Douro Valley the region that everyone should come once in a lifetime, come and meet us on our Douro Valley Tour from Oporto.
A true painting of life, where time passes slowly without letting man interfere, a unique place, different by nature and perfect justice.
Do you knew that the Douro Valley region is the oldest Demarcated Region in the world, from the Sec. XVIII made by the statesman Marquis de Pombal, defending the first institutional model of the wine organization in a wine region, guaranteeing the quality and authenticity of the wines.
About 33 thousand winegrowers in the Douro Valley, most of these small producers only have 1 hectare of vineyard, then sells there grapes for cooperatives and other bigger wineries.
The predominant stone in the Douro Valley region is shale, a strongly laminated metamorphic rock, one of the reasons for the wine production, rich in nutrients, the soil, the useful property of water retention since this stone manages to retain enough moisture to allow the vine to survive on the hottest days of summer.
Stroll through the historic center, walk through the old streets, see the typical houses and the history that the city counts, with the river and the bridge.
For those who like to appreciate the ancient architecture, in Amarante, mainly in the historical center, there are numerous examples of the Romanesque and still many buildings of the Middle Ages, along S. Gonçalo bridge (name of the Dominican friar who will have it built) and enjoy some of the most touristic points of the city: the Church and Convent of São Gonçalo and the Amadeo de Souza-Cardoso Museum.
As he walks by the convent, especially at the end of the week, he will notice the stalls of the vendors of the delicious S. Gonçalo sweets who, because of their phallic appearance, are always a source of curiosity and great laughter. The name of the candy also helps … they are popularly called “quilhõezinhos de S. Gonçalo”.
Tradition tells us that, at the S. Gonçalo festivities in June, the boys offer the girls they want to conquer. That was the way it used to be, but nowadays it is not like that, according to legend, those who want to get engaged have to touch the tomb of S. Gonçalo, from there they assume the saint as a matchmaker … mainly of the older women
Certainly one of the most beautiful places in the Douro region, the Pinhao Railway Station, built in the nineteenth century, its tiles representing the landscape and the life of the people in this region, with images of Port wine production from the harvest, the peculiar tread of the grapes with the feet, and the transport of wine in rabelos boats, typical boats that make the transport of the wine from there to the city of Oporto or more precisely Gaia.
Another possibility and with advance booking, you can make a trip on a boat Rebelo with an approximate duration of one hour (not included in the price).
Strange would be to take a walk to the oldest wine region in the world without making at least one visit to a local winery, where you will be shown the different aspects of winemaking and also taste some of the best wines in the world according to world renowned Wine Spectator, at the end you should understand the methods and the different kind of grapes and wines here create.
The masterpiece will be the Palace of Mateus ( entrance fees not include ), known by the Mateus Rose wine, a baroque mansion from the 18th century, considered one of the most elegant mansions in Europe and is attributed to the Italian architect Nicolau Nasoni.
The palace is surrounded by a fantasist garden, with some formations and line of hedges, carved statues and a harmonious walk of cypresses.