Travel Tips

A Bespoke Douro Valley Wine Route

19.05.2021

The Douro Valley region has been known worldwide for a region of winemaking for over 2000 years – so any visit should definitely include a bespoke to at least one of its gorgeous estates.

This Quinta-studded region has hundreds of different wineries and estates for you to discover – the world-famous port (unsurprisingly) used to be its main focus, but there are plenty of different and amazing tables reds and whites that you can taste known as Douro table wines. In some tastings, you will try them dry or rich, or ruby or Tawnie – whatever your preference, there’s an impressive range of flavors that you will experience and be surprised by it.

In the Douro, you will have the pleasure to visit old family estates that go way back to the 18th Century or explore the newer offerings with wine cellars that use more modern technologies. There are also estates that besides offering private guided tours with wine tastings and its delicious premium ports, offer also panoramic vineyard views and some gorgeous terraced vineyards.

So, follow the Douro river that is considered the heart of this ancient wine region that makes it one of the most unique spots on earth. Wake up in the sleepy valley with outstanding views and enjoy a seductively resort getaway while going in a bespoke Douro Valley Wine Route where you will enjoy tumbling terraced vineyards, Quinta-studded hills, postcard-pretty villages meet 18th Century wine cellars, climb hilly cobbled backstreets, taste the silkiest of tawny ports. Indulge in the luxury of the Douro Valley at its best!

 

Six Senses Douro Valley - Where to Stay

Six Senses Douro Valley is located in this region area that is classified as world heritage by UNESCO. This 19th-century farmhouse transformed into a hotel has 60 accommodations, including rooms, suites, and villas. With a contemporary interior design that combines elements of traditional Portuguese architecture and the inimitable Six Senses style. There is also a spacious spa with an indoor pool and 10 treatment rooms, a Wine Library, located in the center of the resort, which has a wine list, where wines from the Douro and Portugal have the main role.

At its amazing Wine Library, at any time of the day or night, the guests of the resort can taste wines by the glass from the wine dispenser in order to pair the region's famous wines with local delicacies. Every day at 6:30 pm there will be a wine tasting where you can taste the wines produced at the 350 or so estates in the region. In this space, there are touch screens linked to the Douro Museum and the vast information about farms and grape varieties that the museum provides. This space has a large collection of books on Douro and wine topics and it will also be here where guest winemakers and wine experts will share knowledge and details about the fascinating art of winemaking and tasting

The marvelous Six Senses Douro Valley has also a restaurant called The Vale d'Abraão that is composed of an Open Kitchen with a wood-fired oven, a Josper grill, a large fireplace, as well as relaxed spaces where the guests can sample regional specialties in which is added a healthy touch. 

 

Quinta Nova Nossa Senhora do Carmo

At precisely 250 years ago the Quinta Nova Nossa Senhora do Carmo was harvesting their first grapes. It is, undoubtedly, one of the oldest wineries in the Douro region.

In this estate you can visit in detail all production of wines, vineyard, its very and amazing historic winery of 1764, their new underground wine cellar and end this private visit with a top wine tasting that consists in some of the best wines of this estate like the Grainha Reserve White, QN Gr. Reserve Red, QN GR Reference Red, Mirabilis Red, and QN Vintage Port.

 

Quinta do Crasto

Quinta do Crasto of out of 1,500 wineries was nominated around the world for the World’s Best Vineyard and in the final was selected as the #4 top vineyard worldwide. The famous old vineyards, winery, and beautiful warehouse barrels, which it is matured its table wines and premium Port wines, are a must stop in your wine route. 

One of the biggest recognitions received by this estate came in 2008, when the magazine Wine Spectator considered the Quinta do Crasto Reserva Old Vines 2005 from vines with 70 years, the third-best wine in the world, giving it a 95 rating in 100 points. 

 

Quinta do Noval

Quinta do Noval is a historic name with iconic status in the world of wine, but above it, all it is a vineyard. Located in the heart of the Douro Valley, the estate has been making great wines since the early 18th century. After visiting the vineyards and the iconic Nacional plot, you will also have the chance to discover the old winery, where they still tread grapes by foot in granite tanks.

In the cellar full of old wooden barrels, you will feel like you are traveling back in time, it is really a delightful experience. At the end of your private tour, you will taste a Premium tasting in the traditional house estate. And, after the wine tasting, an apéritif (Port&Tonic) will be served on the terrace estate overlooking the stunning Douro Valley.

 

Quinta do Portal

Quinta do Portal is a Portuguese and independent family company that has embraced with passion the concept of Boutique Winery and is also dedicated to the production of DOC Douro wines, premium quality Port wines, and Muscat. The family Mansilha Branco, that is the owner of this estate, is a producer of wines in the Douro Region since immemorial times - in which the first reference dates back to 1477 - and besides has always been linked to its key moments.

In this estate, you will experience a private jeep tour, and a wine tasting of four wines that consist in the Porto Tawny 40 years, Moscatel Reserva 2007, Grande Reserva Tinto 2016, Late Harvest 2015, which will be paired with regional delicacies like cheese and sausages board. In the end, visit also the old olive oil mill and have a wonderful olive oil tasting.

 

Quinta das Carvalhas

Quinta das Carvalhas, which is considered the Real Companhia Velha’s crown jewel and the largest wine-producing estate in the Douro region. This is a property of immense beauty and grandiosity whose oldest written reference date back to 1759. This is one of the most emblematic Douro properties and it is considered by many the “Douro image” because it allows a view of the territory and of what of most beautiful this region has to offer, after all in nowhere else you can see so much in so little time. The mountain of Carvalhas, at 550 meters of altitude and from where you can enjoy a landscape in 360 degrees, is the site of “excellence” for the observation of the property and Douro.

This Quinta has an incredible private Vintage Tour in which you will visit their Vineyards accompanied by the Agricultural Engineer of the estate. Through this experience, you will appreciate direct contact with nature in the vines, the Mediterranean forests, and gardens, alongside the people who work them. In the end, enjoy a wine tasting of premium Wines of Carvalhas  (White, Tinta Francisca, Touriga Nacional & Vinhas Velhas) that are paired with a platter of cheeses and in the very end, you will finish with a glass of Port. 

 

Quinta de La Rosa

Quinta de La Rosa was built in an unusual location, on a hill with steep stairs that connect the different levels besides the Douro River, making its location a very privileged one that will delight every visitor. In La Rosa, the wine that is produced is provided to some of the most important restaurants and retailers all over the world, after all the Bergqvist family has been making Port wine since 1815. 

The private tour consists of a wine tasting of its premium wines: Tim Grande Reserva White, Vale do Inferno Red, Passagem Grande Reserva Red, Tawny Port 20 years, Vintage Port 2007, and Vintage Port 2017. You will learn about their vineyards, the production processes practiced, and the family history.

 

Quinta do Vallado

Quinta do Vallado once belonged to the legendary Dona Antónia Adelaide Ferreira and remains to this day as the property of her descendants. For nearly 200 years the estate was primarily engaged in the production of Port wine, subsequently marketed by Casas Ferreira - that also belong to the family -.

After Dona Antónia Adelaide Ferreira, her great grand-son – Jorge Viterbo Ferreira and her great-great grand-son – Jorge Cabral Ferreira – were responsible for the great development and growth of the Vallado. In the year of 2009, it was built the new barrel cellar that combines the latest technology with high-quality architecture making the estate one of the must-visit places in this region. In Vallado you can enjoy a private guided visit with a wine tasting that will consist of white, red, and Port.

 

Quinta do Bomfim

Quinta do Bomfim is located in the heart of the Douro Valley and is an entirely family-owned and managed estate. The Symington family’s presence over many generations translates into a profound knowledge of the land as well as a long-term vision. The incomparable heritage of this private family vineyard is tangible and you will experience it whilst visiting the winery, the vineyards, the old wine cellar, and also when tasting its incredible wines.

The story of the family and of Quinta do Bomfim is one and the same as it's inseparable from the rich legacy of Port and the magnificent region in which is made. In Bomfim you can have a private guided visit and a wine tasting that consists of Dow’s LBV Dow’s 10-Year-Old Tawny Dow’s 1985 Vintage Port.

 

Wine & Soul Winery

Near Pinhão, you will unveil the amazing Wine & Soul Winery. The owners of this estate, in the beginning, had no vineyards and no wine, but they shared a dream, a personal project to which they have devoted themselves body and soul, a tireless search for exceptional vines in the Pinhão valley -the historic heart of the great Port wines - and on giving them a voice. Their first creation was a wine called Pintas, named after the couple’s restless Pointer. What was initially a garage wine is today the reflection of Douro's history and tradition, using grapes from old vines of more than 30 mixed grape varieties. In it, the grandeur, breadth, and richness of this region find a faithful expression.

Later came Pintas Character, Guru White wine, Pintas Vintage Port, and the extraordinary 5G Port, made from a batch of very old wines, some of which are over one hundred years old. Wine & Soul has become the image of the modern Douro, and nowadays its wines are a living proof that the traditional vineyards where the great vintage Ports are made are equally capable of producing great Douro wines. Wine & Soul has an exceptional profile and the quality of its wines is recognized by the leading international wine critics. In Wine & Soul winery you have a private visit that consists of 4 Premium wine tastings and the privilege of enjoying lunch at Quinta da Manoella accompanied by the Winery Owners, who will share with you the secrets of the wine production and unveil some of the reasons behind the success.

 

 

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