brandy and enjoy a tasting at the acclaimed property of Rémy Martin. Alternatively, visit the Carriages Museum inside Bourg Castle.
Freechoice: Stroll through the charming city of Blaye, or take a more active walk through the Citadel. Alternatively, join a 30-kilometre roundtrip cycle along the Captain’s Road. Or, explore the stunning beauty of the fairytale Château de La Roche Courbon.
Bid farewell as you disembark and transfer to Bordeaux airport or train station for your onward journey.
This itinerary is a guide only and may be amended for operational reasons such as high and low water. As such, the cruise may operate altered from that stated above. Please refer to our terms and conditions.
Scenic provided an exceptional trip via staff, meals, and experiences. Our tour guide was extraordinary and handled even the slight setback of low water with ease and grace. I would recommend them to anyone interested in river travel.
People didn't really dress for dinner. Men in jeans were allowed in the dining room at night for dinner. That did not happen at another Scenic Cruise we were on. Very disappointed about this. We belong to a private Country Club and men will be turned away at the entrance for this dressing in jeans. Scenic is lowering their standards by doing this. We won't travel Scenic again because of the lower dress codes. Not a top of the line company if this is allowed.
Scenic delivered an Above & Beyond Experience that we will cherish forever. The ENTIRE ship personnel was the epitome of what customer service should be!
Scenic River Cruise was fantastic. Service and food were both absolutely wonderful. Exceeded our expectations and will travel again with Scenic.
The ship was luxurious. The staff were professional and attentive. We would definitely travel with Scenic again.
Scenic River Cruise from Amsterdam to Budapest was a wonderful experience. The ship's staff and amenities afforded us a very comfortable experience. The food sometimes challenged us to try new and regional dishes, which we really enjoyed. But alternate choices were always available, as well. The other passengers were friendly and we made many new acquaintances on our trip. Best part...? All inclusive! We may have made a small tip here and there, but nothing was expected during excursions, tours, dining, bar or hospitality services. Great entertainment on various occasions.
Scenic were exceptional.They have to be the best operators of river cruises.Every aspect of the trip with them was of a very high standard.The cabins (suites) were large and very comfortable (we had the lowest level,so I can imagine what the higher levels would have been like!). All the meals served were excellent with plenty of variety and imagination.Every member of staff we encountered was helpful and smiley.The excursions were excellent with high level guiding .Overall a very good experience.and I would highly recommend them.
The tour description matched the tour exactly.
Wonderful Trip at the right price
Scenic Tours delivers a flawless river cruise experience. They truly take care of everything - all at one price. The ships are beautiful and the staff is cheerful and accommodating. The cabins are incredible feats of design that make use of every inch of space. We were gone for two weeks and never felt cramped. The food is diverse and wonderful and the excursions are very interesting and well-planned.
Scenic did a great job. It was all inclusive so we had no bill at the end, including tips. The trip was 14 days down the Danube, Main, and Rhine. The food, service, and excursions were all very good and included. The only note I would make is that you stopped at so many towns that you did not have enough time to really explore them. But overall, it was a very good trip!
The Scenic Jewel Amsterdam to Budapest cruise certainly exceeded our expectations. The Scenic Jewel staff could not have been better. We were certainly pampered the entire cruise and the staff could not do enough to insure the trip was a success. We did not have one staff person who was only average--everyone was exceptional. Our cruise director kept everything humming right along and he and the captian went above and beyond to solve a water level issue.
Scenic was more expensive than our other trips But quality was outstanding!
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