Pinhão means... Porto.
So, if you decide to go, do reserve some time, to visit one or more producers, taste and buy according to your preferences (and budget), and, most of it, let your eyes enjoy the landscape, where the beauty of the river marries the geometry of the terraces supporting the vineyards.
The idea of using decorative ceramic tiles was introduced to Portugal by the Moors. Over the years, their use for floor, wall and ceiling decorations became even more prevalent, with widespread use in the country by 1500 onward. The tiles depict many different scenes and come in a variety of styles. Those on the Pinhao train station were created in 1937 using the traditional blue and white pattern. Here, Sue is standing by one of the scenes on the end of the railway station that depicts one of the activities required for the production of Port wine. To the left, the train tracks pass the station and, although the Duoro itself cannot be seen in the photo, it is not far away from this junction where the River Pinhao flows into it, as the steeply sloping vinyards attest (that hillside looks almost like the one by Sue's shoulder!).
2006 Harvest Tour - Part 3
Like an unforgettable time on your honeymoon, there are some things that can be revisited, but they never live up to the memory of the first time. Ask any individual who spent the next four days with us in the Douro and they’ll all say the same thing regarding our exploration and exploits in the Douro. [...]
Quinta do Crasto
It had been a year since my previous visit to this extraordinary property a few kilometers west of Pinhao, situated on the north bank of the Douro. The property offers a diversity of terrain and vineyards with field blends and newer block plantings of segregated varietals. They all enjoy South facing solar exposures with two exemplary “vinha velha” (old vine) vineyards, Vinha da Ponte and Vinha Maria Teresa, both of which are producing fantastic Douro reds and are gaining a world wide reputation, and in Portugal along with the mono-varietal Touriga Nacional, this trio has rightfully reached “cult” status. [...]
Quinta Do Vesuvio
[...] Since my very first visit to Portugal in 1994, there have been two incredible moments in my Port loving life: #1 was a luncheon at The Factory House and introduction to the heads of the British Port Shippers in May 1994. #2 was my enthronement into the IVDP’s Confraria (brotherhood) and having my wife join me for this honor and ensuing celebration (June 2003). What followed next takes the #3 spot for me, made even better since I know it was something we could all share and it was the first time for every member of our group. In fact the next hour of our lives would make for the most memorable experience during the course of the entire Harvest Tour, which is saying a lot. [...]
Written by Roy Hersh in March 2007.
Click here for more on the For The Love Of Port website.
Praia Fluvial, the river beach, is my favourite area in small Pinhão. I guess that most of the travellers that cross Pinhão definitely miss this enjoyable area.
The whole area has been totally recovered a few years ago (I'm not sure about the specifics about this) and it turn out to be much more convenient for boats to load & unload people.
Pinhão's railway station is just a short walk distance.
Pinhão's Railway Station is considered (probably) the most beautiful in the whole Portugal. Its exterior walls are decorated with Tile Panels depicting the Port Wine theme.
The Tile Panels were painted by J.Oliveira in 1937 and produced by Aleluia factory in Aveiro (in central Portugal).
Two particular Panels got particular historical attention since these represent two landscapes now gone: the Cachão da Valeira, and the iron bridge of Ferradosa.
Click here to see my Travelogue on the Tiles of Pinhão's railway station.
In October 2005, Mr David Spriggs toured the Port Wine vineyards & wineries in the Douro Valley. This Tip features parts of his report.
GREATEST Port trip ever!
[...] Day 4 –
We awoke in the morning and packed our bags for the big move from Oporto to the Douro. We took the train from Oporto to Regua. Waiting for us there was the winemaker for Quinta do Tedo. We piled our bags in and rode to Quinta do Tedo for lunch and then a tasting.
After lunch we drove into Pinhão and settled into our hotel. Most everyone took a nap and prepared for our dinner at Quinta do Noval. The drive to Noval is long and windy, but worthwhile for the views. When we arrived we were greeted and taken on the tour. It was raining and we got to see the Nacional vineyard, but not at its best. We saw the granite lagares with their special robotic plungers. Noval uses a combination of foot trodden and robotics – a good combination.
[...] Day 5 -
We started the day with a wonderful breakfast and then off to our first appointment. Today we started at Quinta da Vista Alegre. We toured the substantial facilities and then went on a Jeep ride to see the property and the spectacular view from the top of the vineyard. Wow! The vineyards are really in a favored position for port wines – south facing, just down river from Pinhão.
Click here for the complete David Spriggs' Port Wine Tour report.
For future Tours to the Port Wine country, please visit
For The Love Of Port - www.fortheloveofport.com
Quinta de La Rosa consists of 135 acres of A grade vineyards in the heart of the upper Douro, recently classified by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.
The property is owned by the Swedish Bergqvist family, formerly trading under the family name of Feuerheerd Bros, who have been shipping Port Wine since 1815.
In 1988 Tim Bergqvist, and his daughter Sophia, decided to re-launch Quinta de La Rosa as an independent estate. They took advantage of the change in Port Wine regulations which enables producers to sell Port direct from their estates and not through the established houses based at Vila Nova de Gaia, near Oporto.
Nowadays, all aspects of production are done on site: growing, harvesting, treading and vinifying followed by maturation, blending and bottling.
This is still one of the few Quintas, where you get a personal guided tour.
If you are lucky, Sophia Bergqvist can be your guide - she speaks Portugese/Swedish/French and German.
The Quinta has 6 rooms and 2 cataring houses, all with a splendid view over the river Douro.
A popular saying in the Douro Valley says the Douro Valley is 9 months of Winter and 3 months of Hell !!!
Well..., the three months of hell emphasis how HOT the weather might be during Summer time. I've been there and can tell about that :-), hehehe ...
Anyway, when the weather gets that hot, nothing better that just take a swim in a swimming pool in the area. Silval Rural Wine Hotel is likely to provide that service for its guests.
The Rabelo boat, it is a typical boat from Porto. This kind of boats is not used anymore , except to tourism trips along the river.
In old times those were the boats that brought the Port wine in big barrels fromthe "quintas", to the cellars in Porto and Gaia.
You can take part of a mini cruise on a rabela boat. You start from Pinhao for about 2 at 3 hours cruising either stream up- or downwards. It's a very interesting trip because you are only with max. 10 people aboard and after one hour of sailing you can get acquanted with people from different parts of the world. We met a couple of South Africans who were involved with the wine industrie in their country.
This station has 24 azulejos, representing all subjects of the region.
The trip by steam train from the well known railway station at Pinhao to Regua is fascinating, it takes about 1 hour 30 minutes, and you can take the trip back to Pinhao with a cruise boat.
The region is still served by narrow gauge railways that cling to the sides of the mountains. The "Tua Valley" line is the most spectacular in Portugal as the train hugs the side of the rocky ravine and climbs for over an hour and a half through a wild and unspoilt area of tiny isolated villages.
This view of the Douro River is typical of what you will see between Peso da Regua and Pinhao. This part of the river is actually close to the eastern end of the demarcated region whose grapes are officially allowed to be transformed into Port. The region runs eastward from here to the Spanish border and also includes production areas on some of the tributaries of the Douro. Port wine made its debut in the 1600s and, over the years since then, the slopes of the river banks have been terraced to provide more wine-growing land.
Last but not the least, … the awesome landscapes that surround Pinhão!
Pinhão is situated on a valley, surrounded by mountains and bathed by the River as I mentioned before. Although the day we visited the sky was cloudy and it had been raining, the involving mountains covered in green vineyards and reflected on the River made an impressive scenario.
Pinhão is famous for the vineyards and the farms where they are situated – on the slopes of the mountain, overlooking the River Douro and River Pinhão. Some of this farms and manor houses are opened to the public (under appointment) and visitors may go on a guided tour around the farm – some of them provide 4wd vehicles for that purpose.
The best season to visit is the grapes’ harvest season, which occurs every year in September. The farms are lively with this tradition and you will be able to learn a bit more about the wine and local customs.
Pinhão is bathed by River Pinhão, and is near River Douro; actually this small lovely village is situated where River Pinhão meets River Douro.
River Pinhão is shaded green after the green slopes of the mountain covered in vineyards, trees and local vegetation, providing a peaceful landscape that delights the visitors.
Also, visitors and locals may enjoy the River at the river beach, which is properly signed while walking through the pier and under the metallic bridge.
The metallic bridge that connects both sides of River Pinhão is also a main landmark in the village. The bridge dates from the 19th century and it was designed/projected by Eifel. Nowadays, the bridge is considered as a national masterpiece.
If you are interested in this type of structure, you may also observe it from underneath and right on top, as there is a path by the River that leads you towards the bridge.