This trip is a 1-week, self-guided walking tour and wine-tasting holiday in the Douro Valley. Our route will take you through astonishingly beautiful world heritage landscapes and picturesque traditional villages.
The Douro Valley demarcated wine region is one of the most scenically impressive in the world; as evidenced by its status as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. For generations, thousands of people have built extraordinary terraced staircases on the steep curved hillsides that surround the Douro River, turning almost inaccessible lands into large cultivated vineyards. From this unique terroir come the grapes used to make Portugal’s famous port wine as well as exquisite table wines.
Make your way from Porto into the very heart of the Douro region before exploring the picturesque slopes and valleys of this World Heritage landscape on foot.
Follow unpaved roads and footpaths as you walk from village to village, pausing for picnic lunches and visits to local wine estates where you can sample not only award-winning table wines but also port and muscatel wines.
Museums such as the Bread and Wine Museum in Favaios will give you a greater appreciation of local traditions and wine production. You’ll also witness some of the year-round activities involved in tending the vines and terraces.
Relax after each day’s walk at carefully selected country houses and hotels. You will receive a warm welcome, comfortable accommodation and delicious meals.
End your self-guided Douro Valley walking tour back in the fascinating historical city of Porto. You can visit the port wine cellars in Vila Nova de Gaia as well as explore Porto’s many sights and views.
You can book this itinerary from March 1st through October 31st each year. The low season is from March 1st to April 30th & from October 16th to 31st. The high season is from May 1st to October 15th. If the trip coincides with the grape harvest, which is usually in September, you will have the opportunity to experience the hustle and bustle of grape picking and transportation to the wineries. With a bit of luck, you can even participate in grape treading or harvest celebrations.
April, May, June, September and October are the ideal months for a walking holiday to northern Portugal. In spring and autumn, there is always a chance of experiencing some rain. Days can be warm and sunny, or chilly and possibly windy, especially on the coast. So, come prepared for changeable conditions. May, June and September tend to be warmer with less chance of rain. July and August are usually the hottest months, with temperatures regularly exceeding 30 degrees Celsius.
Traveling during the low or shoulder seasons is generally considered to be a sustainable tourism practice as it helps with tourism dispersal: spreading out where tourists go and how their money supports locals throughout the year.