Direction: Amsterdam to Bruges
May 6, 20; Jun 3, 17; Jul 1, 15, 29; Aug 12, 26; Sep 9; Oct 7, 2021
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.
Direction: Bruges to Amsterdam
May 13, 27; Jun 10, 24; Jul 8, 22; Aug 5, 19; Sep 2, 16; Oct 14, 2021
Day 1: Arrival and embarkation in Bruges (6 miles/11 km)
Arrival and embarkation between 1-2:00pm in the beautiful city of Bruges, also called "Pearl of Flanders." The crew will welcome you the ship departs at 2:00pm from Bruges to a suburb where there is time for bicycle fitting and test-ride through the countryside around Bruges. After dinner the guide will take you for a short walk through the center of town.
We advise you to come to Bruges one or more days earlier, so that you will have plenty of time to discover the UNESCO World Heritage-listed historical city of Bruges, aptly named the “Pearl of Flanders”. While you are there make sure you 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.
Overnight in Bruges.
Day 2: Bruges – Ghent (21 miles/35 km or 36 miles/57 km)
You will start your first day of cycling by pedaling towards Ghent through the beautiful Flemish landscape along the Ghent canal. On arrival in Ghent make sure you make the effort to discover the best of what this historical city has to offer during an afternoon stroll.
Ghent’s medieval center features lovely illuminated streets that are a must to explore, while the architectural richness in the center of the city has to be seen to be believed. During the Middle Ages Ghent was the 2nd largest European city, after Paris. The ship will dock for the night at a lock, in a suburb of Ghent and approx. 30 cycling minutes from the city center. Before dinner a small canal boat will take you for a guided tour through the historic city.
Overnight in Ghent.
Day 3: Ghent – Dendermonde / St.Amands (24 miles/40 km or 32 miles/53 km)
After breakfast in Ghent you will cycle downstream through a diverse landscape along the tidal Schelde River to Dendermonde located at the confluence of Dender and Schelde rivers. There is only one way to describe the landscape along the Schelde and that is: “magnificent”. It is without doubt one of the natural highlights of the tour. During this section of the Schelde the speed of the ship will be determined by the height of the tide. You will travel from Dendermonde to St. Amands by either bicycle or barge depending on the tides.
Overnight in St. Amands.
Day 4: St.Amands – Temse – Antwerp (19 miles/32km or 31 miles/49km)
Today we will follow the Schelde river further downstream through the Temse region to Antwerp. Over the centuries the Schelde river has held strategic importance for the Romans, Vikings, Spanish and Napoleon... Today it is a beautiful waterway just perfect for bike and barge holidays! Antwerp, your destination for the day, is a harbor city famous for handling up to 80% of the world’s rough diamonds and as the birthplace of the famous painter Sir Peter Paul Rubens. There are many highlights in the city to discover 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. Dinner will be in town in a restaurant of your choice (recommendations available on board).
Day 5: Cruise Antwerp – Kreekrak locks | Cycle Kreekrak locks – Tholen | Cruise Tholen – Willemstad – Dordrecht (23 miles/36km or 13 miles/20 km)
The barge will cruise this morning along the Schelde-Rhine Canal, over the huge Kreekrak locks to Tholen, a former fishing village amidst the large streams of the province of Zeeland. From Tholen you will cycle along the impressive large Volkerak locks to the fortified town of Willemstad, then cycle further to end in Dordrecht, one of the oldest cities of the Netherlands. Today, the skipper will discuss with you which part of the tour will be covered by bicycle. You will enjoy an evening walk in Dordrecht with the guide to learn the history of the Netherlands.
Overnight in Dordrecht.
Day 6: Cruise Dordrecht – Kinderdijk | Cycle Kinderdijk – Schoonhoven – Vianen (19 miles/32 km or 36 miles/57 km)
Today you will start your tour with the “Waterbus,” a fast ferry that will take you and your bike in just 10 minutes to Alblasserdam. After just a few minutes of cycling you will reach Kinderdijk, a village famous for its impressive row of 19 UNESCO cultural heritage-listed windmills – one of which you can visit (don’t forget your camera!). The windmills were constructed in the 18th century to pump water out of the low Alblasserwaard polder (a polder is a low-lying tract of land enclosed by embankments).
You will then continue to cycle via Schoonhoven to Vianen, a small fortified town on the river Lek (where you will be moored for the evening and where you can explore at your leisure after dinner).
Overnight in Vianen.
Day 7: Cruise Vianen – Breukelen | Cycle Breukelen – Amsterdam (23 miles/36km or 28 miles/46 km)
During breakfast, the ship cruises to Breukelen, where you disembark and your cycling tour starts. Ride along the small Vecht river, an area known for its beautiful mansions, small castles, and beautiful houses with large gardens. After cycling through the villages of Nieuwersluis, Loenen, and Vreeland, you arrive to Nigtevecht, where you can visit a traditional cheese farm. Continue cycling through Abcoude and Ouderkerk beside the Amstel River to reach Amsterdam. You will meet your barge again in the harbor of Amsterdam.
Overnight in Amsterdam.
Day 8: Amsterdam
After breakfast: end of the tour and disembarkation by 9:30am. If you wish, you can visit Amsterdam or one of its numerous museums, do some shopping or make a canal tour (not included).
All distances are "approximate distances" of recommended bike tours.