- Visit the ancient city of Lamego
Discover the Gothic Church of Nossa Senhora dos Remedios – a major centre of pilgrimage.
- The famous port cellars of Oporto
Port wine takes its name from the city of Oporto, at the estuary of the Douro river.
- Explore UNESCO Salamanca
The city's historic centre has important Romanesque, Gothic, Moorish, Renaissance and baroque monuments.
- Local flights
- Save £
- Exclusive to Saga
- Full board
The joyous music of Gilbert & Sullivan, the beautiful Douro river and visits to historic cities and wineries await you on this special cruise
Look forward to discovering some of the beautiful and fascinating highlights that lie along the river Douro and beyond. When you're not out and about, look forward to enjoying the music of Gilbert & Sullivan aboard Douro Queen. There will be five on-board concerts of music performed by your expert host Carole Anne Wells with guest musician Leon Berger, as well as two talks to enrich your musical experience. No holiday to Portugal is complete without trying the port wine for which it is so justly famous and your tour of the city of Oporto will conclude with a tour of a port wine cellar. Saúde!
20 meals: 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches and 7 dinners
- Expert host Carole Anne Wells and guest musician Leon Berger
- Two Gilbert & Sullivan talks
- Five onboard performances from your host and guest musician
- Optional travel insurance underwritten by Great Lakes Insurance SE, UK Branch and additional cancellation rights on overseas holidays for over 50s, or a price reduction if not required (cover is subject to medical questions)
- UK travel service
- Return flights and transfers
- Drinks reception and Captain's dinner
- Entertainment and activities on the ship
- Saga cruise escort on board
Excursions and visits
- Mateus Palace Gardens
- Tour and lunch at a local Quinta
- Visit to Figueira Castelo de Rodrigo
- Sightseeing in Salamanca
- Tour of Lamego
- A tour of beautiful Oporto including a port wine cellar visit.
Carol Anne Wells
Carol-Anne's career in both classical and light music has taken her across the world, she has performed at all the major London concert venues, and twice at the Royal Albert Hall in front of members of the royal family. A former student of the Royal College of Music, she studied oboe, singing and her first instrument – the piano – with Angus Morrison, winning the Ellen Marie Curtis Mozart prize and several scholarships for advanced piano study. Carol-Anne became the first official accompanist at the Opera School of the Royal College of Music. Since then, her playing as a soloist/accompanist in concerts, cabaret, opera and musical theatre has charmed the critics, eliciting the comment from eminent musicologist Dr Percy Young, “The most beautiful piano playing I have heard in years”.
Leon is a well-known exponent of the works of Gilbert and Sullivan on disc, TV, on stage and in print and is a Vice-President of the London G&S Society. As a singer Leon has taken major roles with the Royal Opera House, English National Opera, Welsh National Opera, Scottish Opera and New Sadler’s Wells. Leon has performed the lyric and patter baritone roles in all 14 operas by Gilbert & Sullivan with such companies as G&S For All, The Magic of D'Oyly Carte, Gawsworth Summer Opera, Grim’s Dyke Company and at the International G&S Festivals at Buxton and Harrogate.
Day 1 UK to Oporto
Fly to Oporto on the north bank of the Douro and embark your ship at Vila Nova de Gaia on the south bank. You'll remain moored here overnight. Look forward to meeting your expert music host Carol Anne Wells and guest musician Leon Berger, and learn about the five on-board concerts and two music-related talks that will take place during the course of your cruise.
Day 2 Oporto to Régua to Pinhão
This afternoon travel by coach from Régua to Lamego, one of the most attractive cities in Portugal. On arrival, you’ll see the elaborate Sanctuary of Nossa Senhora dos Remédios, which is set atop nine steep terraces overlooking the town. There’ll be free time to explore this impressive baroque church and walk down into the city from the Sanctuary using the ornate staircase – but be warned, there are almost 700 steps! Alternatively, take the coach down to the city and visit the lovely Gothic cathedral, which in parts dates back to the 12th century! This evening there’ll be an included trip to a local vineyard for dinner, with wine and entertainment included. Re-join your ship in Régua then continue your cruise to Pinhão.
Day 3 Pinhão to Vega de Térron
Depart Pinhão early this morning and take in the scenery as you sail towards Vega de Térron. This afternoon, join an included excursion to Figueira de Castelo Rodrigo, a small medieval village with a stunning hilltop location. See the 18th-century baroque church and stroll around the village in your own time. Back on board ship look forward to a traditional Portuguese dinner.
Day 4 Vega de Térron to Barca d'Alva
Today join an included excursion across the border to the city of Salamanca in Spain, a UNESCO World Heritage Site famed for its beautiful old university buildings of golden-coloured stone. The journey here usually takes about two hours, during which your guide will give an interesting commentary on Spanish history. After half an hour of free time join a walking tour with a local guide to the magnificent Plaza Mayor, one of the finest town squares in Spain. You also see the famous cathedral, built in two parts. The original Catedral Vieja, which dates from the 12th century, is now incorporated into the much larger 16th-century Catedral Nueva. Lunch will be served at a local restaurant, followed by a flamenco show to give you a taste of traditional Spanish culture. Return to the Douro Queen which will now be in Barca d’Alva and moor overnight.
Day 5 Barca d'Alva to Pinhão
Depart Barca d’Alva and enjoy the wonderful views as you spend the morning sailing towards Pinhão, arriving after lunch. This afternoon pay a visit to Quinta do Seixo, a local winery. Here you’ll join an included tour of the estate, followed by an opportunity to taste their port wines. The ship remains moored in Pinhão overnight.
Day 6 Pinhão to Regua to Entre-os-Rios
Sail from Pinhão to Regua early this morning. From here an included excursion visits Mateus Palace gardens. Your guide will give you an introduction to the palace, one of the loveliest country houses in Portugal and which famously features on the Mateus rosé wine label. Explore these exceptional formal gardens as well as examining the exterior of the palace. Enjoy the afternoon at leisure on board as the Douro Queen departs Régua and look forward to a traditional Portuguese folk music show after dinner. Moor overnight in Entre-os-Rios.
Day 7 Entre-os-Rios to Oporto
Spend the morning at leisure as you sail back towards Oporto. Learn the history of Portugal’s second-largest city on an included tour. This famous centre of port wine production is beautifully located on the Douro estuary. The coach tour includes a visit to Sé Cathedral, which dates from the 12th century, and is where Phillipa of Lancaster married King Joao I of Portugal in 1387 becoming the first and only English queen of Portugal. Your tour also includes a visit to a port wine cellar where you’ll learn about the production of this famous drink and enjoy a tasting. Remain moored in Vila Nova de Gaia overnight.
Day 8 Oporto to UK
After breakfast and bidding your fellow guests and hosts goodbye, disembark and travel to the airport for your return flight to the UK.
Your talks and performances
During your cruise enjoy two talks from your host, exploring ‘The Story of Gilbert & Sullivan’ in words and pictures, Parts 1 and 2.
You can also look forward to five onboard performances from your host and guest musician:
The story of Gilbert & Sullivan in song – Part 1Enjoy arias, duets and comedy songs ranging from Gilbert & Sullivan’s first opera Thespis, to Patience, premiered in 1881.
The story of Gilbert & Sullivan in song – part 2
Enjoy further arias and songs ranging from the duos famous Iolanthe (1882) to their last collaboration The Grand Duke, premiered in 1896A Society Clown” The Songs of George Grossmith George Grossmith not only appeared in leading comic roles in works by Gilbert & Sullivan but was also a solo entertainer. Learn about the songs he wrote and performed as Leon draws on Grossmith’s personal collection.
Gilbert & Sullivan - together and apart
Enjoy hearing about some of the rarer works by Gilbert & Sullivan, including Art songs and ballads by Sullivan.
The Gilbert & Sullivan Legacy
Your host and guest musician look at the influence of this famous duo on the works of Jerome Kern, Gershwin and more.
Upgrade to Club Europe
Upgrade to Club Europe* from a European business-class service, for access to comfortable private lounges (where available) more personal space to relax, a complimentary food and drink service, dedicated check-in desks (where available) and priority boarding, and a larger baggage allowance.
Upgrade to all inclusive†
†All-inclusive upgrades, with a free bar open from 11am to 11pm for non-branded alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, are available, at extra cost. You can select this option at time of booking.
Please call 0800 096 0082 for more details.