Emerald and Scenic Will Restart Cruises on the Douro River in July

Scenic Group has announced that Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours and Emerald Cruises will restart their 2021 European river cruise season on Portugal’s Douro River. Targeted at the U.S. and U.K. markets, the first river sailings will begin July 30 on Scenic Azure and July 31 on Emerald Radiance. Deposits for new bookings have been reduced to a refundable $100 per person.

Emerald Cruises’ eight-day sailings and Scenic’s eight- and 11-day itineraries are all roundtrip from Porto, Portugal. They operate along the Douro River as far as the port village of Vega de Terron in Spain, before returning. The two sister river lines have their own purpose-built dock in Porto’s historic Cais de Maragaia. Cruisers will have only a five-minute walk to Cais de Ribeira, one of Porto’s riverfront promenades. 

Emerald Cruises’ eight-day "Secrets of the Douro" is an itinerary that will include a day trip to Spain’s Roman city of Salamanca, an excursion to the Coa Valley Prehistoric Museum in Pocinho followed by dinner at a traditional local wine estate; a tour of the Baroque village of Lamego; a guided walk at the Quinta do Tedo vineyard in the heart of Portugal’s Douro Valley; and a city tour of Porto, including the fortified structures of Castelo da Foz and Castelo do Queijo, overlooking the ocean. Onboard, guests can participate in such enrichment activities as mosaic tile painting, a port wine cocktail lesson, Portuguese cooking demonstration and more. 

For new bookings, made through August 31, 2021, Emerald Cruises is offering savings of $2,000 per couple on the eight-day "Secrets of the Douro" itinerary for July 2021 through September 2021 sailings and $1,500 savings on October 2021 and November sailings. 

Scenic will offer eight- and 11-day sailings along the Douro. Activities will include: sparkling wine tasting at Quinta Aveleda; touring the restored Monastery of Saint John of Tarouca; a tour and free time in Salamanca; a canoeing adventure on the Sabor River; a visit to Casa Painova for a sweet almond workshop and a tasting of almond, olive and fruit products; and a wine tasting at the restored manor house of Morgadio da Calçada before joining a local family at their home for lunch.

Exclusive to Scenic is a visit to Porto’s Sao Francisco Church; it's exterior is a mix of Gothic and Baroque architecture, while the interior glows with intricate wood carvings swathed in gold. Scenic's guests will be treated to a private concert in these historic surroundings. Scenic's itineraries can be combined with Bordeaux and Seine river cruises in France plus extensions in Lisbon and a land tour from Porto to Madrid.

For new bookings made by August 31, 2021, the savings on Scenic is $2,400 per couple on all 2021 departures of the 11-day "Unforgettable Douro" and on the August 2021 and November 2021 eight-day sailings of "Delightful Douro." In addition, $1,500 savings per couple is available for September 2021 and October 2021 departures.

Both river lines will require that guests are vaccinated at least two weeks prior to departure. The company is working closely with relevant government and industry groups including Cruise Lines International Association and the Portuguese authorities, to ensure operations adhere to all necessary guidelines. 

Scenic Group’s dedicated Health & Safety Steering Committee is working to ensure guests' wellbeing and safety. Details on the increased health and safety protocols are at: www.scenicusa.com and www.emeraldcruises.com.

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