We signed up for the Douro Valley river tour. This was arguably my favourite day during the whole vacation. Our guides, Ricardo and Ines showed up promptly at our hotel and picked us up for our journey. Both were extremely friendly and taught us a lot about the region's history and different facts about Portugal. We stopped off for breakfast at a cafe, and got to take some pictures at different viewpoints of the river. We went to two wineries, both operated as small businesses. The first one was a pleasant surprise as it also doubled as an olive oil factory. In fact, the owner had the factory set up with all of the old equipment and essentially turned it into a museum. Ricardo told us how it all worked and how the olive oil was produced. We them sampled two different types of wine (red and white), honey, and olive oil with bread. It was all fantastic, and we ended up buying a bottle of olive oil. We then continued to the river cruise, which was absolutely splendid. We went on a typical boat from the region, through the valley with our group. The scenery was picturesque. Afterwards, we had lunch at a local restaurant where we tried different regional specialties including pork, fish, beans, and even a port soaked cake for dessert. For the second winery, we showed up to the vineyard and got to see the seemingly endless fields of grapes. The proprietor took us the warehouse where he stored his port and we got samples directly from the 22,000 litre barrel. He then took us to his personal chapel on site, and even into his 19th century home to eat cheese, fruits, bread, olive oil, and to sample even more port. This tour is a must-do when in Porto, you will not be disappointed!
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