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Douro Valley, Alto Douro region, Portugal

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Harvesting Grapes along the Douro River  Vila Cova  Portugal

Harvesting Grapes along the Douro River

The Douro River Valley in Northern Portugal is a UNESCO World Heritage site and is the birth place of port wine. As I was driving around and exploring the area, I frequently saw large baskets of freshly picked grapes in hand woven baskets like these. The grapes are grown on staggeringly steep, terraced hills on both sides of the Douro River. I learned that the grapes grow in soil that contains a lot of granite and because it is hard work for the roots of the grape vines to find water, this struggle underground creates a sweeter grape by harvest time.