Scenic Group announced that the company’s two subsidiaries Emerald Cruises and Scenic Cruises will start their 2021 European river programs on Portugal’s Douro River with the first voyages departing on July 30 (Scenic Azure) and July 31 (Emerald Radiance).
The announcement is exclusive to the UK and USA markets. Deposits for new bookings on either cruise line have been reduced to US$100 per person.
Emerald is offering savings of US$2,000 per couple on the 8-day Secrets of the Douro for July-Sept cruises and US$1,500 on October and November voyages on new bookings made through August 31, 2021. Savings on Scenic is US$2,400 per couple on 2021 departures of the 11-day Unforgettable Douro and on August & November 8-day cruises of Delightful Douro and US$1,500 savings on the September and October departures.
Emerald Cruises’ 8-day and Scenic’s 8- and 11-day itineraries are roundtrips Oporto, making their way along the Douro as far as Vega de Terron (port to Salamanca Spain).
Unique to the two lines is their own purpose-built dock, situated in Porto’s historic Cais de Maragaia, a 5-minute walk to Cais de Ribeira, one of the most popular riverfront promenades in Oporto Portugal.
Emerald Cruises’ 8-day Secrets of the Douro takes passengers on an exploration of Portugal’s best sites, such as the pastel-colored city of Porto, the terraced vineyards, and pretty towns just beyond the banks of the Douro. Highlights include a day trip to the Roman city of Salamanca, the seat of Spanish language dating back to medieval times; a guided walk at Quinta do Tedo vineyard in the heart of Douro Valley; a trip to Coa Valley Prehistoric Museum in Pocinho, where vacationers can view stone carvings made by early Douro inhabitants followed by dinner at a local wine estate; touring Lamego (from Regua); a city tour of Oporto, including the fortified structures of Castelo da Foz and Castelo do Queijo. Onboard, passengers can enjoy a port wine cocktail lesson, mosaic tile painting, and a Portuguese cooking demonstration.
Scenic offers 8- and 11-day cruises that take in many of the best sites and activities in the region like sparkling wine tasting at Quinta Aveleda; exploring the Monastery of Saint John of Tarouca; a tour in the architecturally rich Salamanca; a visit to Casa Painova for a sweet almond workshop; a canoeing trip on the Sabor River; a wine tasting at the manor house of Morgadio da Calcada before joining a local family for a home-hosted lunch. Exclusive to Scenic Group is a visit to Porto’s Sao Francisco Church, with an exterior that is a mix of Gothic and Baroque architecture. Passengers are immersed in Portuguese music during a private concert in the historic surroundings. The itineraries are combined with Bordeaux and Seine river cruises as well as extensions in Lisbon and land tour from Oporto to Madrid.