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Vantage trip Douro River

Arrive 10/29, afternoon’s free, 10/30 afternoon free, 10/31 free. Only drive by tour on 10/30, suggestions how to maximize time. Staying in Madrid before the cruise.

Posted by
2267 posts

Sorry, I'm not following. Could you clarify your question?

Posted by
1432 posts

It’s advertising. First time poster who kindly mentions in his notes that it’s an ad for Madrid. I reported it.

Posted by
1432 posts

My apologies. Perhaps you can clarify what you want to know. What are your interests?

Posted by
4 posts

Need ideas for a few hour in the afternoons 10/29 and 10/30. Our tour provides a drive by tour in the morning of 10/30. We have a full free day on 10/31. The best you can suggest, to see the most of Madrid.
Museums, art are fine but not the focus of the trip, just your best suggestions!

Posted by
61 posts

I am on the same Duoro river cruise. We spend a few days in Madrid then visit Salamanca then get on our boat to start the Duoro cruise.

We are going 3 days early so we arrive in Madrid on October 26. We have never been to Madrid so will visit the usual (Prado, Sofia), but I would like to learn about the history of Madrid & Spain, especially the 20th century.

Any off-the-beaten path places? Any thoughts on guided tours or small museums that focus on the Battle of Madrid or resistance fighters?

Thanks

Posted by
2267 posts

SylviaS- Some societies have gone through 'truth and reconciliation processes’ after brutal wars and regimes, and can now speak about their dark days with the frankness of lessons learned. Spain's approach, however, was more 'forgive and forget’. Thusly there isn't so much history told about the civil war or life under the dictatorship, and I don't know of any museums that address it directly.

geovagriffith- while most cruising on the Duero is in Portugal, a significant majority of the river itself is in Spain.

Posted by
61 posts

Thank you, Scudder. Interestingly, The Guardian had an article today about a virtual museum. I think it might provide some good information. I enjoy docent led tours in museums because you learn so much that way. But, this time we will learn from the computer.

Here is the link for those interested: https://www.vscw.ca/en

Posted by
3965 posts

@SylviaS

Scudder makes a good characterization

Yes in Spain we still are very "hush hush" about the war, many families still have the skeletons in the closets and that kind of thing. The only civil war sights that I know of are close to the Ebro area, between Aragon and Catalonia, most half forgotten to this day not touched since the war.

The capital of the region, Zaragoza (1.5 hours hours north of Madrid) is a good base for a few days just to explore the city itself and then make daytrips out to Civil War sites like Belchite. There is a Spanish Civil War Interpretation Centre just north of Zaragoza too, in the village of Robres.

If you are able to rent a car for a day you may find interesting to actually follow the George Orwell route in the Aragon region. On the route you will find the very places that inspired his book Homage to Catalonia, like Monte Iranzo battleground, Tres Huegas bunkers, and the Santa Quiteria Hermitage.

You can read more about the route here: https://www.spain.info/en/discover-spain/george-orwell-route-aragon/

Posted by
3965 posts

@geovagriffith - that's a common misconception, the Duero aka Douro river actually starts in Spain, in the mountains in northern Castilla, it's only the last 1/4 of the river that's in Portugal.

Posted by
27362 posts

Rick's priorities in Madrid can be found here: https://www.ricksteves.com/europe/spain/madrid. Click on At a Glance.

The place most often mentioned aside from the Pardo is the Royal Palace. I'm not a fan of palaces, but that place is really popular. If you find you just are not in the mood for art museums or manage knock off what interests you in that category on October 30, on the next day you could take a day trip by train to Toledo, the historic capital and much more atmospheric (in the historic sense) than Madrid. October 31 is a Monday; I haven't checked the websites of the attractions in Toledo to see what would be open.

Posted by
7836 posts

We did the Vantage World Travel Douro River cruise in Portugal in 2018, it was great.

It appeared that once we reached the eastern end of our cruise near the Spanish border that the river wasn't navigable any more.
Perhaps that wasn't the case.