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Springtime Tulips and Keukenhof Gardens (Rail & Cruise)

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Cruise across the rivers of the Netherlands and Belgium

8 days From £2,045 per person
Operated by our sister company Great Rail Journeys

2022 Tour code: NER22

About the tour

Embark on a cruise across the rivers of the Netherlands and Belgium, uncovering enchanting towns, sombre battlefields and the floral displays of the Keukenhof Gardens, with a talk from the BBC's Charlie Dimmock. This tour is operated by our sister company Great Rail Journeys.

Highlights

What’s included

Itinerary

Day 1 - Travel to Amsterdam

Meet your Tour Manager at London St Pancras today*, where you board the Eurostar Service to Amsterdam, where you'll be escorted you to the ship.

Once on board your, take some time to settle into your comfortable cabin and relax in your new surroundings. We enjoy a welcome drink in the lounge before a sumptuous 5-course dinner in the panoramic restaurant, followed by live music.

*If you would like to travel by air, view our Fly & Cruise option here.

Includes
  • Dinner
Day 2 - Amsterdam, Hoorn or the Keukenhof Gardens

You have a choice between three excursions today; you could take a sightseeing tour of Amsterdam, visit Hoorn and journey on the Medemblik Steam Railway, or explore the Keukenhof Gardens, home to one of the best floral displays in Europe. Open for only a few weeks each year, enjoy free time to walk along pathways surrounded by colourful tulips, daffodils and hyacinths, and admire the tranquil ponds, sculpture gardens and greenhouses which showcase an array of different plants and flowers. Alternatively, visit Amsterdam, a city famous for its tree-lined canals, crooked buildings and laid-back atmosphere. Among the sights we discover is vibrant Dam Square, the city's bustling main square, dominated by the Royal Palace - a classical 17th-century masterpiece. Finally, you could visit Hoorn, one of the oldest cities in The Netherlands and an attractive harbour-town. From here, step back in time with a journey on the Medemblik Steam Railway.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 3 - The battlefields of Ypres

Our vessel arrives in Ghent, in Flemish Belgium. This morning, Colonel Piers Storie-Pugh will come aboard to deliver a fascinating talk about the battlefields in the region, using his expertise in the field to take us back in time. In the afternoon, our excursion takes us to the infamous Ypres Battlefields, a key battlefront in the First World War. We are accompanied by experts who take us through some of the most poignant sites, including Tyne Cot Cemetery where many of the combatants were buried. We return to the ship later for dinner.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 4 - Ghent

Discover the attractive town of Ghent this morning, as we venture into the narrow streets and pretty boulevards for a guided tour. Built in an instantly identifiable style, the architecture lends an elegant grandeur to the buildings here, and we discover some of the finest examples on our tour, which includes the ever impressive St Bavo's Cathedral and the Belfry.

After lunch, your time is your own to explore more of Ghent.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 5 - Bruges

Today we pay a visit to the fairytale city of Bruges. An exceptional example of a medieval town which takes great pride in its history, Bruges is a truly an enchanting city. With winding streets opening up to large squares, often filled with locals enjoying the cafés that serve up plenty of Belgian delicacies. Here we discover the canals, churches and noble old townhouses famous across Europe. Later, after our day in Bruges, we enjoy another delicious dinner on board.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 6 - Arnhem

We arrive into Arnhem this morning. After some free time, you have another choice of 2 excursions. Your first option is to visit the excellent Hartenstein Airborne Museum, in nearby Oosterbeek, for a guided tour. This institution focuses on the fierce Battle of Arnhem in WWII, and was the setting of the war film 'A Bridge too Far'. The museum features a collection of various artefacts from the battle itself.

Alternatively, you may wish to visit the interactive Netherlands' Open Air Museum, recounting the storied history of this proud European country. Tonight, we sit down to an elegant gala dinner with our captain.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 7 - Floriade

Back in Amsterdam, we're joined by one of the BBC's most renowned gardeners - Charlie Dimmock. We enjoy an insightful talk about her life in horticulture, followed by a question and answer session, getting expert tips on garden care ahead one of the highlights of our cruise. The Floriade Horticultural Expo only happens once every ten years, and this decade's theme is 'Growing Green Cities'. There are exhibitions from over 30 different countries, each split into four sub-themes exploring the possible future development of our city centres. After dinner, we're joined by a traditional Dutch sea shanty choir who serenade us with traditional songs and passionate renditions of classic sea shanties - a fitting end to our cruise adventure.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 8 - Homeward bound

After a buffet breakfast, your cruise comes to an end and you disembark your ship in Amsterdam. Here you are escorted by your Tour Manager by rail back to London.

Additional information

Mobility information

Due to the nature of our tours they are generally unsuitable for those with restricted mobility. If you’d like to discuss any particular holiday with us in this respect, then please don’t hesitate to call us.

Train

Eurostar

Ships

MS Amadeus Silver III
MS Amadeus Imperial

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European Escorted Holidays by Rail 2022

European Escorted Holidays by Rail 2022

The definitive guide to European rail tours and holidays by rail.

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Springtime Tulips and Keukenhof Gardens (Rail & Cruise)

Cruise across the rivers of the Netherlands and Belgium

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Helen Laverack
Helen
Luke Simpson
Luke
Lynne Broadley
Lynne
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