Grand Tulip Cruise of Holland & Belgium for Garden & Nature Lovers 2020

15 Day River Cruise Amsterdam to Amsterdam

2020 Information

If you’re passionate about gardening, or you simply love nature, this tulip season cruise is for you! A special interest departure designed with inspirational horticultural art in mind. Accompanying your cruise is a botany expert who shares fascinating facts about gardening and the world of plants. You’ll learn a lot with knowledgeable onboard lectures on your Garden & Nature Lover cruise.

Embark in Amsterdam and cruise to Arnhem to tour its WWII Airborne Museum commemorating the brave battle of 1944. Join your ship in Nijmegen and visit the forest setting of ‘s-Hertogenbosch to sample decadent Dutch chocolate desserts. Visit a fruit and flower farm to hear the history of a 15th-century windmill, and take a carriage ride through the nearby nature reserve to watch for herons, storks, birds of prey, and wild horses. In Maastricht, tour the old cobblestoned university town, or visit a working mill to make Limburg pie.

On to Belgium for a sightseeing tour of medieval Namur. In Liège, see the ancient quarters of the “Fiery City,” and explore the city of Antwerp. See the cathedral’s stunning altarpiece paintings by the Flemish master Peter Paul Rubens. Explore Brussels with a guided tour of its landmarks. Visit “The Diamond of Flanders” in Ghent, for stunning Flemish artwork in St. Bavo’s Cathedral. Explore more of the Flanders area with tours in Bossuit—the In Flanders Fields Museum and moving battlefield memorials and memorabilia.

In Middelburg, explore its grand history in the Dutch East India Company. Tour the Veere Delta Works flood-protection system, and cruise through Kinderdijk—where windmills became symbols of Holland. See the Erasmus Bridge in Rotterdam, and the quintessential Dutch towns of Zaandam and Haarlem with their signature flower farms, windmills, waterways, and North Sea trading. Return to Amsterdam for a guided canal cruise through the iconic city.


Dates & Prices Get a Quote Book Online

Cruise at-a-Glance

Day 1 Amsterdam (Embarkation):Onboard welcome reception Day 2 Arnhem—Nijmegen:Guided tour of Airborne Museum in Arnhem; choice of guided excursion to ‘s-Hertogenbosch, or visit to a fruit and flower farm, or bike tourDay 3 Maastricht:Choice of guided tour, or guided visit to a mill; visit a National Park in BelgiumDay 4 Namur:Botany lecture; guided tourDay 5 Liège:Guided tourDay 6 Antwerp:Guided tour, visit the central Grote Markt; botany lectureDay 7 Brussels:Guided tour, see the town hallDay 8 Brussels: Day at leisureDay 9 Ghent:Guided tourDay 10 Bossuit:Visit to Flanders Field Museum in Ypres; visit to the battlefields; Last Post Ceremony at the Menin GateDay 11 Middelburg—Veere: Guided tour in Middelburg; guided tour of the Delta Works Day 12 Kinderdijk—Rotterdam:Guided tour in Kinderdijk and RotterdamDay 13 Zaandam—Haarlem:Free time in Zaandam; guided tour in Haarlem Day 14 Amsterdam:Choice of canal cruise, or guided jogging tourDay 15 Amsterdam (Disembarkation):Your cruise ends this morning

Cruise YourWay

Avalon makes it easy to experience vacation your way with seamless extension options before and after your cruise. Your Way offers added nights in a selection of locales. From Budapest to Barcelona, you can spend a little or a lot more time getting to know more on shore with Your Way custom itineraries.

View 6 Your Way Cruise Options »

Always Included

You've always forged your own path...with your own distinct perspective of looking at the world. Avalon Waterways presents a river cruise experience with your unique style in mind—offering expansive views and wider perspectives. That's why we've designed a cruise experience that's just a bit different.

Here are just some of the features and amenities you'll experience on board our Avalon ships. See the Ship Amenities Section below for more information about the amenities in our fleet’s unique ships.

Throughout the Ship
Suites & Staterooms
Health & Fitness
Dining

Throughout the Ship:

  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • Panoramic windows
  • Elegant, contemporary design & decor
  • Friendly, English-speaking crew & Cruise Director
  • Sky Deck with whirlpool, shade awnings, game area and premium lounges
  • Covered Observation Lounge
  • Club Lounge with 24-hour self-serve beverage station with complimentary cappuccinos, lattes, tea, hot chocolate & premium coffees, as well as treats throughout the day

Suites & Staterooms:

  • Comfort Collection BedsSM with choice of mattress firmness
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens
  • Bathrobes & slippers
  • Premium L'Occitane bath products
  • Large bathroom featuring shower with glass door
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with free movie channels
  • Individual climate control and in-room safe
  • USB Ports
  • Complimentary bottled water daily
  • And, much more.

Health & Fitness:

  • Bikes
  • Canoe, kayak and jogging excursions
  • Maps for hiking, biking and jogging routes
  • Fitness and wellness activities
  • Fitbits®
  • All through your Avalon Adventure HostSM

Dining

  • FlexDining® for more venue and seating options, including flexible seating times in our Panorama Dining Room
  • Avalon Fresh® healthy cuisine options at every meal
  • Complimentary sparkling wine with breakfast; wine, beer, or soft drinks with every lunch and dinner
  • Early and Late Riser breakfast options
  • Daily full buffet breakfast with made-to-order egg station, hot and cold menu items
  • Daily lunch buffet with pasta or carving stations
  • Alternative light lunch at Sky Grill on the Sky Deck (weather permitting)
  • Daily Afternoon Tea featuring tea, coffee, sweet treats & sandwiches
  • Daily four-course a la carte dinner in the Panorama Dining Room with choice of appetizers, soups, salads, entrees and desserts. Includes selections of regional recipes, Western dishes and vegetarian options.
  • Enjoy a tasting menu with a view in the Panorama Bistro - a less formal "sit-down" atmosphere while lingering over several satisfying selections
  • Captain’s welcome & farewell receptions and dinners with sparkling wine and canapés
  • Panorama Lounge featuring premium spirits and Avalon specialty cocktails, along with local entertainment special guests
  • Cocktails available on the Sky Deck
  • Fresh fruit available throughout the day

Avalon has designed included activities with a choice of experiences. We invite you to select the tours, activities, and events that interest you most, so you can experience your cruise your way. There are 3 types of included shore excursion on every Europe cruise:

Classic
Your local expert is ready to guide you through the history and heritage of local destinations. You’ll marvel at the legends, lore, and spectacular architecture of iconic and historic sites.
Discovery
We’ve found inspiring and interactive activities to speak to your interests - from cooking classes, to painting workshops - to immerse yourself in each culture you explore.
Active
Embark on energetic excursions to keep you in motion and on the go - from a guided jogging tour of Amsterdam, to biking, paddling, and hiking your way through scenic locales.
  • Plus independent exploration options and use of our exclusive AvalonGO APP.

Day-By-Day Itinerary

(B) = Breakfast   (L) = Lunch   (D) = Dinner

Day 1

(D)

AMSTERDAM, HOLLAND (EMBARKATION)

Welcome to Holland. Your Suite Ship® is Ready for Boarding.

Flights into Amsterdam must arrive by 2 pm.

Guests must be on board ship by 5 pm.

Your day in Amsterdam is free to explore at your leisure.

You may take a Guided Optional Excursion to Keukenhof gardens—with more than seven million tulips, daffodils, and hyacinths, as well as other bulbs, planted each year.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO ARNHEM

Day 2

(B, L, D)

ARNHEM

A Duke’s Forest and a Dutch Treat

Classic
Join a Guided Tour of the Airborne Museum of Hartenstein commemorating the 1944 WWII Battle of Arnhem.

Join your ship in Nijmegen and enjoy lunch onboard.

Classic
Join a Guided Excursion to ‘s-Hertogenbosch (meaning the Duke’s Forest). Sample a Bossche Bol—a decadent cream puff covered in Dutch chocolate, OR:
Discovery
Visit a windmill and family-operated fruit and flower farm. Hear the history of a 15th century windmill with a local flour miller. Then, enjoy a carriage ride through the Ooijpolder nature reserve—home to herons, storks, birds of prey, and wild horses, OR:
Active
Join in a Guided Bike Ride to explore the river banks of Arnhem.

Sail out this evening for Venlo while dining on board.

AFTERNOON/EVENING CRUISE TO VENLO

Day 3

(B, L, D)

MAASTRICHT

Dutch History, Modern Spirit, and Fresh Pie

Enjoy an early morning sailing to Maastricht.

Classic
Discover this vibrant university town with its lovely cathedrals, old houses, and buildings, and impressively cobblestoned town center, OR:
Discovery
Take a Guided Visit to an old working mill still in operation. At the end of your visit, join the interactive museum and bake your own Vlaai—a delicious Limburg pie.
Discovery
Join a Guided Experience in a unique natural reserve and discover the typical heath landscape of Benelux.

Later, enjoy live entertainment on board.

OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO NAMUR

Day 4

(B, L, D)

NAMUR, BELGIUM

Ancient Architecture and Charming Cafés

Discovery
While sailing satisfy your curiosity about botany and nature during a lecture hosted by a local expert.
Classic
Join a Guided Sightseeing Tour of the picturesque old-town, fortress citadel, and medieval architecture.

Take free time to stroll along Namur’s cobblestone lanes and visit its charming cafés and bookshops.

This evening, enjoy live entertainment on board your ship.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN NAMUR

Day 5

(B, L, D)

LIÈGE

Historic Wonders and Wonderful Waffles

Classic
Join a Guided Sightseeing Tour of the “Fiery City” of Liège with its beautiful ancient quarters, peculiar alleys, and romantic streets. Don’t miss sampling authentically sweet Liège Waffles.
EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO ANTWERP

Day 6

(B, L, D)

ANTWERP

A Grand Gothic Cathedral in Artful Antwerp

Classic
Take a Guided Tour of this sophisticated city to visit the central Grote Markt, lined with 16th-century guildhall houses. You’ll also see the beautiful city hall, the Cathedral of Our Lady with its stunning altarpiece paintings by Rubens.
Discovery
While sailing satisfy your curiosity about botany and nature during a lecture hosted by a local expert.

Enjoy cocktail or coffee aboard your ship as you sail to Brussels this afternoon.

Later, enjoy dinner and live entertainment.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN BRUSSELS

Day 7

(B, L, D)

BRUSSELS

Ancient Landmarks and New Finds

Classic
Join a Guided Tour of Brussels, see the Town Hall with its landmark buildings and discover the many local bars, cafés and shops of the Lower Town Streets.
OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN BRUSSELS

Day 8

(B, L, D)

BRUSSELS

Filling Fare and Fabled Beer

Spend a day at leisure to sample Brussels hearty cuisine and famous beer.

Enjoy dinner on board as you sail for Ghent this evening.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO GHENT

Day 9

(B, L, D)

GHENT

Ghent’s Cobblestones, Canals, and Cosmopolitan Charisma

Classic
Explore Ghent—“The Diamond of Flanders”— with a Guided Sightseeing Tour of this showcase of medieval Flemish wealth. You’ll visit St. Bavo’s Cathedral—with its remarkable Flemish artwork.

Alternatively, you may choose to join a full-day Guided Optional Excursion of Bruges to explore its canals, cobbled streets, and medieval buildings. You’ll see its crisscrossed canals, the 13th-century belfry of Market Square, and charming patrician houses.

This evening, enjoy live entertainment on board.

OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO BOSSUIT

Day 10

(B, L, D)

BOSSUIT

Battlefield Remembrances in Flanders

Discovery
Visit the In Flanders’ Field Museum in Ypres— learn about the story of the invasion of Belgium, the first months of the mobilization, the four years trench war in the Westhoek, the end of the war, and the permanent remembrance ever since. After your visit, enjoy lunch at the museum’s café.
Discovery
Follow your visit to the museum with a journey back in time by visiting battlefields, cemeteries, memorials and private collections.
Discovery
Don’t miss the opportunity to take part to the Last Post Ceremony, taking place every evening under the imposing arches of the Menin Gate. Enjoy some free time for dinner before the Ceremony starts.
OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO MIDDELBURG

Day 11

(B, L, D)

MIDDELBURG, HOLLAND

A Spicy History in Middelburg’s Dutch Harbor Town

Classic
Join a Guided Walking Tour of the historic merchant city of Middelburg—with its 15th century gothic Town Hall. You’ll learn about the spice trade of this Dutch harbor capital of Zeeland, its prosperity in the Dutch East India Company trading, and origins as a stronghold city. Enjoy its winding cobbled streets and canals that circle Old Town.

Enjoy lunch on board while cruising to Veere.

VEERE

The Delta Works Stand Strong as a Technical Marvel

Discovery
Join a Guided Tour of the Delta Works, the largest flood-protection system in the world, and a miracle of modern technology.


Later, enjoy live entertainment on board.

EVENING/OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN KINDERDIJK

Day 12

(B, L, D)

KINDERDIJK—ROTTERDAM

Harnessing the Wind 300 Years

Classic
Join a Guided Tour of Kinderdijk where 19 windmills were built in 1740 as flood prevention and water management. You’ll hear about the windmill’s vital role in the Netherland’s history and why it became a national symbol of Holland.
Classic
Join a Guided Sightseeing Tour of Rotterdam featuring innovative architecture, including the marvelous Erasmus Bridge.

Later, enjoy live entertainment on board.

OVERNIGHT CRUISE TO ZAANDAM

Day 13

(B, L, D)

ZAANDAM—HAARLEM

Windmills, Waterways, and Waving Fields of Flowers

Arrive in Zaandam this morning with free time to explore this quintessential Dutch town. See windmills, waterways, and flower farms, while discovering Dutch history in its handicraft shops and museums.

Cruise to Haarlem this afternoon while enjoying lunch on board.

HAARLEM

Tulips and North Sea Trading Ports

Classic
Visit Haarlem, a major flower bulbs growing district outside of Amsterdam. Explore the former North Sea trading port with its medieval features, gabled houses, and leafy courtyards.

Enjoy dinner on board your ship this evening as you sail to Amsterdam, the capital of the Netherlands.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN AMSTERDAM

Day 14

(B, L, D)

AMSTERDAM

Canals of Colorful Amsterdam

Classic
Explore the iconic waterways of Amsterdam on a Guided Canal Cruise past stately homes of Amsterdam’s “Golden Age”, OR:
Active
See the sights of Amsterdam from a unique perspective by joining our Guided Jogging Tour of the city—all at an easy pace with stops for commentary.

You may choose an Optional City Biking Tour to discover the countryside.

OVERNIGHT DOCKING IN AMSTERDAM

Day 15

(B)

AMSTERDAM (DISEMBARKATION)

Your cruise ends with breakfast this morning.

Notes

  • In the event of technical or water level issues, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or alter the program, including hotel overnight when necessary.
  • Guided Tours, Optional Excursions, activities, sailing and docking schedules may be contingent on weather conditions or other issues outside of our control and could therefore be subject to change at any time.
  • Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.


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Grand Tulip Cruise of Holland & Belgium for Garden & Nature Lovers

Start Sooner, Stay Longer

Start your vacation earlier or stay longer with destination options before or after your Avalon cruise.

Ship Details

Imagery II

Imagery II

One of 2016's two new additions to the youngest fleet on Europe's waterways, the Imagery II continues all of Avalon's outstanding Suite Ship traditions. Passengers can choose from two full decks of Panorama Suites, featuring Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Windows that transform the living space into a unique Open-Air Balcony. At a spacious 200 square feet, Panorama Suites are more than 30% larger than the industry standard, affording the incomparable opportunity to awaken each morning facing the splendid passing scenery. Onboard amenities include complimentary Wi-Fi access, an expanded Fitness Center, an elevator, alternative light dining options in the Panorama Bistro or al fresco grill lunch at the Sky Bistro, and an expansive Sky Deck with whirlpool, premium lounge chairs, a shade system, and deck games.

Included Amenities

Avalon Suite Fleet

  • Complimentary Wi-Fi throughout the ship
  • Panoramic windows throughout the ship
  • Elegant, contemporary design & decor
  • Friendly, English-speaking crew & Cruise Director
  • Sky Deck with whirlpool, shade awnings, game area and premium lounges
  • Covered Observation Lounge
  • Club Lounge with 24-hour self-serve beverage station with complimentary cappuccinos, lattes, tea, hot chocolate & premium coffees, as well as treats throughout the day
  • Elevator
  • Non-smoking interior and staterooms

Fitness & Wellness

  • Fitness Center
  • Avalon Adventure Center
    Your place for active gear and excursions, including
    • Bikes
    • Canoe, kayak and jogging excursions
    • Maps for hiking, biking and jogging routes
    • Fitness and wellness activities
    • FitBits®
    All through your Avalon Adventure HostSM
  • Active shore excursions, both included and optional

Avalon Panorama Suites & Staterooms

  • Open-Air BalconiesSM and Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Windows in all Panorama Suites
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM with choice of mattress firmness
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens
  • Bathrobes & slippers
  • Premium L'Occitane bath products & hairdryer
  • Large bathroom featuring shower with glass door
  • Wide selection of free movie channels and English-speaking TV
  • Individual climate control and in-room safe
  • Full-size closet and mirror
  • Additional under-bed storage
  • Complimentary bottled water daily

Staterooms & Suites

Avalon Deluxe Stateroom (Cat. E) - 172 sq. ft.
Features
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens
  • Soft & firm pillows
  • Choice of bed configuration
  • Bedside tables with reading lamps
  • L'Occitane bath products
  • Easy under-bed luggage storage
  • Alarm clock
  • Bathrobes & slippers
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • Individual climate control
  • Large mirror in bathroom
  • USB Ports
  • Full shower with glass door
  • Vanity and lighted makeup mirror
  • Luxurious mattress toppers
  • European-style duvets
  • Extra blankets
  • Nightly turn-down service
  • Hairdryer
  • Spacious 3-door closets with shelves for ample storage
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with English-speaking channels & over 100 free movie options
  • Direct-dial telephone
  • Well-stocked minibar
  • In-room safe
  • Elegant, contemporary design
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • Two windows
  • Writing desk and chair
Panorama Suite (Cat. A, B, P) - 200 sq. ft.
Features
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens
  • Soft & firm pillows
  • Choice of bed configuration
  • Bedside tables with reading lamps
  • L'Occitane bath products
  • Easy under-bed luggage storage
  • Alarm clock
  • Direct-dial telephone
  • Well-stocked minibar
  • In-room safe
  • Elegant, contemporary design
  • Marble countertops in bathroom
  • USB Ports
  • 6-person sitting area
  • Writing desk and chair
  • Sofa
  • Luxurious mattress toppers
  • European-style duvets
  • Extra blankets
  • Nightly turn-down service
  • Hairdryer
  • Spacious 3-door closets with shelves for ample storage
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with English-speaking channels & over 100 free movie options
  • Make-up mirror
  • Bathrobes & slippers
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • Individual climate control
  • Large mirror in bathroom
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Window with Open-Air BalconySM
  • Full shower with glass door
  • Vanity and lighted makeup mirror
  • Coffee table
Royal Suite - 300 sq. ft.
Features
  • Comfort Collection BedsSM
  • Egyptian super-combed cotton linens
  • Soft & firm pillows
  • Choice of bed configuration
  • Bedside tables with reading lamps
  • L'Occitane bath products
  • Easy under-bed luggage storage
  • Alarm clock
  • Direct-dial telephone
  • Well-stocked minibar
  • In-room safe
  • Elegant, contemporary design
  • Marble countertops in bathroom
  • USB Ports
  • 6-person sitting area
  • Writing desk and chair
  • Sofa
  • Double sinks
  • Luxurious mattress toppers
  • European-style duvets
  • Extra blankets
  • Nightly turn-down service
  • Hairdryer
  • Spacious 3-door closets with shelves for ample storage
  • Flatscreen satellite TV with English-speaking channels & over 100 free movie options
  • Make-up mirror
  • Bathrobes & slippers
  • Complimentary bottled water
  • Individual climate control
  • Large mirror in bathroom
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • Wall-to-Wall Panoramic Window with Open-Air BalconySM
  • Full shower with glass door
  • Vanity and lighted makeup mirror
  • Coffee table
DECK PLANS

 Optional Excursions

No matter what you’re into: food, wine, history, art, music or anything else, we give you the freedom to personalize your vacation with optional excursions that speak to your interests.

When you book your excursions with us, you can be assured that every optional excursion that we offer coordinates with the free time that you'll have in your destination, so you'll never have conflicts between included and optional activities. Our team of travel experts carefully selects each optional excursion that we offer to ensure that you receive the highest quality at a great value. Our tried-and-true partners have a finger on the pulse of the city in which they operate so they deliver the very best experiences. We offer experiences you cannot create on your own and because you’re booking with us, we coordinate all your transportation and timing needs.

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). Optional excursions are available for purchase on our MyAvalon site 90 days prior to the tour start date.

Price Ranges

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

No Excursions are available at this time.