Overview

Introduction

For many years Porto, Portugal’s second largest city, has lived in the shadow of Lisbon. However, it has now emerged as a global city and can rightly be considered as one of the most interesting and scenic in Europe. Porto has spirit, it is welcoming and has a young feel yet its origins stretch back many centuries to 300 BC and the Celts.

With a population of approximately 214,000, Porto is known for its six bridges that span the river Douro.  This is a city made for walking.  The historic medieval district  straddles the river, with the city on one side and the port wine lodges on the other - both classified as UNESCO World Heritage Sites.  Right at the top of the city is the cathedral from where one catches a glimpse of the river, the wine lodges on the opposite bank and the houses of the medieval district cascading down to the Ribeira waterfront, with its cafes and restaurants.

Do visit the iconic Majestic Cafe, the Torre dos Clerigos (Clerics’ Tower), the stock exchange building, Avenida dos Aliados, the church of Sao Francisco, the cathedral and of course one of the port wine lodges.

A short break in the city can be combined with an extended stay exploring delightful towns like Guimaraes, Viseu, the Douro River, the coastline with its many sandy beaches and the relatively unknown Centro region.

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Presidential Train 2020

Presidential Train

 

Presidential Train - 2020 Farewell Edition

Treat yourself to a once in a lifetime gourmet train experience aboard the historic and luxurious Presidential Train. The journey will pass through stunning scenery of terraced vineyards winding through the spectacular Douro Valley in northern Portugal. Travel through history in an atmosphere of luxury and comfort whilst enjoying a gastronomic treat – a meal prepared by some of the world’s leading culinary talents, aboard the most exquisite train in Portuguese history. 

The year 2020 will mark the final year of operation for the famous train with only 12 journeys scheduled in September, October and November 2020. 

Departures

  • 26th and 27th September
  • 3rd, 4th, 10th, 11th, 17th, 18th, 24th, 25th and 31st October
  • 1st November

History

The train has carried Presidents, Heads of State, Kings and Popes for over a century. Built in 1890, it served the court of King D. Luis I as the Royal Train, receiving on board honoured guests such as Queen Elizabeth II and Pope Paul VI. Renamed ‘Presidential Train’ at the beginning of the century, it transported the Portuguese Heads of State until 1970, when it was officially withdrawn from circulation. Beautifully restored in 2010, the furniture and charm that made it iconic remain intact and has since been on display at the National Railway Museum in Entroncamento (111 km north of Lisbon near Tomar) as the most iconic piece of Portuguese railway history.

Day Packages include:

  • 9-hour Journey aboard the Presidential Train
  • 4-course gourmet Tasting Menu
  • Wine appreciation
  • Exclusive access to Quinta do Vesuvio or similar quinta with Port wine tasting
  • Bar with live music
  • Tea lounge
  • Exclusive gift bag and collection book autographed by the Chef

 

Price is £682 per person

 

General Notes

  • The journey starts and finishes at São Bento station, in the centre of Porto. The train leaves promptly at 11:45 and returns at c.22:00.
  • Each guest is accommodated in a compartment made up of 2, 3 or 6 seats and a seat in one of the restaurant carriages (on a shared table of 4 people).
  • Lunch will be served in one of the three dining carriages.
  • There will be a 2-hour stopover where guests will have exclusive access to one of the oldest private Quintas in the Douro – the Quinta do Vesuvio or Quinta dos Malvedos. Here you will have the opportunity to taste some of the finest port wines in Portugal and, during harvest time, there will be a chance to participate in the classic wine treading ritual.
  • During the return journey (Vesuvio-Porto), there will be live music in the bar carriage and an afternoon tea lounge-car.
  • There are no electric points or air-conditioning on the train
  • No children under 12 years of age but may be flexible - on request.
  • Smoking on the train is not permitted.
  • The trip is dependent on a minimum number of participants; the train company reserves the right to cancel the trip if the number of participants reached is less than the minimum. In these cases, the customer will be informed within a 10-day notice of the cancellation.

 

Presidential Train

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Rosanna Melaragni
Rosanna Melaragni
Best time to go
  • JAN
  • FEB
  • MAR
  • APR
  • MAY
  • JUN
  • JUL
  • AUG
  • SEP
  • OCT
  • NOV
  • DEC
Time Difference

GMT + 0

Currency

Euro

Language

Portuguese

Average flight times

2 hours 35 minutes

  • Average temperature

    Average rainfall

Note: Map is for guidance purposes only.

Talk to our Porto expert

Rosanna Melaragni
Rosanna Melaragni

Rosanna is the head of our Discovery Department which covers tailor made holidays to Portugal and the Azores, Italy and Sicily, Scandinavia and the new programme to Spain. She is our longest serving member of staff having joined in 1994 after completing an honours degree in French and Italian and subsequently working for a tour operator in Yorkshire. She is responsible for brochure writing, contracting accommodation, programme costing, computer inputting and generally troubleshoots where necessary. She has global knowledge of our tailor made programme.

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We promise that a member of our specialist reservation teams will reply personally to your holiday enquiry before 5.30pm if received before 12.00pm (Monday to Friday). Enquiries received after 12.00pm will be replied to within 24-hours (excluding Sundays).

If your enquiry is of an urgent nature, please telephone our dedicated reservation teams on the numbers listed below.

Our lines are open from 9.00am to 5.30pm Monday-Friday and from 9.30am to 4.30pm Saturday.

  • Greece: 020 8758 4758
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  • Latin America: 020 8758 4774
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