We’ve just returned from our Douro, Porto & Salamanca river cruise, this was our first river cruise.
It exceeded all expectation! We had a FABULOUS holiday.
The staff on board who are all Portuguese are just so lovely and kind and considerate.
The food was gorgeous, breakfast choice was extensive and yummy! You could have a light lunch in the restaurant or a lighter lunch in the lounge/bar area, that’s where we ate and was enough for us. Evening meal was great with some good choices. We didn’t opt for the drinks package, maybe we should have?
Excursions were great, having the same coach and driver that followed the ship and the same tour guide from the ship and sometimes a local guide as well, worked well.
The evening meal out was gorgeous and the two chaps, who played one on the violin and other on keyboard were lovely.
Lunchtime tapas with flamenco dancers in Salamanca was great too.
The atmosphere on the ship was relaxed and lovely.
Probably one of our loveliest holidays.
Eager to try another destination soon.
Review by: Sue Nicklin on 23/08/2019
This was our first river cruise and we really enjoyed it. Every member of the crew was so helpful and friendly, the food was really good and the week sped past really quickly.
Our coach guide, Carolina was great, as was our driver Lily.
Thomas was a very friendly and informative cruise director.
Review by: Gillian Kelland on 02/08/2019
Wonderful trip on a Solos river cruise. I had read some "not so good" reviews on this trip but I say IGNORE them. Lovely boat, excellent staff, good food. My first river cruise. I have reduced mobility with steps and long walks. I needn't have worried, the staff were considerate. One local guide took us on a slow walkers tour. We saw everything the main groups saw but we avoided steps, had short sit downs while she talked to us and all at a more leisurely pace. Some of the pavements on tours were very cobbley but I managed it all. Everyone on the trip was so friendly and of course we appreciated a double cabin to ourselves. The staff could be more attentive as there were less people on the boat. If you are a single traveller then this is the trip for you. I would go on another tomorrow if I could afford it, but I will be saving for my next riviera solos trip. Great trips out with superb coach drivers. Could not fault this holiday and...oh...the cocktails made by Diago!!!!
Special thanks to Annette, Carolina, Sophia and Lily, our driver. Superb holiday.
Well done, Riviera.
Review by: Sandra Gibson on 29/03/2019
We came back a week ago after spending a wonderful holiday cruise onboard the MV
Splendour. The ship was well appointed, luxurious and extremely comfortable.
I enjoyed a really relaxing and beneficial facial with Fatima and spent an hour or more on the treadmill in the little gym. My husband had foot reflexology.
The food was superb and all the staff friendly and helpful.
The river cruise was enchanting and interesting and we saw many spendid sights. The weather was excellent too so we were lucky.
I must mention Carmen......the perfect choice for a tour guide. She was helpful, charming, fun and knowledgeable.
Shirley and Douglas Mullins
Review by: Shirley and Douglas Mullins on 18/10/2018
On the Douro Splendour we were splendidly looked after, all the staff were friendly and helpful on the ship, and Mario the Cruise Director was charming and very informative. Bruno, who accompanied us on our trips was delightful company and full of stories about the area. The food on the ship was really excellent, good quality and plenty of choice. A wonderful and memorable holiday!
Review by: Sue on 27/09/2018
We have just returned from a wonderful cruise on Douro Elegance and would like to thank Carmen and all the crew for giving us a holiday of a life time. Organisation, excursions, tour guides and coach drivers were so friendly and helpful. The ship and our cabin was, as the ship's name, elegant ++. Weather and scenery couldn't have been better. A lovely relaxing holiday. Thank you all very very much. Robert and Margaret
Review by: Margaret Tarrant on 21/09/2018
Another lovely cruise with Riviera. Once used to the slightly smaller cabin than other cruises we soon settled in. We joined a party of 6 at dinner on the first night and were invited to share the table with them throughout the cruise. Much fun and laughter as a result. Kim, our tour leader was very helpful as was Roberto who accompanied us on coach 2 throughout the week. We are already looking forward to our next cruise to the Yuletide markets followed by The Main in Germany next May. As someone who is disabled I have been SO impressed by how easy everything from flights to coaches to boats has been.
Review by: Anne Hayward on 30/05/2018
Although it was disappointing that the schedule was rearranged due to water levels, the amendments made the holiday most rewarding.
Mario - amazingly - found accommodation; an extravagant welcome lunch, complete with wine; an enjoyable dinner with local entertainment in a most comfortable central 5?* hotel, enabling us to enjoy increased time in the most enticing city on the tour - Salamanca.
Those who declined to come on this extended tour, from whom you may have received complaints, have only themselves to blame for not taking advantage of the hard work and expense no doubt incurred in this re-organisation by the staff and Riviera Travel.
I would like to congratulate all concerned, and pay tribute to the cheerful welcome from all crew members
Review by: Tim & Karen Mathias on 20/04/2018
We have just returned from this Cruise and cannot compliment the Tour Manager and staff of the boat enough. They were exemplary and as this was our first cruise we will certainly be travelling with Riviera again !
Review by: Ann Barry on 27/10/2017
Just returned from this cruise and loved it. The Douro Valley is very beautiful and the river very quiet. The locks along the river are truly amazing. I'm so glad to have been able to see them. They're an engineering marvel. The Cruise Director was Mario who was totally charming and very efficient. We were in group 3 for the tours and our Escort was Bogdan. What a lovely young man he is. He kept us interested and amused the whole time. The coaches used for the excursions were beautiful and built at the same time as the Douro Elegance to be used in conjunction with her. The drivers were first class too. All staff on board were friendly, polite and helpful. They couldn't do enough for us. The ship is smaller than those used for other Riviera cruises because she had to be built to a size that would fit into the locks. If the ship was bigger, then there would be no cruise as she wouldn't be able to navigate this river. She is, however, furnished to the same high standard as other ships, and as she takes fewer passengers the smaller size was unimportant. All in all a wonderful holiday.
Review by: Hetty Garlick on 15/09/2017
Our first amazing river cruise. First-class ship, all areas spotlessly clean and cabin was very comfortable. The cruise director, tour guides and all the crew are outstanding and worked exceptionally hard to make it a thoroughly enjoyable experience. Already looking to book the next one.
Review by: Susan Fitzmaurice on 11/08/2017
My wife and I returned from the above mentioned cruise yesterday.
I would like you to note two things in particular. Firstly, we were very impressed with Mario, our Cruise Director. Secondly, I would like you to know that he went out of his way to retrieve for me my mobile phone which foolishly I had managed to leave on the Lisbon-Porto bus on the outward journey.
I hope that you will be able to note this appreciation somewhere on Mario’s record and be able to tell him that I have expressed to you our appreciation of his efforts in general and his help to me in particular.
Review by: Christopher and Hilary Horsfall on 23/06/2017
The Elegance boat was fantastic in all respects and the weather couldn't have been better. As for the staff/crew they were all so helpful and friendly. Pedro our guide really made the trip with his humour , information and care for us all. This was our first river cruise (four of us) and enjoyed it so much we shall look to go on another. From the minute of arrival to departure everything was included (apart from alcohol) . Well done Riviera.
Review by: Kay Chappell on 14/07/2017
Just returned from the Douro River Cruise. What an excellent cruise and the scenery was above that which I expected.Ship and Crew were excellent and the excursions were all very interesting. Whilst not visiting main cities, I really enjoyed the small places and particularly Salamanca.
Review by: Jean Goffin on 11/07/2017
Our third holiday with Riviera, but our first River Cruise. Lovely boat, Great itinerary made even better by Paul and his team.
I would agree with the comments made about the meals off the boat that were really great.
The holiday is really informal, so only take a jacket if you really feel you must.
Planning to do a Rhine trip next.
Review by: Neil Doak on 17/08/2016
We have just returned from the Douro, Oporto and Salamanca river cruise. I would like to thank everyone at Riviera for yet another splendid holiday.
I have to mention the two excursions where we had dinner off the ship. I am normally skeptical of these ‘special evenings’, but on this occasion they were brilliant.
The food, wine and entertainment far exceeded my expectation. Once again thank you.
Review by: Geoff Turner on 31/07/2016
Having done the Rhine & Danube with you we have some experience now. The weather was atrocious as you must know to your cost?? incurred in having to make so much adjustments to your schedule as the excess rain necessitated the closure of the River to all cruise boats.
The efforts by Mario the Director and ALL the staff was brilliant as they had to use a Hotel in Porto and adjust the tours etc.
This was our seventh holiday with Riviera and were now looking at next year in France.
Thanks again and keep up the good work.
Review by: Ray & Mary West on 19/05/2016