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Van Gogh Tours - Cycling and Walking Tours - Europe

Deluxe 5-Day Tulip Tour

From: $1,150 USD

5 Days / 4 Nights
Type: Guided
Level of Difficulty: Easy

Imagine Yourself…

  • Strolling through rows of tulips and bulbs in a unique flower musuem
  • Watching the lights of Leiden reflecting on the water at night
  • Discovering traditional Dutch ways of life in the Zaanse Schans
  • Drinking a cup of coffee surrounded by the beautiful wooden facades of traditional buildings

Overview

This wonderful bike and barge trip starts and ends in Amsterdam, taking you through the provinces of South and North Holland while spring flowers are in bloom. You will spend time in the historical cities of Haarlem, Leiden, Gouda and Alkmaar, and learn about the water management of these lowlands near the North Sea. You will also visit the famous Keukenhof gardens, known for their thousands of blooming tulips, hyacinths, daffodils, and other bulb flowers. The world-famous Aalsmeer flower auction is also on the program, where an astonishing volume of beautiful flowers are traded daily and exported all over the world. You will visit the open-air museum of the Zaanse Schans with its windmills, cheese farm, and picturesque wooden houses. The beautiful, varied scenery and wonderful bikeways of this tour of Holland will surprise and delight you.

Daily Itinerary

  • Day 1: Amsterdam – Zaandam – warmup ride

    In the afternoon, between 1 and 2 p.m., we ask that you arrive on board your barge in Amsterdam, located near Central Station. Soon afterwards, we’ll start with a short dinner cruise to the charming city of Zaandam. In the Golden Age, Zaandam served as a large milling center, making it one of the oldest industrial centers in the Netherlands. Thousands of windmills powered saws that processed Scandinavian wood for the shipbuilding and paper industries. Zaandam is both historically and architecturally interesting, with a combination of traditional houses, windmills, and modern buildings. The barge moors in the center of the city, and upon arrival you will take your bike for a brief test ride. In the evening we’ll take a short walk through the center. At dinnertime, the program for the next day and the routine for the rest of the week will be explained.

  • Day 2: Zaandam – Zaanse Schans – Haarlem – 14 or 21 miles (24 or 34 km)

    A short bicycle ride will take us to the open-air museum Zaanse Schans that features beautiful windmills, an authentic traditional Dutch village, a cheese factory, and a clog maker’s workshop. We’ll then return by bicycle to the barge. In the afternoon you can choose between a boat trip of approximately 2.5 hours or a bicycle trip (about 14 miles) to the beautiful city of Haarlem. In Haarlem’s center you’ll find the famous St. Bavo Church, home to the organ Mozart played. You could also visit the Grote Markt, the Teylers museum, and the French Hals-museum. Our barge will be berthed in the centre of Haarlem for the night, so you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy a short city walk in the afternoon or in the evening.

  • Day 3: Haarlem – Keukenhof – Oude Wetering – 24 or 35 miles (39 or 57 km)

    After breakfast we’ll ride to the Keukenhof garden, arguably the most famous flower park in the world, where you can admire hundreds of thousands of tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, and many other flowers in full bloom. In the Keukenhof (approximately €18), various gardens and styles can be found: the English Landscape Garden, the Historical Garden, the Natural Garden, the Japanese Natural Garden, the Formal Garden, and three special color gardens. Spread throughout the entire park are approximately eighty flower sculptures from well-known Dutch artists. There are also several other art objects, including the collection Surprising Tulips. After taking our time for a visit, we’ll get back on our bicycles at noon and head to Oude Wetering where our floating hotel will be waiting.

  • Day 4: Oude Wetering – Aalsmeer – Amsterdam – 16-34 miles (25-53 km)

    This morning you’re in for a real treat – an early visit by bus (6.30 a.m.) to observe the biggest flower auction in the world at Aalsmeer (€7, not open in weekends and public holidays*). Early in the morning, millions of flowers are auctioned off and immediately sent out to all corners of the world. By 9 a.m. we’ll return to our barge in Oude Wetering where a late breakfast will be waiting for us before we make our way to Amsterdam by bicycle. During the afternoon and evening you’ll have the opportunity to either make a last beautiful cycling tour through the wetlands of Waterland or to discover this amazing city. Amsterdam began as a simple village at the mouth of the River Amstel but expanded rapidly with its famous rings of canals during its Golden Age. The palace on the Dam Square is sometimes called the 8th Wonder of the World because it’s built on 13,659 wooden piles. Amsterdam as we know it today is a cosmopolitan city with 40 museums, close to one million inhabitants, and a thriving economy. In the evening you’ll have the chance to take an optional canal tour of the city (approximately €10).

    * The Aalsmeer flower auction is not open on weekends and on public holidays. Please be aware that on some departure dates a visit to the flower auction is not possible. 

  • Day 5: Tour Ends

    Tour concludes after breakfast (9.30 a.m.)

Dates & Prices

Green = Open | Yellow = Limited | Red = Full

2025

Departure

Accommodation

Twin

Upper deck Suite

Single

Twin for Single use

March 29

Magnifique II

$ 1130

$ 1590

$ 1650

March 31

Magnifique III

$ 1130

$ 1590

$ 1430

$ 1650

April 1

Magnifique IV

$ 1130

$ 1590

$ 1650

April 2

Magnifique II

$ 1130

$ 1590

$ 1650

April 4

Magnifique III

$ 1130

$ 1590

$ 1430

$ 1650

April 5

Magnifique IV

$ 1330

$ 1790

$ 1960

April 6

Magnifique II

$ 1330

$ 1790

$ 1960

April 8

Magnifique III

$ 1330

$ 1790

$ 1690

$ 1960

April 9

Magnifique IV

$ 1330

$ 1790

$ 1960

April 12

Magnifique III

$ 1330

$ 1790

$ 1690

$ 1960

April 13

Magnifique IV

$ 1330

$ 1790

$ 1960

April 16

Magnifique III

$ 1330

$ 1790

$ 1690

$ 1960

April 20

Magnifique III

$ 1330

$ 1790

$ 1690

$ 1960

April 25

Magnifique III

$ 1330

$ 1790

$ 1690

$ 1960

Prices are per person in US Dollars – inclusive bike rental

  • What's included

    • 4 nights on board the ship
    • 4 breakfasts, 4 packed lunches, and 4 three-course dinners
    • Coffee and tea on board
    • Daily cleaning of the cabin (use of bed linen and towels)
    • Climate controlled cabin
    • Entrance to the Keukenhof garden
    • Entrance North Holland Dune reserve
    • Visit Mill at Zaanse Schans
    • Fees for ferries
    • 11speed bicycle, incl. helmet, pannier bag, water bottle, & bike insurance
    • Two multilingual tour guides 
    • Welcome drink
    • Route information and road book
    • Some short walking tours
    • Reservation costs
  • Bikes

    A well maintained, comfortable 7 or 11-speed hybrid bicycle is available free of charge for each participant. These are well-suited for the flat Dutch terrain. Unisex models are available in sizes appropriate to your height (For the very large bikes they are men’s style). The bikes come with helmets, grip shifters, hand brakes, carrier bag, water bottle, and bike insurance!  Electric bikes can be rented for this tour ($100 per person). We advise you only to rent an electric bike if you have first tried one at home. They’re heavier than regular bikes and therefore can be difficult to maneuver.

  • Meals

    The cook prepares all meals: a substantial breakfast and a three-course dinner of very high quality. A packed lunch may be prepared after breakfast. Tea and coffee will be ready when you arrive on board in the afternoon. There’s a bar on board with reasonably-priced beer, wine, and soft drinks. If you have special meal requirements, we ask you to mention this when booking. In the case of a gluten-free or lactose-free diet there’s an additional charge of €50 per week. You’ll need to pay this in cash on board. If you want to drink a bottle of wine that you didn’t purchase from the ship’s bar, the barge will charge a corkage fee of €5 per bottle.

  • Not included

    • Airfare
    • Drinks from bar on board or when cycling
    • One dinner
    • Admission fees to the various museums or places of interest
    • Trip cancellation insurance

Accommodations

The accommodations listed below are examples of those usually used on the tour. Depending on availability, you may be booked in a different accommodation of equal quality.

Reviews

It was great, loved the bike tours. The boat and staff were fabulous. The food was gourmet. 

Cindy Johnson, April 2022


We enjoyed the tour very much. There was a funny smell in our cabin but they solved the problem by moving us to another cabin. There was also a communication problem regarding when the tour ended. However, they paid for our last night’s food and board as compensation. We enjoyed the crew, our fellow guests, the bikes, the boat, and the countryside

James Currie, April 2024


 

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