Yearly Archives - 2018

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

With the arrival of December, we entered the full holiday season 2018! And even at a time when weather may seem less inviting for outdoor activities, it’s the perfect time to visit the Christmas Villages!
These are small villages, historical and full of charm, decorated to the spirit of the season. Besides the decoration, the possibility to taste some typical products is a great bonus!
Here is a selection of most iconic Christmas Villages:

Santa Maria da Feira: Perlim.

This northern Portuguese city holds a party at Quinta do Castelo. With many activities for children and adults, surely you will enjoy good times and hours of fun. It is a short journey from Porto, about 30min by car.

Óbidos

Óbidos is in itself one of the biggest Portuguese attractions. It was described by the historian José Hermano de Saraiva as “the showcase of Portugal”. In addition to the traditional Obidos ginga, we can enjoy other traditional sweets. The walk along the wall and the historic village, with stops to visit the citadel and the Mother Church with altar painted by Josefa D’Óbidos is mandatory!
To visit Óbidos requires a full day trip. It’s a 2.30h drive from Porto. It is recommended to start in the morning, have lunch in Fatima and spend the afternoon in Óbidos.

Cabeça

What is a Christmas village without the snow? Located in the heart of Serra da Estrela, Cabeça is a small preserved village, where cars do not circulate. During the holiday season the whole village is decorated with natural materials, coming from the region. The whole village turns into a Christmas museum, with several houses opening their doors where we can see the traditional life of a small, isolated village. And of course, with the added charm of having snow!

Consult us to create your plan of visit to these magnificent places!
Happy Holidays!

Fall & Winter Programs

Fall & Winter Programs

Time to turn a new leaf and present our Fall & Winter Douro Programs!

Another harvest season has ended, and now it’s time for the wines to rest and mature. But that doesn’t mean activity in the Douro Valley will dwindle down or there aren’t new and exciting things to do during autumn and winter!

To kick things off, in November, we will have the olives harvest and the production of olive oil. This liquid gold was considered a deluxe product. With our carefully crafted program, you will learn everything regarding the olives and olive oil industry!

The colder months of December and January are more inviting to perform gastronomical tours! Strong, heavy and satisfying typical Douro meals can be experienced at local restaurants, bakeries and butcher shops! We can explore two routes, either north – Favaios, Pinhão, and Lamego; or south, to Serra da Estrela, the highest point in Portugal.

Our first hint of Spring will arrive mid-February when the almond trees start to blossom. Our almond tree tour will take us to the Douro Superior, near the border with Spain. There we will experience the floral snow covering the landscape and unravel the legend of the Douro almond trees.

Tours Douro

Douro Harvest

The Douro Harvest season is a time of great activity. The grapes become ripe and people are out in the terraces, picking them to make the great Douro and Port wines. The activity is such that, from a distance, people resemble ants working along the hills.

Immediately after picking, the grapes go into the “lagares”, where foot treading is still practiced and gives the wines their special taste and aroma.

With our Douro Harvest experience, you can participate in the foot treading – “Lagarada” in Portuguese, and know that you helped make great wines! We start by discovering the history of the region and the vinification processes with a visit to the Douro Museum. Then, you will enjoy a traditional lunch either at the Museum or the Quinta. Once on location, you will witness the harvest happening and can even choose to participate in the foot treading!

This year, weather conditions are pushing for a late harvest, beginning in the second week of September. Be sure to book now your Experience and engage in the most iconic activity of the Douro!

Tours Douro

Electrifying the Douro

Portugal EV Tours mission is to provide unique, genuine and unforgettable experiences. We are also developing a charging network in the Douro Valley!

Do you know what “Range Anxiety” is? It’s the fear you’ll run out of electricity when driving an electric vehicle. However, electricity is the most ubiquitous source of energy!

Modern gasoline cars have a range of 500 to 700km. More than enough to enable long-distance travel. And when we are low on gasoline, we can rest assured that we have a gas station nearby. The infrastructure is already in place.

With an electric vehicle, with ranges of around 200 to 300km, you will need to “fill up” more often. Also, you need to know where you can recharge your EV. So, the EV range is still low, compared to gasoline and diesel cars, and the charging infrastructure isn’t great (yet). Any electrical outlet will provide you with some energy. How fast you recharge depends on several factors, but if you are not using your car, you can leave it charging. A regular outlet provides 10km of range every hour – for our Model X. A 3-phase outlet provides 45km every hour and a charging station provides up to 70km every hour. Finally, fast chargers like the Supercharger network provide 250km every 30min!

With Portugal EV Tours, we aim to develop a network of charging hook-ups, so that you can visit the Douro Valley using an EV. We already succeeded in installing a public charging station in the village of Tabuaço and some of our partners will receive Tesla High Power connectors, enabling their customers to top up their EVs during a visit!

Tours Douro
Tours Douro

Welcome!

Welcome to Portugal EV Tours’ first blog post!

When we started this project we had a simple vision: show the Douro from the perspective of people who live, work and have an attachment to the Douro Valley region.

We also want to do it in a way that would preserve and protect the region for future generations. We will showcase the best, unknown places and persons of the Douro.

With a large emphasis on sustainability, we chose to be bold on our sustainability premise. We perform all our tours wanted using an electric vehicle. The Tesla Model X was the only vehicle that would fit our purpose: It is fully electric, can carry up to (in our case) 5 passengers, has great range and fast recharging capabilities. Also, it is more spacious than any other vehicle in the category. You will discover hidden storage spaces throughout the vehicle. Being electric means there is no engine noise. Therefore you can truly appreciate the region and its quietness while reducing stress associated with a car travel.

Our private experiences invite you to the region and to explore it through the eyes of the locals. The life, the landscape, the gastronomy, everything comes together in our experiences.

Stay tuned in our blog to catch up on the latest tours and special events we will be announcing!