8 days & 7 nights
Porto – Cinfães – Bestança – Mesão Frio – Quinta do Tedo – Régua – Povoação – Corgo River – Fisgas de Ermelo – Terras de Basto – Senhora da Graça – Mondim de Basto
Portuguese wine is the result of traditions introduced by ancient civilisations; the Basto and Douro regions remain two of the main wine-producing regions of Portugal, complete with wonderful landscapes and a rich history to discover. This walking tour takes us from the atmospheric city of Porto through the UNESCO World Heritage Douro Valley – where famous port wine is produced – and on to Terras de Basto, home of Portugal’s ‘young’ vinho verde wine. With leisurely walks, wine tastings and cultural visits throughout, this tour is the perfect introduction to the country of food and wine.
DAY 1 PORTO ( — / — / — )
The trip begins in the beautiful historic city of Porto, famous for one of the most appreciated wines in the world – port wine. Porto is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, renowned for its old architectural and landscape value. Today, depending on the arrival time of the group, we might have some time for a quick orientation tour accompanied by the tour leader. A full day of sightseeing in Porto is scheduled on the last day of the itinerary. Overnight in Hotel Vila Galé or similar.
DAY 2 PORTO • CINFÃES • BESTANÇA • MESÃO FRIO ( B / — / D )
After breakfast, we will transfer to Cinfães (approx. 1 hour 30 minutes journey) for our walk in the Bestança Valley. Within the valley is Portugal’s hidden gem, the Bestança River, with plenty of waterfalls, a medieval stone bridge and villages that have retained the beauty of their rural location. There are many walking paths in the valley, allowing us to combine several different routes, but the highlight is the walking trail of ‘Vilar de Mouros’, which passes through the medieval bridge of Covelas and Biodiversity Stations. We then transfer to our 5-star luxury hotel at Mesão Frio (approx. 1 hour journey) via a scenic road that follows the Douro River.
Distance covered: 7 km / 4 miles
Altitude gain (m): 295
DAY 3 QUINTA DO TEDO • RÉGUA ( B / — / — )
We start the day with a short transfer (30 mins) to Quinta de Tedo, a winery farm from the 18th Century in the heart of the Douro region. We will have a guided tour of the winery grounds, following a walking trail that offers beautiful views of the Douro and Tedo river, vineyards and olive groves and plenty of opportunities for some bird watching. After lunch and an included wine tasting at the winery we transfer to the town of Régua, where we visit the interesting Douro Museum, an ideal place to learn about the history, culture and identity of the UNESCO World Heritage Douro wine region. In the afternoon we transfer back to our hotel.
Distance covered: 4 km / 2 miles
Altitude gain (m): 90
DAY 4 POVOAÇÃO • CORGO RIVER • FISGAS DE ERMELO ( B / — / D )
In the morning we transfer from the hotel to the start of today’s walk in Povoação (approx. 40 mins), driving through the beautiful roads along the north slope of the Douro Valley and its side tributaries. The Corgo walking trail is located in the heart of the Douro wine region and here we will be walking most of the time along terraced vineyards with unique views of the Corgo river. We end the walk at Quinta do Vallado winery where we have the chance to enjoy another wine tasting experience (optional). In the afternoon we transfer to Vila Real (20 mins) to visit Casa de Mateus, a palace set in beautiful gardens considered to be one of the finest examples of baroque architecture in Portugal. Later we continue by bus through the Alvão Natural Park, stopping to take in the views of the 200m high Fisgas de Ermelo, one of the largest waterfalls in Europe. We stay overnight at a 4-star hotel in Mondim de Basto where we can enjoy a stunning infinity pool and the view.
Distance covered: 10 km / 6 miles
Altitude gain (m): 60
DAY 5 TERRAS DE BASTO ( B / — / — )
Our walk today takes us through Quinta das Escomoeiras, a traditional winery in the green wine region set on the banks of the Tâmega River. Here we are greeted with uninterrupted views of the forest-covered mountains of the Terras de Basto region. We will explore the woodlands above the river and return to Lourido and the Quinta’s welcome Adega via the Ecopista, a former railway track which is now a walking and cycling route. We finish our walking with wine tasting to appreciate the organic ‘Vinho Verde’.
Distance covered: 5 km / 3 miles
Altitude gain (m): 280
DAY 6 SENHORA DA GRAÇA SANCTUARY • MONDIM DE BASTO ( B / — / — )
In the morning transfer by minivan to Levada do Piscaredo (10mins), a waterway dating back to the 13th Century where we will start our walk. These rural constructions were indispensable for the irrigation of the fields of the Terras de Basto region, due to water scarcity in the past. We follow the waterway to the center of Mondim de Basto village. In the afternoon we visit one of the main shrines to the Virgin Mary found in northern Portugal: the Senhora da Graça, also known as Chapel of Monte Farinha. The chapel is perched in front of a granite mountain range at almost 1000m high.
Distance covered: 8 km / 4 miles
Altitude gain (m): 220
DAY 7 SANTUÁRIO DA SENHORA DA GRAÇA • MONDIM DE BASTO ( B / — / — )
In the morning we travel back to the vibrant city of Porto. After a guided visit of the historic centre and Port wine cellars (wine tasting included), the rest of the day is free for further individual sightseeing or optional activities, such as a boat ride along the Douro river; overnight at Hotel Vila Galé.
DAY 8 PORTO ( B / — / — )
Our trip ends in Porto in the morning.