Porto – Regua – Pinhao – Barca D’Alva – Vega de Teron – Senhora de Ribeira – Porto
Listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, the River Douro, the “River of Gold” flows majestically through both Portugal and Spain.
Travelling along the River Douro is the perfect way to visit this beautiful, natural part of the world; where steep terraced hillside vineyards, typical villages, and “quintas” with their fragrant wines appear along its banks throughout the cruise. Salamanca, in Spain, is also listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO and is rich in architectural treasures dating back through the ages.
Your Exclusive Itinerary
What is included:
Your cruise – with all meals from dinner on day one, to breakfast buffet on day eight. Drinks including water, wine, beer, fruit juices and coffee served during meals on board, drinks served at the bar (excluding champagne and wines on the wine list); double-occupancy cabin with shower in private bathroom; all excursions mentioned in the itinerary; on board entertainment; assistance from our on board multi-lingual host/ hostess; welcome cocktail; gala dinner and evening; Flamenco-themed entertainment; Fado-themed entertainment; traditional folk entertainment; travel assistance and all port fees.
Monday November 6th: PORTO
Welcome on board in the end of the afternoon. Meet the crew. Welcome cocktail. Dinner and free evening. Time to explore Porto – or watch a “surprise” Gilbert and Sullivan film on board. Overnight.
Tuesday November 7th: PORTO – REGUA
Full board on board. Morning spent sailing, admiring the wonderful landscapes and scenery. Arrival in Régu after lunch. Your afternoon is free to visit Regu or join our guided excursion to Lamego and discover the Nossa Senhora dos Remedios sanctuary and the cathedral. We are back in time for our first Trial by Jury rehearsal. Dinner on board and then our first opportunity to meet and hear our wonderful entertainers – Richard Suart, Rachel Harland and Emma Watkinson – with Andrew Nicklin at the piano. Overnight in Régua.
Wednesday November 8th: REGUA – PINHAO – BARCA D’ALVA
Full board on board! Excursion to Vila Real, a town with a great variety of religious buildings and architecture. Return on board in Pinhão. The cruise continues along the Douro River. We have an optional fun “Keep Fit with Gilbert and Sullivan” session on the sun deck this afternoon.Second Trial by Jury rehearsal. Arrival in Barca d’Alva in the evening. Dinner and Evening of Flamenco entertainment.
Thursday November 9th: BARCA D’ALVA – VEGA DE TERON – SENHORA DE RIBEIRA
Full board on board! Excursion to Salamanca, this beautiful town boasts many extraordinary Roman, Arabic and Christian architectural treasures. Return on board and continuation of the cruise to Senhora de Ribeira. After dinner we enjoy an evening of entertainment with Richard Suart. Overnight.
Friday November 10th: SENHORA DE RIBEIRA – FERRADOSA – FOLGOSA – ENTRE OS RIOS
Full board on board. Excursion to discover the “Wines of Porto”: following the famous port vineyard route and tasting Porto’s wines. In the afternoon, optional fun, games and more “keep fit” as we cruise to Entre Os Rios. This is the ideal opportunity to relax on board and admire the wondrous scenery of the Douro Valley. Fun Gala evening. This is “party piece” night when you are invited to provide the entertainment. Bring your party pieces with you. Overnight.
Saturday November 11th: ENTRE OS RIOS – PORTO
Full board on board. Morning spent sailing through the Douro Valley. Arrival in Porto in the beginning of the afternoon and guided tour of one of the oldest towns in Europe: the old districts are still largely intact, with a veritable maze of narrow winding lanes, houses with arches, and beautiful little churches. Final Trial by Jury rehearsal. After dinner we have some Fado music and entertainment from our other celebrity guests – Rachel Harland and Emma Watkinson. Overnight.
Sunday November 12th: PORTO – AVEIRO – PORTO
Full board on board. Free morning to discover Porto at our own pace. In the afternoon, excursion to Aveiro, nicknamed the “Venice of Portugal”. Return to Porto. After dinner a performance of “Trial by Jury” followed by some traditional folklore entertainment. Overnight.
Monday November 13th: PORTO
Buffet breakfast on board. Disembark.
As you can see from the programme, this particular cruise already features a range of musical entertainment. However, in line with our unique branding we will include several stars from our International Gilbert and Sullivan Festival for your special G&S and operetta fix! This trip, we are delighted to welcome Richard Suart, Emma Watkinson, Rachel Harland and the inimitable Andrew Nicklin. And we will find time to rehearse our own “Trial by Jury” which will be presented during our special Gala Evening.
Richard Suart has sung Ko-Ko in The Mikado for English National Opera since 1988 in Jonathan Miller’s celebrated production – he has also performed it in New York and Venice. For ENO he has sung King Gama and Major-General Stanley and, for Welsh National Opera, Jack Point in a production which performed at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden under Sir Charles Mackerras. Richard has been a member of the D’Oyly Carte since 1988 with whom he has sung not only many of the Savoy Operas, but also La Vie Parisienne and Orpheus in the Underworld. His involvement with the works of Gilbert and Sullivan led him to create As a Matter of Patter which he has performed in many venues throughout the UK, as well as Capetown and the Middle East. He has appeared as The Duke of Plaza-Toro, The Lord Chancellor and Sir Joseph Porter at the BBC Proms, and has made many other appearances at Gala Concerts in the UK, North America and Canada. As a result of having to re-write his Little List so often, he recently published his first book entitled They’d none of ’em be missed, a study of one song in 200 pages, and described in The Sunday Telegraph as ” also an amusing review of recent political scandal and sleaze.”
Andrew originally trained as a pianist with David Newbold, but early in his musical career he turned to musical direction and has conducted well over 40 operas, including the majority of the G & S canon. For the G & S Opera Company he has musically directed Cox & Box, The Pirates of Penzance and The Merry Widow. He was also Musical Director of the International G & S Festival for several years and or the last two years has Adjudicated the international competition. Also known for his productions, Andrew has directed seven operas for the G & S Opera Company, including Princess Ida, The Merry Widow and Utopia Ltd. A regular participant in the international competition with Derby G & S Company, Andrew has seen the company crowned international champions on six occasions and once with Trent Opera. He also took Trent Opera and Nottingham Festival Opera to the Waterford International Festival of Light Opera and his productions of Sondheim musicals won the competition on three occasions. Andrew has his own company, but apart from regular productions of Gilbert & Sullivan, Trent Opera has staged The Barber of Seville, Carmen, The Magic Flute and Turandot.
British Mezzo Soprano, Emma Watkinson read Music at City University and recieved her masters at Trinity College of Music, where she gained distinction. She then completed a further year at the Flanders Opera Studio in Ghent, Belgium.
2017 saw Emma make a return to ETO singing in their productions of Gilbert and Sullivan’s Patience, and Tosca. She then covered the role of Nancy in Albert Herring with Buxton Festival Opera. In October she made her debut with Celebrate Voice singing the role of Sandman and cover Hansel in their new production of Hansel & Gretel under Philip Thomas.
She has sung numerous roles with ETO, Grange Park Opera, and Pavilion Opera as well as work with Opera Australia, Longborough Festival Opera, Iford Arts and at Covent Garden in the regazzi chorus of Linda di Chamounix under Mark Elder. Emma loves performing Oratorio. In 2017 she sang the alto solo’s in Mozart’s Requiem with Emmanuel Choir on their bi-annual tour to France. At Christmas she will sang The Messiah with both Harrogate Choral Society and The Emmanuel Choir.
Rachel Harland studied music as an undergraduate at The University of Manchester. As a postgraduate she trained at Central School of Speech and Drama and Flanders Opera Studio. Rachel has sung for various opera companies in the U.K. and Belgium including Opera La Monnaie, Opera Holland Park, Carl Rosa Opera (U.S. and Canada tour) and Opera Brava. An experienced principal soprano of the Gilbert & Sullivan repertoire, roles include Yum Yum The Mikado – Charles Court Opera, Elsie Maynard Yeomen of the Guard and Mabel The Pirates of Penzance – Grim’s Dyke Opera, Peep Bo The Mikado – Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company and Nicemis Thespis – Normansfield Theatre, London. She has also created two solo recitals for the International Gilbert and and Sullivan Festival: ‘Happy Wanderings of a Savoyard’ and ‘Sullivan and his Contemporaries.’ In addition to teaching at the International Opera Academy, Rachel is director of her own business, Sing Salon. Other educational work includes working as an English coach at the Royal Conservatory of Antwerp, teaching singing at Liverpool University and leading music and vocal workshops for Music in Prisons and Aldeburgh Music.