Going against the current in cruising
As social media feeds are flooded with European holiday snaps, it’s no surprise to hear that Europe experienced a decade high in number of tourist stays in the first half of 2023. As reported by Eurostat, international tourist night stays rose 22.5% from last year to 545 million.
It’s not just the desire to venture far away, seeking a taste of European culture, art and cuisine on European soil. Its waters are also beckoning sun seeking travellers with the Global Travel and Tourism Whitepaper 2023 revealing, the experience of staying on a luxury cruise is amongst the most popular travel activities. In fact, global intention to cruise amongst affluent consumers is expected to rise from 7-11% over the next year.
Riding off the back of this wave is Avalon Waterways making its Portugal debut in March 2024 with a new Suite Ship, the Avalon Alegria. In line with the rest of the company’s fleet, the Alegria will feature signature, award-winning Panorama Suites on two full decks, as well as a pool on the Sky Deck. Built exclusively to sail the Douro River, guests will discover why the river’s name translates to ‘River of Gold’ as they sail through Portugal’s postcard-perfect views that begins and ends in Porto.
Featuring everything from a stop in ancient Amarante – in the picturesque Minho region, known for its golden church that dates back to 1530 – to the sandstone architecture in Salamanca, Spain, to rock art and bike riding from downtown Porto to the sea, this new cruise promises countless ways to soak up Portugal’s splendour – whether that’s medieval castles, cinematic scenery and all the vinho, baked bread, olives and cheese guest’s desire.