21 Day Beautiful Bordeaux & Unforgettable Douro
Welcome to . Your friendly crew will welcome you on board the luxurious Scenic Diamond for your cruise through France’s southwestern pocket.
2. Bordeaux - Saint-Émilion
Enjoy a relaxing morning on board as you cruise into the beautiful 13th century port of Libourne. While cruising, perhaps drop into Scenic Culinaire for a French cooking class. Spend the afternoon in the nearby town of Saint-Émilion, a visual feast and the jewel of this ancient wine growing region. You’ll also get to explore the underground catacombs of the Monolithic Church – a true trip highlight. Sundowners: Celebrate the 2,000-year history of wine by enjoying a glass at the estate of Château de la Rivière. Surrounded by the vines, mingle with newfound friends, explore the spectacular property, or discover the artistic heritage of this region and admire a local artist painting the stunning landscape using paint made from the wine grown on the estate.
3. Libourne - Pauillac
Freechoice: Enjoy a guided tour of Libourne and view its quaint 16th century town-houses and Gothic church. Alternatively, explore the exclusive estate of Château Franc Mayne and taste its Grand Cru Class wine, or view the eclectic city of Bergerac and enjoy a foie gras tasting at a charming local farm. During your afternoon at leisure, opt to enhance your culinary prowess in Scenic Culinaire or simply take in the riverside panoramas while cruising to Pauillac.
Freechoice: Travel the scenic wine route and discover why this region is viewed as the world’s leading red wine producer. Afterwards, sample the region’s finest at the Château Gruaud-Larose estate. Alternatively, cycle through the region to a local château and sample delicious wine produced on the estate. Enrich: Set in spectacular surrounds in the countryside, Château Agassac is truly enchanting. Dating back to the 13th century, the Château is one of the oldest winemaking establishments in the region and is the venue for your unforgettable evening concert. Soak in the ambience of this magnificent property as live musicians perform classical masterpieces for your exclusive enjoyment.
5. Pauillac - Cadillac
Soak in the vistas as you cruise on board the luxurious Scenic Diamond past the picturesque landscapes of the Garonne River into Cadillac, some of the most beautiful scenic cruising in the Bordeaux region. While on board, you may choose to further develop your cooking skills with a lesson in Scenic Culinaire. Tonight, this remarkable space comes to life when fabulous local entertainers perform live in the Panorama Lounge for your exclusive enjoyment.
Freechoice: This morning, venture into the Sauternes region for a tasting of the prestigious Château Guiraud dessert wines. Alternatively, cycle through the rolling vineyards of Sauternes to the Grand Cru Class estate of Château Myrat for a tasting. Freechoice: This afternoon visit Roquetaillade Castle; founded by Charlemagne, it’s one of the region’s most impressive historic sites, and you’ll tour it with the family that now lives within its walls. Alternatively, visit a truffle farm and sample the delicious regional delicacy, or perhaps enjoy a 12 kilometre roundtrip hike from to the village of Loupiac.
Freechoice: Shop with a Chef at a local food market and cook up a storm in Scenic Culinaire afterwards. Or, enjoy a guided tour of and her many attractions. For the more energetic, cycle the historic regions of . Cross beautiful bridges to witness sites such as the Royal Gate and the Palais Rohan, before cycling through public gardens back to the luxury of your floating hotel. Spend the afternoon at leisure to immerse yourself in the culture of the Bordelais. Enjoy a special dinner on board showcasing regional delicacies before an illuminations cruise on the Garonne River. A fabulous local soloist will perform live in the Panorama Lounge to round off a magical evening.
8. Arcachon - Bourg:
Situated on the northern tip of Europe’s longest coastal beach, Arcachon is the jewel of France’s western coastline. Freechoice: Journey to Arcachon and join a walking tour including a visit to the local Baltard market. Or climb Europe’s largest sand dune and take in the expansive panoramas. Alternatively, stay in Bordeaux and take a local tram to the Cité du Vin museum and enjoy an interactive journey of wine discovery. This afternoon, if you fancy something sweet, stay on board and enjoy a fabulous Mademoiselle de Margaux chocolate and wine-pairing event. Later, take a leisurely cruise into Bourg, perhaps join a masterclass in French cooking in Scenic Culinaire. Tonight enjoy a lively jazz performance on board.
Today explore the unique northern shores of the Gironde Estuary. Freechoice: Discover the Carriages Museum in the enchanting Bourg Castle including a visit to the 16th century passageway to the guards rooms and immense WWII oil tanks. Alternatively, spend a full day exploring the fortified town of , renowned for its production of fine brandy. Afterwards, enjoy a tasting at the acclaimed property of Rémy Martin. This afternoon, unwind on the Sun Deck cruising on the Gironde River into the historic port of Blaye.
10. Blaye - Bordeaux
Discover the remarkable Blaye region, established to protect the Bordeaux region from invasion. Freechoice: Stroll through the charming Citadel of Blaye, or take a more active walk throughout the town. Alternatively, join a 30 kilometre roundtrip cycle along the Captain’s Road which is named in honour of the WWI Captains who chose to purchase their homes along this beautiful stretch of waterway in the early 20th century. Enjoy a cooking class in Scenic Culinaire or simply relax on board as we cruise past beautiful uninhabited islands, bound for Bordeaux. Dine at the Captain’s farewell dinner on board this evening.
11. Bordeaux - Porto
Today fly to Porto for your Douro Valley cruise.
12. Porto - Entre-os-Rios
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. 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. It’s a great tour to kickstart your interest in this fascinating region. Alternatively, you could choose a tasting at the fairytale property of Quinta Aveleda. Located in the famous Vino Verde region and a renowned regional sparkling wine producer, the incredible gardens alone make the excursion worthwhile. 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. 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, both of which you will get the opportunity to visit. Alternatively, enjoy a guided visit of Mateus Palace, the historic icon depicted on the labels of Portugal’s famous Mateus rosé wine.
15. Regua - Vega de Terron
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.
Take your time absorbing the architectural splendour of , a city as visually striking as it is historically intriguing. From humble beginnings during the Iron Age to darker times, such as economic crises and the War of the Spanish Succession, has been shaped over time to become the fascinating beauty it is today. Explore the city on a guided tour before some time at leisure followed by a fabulous ‘Tastes of Spain’ experience. Your lunch today will be accompanied by an energetic Flamenco dance performance.
17. Pocinho - Pinhão
Enjoy a leisurely cruise to nearby Pocinho for our Côa Valley discovery. Freechoice: Visit the award-winning Côa Valley Museum and enjoy a pre-historic workshop. 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. Sundowners: Enjoy a cocktail on the Sun Deck of Scenic Azure, surrounded by newfound friends as you sail this picturesque stretch of the river towards Pinhão. 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 the estate of Quinta Roeda 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.
19. Pinhão - Porto
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. Enrich: The sheer beauty of São Francisco Church is sure to impress. The facade 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 this wondrous surrounding.
Freechoice: Visit the oldest remaining Canning Factory in for an insight into their 100-year-old family business. Alternatively, visit a local corking factory. 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 the most famous cellars of .
Your cruise of Portugal’s Douro Valley concludes after breakfast as you’re transferred to airport. Your time in the Douro Valley may have come to an end, but you’ll leave with wonderful memories and newfound friends.
Dates & Prices
28 Apr 2019
18 May 2019
11 Jun 2019
01 Jul 2019
21 Jun 2019
11 Jul 2019
01 Jul 2019
21 Jul 2019
11 Jul 2019
31 Jul 2019
07 Aug 2019
27 Aug 2019
03 Sep 2019
23 Sep 2019