Floralia Spring Flower Show and Keukenhof Gardens 2015
Antwerp, Floralia Flower Show and Keukenhof Gardens by rail
From Belgium's forgotten gem, Antwerp, we discover the magnificent flowers of Floralia and kaleidoscopic displays of Keukenhof Gardens on this enchanting tour celebrating the best of Dutch and Belgian horticulture.
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Day 1 - By train to Antwerp
We leave St Pancras International by Eurostar to Brussels, where we connect with a local train to the city of Antwerp in the Belgian region of Flanders. Famous as the world's leading diamond city, Antwerp is one of Belgium's hidden gems. It has undergone a remarkable transformation over the past decade and is one of the most culturally fascinating cities in Europe. On arrival in Antwerp we transfer to the 3* Ibis Centrum, our base for the next four nights.
Day 2 - Exploring Antwerp
This morning we are joined by a local guide for a revealing walking tour of Antwerp. The tour includes the Vrijdagmarkt, site of the city's oldest antique flea market, and the Vlaeykensgang, a narrow alleyway regarded as one of Antwerp's most attractive streets. We also visit the Grote Markt, which is lined with wonderfully grand, gabled Guild Houses and is home to the large town hall and the famous Brabo Fountain. Following the walking tour you are free to continue exploring Antwerp at your leisure - you may choose to visit the beautiful Gothic Cathedral of Our Lady or visit Rubens House (closed Mondays), the Italianate mansion and former home of the Flemish painter Peter Paul Rubens, which is now a museum dedicated to the artist and his work. You can also explore the Diamond District, where 70% of the world's diamonds are traded.
Day 3 - Floralia & the Botanic Garden
This morning we travel by coach to Château de Grand-Bigard, which hosts the 2015 Floralia Spring Flower Exhibition, a vibrant display of 500 varieties of flowers including 400 different types of tulip. In the afternoon we visit the National Botanic Garden of Belgium, located in the grounds of Bouchout Castle. Here 18,000 species of plants from all over the world can be found in the Plant Palace and the grounds.
Day 4 - Delft & Keukenhof Gardens
We travel by coach across the Dutch border to the town of Delft, one of the prettiest towns in the Netherlands, famous for its pottery. Tree-lined canals and cobbled streets wind away from Markt, Delft's large open central square. You are free to explore Delft at your own pace; you could take a tour of the Royal Delft porcelain factory, which produces the famous 'Delft Blue', or visit the excellent Johannes Vermeer Museum. In the afternoon we continue by coach to visit the famous Keukenhof Gardens, where we enjoy the fantastic floral displays. The gardens only open in the spring, providing an incredible seasonal display of tulips, crocuses, daffodils and other flowering plants.
Day 5 - By train to London
We transfer to Antwerp station for our return journey to Brussels and our onward connection on the Eurostar to St Pancras International in London.
These meals, where shown, are included in the price of your holiday
Please note that while every departure of this tour will feature the same excursions, the order may differ from that shown above.
Availability & Booking
All prices are per person and assume full occupancy of the room.
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