Portugal & Douro River Valley River Cruise with George Graphos

October 2, 2019 to October 13, 2019

Join George Graphos and his wife Kathy on this journey though the breathtaking Douro Valley.  Your journey starts with three nights in Lisbon, the city that launched some of the world’s most renowned explorers. You’ll sail from Porto through the, UNESCO-designated Douro Valley, where vines cling to precipitous hillsides and visit charming quintas and meet the winemakers who run them. Following the Douro River through Portugal and into Spain, you’ll cruise past steeply terraced hillsides, quaint villages and acres of ripe vineyards. Dine on traditional fare in majestic Coimbra, the birthplace of six Portuguese kings; enjoy private tastings of Port; and explore Porto’s historic Ribeira district, home to iconic rabelo boats, cutting-edge cuisine and a thriving art scene.

Wind your way through the dramatic landscapes of the UNESCO-designated Douro Valley, heading ashore to visit charming quintas and meet the winemakers who operate them. In Salamanca, Spain, you’ll see the city’s famous university and take in a high-spirited flamenco show. Return to Portugal with a visit to the fortified village of Castelo Rodrigo and historic Guimarães. There’s no better way to discover Europe’s best-kept secret than this scenic and all-inclusive river cruise!

 

 

 

Motor coach transportation is included from various pick up points to Chicago O’Hare airport for the overnight flight to Lisbon, Portugal.

Arrive at Lisbon Portela Airport, where you will be transferred to the hotel.

Get to know this hilly metropolis with a Lisbon city tour that shows you all the top sights and treats you to an iconic, locally-made pastry with an intriguing tale of its own. Vibrant, colorful and picturesque, Lisbon will continually surprise you. Glorious historic architecture reflects the wealth brought in during the “Age of Discovery,” when the Portuguese owned the seas, but it is also a modern center of finance and international trade.

Meal: Breakfast Buffet

Lisbon is yours to explore today. Get out and see the city on your own. Ride the famous iron elevator from the Baixa district up to the Bairro Alto, the cultural and bohemian heart of Lisbon, and catch a fantastic view of the city from the vantage point of São Pedro de Alcantara Belvedere. Once you reach Bairro Alto, head for São Roque, whose plain façade hides a magnificent baroque interior. The city hosts remarkable museums and excellent shopping. Your options at Centro Comercial Colombo, the biggest mall in the Iberian Peninsula, are seemingly limitless. Or try a flea market, perhaps the Campo de Santa Clara, if you prefer to hunt for unique treasures. Natives of Lisbon boast that they have the best food in the world; the many cafés and taverns tempt you to verify that claim.

Meal: Breakfast Buffet

Check out of your Lisbon hotel and board a motorcoach, heading north through Portugal’s picturesque countryside toward Porto. En route to Porto, you’ll stop in Portugal’s first capital, Coimbra, home to an ancient university and a lavish baroque library considered one of the most beautiful in the world. Admire the lingering traces of the town’s Moorish and Roman past after sitting down to a traditional Portuguese lunch.

This afternoon, you'll board the magnificent Queen Isabel and set sail down the scenic Douro River.

Meals: Breakfast Buffet, Family-Style Lunch, Dinner

Portugal’s second city (after Lisbon), Porto gave its name to the nation’s most famous export, Port wine, and to the nation itself. The city is a fascinating combination of historic buildings and cutting-edge architecture, tradition and vivacious modernity. You must choose between two distinctive—and distinctively Portuguese—ways to explore Porto. Choose between the Porto City Tour or a “Do as the Locals Do” Porto walking tour.

Meals: Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner

Today is all about wine, which has been cultivated in the Douro River Valley since ancient Roman times. Get a crash course on the history of Porto during your visit to the Douro Museum, then treat yourself to a tasting of fruity Moscatels and a hearty, rustic-style lunch at the Quinta Da Avessada Wine Estate.

Meal: Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner

Feel the centuries fall away as your ship winds its way through the pristine, dramatic, UNESCO-protected landscapes of the Douro River Valley. Head ashore for a choice of excursions, a tasting at a prestigious port wine estate or a vineyard hike with a wine tasting at a local quinta.

Meals: Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner

What adventures await you in Spain today? You can visit the historic university town of Salamanca—the “Golden City”—famous for its sand-colored buildings and abundance of churches, or immerse yourself in the region’s spectacular natural beauty, with a small boat cruise in a national park.

Meal: Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner

Enjoy breathtaking scenery this morning as your ship cruises the upper Douro River Valley, which has been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, both because of its beauty and its remarkable history. On shore, go medieval at Castelo Rodrigo, both the name of a hilltop castle as well as the village that surrounds it. The view from the top is incredible and the village is a charming place to ramble, relax and replenish. If you wish, you can also lace up your hiking boots and unleash your inner Indiana Jones with an up-close gander at some pre-historic carvings at Foz Côa.

Meals: Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Dinner

Guimarães or Porto? That’s the question of the day today (you really can’t go wrong either way). Guimarães is the town where Portugal was born and its well-preserved architecture and stylish young residents make it a pleasure to visit. Or opt to explore one of Porto’s oldest neighborhoods, picturesque Ribeira, considered the soul of the city. A tough choice awaits you.

Meal: Breakfast Buffet, Lunch, Special Gala Dinner

Disembark the ship in Porto and transfer to Porto Airport for your flight home. Upon arrival in Chicago, your motor coach will be waiting to return you to your original point of pick up.

Meal: Breakfast Buffet


Air-Inclusive Package Transportation

  • Round trip flights from Chicago O’Hare to Lisbon, Portugal and return from Porto, Portugal
  • Group motorcoach transfer to and from Chicago O’Hare from select pick-up points
  • Motorcoach transfers between the airport, hotel and ship

Hotel & Cruise Accommodations

  • Three nights in Lisbon at the Corinthia Hotel Lisbon (or similar)
  • Seven-night cruise in a riverview stateroom on the chic Queen Isabel

Highlights and Experiences

  • Eight days of excursions, including “Choice Is Yours” options, all fully hosted by English-speaking local experts with Guided “Do as the Locals Do,” and “Gentle Walking” programs
  • $100 per person ship board credit
  • All gratuities to onboard staff, and to Uniworld onshore coach drivers and tour guides
  • State-of-the-art Quietvox portable audio-headset system on all excursions
  • Bathrooms stocked with L’Occitane bath and body products and comfy robes and slippers
  • Captivating onboard local entertainment
  • Remarkable service from your English-speaking crew and on-board tour director
  • Free Internet and Wi-Fi
  • Use of bicycles and Nordic walking sticks

Included Meals/Beverages

  • Three night stay in Lisbon includes daily breakfast
  • All meals are included on board the Queen Isabel
  • All meals onboard the ship, prepared using the finest and freshest ingredients
  • Unlimited beverages including fine wine, beer, spirits, specialty coffee, and non-alcoholic beverages onboard the Queen Isabel
  • Bottled water replenished daily in your stateroom; and 24-hour specialty coffee and tea station

Included Tour Guides/Materials

  • Experienced Tour Manager from Fox World Travel to accompany the group*
  • Customized informative travel documents

*A minimum number of passengers are required for the Fox World Travel tour manager to accompany this group. If the minimum is not met, the tour will still include a professional local guide in the destination.

Not Included: Meals unless noted; gratuities unless noted; medical services; airline imposed baggage fees; trip cancellation insurance, or any other items of a personal nature. A valid passport is required.

Land and Cruise Only

Classic Cabin

Tour Only Pricing
See Special Discounts Below
Based on double occupancy

French Balcony

Tour Only Pricing
See Special Discounts Below
Based on double occupancy

Deluxe Balcony

Tour Only Pricing
See Special Discounts Below
Based on double occupancy

Air-Inclusive Package

Classic Cabin

Air from Chicago O'Hare
See Special Discounts Below
Based on double occupancy

French Balcony

Air from Chicago O'Hare
See Special Discounts Below
Based on double occupancy

Deluxe Balcony

Air from Chicago O'Hare
See Special Discounts Below
Based on double occupancy

Single Occupancy: Single occupancy rates available up request

Deposit: $700 per person. Deposits are non-refundable

Final Payment: Due no later than May 24, 2019

*Above prices are per person based on double or single occupancy.  Economy class flights are included in the air-inclusive pricing. All taxes and fees of $563 are included and subject to change. 

Double Occupancy

Pay in Full at Time of Booking (Pay in full at time of booking prior to June 28, 2018 to receive): 

  • Classic Cabin: $465.00 off per person
  • French Balcony Cabin: $541.00 off per person
  • Deluxe Balcony Cabin: $636.00 off per person

Uniworld Past Passenger Discount (Deposit or Pay in Full by June 28, 2018 to receive):

  • Classic Cabin: $244.00 off per person
  • French Balcony Cabin: $284.00 off per person
  • Deluxe Balcony Cabin: $334.00.00 off per person

Note: Past Passenger Discounts apply if clients have traveled with Brendan Vacations, Contiki, Insight Vacations, Trafalgar, or Red Carnation Hotels within the last five years. All passenger discounts are subject to change. 

Round-trip Airfare from Chicago O’Hare

Departure flight from Chicago (October 2)

Flight details are still pending

Return flight from Porto (October 13)

Flight details are still pending

NOTE: The flights included in your package have not yet been announced, the identity of the carrier, which may include the carrier`s code-share partner, will be assigned and disclosed at a later date.

Tickets will be non-refundable once issued. Changes will be subject to a fee plus any fare difference.  Additional restrictions may apply. Flight schedules are subject to change. Fox World Travel has no control over flight or equipment changes, seat assignments, delays or cancellations.  

George Graphos

George Graphos TripAfter more than three decades as WBAY-TV’s chief meteorologist, George Graphos recently retired, freeing him up for the things he enjoys, like traveling the world.

George doesn’t have one of those classic young meteorologist stories of spending his youth engaged in the search for the true actual air temperature by counting the chirps of a lone cricket and thus was born his penchant for “the perfect forecast.”

Truth be told, George’s love of all things weather came quite by happenstance. A friend contacted George, offering him a crew position aboard a sailboat returning to the Great Lakes from the Lesser Antilles in the eastern Caribbean Sea. Possessing neither the skills required to save oneself from a body of water deeper that six feet nor the ownership of a rich history of deep water sailing, George keenly surmised that being single — and ignorantly fearless — he would seize the opportunity with little or no delay. After all, it was college summer break and this favorable combination of circumstances seemed to be exciting.

It wasn’t long before George became smitten with sailing and soon discovered his passion for “all things weather,” and thus initiated a mid-course correction toward the study of Meteorology and the Geosciences. After completing his studies at Northern Michigan University and the University of Texas at Dallas, he landed his first position in broadcast news as Meteorologist for WLUC-TV in Marquette, Michigan. He then worked as on-air Meteorologist for KPNX-TV in Phoenix before arriving at WBAY in Green Bay in 1985 as Chief Meteorologist. George says, “I feel blessed that these twists of fate have brought me and my family to northeast Wisconsin. WBAY has become a wonderful professional partner, and the fine people here in northern Wisconsin have become dear friends.”

George can be found speaking in school classrooms, to clubs and organizations, as well as emceeing various events in the area. In his free time he enjoys traveling with his family to locales as near as Door County and as far as anywhere in Europe. He says, “I have way too many hobbies and interests, and far too little time to enjoy them. Painting, watercolors, computer graphics, photography and, most importantly, sports car racing at one of my favorite places in the world, Elkhart Lake’s Road America, both as a race fan and a racer!”

And now we come back to “What is the temperature?” George says, “Count the number of cricket chirps in 14 seconds then add 40 to get the temperature in degrees Fahrenheit. Example: 30 chirps+40=70°F.” By the way, to convert cricket chirps to degrees Celsius, count the number of chirps in 25 seconds, divide by 3, then add 4 to get the temperature. Example: 48 chirps/(divided by) 3+4=20°C

Cancellation Penalties:

  • Date of booking to May 24, 2019 – Deposit amount of $700 per person
  • May 25 to July 3, 0219 – 50% of trip cost + applicable airline fees
  • July 4 to August 2, 2019 – 75% of trip cost + applicable airline fees
  • August 3, 2019 to departure – no refund

To talk to a travel specialist or book your trip, please call 1-888-369-8785