Unforgettable Douro & South of France

Journey through Portugal and the South of France on a 21-day all-inclusive, luxury river cruise. Highlights include the Douro Valley, Lyon and Avignon.

21 Days
Porto to Lyon
From (CAD)
$ 16,855
Dates & Pricing

2021 Porto > Lyon

Rivers of wine and gold

There just aren’t enough superlatives to describe the beauty and wonder you’ll encounter along this journey through Portugal and the South of France.
Starting in Portugal, a hidden gem with a proud seafaring history and an enviable lifestyle, your journey along the Douro River will reveal a plethora of hidden treasures. The joy is far from over when you arrive in France. Cruise along the Saône River across the Burgundy region. Explore medieval villages, savour the cuisine – often referred to as the world’s best – and experience the beauty that can be found both on the water and along the shore.
Tour Map
Tour Code:
DOFR
Duration:
21 days
Departure City:
Porto
Return City:
Lyon

Selected Itinerary

21 Day Itinerary

  1. Day 1 - Porto

    Welcome to Portugal. Enjoy a warm welcome reception on board the luxurious Scenic Azure. Tonight, as an introduction to Portugal you will be seduced by a soulful Fado performance on board.

    Meals Included: Dinner

  2. Day 2 - Porto > Entre-os-Rios

    Freechoice

    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. Instead, if you’re feeling more active, join a walking tour that includes a cable car ride allowing you to see Porto from a different perspective.

    Enjoy a relaxing afternoon of cruising as your luxurious Scenic Space-Ship meanders its way to Entre-os-Rios.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  3. Day 3 - 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. Alternatively, you could choose a tasting at the fairytale property of Quinta da Aveleda. Located in the famous Vino Verde region and a renowned regional sparkling wine producer, the incredible gardens alone make the excursion worthwhile.

    Later, 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.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  4. Day 4 - Regua

    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. Enroute, 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, or enjoy a guided visit of Mateus Palace, the historic icon depicted on the labels of Portugal’s famous Mateus rosé wine. Alternatively, you may choose to visit the home of a local for a demonstration on how to bake delicious crusty bread in a traditional wood fire oven. Enjoy the opportunity to hear stories from the locals while sampling their home made produce.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  5. Day 5 - 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.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  6. Day 6 - Vega de Terron

    Today you have the opportunity to cross the Spanish border.

    Freechoice

    Take your time absorbing the architectural splendour of Salamanca, a city as visually striking as it is historically intriguing. From humble beginnings during the Iron Age to darker times, such as the economic crises and the War of the Spanish Succession, Salamanca has been shaped over time to become the fascinating beauty it is today. Explore the city on a guided tour before free time to explore at your leisure. Alternatively, you may choose to visit the Portuguese village, Freixo de Espada à Cinta for a guided tour and visit to their silk museum. Freixo de Espada à Cinta is the only municipality where handcrafted silk is still processed entirely by hand. After exploring the beautiful village, a local will welcome you into their home for a hearty and authentic lunch.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  7. Day 7 - Pocinho > Pinhão

    Freechoice

    Visit the award-winning Côa Valley Museum and enjoy a pre-historic workshop, or 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.

    Tonight, be entertained by a traditional Portuguese musical performance on board.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  8. Day 8 - Pinhão

    Enrich

    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 before joining a local family at their home for a home hosted lunch.

    Freechoice

    Top off a truly unforgettable day with a visit to a local estate 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.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  9. Day 9 - 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 façade 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 these wondrous surroundings.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  10. Day 10 - Porto

    Freechoice

    Step outside of Porto and join an excursion to Aveiro for a guided tour including a cruise on the waterways that meander through this historic and colourful city. Alternatively, visit a local corking factory and learn how cork is produced as well as its multitude of uses, 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 Porto’s most renowned port wine aging cellars.

    You have the opportunity to explore Porto at your leisure this afternoon, or simply make the most of the remainder of your time on board Scenic Azure.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  11. Day 11 - Porto > Lyon

    Your leisurely cruise of Portugal’s Douro Valley concludes this morning and you’ll be transferred to Porto Airport for your included flight to Lyon where your friendly crew await to welcome you aboard your luxurious Scenic Space-Ship.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

  12. Day 12 - Lyon > Tournus

    Relax on board as you cruise the Saône River towards Tournus. Perhaps sharpen your skills on French cookery at a lesson in Scenic Culinaire.

    Freechoice

    Explore Château de Cormatin, admire the castles gilded rooms, surrounding moat and water features, as well as the perfectly manicured gardens. Or, join highly trained hounds and their owners in a nearby quaint village locating and sampling French truffles. Alternatively, visit the restaurant of three star Michelin chef, Georges Blanc for a cooking demonstration.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  13. Day 13 - Chalon-sur-Saône

    Freechoice

    Explore Beaune, including a visit to Les Hospices de Beaune. The former hospital is a prime example of traditional 15th century Burgundian architecture and now houses a fascinating museum. Alternatively, visit the estate of Château Meursault and taste some of the acclaimed wines from this premium estate located in the heart of the Burgundy region, or visit the photography museum in the town where it was first invented. The museum is home to over three million photographs and objects, which you will have the opportunity to observe with your knowledgeable local guide.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  14. Day 14 - Tain l’Hermitage

    Perhaps start your day with a stretching class on the Sun Deck, or simply enjoy a leisurely morning as you take in the picturesque riverside panoramas.

    Freechoice

    Enjoy wine tasting at a local vineyard, or join a guided walking tour of the village of Tain l’Hermitage, including a tasting at Valrhona Chocolates. Alternatively, join a guided cycling tour along the Rhône to neighbouring villages.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  15. Day 15 - Avignon

    A Scenic Culinaire cooking class is on offer this morning.

    Freechoice

    Take a walking tour of the magnificent city of Avignon, including entrance to Popes’ Palace and the famed St. Benezet Bridge also known as the Pont d’Avignon. Alternatively, join an excursion to Pont du Gard, an engineering masterpiece dating back to the middle of the first century which was designed to carry water to the city of Nimes.

    Enrich

    Enjoy a truly unforgettable experience at the prestigious Palais des Papes. After the doors close to the general public, be treated to an exclusive dinner and classical concert in one of the grandiose rooms.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  16. Day 16 - Avignon

    Freechoice

    Shop with a Chef at a local food market and cook up a storm in Scenic Culinaire with your fresh ingredients. Alternatively, drop into the villages of the Luberon region, including Gordes and Sénanque Abbey, or sample the celebrated wines of Châteauneuf-du-Pape at a Côtes du Rhône vineyard. If you’re feeling more active, you may choose to visit one of the most beautiful villages of France, Roussillon for a guided tour and a visit to the Lavender museum.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  17. Day 17 - Tarascon

    Freechoice

    Explore the artistic heritage of Arles, and visit the striking Arles Arena, or stop in at the pretty medieval hilltop village of Les Baux, before touring a charming family-run olive farm. Alternatively, pay a visit to Saint-Rémy and Saint-Paul de Mausole Monastery where Van Gogh was held for a year, or take an active walk through La Camargue National Park. Classified as a UNESCO World Heritage site, this sanctuary for flora and fauna is the largest wetlands in France and is home to almost 400 species of birds.

    This afternoon you may wish to enjoy the medieval charm of Tarascon. It is the perfect city to cycle around so why not jump on an e-bike and cycle the riverside paths along the Rhône.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  18. Day 18 - Viviers

    Enjoy a walking tour of Viviers, a town with an important heritage and a rich past.  Admire the many significant monuments and architectural treasures such as the Cathedral of St. Vincent, with its 18th Century gothic style and its Renaissance façade, admire the cathedrals beauty as you are treated to an organ recital.

    Freechoice

    Explore the Ardèche National Park including the Caverne du Pont-d’Arc Museum, a replica museum depicting the collection of engravings, paintings and drawings found in the nearby Chauvet Cave, or visit Bollene Hydroplant and dive into the world of renewable energies. Learn about the hydropower plant, wind farm and the two solar power plants located here. Alternatively, if you’re feeling adventurous, you can kayak through one of Europe’s largest natural canyons, or drop into the beautiful provincial town of Grignan for a guided tour and a visit to the Château, before enjoying some time at leisure to explore on your own.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  19. Day 19 - Lyon

    Take in the vistas of the Rhône River as you sail towards the gastronomic heart of France, Lyon. Why not visit Scenic Culinaire and pick up a trick or two to add to your culinary repertoire.

    Enrich

    Tonight admire the beauty of one of the city’s greatest baroque buildings, Trinity Chapel. Built in the 17th century, the interior is decadently covered in Carrera marble. As an exclusive experience with Scenic, join your fellow guests for a breathtaking acapella choir performance in this wonderful setting.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  20. Day 20 - Lyon

    Freechoice

    Discover Lyon’s historic significance by traversing its hidden secret passageways dating back to the 4th century, and visit Notre Dame Basilica for magnificent views across the city, or explore Lyon on foot and view famous sights along the waterways. Alternatively, walk the cobblestone paths in the medieval hilltop town of Pérouges.

    This evening enjoy one final indulgence on board Scenic Sapphire when a local patissier comes on board with a selection of their finest desserts for your dining pleasure.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  21. Day 21 - Lyon

    Depart after a wonderful farewell breakfast. Lyon is the end of your cruise, but it will be the start of a lifetime of wonderful memories.

    This itinerary is a guide only and may be amended for operational reasons such as high and low water. As such, the cruise may operate altered from that stated above.

    Meals Included: Breakfast

Tour inclusions

Truly All-inclusive highlights
  • 5-star Scenic Space-Ships featuring Scenic Sun Lounges
  • 4 exclusive Scenic Enrich experiences
  • Scenic Culinaire available on board in the South of France
  • Your choice of 43 Scenic Freechoice activities
  • Up to five on board dining options, from casual to fine dining
  • 58 meals – 20 breakfasts (B), 18 lunches (L) and 20 dinners (D)
  • Complimentary premium beverages all day throughout your cruise
  • Butler service for all guests throughout your cruise
  • Exclusive Scenic Tailormade available throughout your cruise
  • The freedom of our e-bikes – electronically assisted bicycles on your France cruise
  • Cruise Directors to guide and assist
  • Expert local guides
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi throughout your cruise
  • All tipping and gratuities

Pricing & Availability