We chose this trip because it visited the Basque Country, Santiago de Compostela and Oporto, all places we wanted to see. Having been on three previous Nat Geo trips, we knew they were tops. This one even exceeded the other because,the Orion is a luxurious ship. You always have top professional guidance and leadership and this was no exception. Nine exceptionally qualified professional leaders, many with PhDs or working towards one. Includes three professional photographers, all willing to be very helpful whether you have a fancy camera or an iPhone. The crew, all from the Phillipines, were also exceptional. Hard working, caring, personable...the best! Highly recommend Nat Geo/Lindblad trips. The other passengers are all very bright, interesting people. The food was outstanding, often reflecting the cuisine of the area we were visiting that day. Two completely interchangeable menus every night, one more gourmet and one more traditional...everything delicious! The local guides are also excellent and the touring groups a manageable size. Everything well organized.
We spent four nights in Bordeaux before embarking and five nights in Lisbon after the cruise. Definitely recommend doing this as the cruise concentrates on the actual ports for exploration.