Day 1: Arrival to Amsterdam
Embarkation and check-in on board 2:00pm. After unpacking your luggage in your cabin, you’ll still have plenty of time to explore this famous city. Visit one or more museums or simply do some shopping. An introduction to the tour will take place back on board at 5.30 pm, during which the crew will be introduced and your first dinner will be served. After dinner a canal tour through the center of Amsterdam is on the program.
Overnight in Amsterdam.
Day 2: Amsterdam – Breukelen | Cruise Breukelen – Vianen (23 miles/36 km or 28 miles/46 km)
You’ll start your first day on the bike by cycling out of Amsterdam to the historical town of Muiden, with its 14th century waterfront castle. Ride along the Vecht River in an area famous for its beautiful mansions, small castles, impressive houses and their large gardens. Close to Vreeland you can visit a traditional cheese farm. After cycling through the charming villages of Loenen and Nieuwersluis, you’ll arrive at Breukelen where you’ll rejoin your ship. Around 5 pm the ship departs for Vianen and you can enjoy dinner while cruising. Spend the evening and night in Vianen, a small fortified town on the Lower Rhine river.
Overnight in Vianen.
Day 3: Vianen – Schoonhoven – Kinderdijk | Cruise to Dordrecht (19 miles/32 km or 34 miles/56 km)
Today you will cycle along a beautiful route to Schoonhoven – nicknamed Zilverstad (“Silver City”) – a city renowned for its talented silver smiths since the 17th century. Later in the day as you cycle through the Alblasserwaard region you will reach Kinderdijk, a village famous for its impressive row of 19 large windmills. All 19 windmills have a UNESCO cultural heritage listing and are a definite highlight – you will have the opportunity to visit one so don’t forget to bring your camera! From nearby Alblasserdam you will take the “Waterbus”, a fast ferry, that will take you and your bicycle in approximately 10 minutes to Dordrecht, one of the oldest towns in Holland.
Overnight in Dordrecht.
Day 4: Cruise Dordrecht – Willemstad | Cycle Willemstad – Tholen | Cruise Tholen – Kreekrak lock – Antwerp (23 miles/36km or 28 miles/44km)
As you enjoy your breakfast aboard the ship, the ship will sail to Willemstad where you will start your day’s cycling. Willemstad is a beautiful old fortified town on the Haringvliet waterway. Your bicycle ride goes to Tholen, once was an island in the middle of the large Zeeland streams, where many people fished for their living. Nowadays Tholen is connected to the mainland in various ways. But it is still a picturesque village with many relics of an eventful past.
In the afternoon you will once again board the ship which will sail to the port city of Antwerp, situated on the river Schelde. Antwerp is famous for handling up to 80% of the world’s rough diamonds and is a city with a long list of attractions including: the City Hall, one of several majestic buildings constructed during the Renaissance period, the historical City Square Grote Market, the Onze-Lieve-Vrouwe Cathedral and the medieval Steen Castle. After dinner you can visit the beautiful old city center.
Overnight in Antwerp.
Day 5: Antwerp – Temse – St. Amands (21 miles/34 km or 31 miles/49 km)
This morning you will cycle out of Antwerp along a picturesque section of the Schelde River to either St. Amands, your home for the night. "Magnificent" is the only way to describe the landscape around the Schelde. It is without a doubt one of the natural highlights of the tour.
Overnight in St-Amands.
Day 6: Cruise St. Amands – Dendermonde | Cycling Dendermonde – Ghent (32 miles/53 km)
Today you will continue to follow the river Schelde to Ghent where the barge will moor for the night at a lock in the suburb of town. Ghent is a lively university city that boasts a rich history. Since Roman times Ghent's position at the junction of Leie and Schelde Rivers has ensured that it has been a successful trading port.
In total, the city features an Opera House, 18 museums, more than 100 churches and over 400 historical buildings. Major attractions are St. Bavo Cathedral where a number of masterpieces of medieval art including the world famous "Adoration of the Mystic Lamb" by Jan van Eyck are kept and the 91-meter-tall belfry of Ghent, one of three medieval towers that overlook the old city center.
Overnight in Ghent.
Day 7: Ghent – Bruges (13 miles/ 22km or 28 miles/45 km)
Today you will cycle from Ghent through the beautiful Flemish countryside of western Flanders to Bruges, widely described as the "Venice of the North" and arguably the most beautiful of all the Flemish cities. Bruges attracts more than two million visitors every year who come to see the picturesque medieval town center of the UNESCO World Heritage-listed historic city and a long list of historic attractions.
An outstanding example of a medieval historic settlement, Bruges has managed to maintain its historic fabric as it has evolved over the centuries, with the result that today the city's original Gothic buildings form an integral part of the town's identity. While you are here you can visit one of Bruges many museums or simply take in the stunning beauty and culture of this unforgettable city from the comfort of a sidewalk café.
Dinner tonight will be in town in a restaurant of your choice (not included; recommendations available on board).
Overnight in Bruges.
Day 8: Bruges
After breakfast: end of the tour and disembarkation by 9:30am.
All distances are "approximate distances" of recommended bike tours.