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Art History in Belgium and Holland

Program Number: 3544RJ
Start and End Dates:
5/10/2013 - 5/23/2013; 9/26/2014 - 10/9/2014; 6/5/2015 - 6/18/2015; 6/19/2015 - 7/2/2015; 9/25/2015 - 10/8/2015;
Duration: 13 nights
Location: Netherlands/Belgium
Price starting at: $3,895.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Art History/Criticism
Meals: 28; 12 Breakfasts, 6 Lunches, 10 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian; Low Salt; Low Fat; Gluten Free    

As you stroll through the sculpture garden, you realize that most of these art lovers are speaking Dutch and admiring the works of their own beloved artists. In this comprehensive exploration, learn why even local residents hold artists such as Vermeer and van Gogh so dear. Expert artists guide a study of the history, architecture, genres and artists that comprise the rich artistic traditions.




Highlights

• Scholars and artists present expert insight into three centuries of art by Brueghel, Bosch, Vermeer, De Wit, Mondrian and many more.
• Spend a day at the Kroller Muller Museum, located in a national park, with 90 van Gogh paintings and a magnificent sculpture garden.
• Discover the significant collections of Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum and the Museum of Ancient Art in Brussels.



Activity Particulars

Walking on cobblestone streets; participants should be able to walk and stand with a guide for 2 hours in the morning and 2 hours in the afternoon.




Date Specific Information

5-10-2013, 9-26-2014, 6-5-2015, 6-19-2015, 9-25-2015

Enjoy the latest in hearing technology — listening devices — on this date.



Itinerary Summary

Arrival Brussels (Belgium), coach to Ghent, 6 nights; coach to Amsterdam (The Netherlands), 6 nights; departure.



Overnight flight from the U.S.A.
1 night
Arrival Brussels (Belgium)
Coach to Ghent
6 nights

Explore Ghent’s splendid architecture along the old Graslei harbor and view the famous van Eyck painting. A lecture by artist and teacher Jaap Clement presents the 15th-and 16th-century artists Brueghel and Hieronymus Bosch, whose complex images of demons and sin paved the way for 20th-century Surrealists. View masterworks at Brussel’s Museum of Ancient Art and learn about Rubens and van Dijck in Antwerp. Study the Flemish primitives at the Groeninge Museum in Bruges and sample some of the more than 500 beers brewed in Belgium.



Coach to Amsterdam (The Netherlands)
6 nights
Departure

Judging from the vibrant cityscape, it’s hard to believe that the Golden Age of Amsterdam passed three centuries ago. Investigate these lost centuries in art collections throughout the city and in nearby Haarlem alongside art historian Max Put. Discuss 17th-and 18th-century art at the Rijksmuseum and study works by Haarlem’s most renowned painter of the Golden Age at the Frans Hals Museum. Enjoy a special journey to the remote Kroller-Muller Museum for a look at work by van Gogh and Mondrian.




Accommodations
Ghent: Centrally located hotel. Amsterdam: Four-star hotel with artistic theme.
Meals and Lodgings
   Ghent River Hotel
  Ghent, Belgium 6 nights
   Park Plaza Vondelpark
  Amsterdam, Netherlands 6 nights
 Ghent River Hotel
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: The Ghent River Hotel is situated on the river Leie, just a few minutes walk from the "vrijdagsmarkt" - one of the biggest squares in Ghent, home of the famous statue of Jacob Van Artevelde. Thanks to the ancient pier, this hotel is the only one in Ghent that can be reached by boat. The site encompasses two buildings: a renaissance house dated 1518, and a rice-mill built on a former sugar refinery dated 1857. The building also served as a cotton spinning-mill in 1873, a warehouse in 1879, and a steam actuated baker in 1892.
  Contact info: Waaistraat 5
Ghent,  9000 Belgium
phone: +32 92661010
web: www.ghent-river-hotel.be
  Room amenities: Each room has a hair dryer, mini bar, safe, telephone, television, and Internet access with a cable (for a fee).
  Facility amenities: The hotel offers a bar and lounge, fitness room and sauna (for a fee), air conditioning, laundry services (for a fee), fax machine, computer in lobby and wireless Internet in lobby and rooms (for a fee).
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: n/a Please contact Road Scholar Travel Services if you would like assistance making hotel reservations for additional non-program nights. (800) 241-1404
  Check in time: 4:00 PM

 Park Plaza Vondelpark
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: This first class hotel is located in the heart of the city center, right next to the Vondelpark, just a few tram stops away from the main museums and shopping streets. The Central Station and the famous Dam Square are easy to reach by tram. The hotel has been recently renovated and is comprised of three former mansions.
  Contact info: Koninginneweg 34-36
CZ Amsterdam,  1075 Netherlands
phone: +31 20 6646111
web: www.parkplaza.com
  Room amenities: Each room has a hair dryer, safe, TV, telephone, free wireless Internet access, mini fridge, and coffee & tea making facilities.
  Facility amenities: The hotel offers a restaurant, bar, lounge, laundry service, free wireless Internet access throughout the hotel, and one Internet computer terminal in the lobby.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights after: n/a Please contact Road Scholar Travel Services if you would like assistance making hotel reservations for additional non-program nights. (800) 241-1404
  Check out time: 11:00 AM


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Ghent, Belgium. 4:00 PM in hotel lecture room. You will be staying at Ghent River Hotel that night.
  End of Program:
Amsterdam, Netherlands. After breakfast on the last day. You will be staying at Park Plaza Vondelpark the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required.
Transportation (For Independent Travelers)
  Train or bus availability: From airport, you can take a train to Ghent St. Pieters (45 minutes, costs approx 10 Euro). From there, take a taxi to hotel (10 minutes, costs approx. 10 Euro).
To Start of Program
  Location:  Ghent
  Nearest city or town:  N/A
  Nearest highway: E 40, E 17
  Nearest airport:  Brussels airport.
  Transportation to site: From Brussels airport: Take 45-minute train ride from Brussels airport to Ghent/St. Pieter (costs approx. 10 Euro). At the Ghent/St. Pieter station take a taxi to the hotel (approx. 10 Euro).
  From End of Program
  Location:  Amsterdam
  Nearest city or town:  N/A
  Nearest highway: A9, A10
  Nearest airport:  Amsterdam/Schiphol Airport
  Transportation from site: Take a taxi from the hotel to the airport. It takes 20 minutes and costs approx. 35 Euro.
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: In Transit
(Friday, May 10)
   
 In Transit: Depart on international overnight flight to Brussels.

Day 2: Welcome Reception / Program Introduction
(Saturday, May 11)
   
 Morning: Arrive at Brussels airport (BRU) in the morning. Transfer to Ghent.
 Lunch: Lunch on your own in a restaurant in the neighborhood of the hotel.
 Afternoon: Check into your rooms and get settled. In the late afternoon we will have an introduction to the program. The orientation will be followed by a welcome reception.
 Dinner: Belgian specialties in the hotel dining room.
 Evening: Free time to get acquainted and recover from jet lag.
   
Accommodations: Ghent River Hotel
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 3: Ghent / Lecture: Art as a Mirror of Society
(Sunday, May 12)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: We take a short guided walk through Ghent to get familiar with the surroundings of the hotel.
 Lunch: Lunch in the hotel dining room.
 Afternoon: Mr. Jaap Clement will give a lecture titled: "The Development of Craftsmanship into Art in the Low-lands: Art as a Mirror of Society."
 Dinner: Belgian specialties in the hotel dining room.
 Evening: Free evening.
   
Accommodations: Ghent River Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Ghent / Van Eyck Painting
(Monday, May 13)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: A guided walk through the city center of Ghent. A guide will provide us with the history of the city. Afterward we will visit the famous Van Eyck painting in Ghent.
 Lunch: Lunch in the hotel dining room.
 Afternoon: We will take in a lecture titled: "From 15th to 16th century, Brueghel and Bosch."
 Dinner: We will dine at a restaurant in downtown Ghent.
   
Accommodations: Ghent River Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Bruges / Groeninge Museum
(Tuesday, May 14)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: This morning we will have a guided walk through Bruges.
 Lunch: Explore local fare on your own.
 Afternoon: We will enjoy a guided visit through the Groeninge Museum, a beautiful exhibit of Flemish primitives.
 Dinner: Belgian specialties in the hotel dining room.
 Evening: Hear a lecture titled "Famous Antwerp Painters, Rubens, van Dijck."
   
Accommodations: Ghent River Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 6: Antwerp / Rubens House
(Wednesday, May 15)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: A guided bus excursion to the more remote areas of the city of Antwerp where we will visit the Middelheim sculpture park and the Zurenborg architectural area.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant near the market square.
 Afternoon: Take a walk through Antwerp's old city center and then visit The Rubens House museum.
 Dinner: Back in Ghent, explore local fare on your own.
 Evening: Free evening.
   
Accommodations: Ghent River Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 7: Brussels / Museum of Ancient Art
(Thursday, May 16)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: We will visit the Museum of Ancient Art in Brussels. Here we see the best examples of the 15th and 16th century painting and sculpture in Flanders on a guided excursion through the museum.
 Lunch: Lunch on your own at the museum buffet restaurant.
 Afternoon: Free time to explore the museum on your own, followed by free time around the market square of Brussels.
 Dinner: Belgian specialties in the hotel dining room.
 Evening: Free evening to continue exploring Ghent or to pack for our travels to Amsterdam.
   
Accommodations: Ghent River Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 8: Rotterdam / Delft Blue Pottery Factory
(Friday, May 17)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in hotel dining room.
 Morning: En route to Amsterdam, we enjoy a guided bus excursion through Rotterdam and visit the Delft blue pottery factory in Delft.
 Lunch: Lunch at a restaurant in Delft.
 Afternoon: Excursion in Delft: The city of Vermeer & The House of Orange. After our visit we will continue our transfer to Amsterdam, arrive at the hotel, check-in, and get settled.
 Dinner: Dutch cuisine in the hotel dining room.
 Evening: Free evening.
   
Accommodations: Park Plaza Vondelpark
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9: Amsterdam
(Saturday, May 18)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: Guided city excursion in small groups to admire and learn about the architecture of Amsterdam.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Amsterdam on your own. A free afternoon to do as you wish. We suggest visiting the Amsterdam Historical Museum or the Anne Frank House.
 Dinner: Explore local fare on your own.
   
Accommodations: Park Plaza Vondelpark
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 10: The Hague / Vermeer and Rembrandt
(Sunday, May 19)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: Take in a lecture on the Golden Age and its paintings in preparation of the afternoon field trip to the Municipal Museum. Then enjoy a guided bus excursion to the Hague, the legal capital of the world, with its many legal institutions and the seat of the Dutch Parliament.
 Lunch: Lunch at a restaurant in the Hague.
 Afternoon: Guided excursion through the Municipal Museum to see famous Dutch paintings from Vermeer and Rembrandt. The Municipal Museum is the temporary location for the collection of the Maurits House Museum, which will be temporarily closed.
 Dinner: Dinner at a local restaurant in Amsterdam.
   
Accommodations: Park Plaza Vondelpark
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 11: Rijksmuseum
(Monday, May 20)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: Field trip to the Rijksmuseum with audio guide provided.
 Lunch: Explore local fare on your own.
 Afternoon: This afternoon you will have free time to explore the Van Gogh Museum at your own pace.
 Dinner: Dutch cuisine in the hotel dining room.
 Evening: Listen to a lecture entitled: "Art in the 17th & 18th Centuries: The Intellectual Drain from Flanders."
   
Accommodations: Park Plaza Vondelpark
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 12: Frans Hals Museum / Haarlem
(Tuesday, May 21)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: Visit Haarlem and The Frans Hals Museum.
 Lunch: Lunch on your own at the museum buffet restaurant.
 Afternoon: A guide will introduce us to the city of Haarlem with an excursion that includes a visit to the St. Bavo church, home to one of the world's greatest organs.
 Dinner: Dutch cuisine in the hotel dining room.
 Evening: Lecture on modern art: "The 19th & 20th Centuries," followed by a short introduction to the next day's program.
   
Accommodations: Park Plaza Vondelpark
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 13: Kroller-Muller Museum
(Wednesday, May 22)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: Field trip to the Kroller-Muller Museum: Van Gogh and Mondrian. Here we will be led through the museum, which owns the second largest collection of Van Gogh paintings in the world as well as many French impressionist paintings.
 Lunch: Lunch on your own at the Kroller-Muller Museum buffet restaurant.
 Afternoon: View the Garden of Statues of The Kroller-Muller Museum.
 Dinner: Farewell dinner at the hotel.
   
Accommodations: Park Plaza Vondelpark
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 14: Departures
(Thursday, May 23)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: Transfer to Schiphol airport (AMS).
   
Meals Included: Breakfast

Free Time Opportunities
 
  Amsterdam The Rembrandt House Museum
The Rembrandt House Museum lets you gaze at a huge collection of his drawings while exploring the house in which Rembrandt lived and worked. For additional information, visit www.rembrandthuis.nl
  Ghent Cruise in Bruges Canals
From Ghent, we travel to Bruges where during free time you may take a guided canal cruise through this fantastic medieval city. For additional information, visit www.welcome-bruges.be
  The Memling Museum in Bruges
From Ghent, we travel to Bruges where during free time you may wish to visit the Memling Museum. What was once the St. John Hospital for 700 years, now contains beautiful paintings made by Hans Memling. Hans made these paintings specifically for this hospital, in medieval times. For additional information, visit www.brugge.be
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List


A Tall Man in a Low Land


Author: Harry Pearson


Description: Pearson, a British travel writer, journalist and comic is an entertaining guide to Belgium and its traditions, culture, beer and chocolate.



A Worldly Art


Author: Mariet Westermann


Description: This appreciative analysis of Dutch art in its Golden Age (1585-1718) features 100 exemplary illustrations by Rembrandt, Vermeer, Pieter de Hooch, Frans Hals and other masters.



Amsterdam, A Traveler's Literary Companion


Author: Manfred Wolf (Editor)


Description: Organized by district, these 17 contemporary short stories by modern Dutch writers, including Cees Nooteboom and Geert Mak, are set among the canals, cafes and neighborhoods of Amsterdam.



Benelux Map


Author: Michelin Travel Publications


Description: Covering the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg at a scale of 1:400,000.



Bruegel


Author: Walter S. Gibson


Description: A volume in the excellent "World of Art" series, Gibson's book dispels the myth of Bruegel the simpleton artist and replaces it with a portrait of a man who understood the needs of his patrons. With many black-and-white and color reproductions of the paintings.



Dutch Painting (World of Art)


Author: Rudolf Herman Fuchs


Description: Starting with Van Eyck and his 15th-century contemporaries, this volume in the "World of Art" series surveys nearly 500 years of painting in the Netherlands, ending with a discussion of late 20th-century artists. Featuring almost 200 illustrations.



Eyewitness Guide Amsterdam


Author: Eyewitness Guides


Description: A wonderful guide to Amsterdam, filled with detailed drawings, photographs and thumbnail sketches. Slim and attractive, it also includes detailed maps and cutaway drawings of landmarks. Includes The Hague, Rotterdam and Delft.



Eyewitness Guide Brussels, Bruges, Ghent & Antwerp


Author: Rebecca Miles


Description: This superbly illustrated guide features color photos and maps of city neighborhoods, with information on history, culture and sightseeing.



Eyewitness Guide The Netherlands


Author: Eyewitness Guides


Description: Gorgeously illustrated and filled with excellent maps, this compact book covers Holland, its history, traditions, cultures and sights. With hundreds of color photographs and illustrations.



Fodor's Amsterdam's 25 Best


Author: Fodor's


Description: This slim guide to essential highlights includes an excellent map of the city center and can easily be slipped in your pocket.



Girl With a Pearl Earring


Author: Tracy Chevalier


Description: Chevalier's richly drawn novel imagines the story behind Vermeer's mysterious portrait of a turbaned girl with a pearl earring.



Headlong, A Novel


Author: Michael Frayn


Description: A Bruegel canvas claims a central role in Frayn's hilarious tale of an art heist gone awry. Frayn weaves detailed research about the Old Master with a philosopher's foiled plot to appropriate the valuable masterpiece from a boor he feels is unworthy of it.



Master of Shadows, The Secret Diplomatic Career of the Painter Peter Paul Rubens


Author: Mark Lamster


Description: Ranging from his home in Antwerp to London, Madrid, Paris and Rome, Lamster uncovers the gripping tale of the world’s most famous painter and his double life as a secret agent, diplomat and political operative in 17th century Europe.



Niccolo Rising


Author: Dorothy Dunnett


Description: From the reigning queen of historical fiction comes this fast-paced, thoroughly-researched novel of ambition and worldly goods in 15th-century Bruges. This is the first volume in her House of Niccolo series.



Rubens


Author: Kristin Lohse Belkin


Description: Belkin chronicles the 17th century artist Peter Paul Rubens from his early family life to his influential interactions with the Italian Renaissance masters and finally to Antwerp, where he rose to fame as a renowned painter and diplomat to the royal courts of Europe.



The Autumn of the Middle Ages


Author: Johan Huizinga


Description: A pioneering work of social and cultural history, this well-translated classic is a richly detailed portrait of life, thought and art in 14th- and 15th-century France and the Netherlands.



The Diary of a Young Girl, The Definitive Edition


Author: Anne Frank


Description: The classic story of an adolescent Jewish girl's life and thoughts while in hiding with her family in Nazi-occupied Holland. A new edition with added material.



The Embarrassment of Riches


Author: Simon Schama


Description: An engaging cultural history and much more, this book is a study of the Dutch in the 17th century and their surprising challenge to Spanish rule.



The Undutchables


Author: Colin White


Description: A laugh-out-loud, irreverent guide to Dutch character and habits, including how to drink coffee and why you shouldn't even think about haggling over prices.



Time Out Brussels, Antwerp, Ghent and Bruges


Author: Time Out (Editor)


Description: An up-to-date guide on what to do and where to go by the people who publish Time Out Magazine.



Tulipomania


Author: Mike Dash


Description: The story of the world's most coveted flower and the extraordinary passion it aroused, this vivid history traces the story of the tulip from its origins on the Turkish steppes to an absurdly coveted object in Europe and its key role in the financial follies of 17th-century Holland.



Vincent Van Gogh, The Passionate Eye


Author: Pascal Bonafoux


Description: From Paris to Asnieres, Amsterdam and Provence, this jewel of a book traces the life and art of Vincent Van Gogh, the spirited, self-destructive painter who celebrated the south of France. Engaging, compact and illustrated with hundreds of photographs.





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