Because of its many canals, the best way to see Holland is to take a waterways river cruise - one that includes the sites of Belgium as well, including Antwerp, Ghent, and Brussels. Many of the excursions begin in Amsterdam and end in Brussels, making it possible for you to escape to some of the charming waterways that lead to some of the most renowned historic sites in Europe. With river cruise volume buys plus our low everyday prices you can save up to 50% versus the brochure price! Book your Holland and Belgium Waterways river cruise today with AffordableTours.com, your discounted river cruise headquarters.Holland and Belgium Waterways Travel Guide
|Dec 24, 2022||AmaWaterways||AmaSerena||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||10||$4,249|
|Dec 26, 2022||AmaWaterways||AmaSerena||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||8||$3,499|
|Mar 14, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaMora||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||10||$3,549|
|Mar 16, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaMora||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||8||$2,799|
|Mar 17, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaLucia||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||10||$3,649|
|Mar 18, 2023||Avalon Waterways||Imagery II||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||16||$5,257|
|Mar 18, 2023||Avalon Waterways||Imagery II||Amsterdam||Brussels||9||$3,458|
|Mar 19, 2023||Viking||Viking Kvasir||Amsterdam||Antwerp||10||$5,799|
|Mar 19, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaLucia||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||8||$2,899|
|Mar 19, 2023||Avalon Waterways||Imagery II||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||15||$4,898|
|Mar 19, 2023||Avalon Waterways||Imagery II||Amsterdam||Brussels||8||$3,099|
|Mar 21, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaMora||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||10||$3,749|
|Mar 23, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaMora||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||8||$2,999|
|Mar 24, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaLucia||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||10||$3,749|
|Mar 25, 2023||Avalon Waterways||Tranquility II||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||9||$2,808|
|Mar 26, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaCerto||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||10||$3,849|
|Mar 26, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaLucia||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||8||$2,999|
|Mar 26, 2023||Avalon Waterways||Imagery II||Brussels||Amsterdam||8||$3,199|
|Mar 26, 2023||Viking||Viking Freya||Amsterdam||Antwerp||10||$4,599|
|Mar 28, 2023||Viking||Viking Kvasir||Antwerp||Amsterdam||10||$4,599|
|Mar 28, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaMora||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||10||$3,849|
|Mar 28, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaCerto||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||8||$3,099|
|Mar 30, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaMora||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||8||$3,099|
|Mar 31, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaLucia||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||10||$3,949|
|Mar 31, 2023||Emerald||Emerald Destiny||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||8||$3,595|
|Apr 01, 2023||Avalon Waterways||Imagery II||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||16||$6,307|
|Apr 01, 2023||Avalon Waterways||Tranquility II||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||9||$3,558|
|Apr 01, 2023||Avalon Waterways||Imagery II||Amsterdam||Brussels||9||$3,158|
|Apr 02, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaCerto||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||10||$3,949|
|Apr 02, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaLucia||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||8||$3,199|
|Apr 02, 2023||Avalon Waterways||Impression||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||9||$3,658|
|Apr 02, 2023||Avalon Waterways||Imagery II||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||15||$5,948|
|Apr 02, 2023||Avalon Waterways||Imagery II||Amsterdam||Brussels||8||$2,799|
|Apr 04, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaMora||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||10||$3,949|
|Apr 04, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaCerto||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||8||$3,199|
|Apr 06, 2023||Viking||Viking Kvasir||Amsterdam||Antwerp||10||$4,599|
|Apr 06, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaMora||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||8||$3,199|
|Apr 07, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaLucia||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||10||$4,049|
|Apr 08, 2023||AmaWaterways||AmaSerena||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||10||$4,049|
|Apr 08, 2023||Avalon Waterways||Tranquility II||Amsterdam||Amsterdam||9||$3,158|
Holland and Belgium Waterways Travel Guide
Holland and Belgium Waterways River Cruises Highlights
- Visit during tulip time, and see thousands of tulips growing in gardens and in the wild from late March to early May.
- Enjoy a private gala dinner onboard your luxury river cruise ship.
- Take a scenic river cruise on the beautiful 17th century Amsterdam canals.
- Stroll through Keukenhof Gardens at Tulip Festival Time.
- Visit the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.
- Enjoy an all-inclusive river cruise trip. The typical trip covers 7 nights.
- Receive all meals free – 20 meals for 7 days.
- Drink unlimited beverages, including premium beers and wines, tea, and coffee.
Holland and Belgium Waterways River Cruises Travel Tips
- Schedule your river cruise during the spring so you can enjoy tulip-blooming time.
- You won't need a visa to travel, unless you plan to spend over 90 days in Europe. The passport you use should be good for 3 months after you end your river cruise holiday.
- Carry a sturdy and small umbrella in case you get caught in a spring rain.
- Because the pollen count rises in the spring and temperatures fluctuate, don't forget to carry cold medicine or an allergy medication with you.
- European merchants accept charge cards with a chip and pin. Therefore, make sure you are using this type of credit card.
Holland and Belgium Waterways River Cruises Things To Do
When you first experience Amsterdam, it is hard to believe that it started as a sleepy fishing village in the 12th century. Today, Amsterdam is revered as being one of the most influential and historic cities in Europe. Not only does the city boast approximately 7,000 historic buildings, its 400 bridges connect numerous islands along Amsterdam's network of canals.
Best Time To VisitThe best time to tour Amsterdam is when the tulips are in bloom in Keukenhof Gardens. At this time, you have the rare opportunity to see an amazing display of the Netherlands' iconic blossoms.
You Should KnowIf you want to visit the Anne Frank House, it is best to make reservations before you go on your river cruise journey. One of the highlights of a trip to Amsterdam is the Golden Age paintings of Rembrandt and Vermeer – seen in the famous Rijksmuseum. Vincent Van Gogh's artwork is prominently displayed in the city's Van Gogh Museum. Bloemenmarkt, which is Amsterdam's floating flower market, will ship tulip bulbs to your home so you can plant them in your garden.
Lisse, which is located between Haarlem and The Hague, has become the heart of the Netherlands' tulip-growing region. Not only can you see colorful fields of flowers during the springtime, you can also capture their fragrance and beauty at Keukenhof Gardens, noted as being the world's largest flower park. If you love flowers and springtime, Lisse offers you a tremendous travel opportunity.
Best Time To VisitTo appreciate the beauty of Lisse, it is best to visit between late March and early spring. During this time, you can see thousands of tulips and flowers displayed.
You Should KnowThe Keukenhof Tulips Gardens opens from late March to early May during the area's Tulip Festival. Each year, over 7 million flower bulbs are planted in the fall to bloom by March. The garden features 800 varieties of tulips. A flower parade passes through Lisse each year during the Tulip Festival. The parade route begins in Noordwijk and ends in Haarlem. Tulips did not originate in Holland. The bulbs were 16th-century imports from the Ottoman Empire, which is present-day Turkey. While tulips bloom from March to May, they reach their peak in mid-April. Lisse is also home to Keukenhof Castle, a restored 17th century estate that is used as an event venue.
- The Hague (by way of Rotterdam)
Stopping off at Rotterdam, river cruise travelers travel to their next stop, The Hague. This famous Dutch city is located on the coast of the North Sea in the west Netherlands. The seat of the Dutch Parliament, The Hague is also the base for the International Court of Justice overseen by the United Nations, or UN.
Best Time To VisitVisit The Hague during the Netherland's Tulip Festival to add diversity to your Netherlands and Belgium Waterways river cruise.
You Should KnowThe Hague's symbol on its coat of arms is a stork on a shield flanked by two gold lions. The bird stands on one leg and is eating an eel. Back in the 14th century, storks built their nests in the area, and were believed to be good luck. The bird was first seen on the court of arms in 1541. The Hague is home to the longest lane in the country, or Laan van Meerdervoot, which is about 3.5 miles long. However, don't confuse a lane with a street. In the Netherlands, that distinction goes to Oudebildtdijk (Street) in Friesland, which runs about 7.5 miles in length.
You really cannot experience the Netherlands without visiting the enchanting village of Kinderdijk. This UNESCO listed attraction is known for its polder landscape and as a point of confluence for the Noord and Lek rivers. The real charm of Kinderdijk unfolds when you see its old-fashioned Dutch windmills.
Best Time To VisitVisit Kinderdijk in the first part of May, when rains or flooding begin to subside.
You Should KnowMake sure you choose a river cruise provider that features bikes for exploring the Kinderdijk countryside. This is the best way to see the windmills and scenery. The village is home to 19 Dutch windmills. Begin your off-shore excursion by paying a visit to the Kinderdijk's Wisboomgemaal Visitors Center. Doing so will give you a better idea of the lay of the land and its sites.
The historic island city of Dordrecht, which borders five rivers, lies in the province of South Holland. The harbor town truly embodies the Dutch word for harbor ("haven"), given it historic district and its array of old warehouses, quays, and former merchant's mansions and homes. Dordrecht was known as an important port from the 1400s to 1700s in the Netherlands.
Best Time To VisitVisit Dordrecht during the spring and enjoy lower temperatures and the lovely tulips and flowers on display in all parts of the Netherlands.
You Should KnowThe best way to see Dordrecht is by taking a guided walking tour in the medieval inner city. During your trek, you will also be able to view the 19th-century buildings that ring the outer part of the inner section. While Dordrecht was settled in 1049, it did not officially become a city until 1220. Dordrecht served as an important trading port when travel by waterway was the main mode of transport.
- Ghent, Belgium
Many river cruise travelers have expressed that Ghent, Belgium is arguably the prettiest city in Belgium. Located in Flanders, Ghent is a walk-friendly city with its smorgasbord of churches, old merchants' residences, and castles. The city's cobblestoned town center allows you to see examples of early Flemish architecture.
Best Time To VisitMake plans to see Ghent when the trees begin to bud and brief spring showers provide a quiet respite from sight-seeing activities.
You Should KnowGhent is known for a cube-shaped candy known as a Ghent nose. The traditional raspberry sweet treat is sold by street vendors in the city. Waffles are popular at breakfast, and served with honey or sugar. The medieval Gravensteen Castle, also known as the Castle of the Counts, is located in the middle of Ghent. While you can see spetacular views of Ghent from the top of the castle, you may feel squeamish about visiting the torture museum located inside the building. About 25% of Ghent's population is made up of university students.
- Antwerp, Belgium
The city of Antwerp is synonymous with the diamond trade, as most of the world's diamonds pass through this Belgium city. Billed as the diamond capital of the world, Antwerp is also known for its Old-World charm and medieval personality. The influence of the painter, Pieter Paul Rubens, is greatly felt here, as you can see his works at the Rubens House, built in the 17th century.
Best Time To VisitIf you are visiting Holland as well, travel to Antwerp in the spring. That way, you won't miss the Tulip Festival in the Netherlands.
You Should KnowNoted for its Flemish Renaissance period buildings, Grote Markt sits in the center of Antwerp's Old Town. The Rubens House, constructed in the 17th century, displays the works of the Flemish Baroque painter, Pieter Paul Rubens. The Red Star Line Museum features interactive displays in the former warehouses of Red Star Line Shipping. A visit to a brewery and a beer tasting can be arranged for an off-ship excursion.
- Brussels, Belgium
The capital of Belgium, Brussels has been an important center of trade and commerce since the 1200s. This city hosts a number of fun and/or interesting activities, including chocolate making and beer tasting. You can also see some unique attractions, including the Atomium, a 338-foot high structure that resembles atoms. It was built for the World Fair in 1958.
Best Time To VisitPlan your trip to Brussels on a Holland and Belgium waterways river cruise during the middle part of April. Not only is this tulip-growing season in the Netherlands, it also is a propitious time to travel in Belgium. Crowds are fewer during the period, as the summer rush of tourists has not yet begun.
You Should KnowBrussels features one of Europe's most beautiful squares. The Grand-Place is home to a town hall that sits among Renaissance styled guildhalls. The Delirium Café in Brussels features around 2,000 beers. The Comic Strip Route in the city celebrates Brussel's self-proclaimed status of being the world's comic strip capital. Around 50 murals along the route highlight comic strip art.
Holland and Belgium Waterways River Cruise Packages
You simply are missing out if you take one of the Holland and Belgium waterways river cruises in the summer or fall, as the Tulip Festival takes place in the Netherlands in the spring. Therefore, spring is generally the best time to mark your river cruise calendar.
While spring is an ideal time for frolicking among the flowers, you may have to take a bus to the location. If snow melt and rain lead to flooding conditions, you will spend less time river cruising and more time on a bus. This is just a reality of travel during a rainier season.
If you want to visit the Netherlands and Belgium when river cruise prices are lower, you might consider taking a river cruise in November and/or December. That is when the Christmas Markets are set up through Europe. These markets can provide some pleasant holiday magic for anyone taking a river cruise during this less-traveled season of the year.
Holland and Belgium Waterways River Cruises Frequently Asked Questions
- What Are Holland and Belgium Waterways River Cruises?
Most Holland and Belgium waterways river cruises begin in Amsterdam, where a walking tour is offered before departure. Other popular ports and attractions include Lisse (home of the tulip fields and Keukenhof Gardens), The Hague (the seat of the country's government), and Kinderdijk, home to Netherlands' old-fashioned windmills. River cruise ships stop at Belgium cities, such as Ghent, Bruges, Antwerp, and Brussels.
- What’s Included on Holland and Belgium Waterways River Cruises?
Holland and Belgium waterways river cruises feature luxury suites with amenities, such as a hairdryer and toiletries, Wi-FI, and flat screen TV. You are also provided with escorted tours and free onboard, award-winning cuisine. In addition, river cruise travelers can drink unlimited beverages, including beer, wine, premium spirits, sodas, and bottled water.
- What’s the Best River Cruise of Holland and Belgium Waterways River Cruises?
Before that question can be answered, you need to review what you can spend. Your best river cruise value provides you with luxury amenities at an affordable price. The travel itinerary should clearly outline what you will receive for taking an all-inclusive tour of the Netherlands and Belgian waterways. One top river cruise provider that offers this type of service is Tauck. You can also experience similar benefits by choosing Viking River Cruises.
- How Much Do Holland and Belgium Waterways River Cruises Cost?
For a river cruise journey of 7 nights, plan on spending an average price per person of $6,000. This all-inclusive travel price includes gratuities and airport transfers upon arrival and departure.
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