Douro Valley

The home of port wine, the Douro Valley is spectacular with the hills covered with terraces of vines falling steeply down to the river banks. The Douro River originates in Spain and flows west in the north of Portugal until it reaches the ocean in Porto. What used to be a fast flowing river with rapids and ravines is today a tranquil river tamed by the construction of 8 dams in the last 25 years. The valley can be visited by car, there is a road along the river between Peso da Regua and Pinhao, but the best scenery is from the hills driving up the winding roads. A better way to visit the area is either by train or by cruising up the river with one of the many boat rides on offer.