The main winter activities in the Douro Valley

The Douro reveals a unique beauty during the winter months. In addition to the traditional autumn harvests, winter brings with it a special atmosphere. Although the region is most popular during the warmer months, you can enjoy incredible experiences in this magnificent region all year round.

Christmas markets:

Christmas markets, inspired by European traditions, also take centre stage in the Douro region during the winter. Decorated streets, local craft stalls, typical seasonal products and activities for children create a festive atmosphere. Some of these markets are held in historic locations in the municipalities that make up the region, providing a unique and picturesque experience.

Winter cruises along the Douro:

Embark on a boat trip through the enchanted valley between Pinhão and Tua aboard a traditional rabelo boat. Discover the Douro wine-growing region, sometimes with its snow-covered banks, while relaxing to the rocking waves of the river of the same name.

Visit Museums:

As “cliché” as this tip may sound, often, given the natural beauty of this region, the museums present in its constituent municipalities can sometimes go unnoticed in favour of the vineyards by the river. However, it is in these places that the region’s history is preserved and can be explored interactively in a deeper way.
The Douro Museum, the Côa Museum, the Vila Velha Museum in Vila Real and many others are certainly worth a visit.

Cooking Experiences:

As regional culinary experiences become more popular, this type of activity is also coming to the Douro. This allows all visitors and even residents to explore the region’s endogenous ingredients and marvellous recipes in a class format, often with a fun group that will certainly liven up your afternoon. And the best part? You can eat the delicious dish you’ve made at the end!

Train journeys by the river:

Considered the most beautiful train journey in Portugal, the stretch of line linking Peso da Régua to Pocinho is undoubtedly a trip that will stay in your memory. A journey by the river, characterised by the beauty of the landscape, far from the lights and sounds of the city.

Visit the 19 municipalities and complete the Douro Passport:

Are you in the mood for a road trip? Then why not do it in a region internationally recognised for its roads and natural beauty? You can also request the Douro Passport for free at participating locations, or even download the Discover Douro app, and make your trip even more exciting by turning it into a kind of peddy-paper that will take you to see the main monuments, viewpoints and museums in the Douro region! This is undoubtedly an excellent activity to do with family, friends or even on your own.

Although summer is the most popular time to visit the Douro, winter reveals a unique and enchanting side to the region. The activities mentioned above provide an opportunity for visitors to explore the culture, gastronomy and beauty of the Douro in a new light. Whether it’s enjoying fine wine, taking part in traditional festivities, exploring the Christmas markets or sailing down the frozen river, winter in the Douro is an experience that will remain etched in the memory of all who experience it.

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