Douro River Cruise Terminal

One of Porto's major atractions are the river cruises along the Douro River Valley. The terminal of the major operator, Douro Azul, is actually across the river from the city of Porto in the town of Vila Nova da Gaia where the Port Wine Cellars are located. You need to cross the river using the spectacular Ponte D. Luis 1 . Once crossed turn right and it's there.

You can get there by car, taxi, bus or by walking. If walking, use the footway of the lower level of the bridge only. You can park your car in the car park of Cais de Gaia - a restaurant and bar complex adjacent to the river cruise terminal. City buses 11,16, 27, 901 and 906 stop outside. The area is called the 'Cais' (Quays). There is no metro station close by. Bus details at www.stcp.pt

The boats leave from the quays once used to unload the barrels of port brought down from the vineyards upriver. There are replica vessels on display and the whole area is a collection of all the big names of port in the form of their warehouses and tasting salons. There are plenty of cafes and restaurants.

 There are three kinds of river cruises that depart from this terminal:

6 Bridges Cruise - short (about an hour) cruises along the rivershores of Porto that visit the 6 bridges that connect Porto and Vila Nova de Gaia;

Regular cruises - these are cruises of up to 3 days that can take up the Douro to Peso da Régua, Pinhão or Barca d'Alva

7-day cruises - a full week on the Douro, departing from Porto and going upstream all the way to Vega Terrón on the Spanish side of the border