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Day 1 Porto – Dinner

You will make your way to our hotel in Porto where you will have time to rest. At 3 pm you will meet your guide and receive a detailed explanation of the expedition followed by a walking tour of the Centre of Porto declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We’ll end our first night with dinner in a typical Porto restaurant.

Day 2 Porto – Pocinho – Foz Coa

After an early breakfast today our adventure really begins with a train ride on the Linha do Douro. (www.roughguides.com/destinations/europe/portugal/porto-rio-douro/douro/linha-douro-portugals-best-train-ride) We’ll meet at the Sao Bento train station at 08:15 so we have time to look at the wonderful azulejos which are hand painted tile scenes of historical events on the upper Douro. At 09:10 we’ll board our train with Pocinho as our destination. Upon arriving at the end of the line in Pocinho at 12:41 we will have lunch at a family run restaurant in Foz Coa and then go to the Prehistoric Rock Art Museum for a private guided tour and special class on stone tool making and other aspects of life of the people who created this art in the Paleolithic age  (http://www.arte-coa.pt) Rock art is mankind’s oldest graphic memory and the Foz Coa Valley is a Rock Art World Heritage Site. The view from the Museum alone is worth the visit. Tonight we will stay in a beautiful working wine estate where we will also have dinner.

Day 3 Foz do Sabor – Mos 7.6 miles 12.231 Km

Today we will have our first paddle on the wonderful Douro River. We’ll get an early start to avoid midday head winds. Today our journey will take us through one of the most beautiful and isolated parts of the river. Along the way we’ll stop a couple of times for a brief swim. Our lunch will be in a restaurant owned by Jose Manuel who is a friend since we started paddling the Douro. Jose Manuel raises much of the food he serves and he also makes his own port wine. After lunch and café and a bit of Jose's port wine, we will drive to Bairro do Casal (http://www.bairrodocasal.pt) where we’ll spend two blissful nights. In the afternoon we will have a sauna, swim in the pool and take a 3 k. walk on a 3000 year old roman road. Dinner will be nearby.

Day 4 Mos – Ferradosa 7.4 Miles 12.310 Km

Today we have another beautiful and relaxing day. After breakfast we paddle down river for about 2 miles to the most famous quinta on the river. (http://www.quintadovesuvio.com) The history of port wine and the Douro River would be very different without the Quinta da Vesúvio. Under a very special authorization we will visit the grounds and the garden and learn more about wine making and the history of the Upper Douro. The Symington family owns this quinta as well as many others in the Upper Douro and here they are producing some of their finest wine. We’ll see the granite vats used for treading grapes for nearly 200 years. All this will be topped off  with a tasting. After the tasting we’ll go back to our kayaks to paddle past the Quinta de Vargelas to Ferradosa. At take out we will have lunch in the old rail station converted into a very nice restaurant.  After lunch we'll return to Bairro Casal with a stop to visit an 8th century castle. Dinner will be a Barbecue at Bairro Casal. 

Day 5 Ferradosa – Tua 7.7 Miles 12.400 Km

The paddle today will not be forgotten. the Valeira Cataract was the greatest obstacle to navigation on the Douro River till the first great hydraulic project was carried out between 1780 and 1791. This project was to demolish the falls and they succeeded to make it possible to navigate up the Douro to the border with Spain. This made it possible for an important development of the wine industry and in fact was the reason for the project. This incredible project didn’t eliminate the dangers of the river, it only made it possible to pass, but still with great risk. A point worth mentioning is that the wine casks were only half filled so when a boat hit the rocks the wine casks would float and be saved. The man who made the first detailed map of the Douro, Baron Forrester, drowned in this place 70 years after it was demolished.

All 5 locks on the Douro River are the same size and allow boats up to 272 ft. in length, 37 ft. beam and a draft of 12.5 ft. Today we will pass this (2.8 miles from Sao Xisto 1.5 hr.) Valeira Gorge via a lock that will lower us 108 ft. This is one of the most impressive locks in the world and it’s part of the Valeira Dam which was finished in 1975. In the lock we will be lowered 108 ft. to continue our journey down the river. Going through a lock in a kayak for the first time is an interesting experience and you´ll enjoy it, I’m sure.

After the lock we´ll paddle to the small village of Tua. Here we'll first have lunch and after lunch we'll go to our hotel where we'll relax and maybe swim in the pool before we have dinner. (http://www.casadotua.com).

Day 6 Tua – Pinhao – Folgosa – Peso da Regua 7.7 Miles 12.400 Km

This is our last day on the river and we’ll again be off to an early start. We’ll paddle to Pinhao where we’ll takeout and have lunch. After lunch we’ll go to the train station where you will see the very fine ceramic tile work and take the train back to Porto or stop off in Peso da Regua and optionally visit the Douro Museum and stay the night in Peso to catch the next morning train to Porto. An Important note: Our itinerary is always subject to change due to the weather or other unforeseen situations requiring changes. Our objective is to spend our six fully enjoyable days on the river and not be stressed by rigid planning.