Ship Details | Holland & Belgium River Cruise - Avalon Europe Cruises

Essential Holland & Belgium – Southbound 2017

8 Day River Cruise from Amsterdam to Brussels

2017 Information

On this cruise vacation, see some of the highlights of Holland and Belgium, and in the early spring, admire the tulips and other spring blooms! Start your vacation with a cruise through Amsterdam’s canals. Guided sightseeing shows you the charming town of Middelburg, as well as the bigger cities of Ghent and Antwerp. In the spring, visit the famous gardens of Keukenhof and see the breathtaking display of colors from the tulips, daffodils, and more, or later in the year, visit Delft famous for its distinctive Delft blue pottery; then the fascinating Delta Works, and a windmill in Kinderdijk. So much to see in an experience-filled week!


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Highlights & Sightseeing

Cruise: deluxe 7-night cruise in an outside stateroom with Avalon’s exclusive Comfort Collection BedsSM

Day 1 Amsterdam (Embarkation): onboard welcome reception

Day 2 Amsterdam: canal cruise

Day 3 Rotterdam: excursion to Keukenhof Gardens (departures March 30, March 31, and April 9), or guided visit to Delft (departures July 14 and October 13)

Day 4 Kinderdijk–Willemstad: visit a windmill in Kinderdijk; time at leisure in Willemstad

Day 5 Veere-Middelburg: visit the Delta Works; guided walk of Middelburg

Day 6 Ghent: guided sightseeing, visit St. Baaf’s Cathedral

Day 7 Antwerp: guided sightseeing

Day 8 Brussels (Disembarkation): your vacation ends after breakfast this morning

Special onboard and onshore experiences presented by local chefs, entertainers, artisans, and experts, designed to enrich your cruise.

Enjoy an onboard Classical Music Performance.

Meals

  • Captain’s welcome & farewell receptions with sparkling wine and canapés
  • Welcome dinner
  • Farewell dinner
  • Daily full buffet breakfast with made-to-order egg station, hot and cold menu items
  • Early and Late Riser breakfast
  • Daily lunch buffet with pasta or carving stations
  • Alternative light lunch or (weather permitting) grill fare at the Sky Bistro on the Sky Deck
  • Daily four-course à la carte dinner in the main dining room
  • Alternative dinner of petite portions or regional specialties with wines, in the Panorama Bistro
  • Daily Afternoon Tea
  • Daily Night Fare
  • Complimentary sparkling wine with breakfast; wine, beer, or soft drinks with lunch and dinner are included daily on board your vessel

NOTES:

  • In the event of water level problems or any problems of a technical nature, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or to alter the program.
  • Included visits and special features are subject to change. If a change becomes necessary, a substitute will be offered.

Day-By-Day Itinerary

Day 1Arrive in Amsterdam, Holland (Embarkation)

Welcome to Amsterdam! Holland’s sophisticated, modern capital has a rich and fascinating history. This delightful 700-year-old city with its elegant and classic architecture, cafés, and restaurants has a distinct ambiance. The streets, squares, and canals—not to mention the bike paths throughout the city—make for a vibrant atmosphere, and with over 60 museums, Amsterdam has the highest museum density in the world. This afternoon, board your river cruise vessel and meet your crew at an evening welcome reception. (Dinner)

Day 2Amsterdam

There is no better way to see Amsterdam than by CANAL BOAT, cruising through the elegant grachten lined with stately homes dating back to Amsterdam’s “Golden Age.” There’s free time in the city this afternoon—you might like to join an optional excursion—and later, bid tot ziens (farewell) to Amsterdam. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 3Rotterdam. Excursion to Keukenhof Gardens or Delft

This morning, cruise through Rotterdam harbor and enjoy a leisurely morning on board before an afternoon excursion takes you to the gardens of KEUKENHOF near Lisse—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 chance to see the spectacular display of colors from the tulips, daffodils, crocuses, and more. If you’re a garden enthusiast, you may opt for an extended stay in Keukenhof, going in the morning, and lunching in the gardens on your own before rejoining the ship with the rest of the guests in the later afternoon. After May 26, when the Keukenhof gardens are no longer open, a guided excursion takes you to the city of Delft. Most famous for its distinctive Delft blue pottery, the city with its historic town center and canals was also home to the painter Johannes Vermeer. Join your local expert for a GUIDED WALK to see the City Hall, the Old Church, and hear the story of the “Delft Explosion.” (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 4Kinderdijk–Willemstad

Kinderdijk’s 19 windmills were built in 1740 as part of the water management system to help prevent floods. Visit a WINDMILL and learn how they played a vital role in the development of the country, becoming a symbol of Holland. Rejoin your ship for lunch and sail to Willemstad. Here, there is free time for you to explore at your own pace in this small historical town with well-preserved fortifications. One of the oldest buildings in town is the old gatehouse at the entrance of Willemstad, and as you walk around you will notice a wide variety of building styles. The town even has its own windmill towering high above the marina, and in the very center of the seven-pointed, star-shaped town stands the Koepelkerk (Rounded Church). (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 5Veere. Excursion to the Delta Works–Middelburg

This morning, visit the DELTA WORKS near Veere. After the flood of 1953, during which more than 1,800 people drowned in one night, the Delta Plan was born to prevent a disaster of this magnitude from ever happening again. Taking 30 years to complete, the storm flood barrier stands as the final defense in the battle against the water—almost six miles long and considered a technical miracle. During lunch, cruise to Middelburg. This afternoon, a WALKING TOUR will acquaint you with this Dutch East India Company trading city, which was originally built as a Zeeland stronghold against the water and from enemies. Later, it became a prosperous merchant city that spent great wealth on the construction of important buildings, such as the 15th-century gothic Town Hall. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 6Ghent, Belgium

In a unique way, Ghent, the “diamond” of Flanders, has managed to preserve its medieval charm and power while keeping up with the times. A LOCAL GUIDE will proudly point out that the city center alone is a showcase of medieval Flemish wealth and commercial success. Visit ST. BAAF’S CATHEDRAL, which houses remarkable art treasures, including the most important work in Flemish art, The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb, created by the Van Eyck brothers around 1432. On your own, explore the traffic-free streets in the city center; see Gravensteen, the “castle of the counts,” an imposing castle in the city that was built in 1180; or join an optional excursion to fascinating Bruges with its criss-crossed canals and charming old patrician houses. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 7Antwerp

Antwerp is Belgium’s second-largest city and one of the world’s most important ancient seaports. It merges the new with the old and offers the attractions and atmosphere you’d expect from a European city—friendly people, fabulous architecture, chic shops, interesting museums, vibrant cafés, charming galleries, and historic monuments. INCLUDED SIGHTSEEING with a Local Guide shows you its superb architecture; the central GROTE MARKT, lined with 16th-century houses; the beautiful city hall, completed in 1566; and the Church of Our Lady, started in 1352 and featuring paintings by Rubens. An optional excursion is available to nearby Brussels, Belgium’s capital and home of the European Union. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 8Brussels (Disembarkation)

Your vacation ends after breakfast this morning. (Breakfast)

Ship Details

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Hotels

Amsterdam
Brussels

Amsterdam

Moevenpick Amsterdam City

Moevenpick Amsterdam City Piet Heinkade 11, Amsterdam,  Netherlands Piet Heinkade 11
Amsterdam, Netherlands

Free WifiFree Wifi

Hotel as shown or similar
Superior First-Class

A stylish 408-room hotel in the perfect location, this waterfront property offers Free Wi-Fi internet access throughout. The chic restaurant serves creative international cuisine and there is a fabulous bar serving drinks and light snacks which is also a great spot for a nightcap. For relaxation there is a Lifestyle Studio featuring a gym, Finnish sauna, bio sauna & ice fountain.

Hotel Amenities

Restaurant On-Site
Luggage Storage
Fitness Room
Currency Exchange
Free WiFi
Bar/Lounge
Business Center
ATM
Parking/Valet
Gift Shop
Concierge desk
Dry Cleaning
Spa Services
Elevator
Room Amenities

Air Conditioning (Seasonal)
In-Room Safe
Disabled Access / Rooms
Non-smoking Rooms
Smoking Rooms
Wake-Up Calls
Television
Room Service
Climate Control
Pay Movies
Internet Access
Coffee Maker
Desk
Hair Dryer
Mini-bar
Window Opens
Air Conditioning
Phone
Voicemail
Iron/Ironing Board
Cable/Satellite
Complimentary Toiletries

Brussels

Radisson Blu Royal

Radisson Blu Royal Rue D.Fosse-Aux-Loups 47, Brussels,   Belgium Rue D.Fosse-Aux-Loups 47
Brussels, Belgium

Free WifiFree Wifi

Hotel as shown or similar
Deluxe

Just 14 kilometers from the airport, the Radisson Blu Royal Hotel, Brussels welcomes guests with a signature art deco façade designed by famed city architect Michel Jaspers. Easily discover the best of the capital's vibrant culture, food, commerce and architecture from this city center hotel. Brussels visitors should be sure to visit nearby Grand Place, Manneken Pis and Magritte Museum, among other attractions. Rooms well-designed in their own right, award-winning restaurants and first-class facilities await enjoyment upon guests' return.

Hotel Amenities

Elevator
Restaurant On-Site
Ice Machine
Business Center
Free WiFi
Luggage Storage
Concierge desk
Currency Exchange
Fitness Room
Parking/Valet
Dry Cleaning
Room Amenities

Room Service
Air Conditioning
Non-smoking Rooms
Mini-bar
Hair Dryer
Coffee Maker
Climate Control
Iron/Ironing Board
Television
Phone
Internet Access
Disabled Access / Rooms
In-Room Safe
Cable/Satellite

 Optional Excursions

The following optional excursions are examples only for this vacation. These may or may not be offered, and availability is subject to days of operation and seasonality. Please select a departure date to view optional excursions and pricing for a specific date (due to currency fluctuation, pricing shown is subject to change until purchased).

Price Ranges

$ ($50 USD and under)
$$ ($51 - $100 USD)
$$$ ($101 - $150 USD)
$$$$ (Over $150)

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