Location of Adventure
Group Size Limit
Approximately 12 Travelers
A very important feature of our Douro River trip is the limited group size, as kayaking trips are best experienced and safely conducted with a small group of travelers. Also, a small group allows us to experience the intimate hospitality of the small inns and manor houses where we stay.
Specialized 4x4 Land Rovers and Land Cruisers
Our Private Leaders
Arrival and departure airport transfers (if you are staying at the Hotel Infante Sagres), accommodations, land transportation, meals from dinner on Day 1 to breakfast on final day, drinking water during activities, and drinking water, soft drinks and some wine at meals, all kayak and safety equipment, services of an NHA Expedition Leader and local assistants, most gratuities, all permits, entrance fees and taxes.
Travel to and from the start and end points of the trip (Porto, Portugal), early arrival or late departure airport transfers (if you are staying at a hotel other than the Infante Sagres), passport fees, optional activities, items of a personal nature (phone calls, laundry, Internet, etc.), alcoholic beverages (other than those described above), some gratuities, airline baggage fees, required medical evacuation insurance and optional travel insurance.
Moderate to Difficult
Our Portugal kayaking adventure includes five days of flatwater river kayaking at a beginner level. This trip is suitable for those with little to no paddling experience, although you should know in advance that you are physically able to kayak the minimum daily distance, and that you actually enjoy kayaking, before signing on for this tour. You must be able to paddle a minimum of 4-5 hours per day (with breaks) in order to participate. The exact distance we paddle each day will depend on local weather and wind conditions, and participants should expect to paddle for sustained periods of 1-2 hours at a time. The river is relatively narrow and water is very slow-moving, with little or no current. We will encounter no waves or rapids, though sometimes it can be windy in the river canyons and we may have to paddle against the wind, which can be more taxing. Please note that during breaks ashore for rest stops and/or a picnic lunch, 'bathroom breaks' may entail finding a hidden spot in the bushes, as toilet facilities are not always available. Hikes ashore, which are generally optional, take us through inviting landscapes that frequently include historic sites. Hikes typically last from one to three hours over well-marked easy but hilly terrain, sometimes following a dirt road among the vineyards.
Important Information About This Trip
Your safety while traveling with us is one of our primary concerns. Toward that end we provide highly competent guides and the very best equipment. We use stable and well-maintained Prijon rigid single and double sea kayaks
specifically designed for this kind of touring. By using double kayaks,
we are able to balance the group with respect to paddling power and
ability, in order to facilitate our ability to stay together as a group
on the river (single kayaks are also available in limited supply for
those who choose). We will also provide all kayaking gear such as paddles, dry bags, unisex flexible-sized life jackets, pumps and
sponges. Our guides are thoroughly trained in emergency first-aid techniques and have extensive experience in this environment. Ultimately, our guides make decisions with everyone’s comfort and safety in mind while trying to maximize the adventure experience for each individual. We must stress that listening carefully to your guide’s instructions and
directions is ultimately your responsibility, and in your best interest
and that of the group.
Since the areas we travel to on this trip are remote and wild (that's why we go there!), we require medical evacuation insurance for our guests' safety. If you decline the medical evacuation insurance coverage offered by Natural Habitat, we request that you send us documentation of the independent coverage you have selected. We will add the cost of a medical evacuation policy to your tour invoice until you provide our office with proof of coverage including your insurance company's name, contact number and your individual policy number. Thank you for understanding that our policy exists exclusively in the interest of our guests' safety.
Also, to ensure quality medical care in the event of a medical emergency, as well as peace of mind from the time you book your trip to the time you return home, we highly recommend purchasing comprehensive travel insurance. Plans may cover everything from medical treatment and trip cancellations and delays, to lost luggage. We offer both medical evacuation and comprehensive travel policies through Travelex. Please contact our office if you would like more information about either of these plans.
Getting There & Getting Home
Arrive in Porto no later than 1:15 pm on Day 1 in order to participate in afternoon activities. You are free to depart Porto anytime on the final day. We can best serve you if our Natural Habitat Adventures Travel Desk makes your reservations, as we are intimately familiar with the special requirements of this program and can arrange the most efficient travel. Please call us at 800-543-8917. Note that while we offer you the best possible rates available to us on airfare and additional nights' accommodations, you may find special web rates or better fares online.