From June to October, the Douro Valley adds a fantastic attraction to its Douro Valley Tours and River cruises. This historical train is a secret kept off radars for most of the tourists. You really need to experience it as the historical train rides side by side to river cruises in the Douro river. How? All aboard! Douro's historical train ride from Régua to Tua is about to depart.
Just a quick question: Are you familiar with Harry Potter? Are you a otterhead?
If you are, I'm sure you will find some similarities bettween this train and the one that goes to Hogwarts. This is the real scenery that inspired JK Rowlling to write Harry Potter's books as she lived here, in Porto.
If you are not, this is the oppotunity to enter in a magical trip!
Well, every Saturday and Sunday, from middle August on, the famous train from the sixties leaves Régua at 3.22 p.m. coming back at 6.32 p.m. In between, the journey will be vivid. Regional chants on board and a Port wine tasting may take place while you serpentine the Douro Valley wineries, next to the river, so close to the water that one might think it's impossible.
Breathtaking Landscapes in the Douro Valley
The strech from Régua to Tua is one of the most famous and beautiful tracks in Douro. Leaving the station, the water is almost at your feet and you can admire the stunning landscapes of Douro Valley while passing Régua's old bridges. This bridges connecting the margins of Douro river will take you on a immersive journey in one of the best landscapes in Europe.
On the route to Pinhão, and after the first tunnel, enjoy the magnificent view: the Douro terraces and the well-aligned vineyards and its emblematic Douro Valley wineries where the sweet Port wine is produced, as well as the secular Quintas, updated manor houses now luxury wine hotels hidden in the vineyards.
This is the perfect place in Europe for a wine tasting tour as you have Porto wine tastings, Port wine tours, and some of the most awarded portuguese wines available at the same winery.
Stop for a Wine Tasting at Pinhão
Arriving at Pinhão, the train will stop for a break. During the stop you can visit the train station of Pinhão to see its well-kept glazes tiles. The tiles showcase the different stages of the wine production in the region, from the harvest to carrying the barrels on boats down the river.
Cross the small bridge and head for Quinta das Carvalhas at the other side of the river. Quinta das Carvalhas is a world-renowned wine producing estate in Douro, famous for its Barca Velha wine or its Port Wines like Sandeman, Ferreira and Offley. After the tasting, you will wish you can take home a bottle of portuguese table wine, Port Wine or regional products, our tip is that you end your wine tour at the Quinta's shop.
Journey From Pinhão to Tua and The Return Trip
On its way to Tua the landscape starts to change as the Douro slopes become rockier. At the station, there will be some time off to enjoy the scenery, discover the history of this station that used to lead to Bragança, one of the most ancient cities in Portugal, developed from an abandoned romanic castro. Take your time to breathe deeply as you enjoy the nature sounds of instagram it at will, as this is nothing short but intagramable.
Heading back to Régua you can once again enjoy at the proximity with the Douro River, now with a golden hue of the setting sun covering the banks. Happy in your heart and soul as you had this quality time amongst nature and those you love. Aint't you ready for dinner just yet? We bet you will be, here some suggestions.
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