Tulips of Northern Holland 2018 Avalon Waterways River Cruise

If you're looking for a holiday that combines some well-known sights with others that are off the beaten track, this itinerary is for you! Arrive in Amsterdam and transfer to your river cruise vessel in Haarlem. Discover the region of "North Holland," where tulip fields abound, then sail across the Ijsselmeer, formerly known as the Zuider Zee, to the region known as "Friesland," famous for its black-and-white cows. Visit the Zuider Zee Museum in Enkhuizen or get a chance to meet some of the locals. Visit the Batavia shipyard in Lelystad, and choose between visits of the Kröller-Müller Museum or Museum Hartenstein near Arnhem. Enjoy a harbor cruise in Rotterdam, choose between a visit to Keukenhof Gardens or the town of Gouda and enjoy a tasting of Dutch cheese, genever, and some local sweet specialties. Your vacation concludes with a cruise along Amsterdam's canals.

Tulips

Itinerary

Upon arrival into Amsterdam you will be transferred to your cruise ship. Before dinner, meet your crew at a welcome reception

Tulip fields abound in this part of the country. This morning, an excursion takes you along the growing areas that look from afar like carpets of colour. Take pictures and learn more about these flowers and how they were introduced into Holland from the Ottoman Empire (Turkey) in the 17th century. Rejoin your ship and over lunch, sail to Enkhuizen, situated at the most easterly point of North Holland. Enkhuizen is a quintessential fishing town with cobble stoned streets, a quaint town centre, and one of the largest marinas in the Netherlands. It owes its prosperity to the Zuider Zee (now known as the IJsselmeer) during the 'Golden Age'. This afternoon, visit the Zuiderzee Museum, dedicated to the culture and history of this area. The museum focuses on the past and present of the IJsselmeer, and features living history, heritage, and crafts combining works from the past with works from the present.
Included today: Tulip Fields Excursion; guided visit to Zuiderzee Museum.

This morning you have a choice between an included guided walk of Enkhuizen, or you may wish to join a 'Dutch Experience' outing to meet some locals. Then cruise across the IJsselmeer to south-west Friesland, a province rich in history and legends. As you sail, enjoy the scenic rural landscape along the river. Dock in Lemmer, from where our Friesland excursion departs. Primarily an agricultural region with a long history, Friesland is best known internationally for its famous black-and-white Friesian cattle and black Friesian horses. Visit the 18th-century Royal Eise Eisinga Planetarium, which has been nominated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Rejoin your ship in Sneek, where you dock overnight.
Included today: Choice of guided walk of Enkhuizen or 'Experience the Ditch' outing or Friesland excursion, visit the Planetarium.

Today, enjoy a peaceful morning of cruising through this delightful area of Friesland. Reaching Lelystad, join the guided visit of the Batavia Shipyard, where ships that were important to the Netherland's maritime industry during the 'Golden Age' have been faithfully reconstructed. Later, board the Batavia itself, a reconstruction of a 1628 Amsterdam-built Dutch East India Company ship, wrecked on its maiden voyage on June 4, 1629 off the coast of Western Australia. Later this afternoon, enjoy a local cheese and genever tasting on board as you sail to Kampen, where you dock overnight.
Included today: Visit the Batavia shipyard and the Batavia in Lelystad; Cheese and genever (gin) tasting.

Another relaxing morning on board as you sail along the IJssel River, also known as the Gelderse IJssel, which is a branch of the Rhine River. Learn more about Holland at an on-board lecture and taste a sweet local speciality. After lunch, visit the Airborne Museum Hartenstein, dedicated to the Battle of Arnhem, one of the major tragedies of World War II. Alternatively you may prefer to visit the Kroller- Muller Museum. Later, rejoin your ship in Arnhem.
Included today: Visit Hartenstein Museum.

This morning, sail through the harbour of Rotterdam, said to be the world's busiest port. Levelled by German bombs in World War II, Rotterdam now has a modern, high-tech look. After an early lunch you may opt to join a guided excursion to Gouda, famous for its cheese, syrup waffles, clay pipes, and elaborate city hall. It is a typical Dutch city with many old buildings and pretty canals. Alternatively, you may wish to visit the gardens of Keukenhoff near Lisse, which encompass over 70 acres of parkland with lakes, sculpture gardens, greenhouses, and a windmill to explore. Every year, 7 million flower bulbs are planted, and you have the opportunity to see the spectacular display of colours not only from the tulips, but also from hyacinths, daffodils, and more. Garden enthusiasts may opt to spend for an extended visit to in Keukenhof, having lunch on their own in the gardens.
Included today: Harbour cruise; choice of excursion to Keukenhof Gardens or to the city of Gouda.

After breakfast, arrive in Amsterdam where guided sightseeing is by canal boat. Cruise along elegant grachten lined by stately homes dating back to Amsterdam's Golden Age. This afternoon is at leisure to explore on your own or choose from a selection of optional excursions.
Included today: Canal cruise in Amsterdam.

This morning, transfers to the airport for your flight to the UK.

Price Guide

Date Price from (pp)
08 April 2018 £2,589 Cat D Deluxe Stateroom
15 April 2018 £2,889 Cat A Panorama Suite
18 April 2018 £2,083 Cat D Deluxe Stateroom
22 April 2018 £2,249

What's Included

  • EXCLUSIVE OFFER! Book by 28th January and receive €50pp credit to spend on board*!
  • Big savings of up to £800 per couple, plus book by 28th February and pay only £99 per person deposit*
  • Your personal Avalon chauffeur service by executive car for you and your travelling companions to and from your chosen UK departure point
  • 7 nights deluxe accommodation in a spacious stateroom with Avalon's exclusive Comfort Collection® style beds, en-suite facilities and river views
  • Return Eurostar from St Pancras Rail Station plus a wide range of flights from UK regional airports are also available (A supplement may apply)
  • All meals on board including full breakfast , buffet lunch and waiter service evening meal; afternoon tea with cakes and sweet treats; midnight snack, choice of premium teas and coffees & soft drinks throughout the day. Wine and beer is included with lunch and dinner.
  • Included excursions and sightseeing trips with Local Guides and a choice of optional tours; headsets provided on excursions
  • Services of an experienced Cruise Director
  • Gratuities for Cruise Director and crew
  • On board lectures, activities and nightly piano music
  • Captain's Welcome Reception, Welcome Dinner and Farewell Gala Dinner
  • All transfers, local port charges and airport taxes
  • Complimentary Wifi (signal permitting)