A spellbinding journey along Europe’s most underrated river

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“Spellbinding!” said a voice beside us, “absolutely spellbinding.” Sarah and I were enjoying after-dinner drinks on the river cruiser Amália Rodrigues as we gazed at the red-tiled rooftops, towers and bright facades of the medieval city of Porto in northern Portugal. 

This was the final evening of our seven-day journey along the river Douro. Darkness was falling and the lights of the ancient buildings, climbing steeply away from the lively Ribeira riverfront district, were beginning to twinkle at the end of another cloudless day. Along with our fellow passengers, we were both admiring the view and reflecting on a magical week. 

Magic in all its forms, from the merely wonderful to the out-and-out…

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