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Maastricht to Amsterdam 8-day Bike and Barge Tour (LM)
“Thinking of Holland I see broad rivers languidly winding through endless fen, lines of incredibly tenuous poplars like giant plumes on the polder’s rim”. These lines of a famous poem by the Dutch poet Marsman characterize this wonderful journey between Amsterdam and Maastricht, the southernmost city in the Netherlands. Discover magical flat and green landscapes formed by the rivers Vecht, Lower Rhine, Waal, Linge and Meuse: a tangle of old gullies, cut-off meanders, dikes and flood plains with a typical flora and fauna. Visit historical towns, remarkable villages and some castles and gardens along these rivers. In the hospitable province of Limburg, cycling tours will cross borders regularly: although the Meuse flows through the Netherlands, Germany and Belgium are only a stone’s throw away. You can eat ‘Kuchen’ (cake) in a German ‘Konditorei’ in the morning and have a delicious afternoon beer in a street café in a Belgium village. The journey starts in Maastricht, the capital of the province of Limburg, famous for its lively centre and vibrant hospitality.
Ideal for bike and barge tours is this spacious river cruiser offers lots of room and comfort to a maximum of 24 passengers. All of the 12 cabins, that are located on the lower deck, are provided with 2 low beds, storage facilities for your luggage, and a small, private bathroom. On the upper deck you’ll find a restaurant area on one side and on the other a salon with nice seats. A perfect spot to regain your strength after a few hours on your bicycle.
If you would like to rent a bike (85 EUR) or e-bike (185 EUR) helmet (10 EUR), please contact our office when booking: [email protected]
Slow Tours offers other Bike & Barge tours in Europe
Embarkation and check-in where the crew will welcome you onboard is between 1pm and 2pm. After the welcome meeting, there is time for bicycle fitting and a short test-ride. After dinner, the tour leader will take you for a walk through the centre of town. We advise you to come to Maastricht one or two days earlier so that you will have plenty of time to discover this interesting city. Maastricht is a beautifully preserved city with Roman roots. In this town you find the treasure house of the St. Servaas Church, the Bonnefanten museum for art and antiquity and the Kazematten, a system of underground fortress works from the 18th century. In addition to these places of interest, it is also worthwhile visiting the marl caves or just to thoroughly enjoy yourself on the Vrijthof. You will not get bored!
Maastricht - Born | Born - Roermond 40km
During breakfast, you join the barge to Born via the Juliana Canal, where you disembark at the locks. From here you bike over the Dutch/Belgian border into Belgium to Maaseik. This town is famous for the painters Hubert and Jan van Eyck. On the market square, you see typical renaissance houses with their impressive facades. You can also use the opportunity to try a Belgian “pint” on this beautiful square. Then you continue to Thorn, the ‘white Village’ on the Dutch/Belgian border known for its cobblestone streets and white painted houses. The only non-white building is the 14th-century church. Our destination for today is the city of Roermond, whereof the river Roer and Meuse come together. Roermond is known for its rich cultural heritage. Since 1559 it has been a bishop city. In the centre, you will find many historical buildings. Roermond is also the city of Pierre Cuypers, according to many, the most important Dutch architect of the 19th century. He is the architect of the Rijks museum and Central Station in Amsterdam.
Roermond - Venlo - Arcen 50km
Today you start biking from Roermond. First, you follow the river on the east bank to the beautiful village of Beesel, where the grain mill ‘grey bear’ stands proudly along the river. Then you cross over to the other bank to Kessel. Kessel is one of the oldest villages on the Meuse. At lunchtime, you arrive in Venlo, with many historical moments and a lively inner city. In the afternoon you ride to Arcen, a former fortified town on the banks of the Meuse. There you can visit the beautiful castle gardens: the Rosarium, with ten different rose gardens, the water and sculpture garden, the Lommerrijk, with shadows, waterfalls and streams, the valley, with six ‘international’ gardens, Casa Verde, with Mediterranean and tropical gardens, the golf garden, overlooking the largest waterfall in the Netherlands.
Arcen - Cuijk 53km
Today a magnificent bike tour is on the program. First you will bike pass Well where you find the Well castle with its heavy round brick tower dating from the 14th century. You continue through the National Park Maasduinen close to the German border. Around lunchtime you arrive in Afferden. You will find the barge again in Cuijk, another interesting city on the banks of the Meuse. The St. Martins Church, a neo-gothic church, houses a very well kept baroc-organ (built 1639-1650). This organ is one of the oldest in the Netherlands.
Cuijk - Maasbommel | Massbommel Heusden 40km
Today you bike from Cuijk along the Meuse River to the cities Grave and Ravenstein. Both are medieval cities. In Grave you will see canons from the time of Napoleon. Grave has also played an important role in Operation Market Garden during the second world war, because it was situated near an important bridge. This bridge is now called the John S. Thompson Bridge. In Ravenstein you can visit the Tanner’s Cottages in the city park. From Maasbommel you will join the barge again on which you will have a nice sail to Heusden, a very beautifully fortified city.
Heusden - Gorinchem | Gorinchem - Vianen 41km
In the morning you will join the barge to Gorinchem, a charming town on the river Waal. From there you cycle through a typical Dutch landscape to Leerdam a little town on the banks of the river Linge. Leerdam is famous for its glasswork. A visit of the centuries-old crystal factory of Royal Leerdam is on the program. You can see a team of master glassblowers at work. In the afternoon you continue to Vianen, a small fortified town on the river Lek.
Vianen - Breukelen | Breukelen - Amsterdam 42km
You will sail during breakfast. Today’s bike tour starts in Breukelen, leads along the winding river Vecht to Amsterdam. In Loenen you will visit a mill. Final destination is Amsterdam, where you can take a tour through the canals or visit the Rijks Museum or the van Gogh museum.
End of your tour: Disembarkation after breakfast until 9.30am
The tour details are barring changes, a.o. as a result of nautical, technical or meteorological reasons.
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