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Best of Holland 8-day Bike and Barge Tour ( Mag)
This tour with premium barges, combines many highlights and gives you a fantastic insight into all that is Holland. The cycling cruise starts in Amsterdam, with an enjoyable dinner cruise to Zaandam. This is followed by the Zaanse Schans open-air museum - a must-see!
Enjoy a cycling tour to Volendam through the unique wetlands of Waterland - a large open area with tiny lakes and canals. This town is famous for its harbour, fresh fish such as eel and herring –and the ‘Palingsound’; a kind of Dutch folk or country music. You will also visit the picturesque former island of Marken.
From there you will cycle to IJburg, the newest part of Amsterdam. This part of the city was built just a decade ago on the polder land and was once, the bottom of the sea. Continue by barge to the small town of Vianen on the Lower Rhine River. Visit Schoonhoven, well known for its silver, and the UNESCO site at Kinderdijk, with its 19 windmills. Lovely views are guaranteed!
Enjoy the old city of Dordrecht that obtained city rights in 1220 AD. From here the tour continues north to Gouda, famous for its cheese and candles. Explore The Green Heart of Holland, a largely rural and green area amidst the horseshoe-shaped ring of cities in the western part of the country. You’ll spend the night in a small village in the Green Heart. Cycle or sail into Amsterdam, where your journey ends.
The premium barges which run this tour will have two tour guides for guided cycling in smaller groups; guests can opt for longer/shorter of quicker/slower cycling tours (depending on the route). Only available when there are at least 18 guests onboard.
The barge has sixteen cabins, situated on the lower deck. Guests are accommodated in eleven twin cabins (11 m² – 118.5 sq.ft.) with two single beds set next to each other, four premium twin cabins (14 m² – 151 sq.ft.) with two single beds next to each other and a small sitting area and one single cabin (7 m² – 75.5 sq.ft.). On prior request, the beds in most twin cabins can be set together as a double bed. On request, an additional bed is available in some twin cabins (as fold away bunk bed, above one of the other beds). Each cabin has an en-suite bathroom with a shower, toilet and washbasin. All cabins have an individually regulated air conditioning, ventilation system and central heating; the portholes in all cabins are fixed for safety reasons. Furthermore, each cabin has a flat-screen (satellite) TV, a mini-safe and a hairdryer.
On the upper deck, is a tastefully furnished lounge with air conditioning, restaurant, a beautiful bar, a sitting area with cozy corners, a widescreen TV and large windows. Wi-Fi is available. There are two partly covered teak wooden sundecks with chairs and tables where you can have a drink when the weather is nice and enjoy the scenery while cruising. On the elevated aft deck you will find a barbecue and a whirlpool/Jacuzzi to relax.
If you would like to rent a bike (85 EUR) or e-bike (185 EUR), please contact our office when booking: [email protected]
Slow Tours offers other Bike & Barge tours in Europe
Amsterdam | Amsterdam – Zaandam
Embarkation and check-in. The crew will welcome you on board between 1pm and 2pm. As soon as all guests have arrived a short cruise will bring you to Zaandam, a spot famous for its windmills. Here, your barge will berth in the centre of the city for the night. Upon arrival you can enjoy taking your new bike for a brief test ride through the surrounding area. In the evening, enjoy a short walk through the picturesque centre of Zaandam.
Zaandam – Zaanse Schans museum – Waterland – Volendam 33km or 43km
After breakfast start the first cycling tour to the open-air museum Zaanse Schans for a short visit. Continue cycling through small villages in the beautiful wetlands of Waterland to Volendam. The ship sails via Amsterdam to Volendam. Late afternoon on board in Volendam, the small and picturesque fishing harbour on the shores of the Lake IJsselmeer.
Volendam – Marken (ferry) | Marken – Waterland – Muiden | Muiden – Vianen 39km or 46km
After breakfast, you will take the ferry for a 30min crossing from Volendam to the former island of Marken. Visit this nice, authentic village and continue cycling along the coastline towards IJburg, a new and modern part of Amsterdam that was recently built on reclaimed land from the sea. From here you’ll cycle to the historical town of Muiden with its 14th-century castle on the waterfront. Your cycling tour ends close to the village of Weesp, where the ship is moored. Around 5pm the ship departs for Vianen and you can enjoy dinner while cruising. Evening on board in Vianen, a small fortified town on the lower Rhine River.
Vianen – Schoonhoven – Alblasserdam | Alblasserdam – Dordrecht (waterbus ferry) 22km or 57km
Today you have 3 cycle options. The long option leads all the way from Vianen to Alblasserdam. If you prefer a shorter bike tour you can either bike in the morning or bike in the afternoon. The ship will make a stop halfway in Schoonhoven, also called the ‘Silver City’. In the afternoon the cycling tour takes you from Schoonhoven through the Alblasserwaard polder to Alblasserdam, This is where you pass the famous 19 windmills of Kinderdijk (UNESCO World Heritage site). It is known as one of the most photogenic sights of the Netherlands. You can have a look around in one of the windmills and the visitor centre before you will take the Waterbus ferry to Dordrecht. Dordrecht, or Dordt as it is called by insiders, is one of the oldest Dutch cities, on the conjunction of 3 major rivers. In the evening, after dinner, you can join for a short city walk. You will spend the night in Dordrecht on board the ship.
Dordrecht – Alblasserdam (waterbus ferry) | Alblasserdam – Gouda 37km or 52km
When you’ve finished breakfast you will return by Waterbus to Alblasserdam to start your cycling tour. Close to Bergambacht, you may visit a cheese farm where you will learn about the traditional cheese-making process and you will have the opportunity to taste the results. Continue cycling to Gouda, the cheese and candle capital of Holland. Enjoy this beautiful historical city, the old market square and the Cheese Weighing House during the afternoon and evening. This evening dinner is not included, so you will enjoy a wonderful meal in one of many restaurants in Gouda. We have various restaurant recommendations available onboard.
Gouda – Leiden – Oude Wetering 33km or 52km
Today’s cycling tour starts in Gouda (long option) or in Alphen (short option) and shows you the typical scenery of the so-called Green Heart of Holland with green landscapes, wide views, small canals and tiny lakes – all below sea level! The cycling tour leads via Leiden, the birthplace of famous painter Rembrandt and residence of the oldest university of the Netherlands. Both cycling options end in Oude Wetering. Dinner, onboard the ship in this small village.
Oude Wetering – Amsterdam 29km or another 28km
After breakfast, you’ll start your last cycling day from Oude Wetering along the canal and through the ‘Amsterdam forest’ into Amsterdam. During the afternoon you either have the opportunity to make a last beautiful cycling tour through the wetlands of Waterland or to discover this amazing city. Visit the inner city flower market, a museum, do some shopping there is just so much to do! In the evening you can join a boat tour through the beautiful canals of old Amsterdam (UNESCO cultural heritage). A wonderful way to conclude your trip!
Check-out and disembarkation right after breakfast, before 9.30 a.m.
If you would like to drive yourself before or after your tour, ask us for a quote on any brand new Renault, Peugeot or Citroen vehicle for driving in Europe.
Pick up your vehicle from most capital cities in Europe and return it to your drop off destination. Top insurance cover. Email [email protected] for a competitive quote