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Wow! What s terrific experience. Beautiful scenery in the Douro valley, outstanding personalized service by the crew of the Viking Hemming - particularly chef Carlos Silva and the galley crew; excellent schedule of interesting, fun shore excursions along the river - including a visit to the Quinta do Seixo-Sandeman (port wine) vineyard at harvest time, and a visit to Salamanca, Spain. Starting the trip in Lisbon we were a bit underwhelmed by the city - it was dirty and graffiti riddled when compared of other cities (like New York). The city tour was interesting, but mobs of tourists detracted from the experience. We found a lovely family restaurant near the central area for dinner "Restaurante Bom Apetite Avenida da Liberdade", Portugal address:Travessa da Glória, 20, Avenida da Liberdade, Lisboa. On the way to Porto, the visit to Coimbra - along with the Portuguese lunch & Fado show - was excellent. Embarking in Porto was a pleasure - the Viking Hemming is a new ship with a gracious crew. Like Lisbon, Port is an interesting city, but perhaps a bit dilapidated. The 'euro crisis' was mentioned frequently. Our introduction to Port wine at the Calèm Wine House was fun. Cruising on the Douro River was great. The food on board was consistently excellent, as was its service. Other than cruising itself, visits to the Sandeman vineyards (harvest time - trucks full of grapes everywhere), Salamanca Spain with a Flamenco show and lunch+ at Favaios were highlights. The biggest highlight of all was the breath-taking scenery along the river and the amazing driving by our bus driver on narrow, steep, winding country roads. On board activities during the week were fun - galley tour, Portuguese folk music show, cooking demonstrations, even just sailing through the four locks on the Douro. We took the extension to Santiago de Compostela. Perhaps a bit more costly than it should have been for what was offered, but very interesting nonetheless. The cathedral, old city and large number of pilgrems who traveled there held our interest. The city tour was very well done. lots of restaurants in Santiago old town, but watch out, most of them open at 8 PM for dinner. We found a lovely restaurant in 'Restaurante Xantares' and another in "O Lagar do Franco". We had great Galecian seafood at both. Overall a truly excellent trip - well done by Viking.

Viking

Viking Hemming Cruise Review by SIZ

Trip Details
Wow! What s terrific experience. Beautiful scenery in the Douro valley, outstanding personalized service by the crew of the Viking Hemming - particularly chef Carlos Silva and the galley crew; excellent schedule of interesting, fun shore excursions along the river - including a visit to the Quinta do Seixo-Sandeman (port wine) vineyard at harvest time, and a visit to Salamanca, Spain.
Starting the trip in Lisbon we were a bit underwhelmed by the city - it was dirty and graffiti riddled when compared of other cities (like New York). The city tour was interesting, but mobs of tourists detracted from the experience. We found a lovely family restaurant near the central area for dinner "Restaurante Bom Apetite Avenida da Liberdade", Portugal address:Travessa da Glória, 20, Avenida da Liberdade, Lisboa.
On the way to Porto, the visit to Coimbra - along with the Portuguese lunch & Fado show - was excellent. Embarking in Porto was a pleasure - the Viking Hemming is a new ship with a gracious crew.
Like Lisbon, Port is an interesting city, but perhaps a bit dilapidated. The 'euro crisis' was mentioned frequently. Our introduction to Port wine at the Calèm Wine House was fun.
Cruising on the Douro River was great. The food on board was consistently excellent, as was its service. Other than cruising itself, visits to the Sandeman vineyards (harvest time - trucks full of grapes everywhere), Salamanca Spain with a Flamenco show and lunch+ at Favaios were highlights. The biggest highlight of all was the breath-taking scenery along the river and the amazing driving by our bus driver on narrow, steep, winding country roads.
On board activities during the week were fun - galley tour, Portuguese folk music show, cooking demonstrations, even just sailing through the four locks on the Douro.
We took the extension to Santiago de Compostela. Perhaps a bit more costly than it should have been for what was offered, but very interesting nonetheless. The cathedral, old city and large number of pilgrems who traveled there held our interest. The city tour was very well done. lots of restaurants in Santiago old town, but watch out, most of them open at 8 PM for dinner. We found a lovely restaurant in 'Restaurante Xantares' and another in "O Lagar do Franco". We had great Galecian seafood at both.
Overall a truly excellent trip - well done by Viking.
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