Monday, 20 December 2010

River Cruising Through Spain and Portugal.

By guest blogger Steve Newman

Uniworld Boutique River Cruises is proud to announce its new luxury ship, the Douro Spirit, which will sail along Portugal and Spain’s UNESCO World Heritage Douro River. In 2011, the beautiful Spirit will be the most elegant ship to sail through the magnificent Douro River Valley.

The Douro Valley is a cultural landscape of exceptional beauty, with rambling vineyards and charming quintas clinging to the steep slopes of its valley, creating an incomparable backdrop to one of Europe’s most unspoiled regions. And this is what guests can expect to see and experience from the comfort of Douro Spirit.

Every river-view stateroom and suite features a French balcony, so guests can get closer than ever to the breathtaking scenery of the region’s unspoiled natural landscapes. Staterooms and suites also feature fine linens, built-in closets, flat-screen televisions with satellite, and complimentary bottled water. Each bathroom is stocked with L’Occitane bath and body products and cosy waffle bathrobes.

Explore the seven hills of cosmopolitan Lisbon, uncovering a treasure trove of Old World architecture. Visit Coimbra, the “Birthplace of Kings”; Porto, the beautiful “City of Bridges” with its UNESCO World Heritage-designated Medieval city centre; Guimãres, which also has its own UNESCO-listed Medieval city centre; and Salamanca, Spain, another UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Taste a variety of wonderful local wines from village vineyards, including the famed Port. Feast on a traditional meal at the Alpendurada Monastery; enjoy an authentic Spanish-style lunch complete with a flamenco show and dine at the Vintage House Hotel, a magnificent18th-century wine quinta overlooking the Douro. And, all along the way, uncover a land of genuine beauty and breathtaking charm, and meet warm-hearted, friendly people with welcoming open arms.

Uniworld’s 11-day Portugal, Spain & the Douro River Valley Cruise includes: three nights in Lisbon at a deluxe hotel with breakfast; a seven-night cruise in a stateroom with a French balcony onboard the Douro Spirit; all meals with complimentary fine wine, beer, and soft drinks served with dinner onboard; ten fully hosted shore excursions by English-speaking local guides; and transfers on arrival and departure days.

For more information, visit or call the river-cruise agents of the UK's top cruise specialists, The Cruise Line Ltd.