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Tulipmania

Program Number: 10137RJ
Start and End Dates:
4/21/2015 - 5/3/2015; 4/27/2015 - 5/9/2015;
Duration: 12 nights
Location: Netherlands/Belgium
Price starting at: $3,427.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: ; Homes & Gardens
Meals: 26; 11 Breakfasts, 6 Lunches, 9 Dinners    
Meal Options: Low Fat; Low Salt; Vegetarian; Gluten Free    

In the early 17th century, amateur speculators in North Holland sold their farms and possessions to bet big on the hottest new commodity on the market: tulips. First imported from Turkey in the mid-1600s, the bloom became a status symbol and extraordinarily expensive luxury during the Dutch Golden Age. At the height of tulip mania, 12 acres of land were reportedly offered for a single Semper Augustus bulb. Learn the story of the tulip craze, go inside today’s evolved tulip industry and discover the flower’s lofty place in Dutch culture.




Highlights

• On the floor of the world’s largest flower auction watch as more than 20 million flowers are bought and sold in a daily flurry of activity.
• A tulip farmer discusses the art and the business of growing tulips bulbs at his farm.
• Art experts at museums in Amsterdam highlight Vermeer, Frans Hals and other masters of the Dutch Golden Age.



Activity Particulars

Walking up to two miles per day, some cobblestone streets.




Date Specific Information

4-21-2015, 4-27-2015

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



Itinerary Summary

Arrival Amsterdam (Netherlands), coach to Haarlem, 6 nights; coach to Ghent (Belgium), 5 nights; departure.



Overnight flight from the U.S.A.
1 night
Arrival Amsterdam (Netherlands)
Coach to Haarlem
6 nights

Trace the rise of Tulipa humilis during the height of trade and commerce in the Netherlands and learn how a single flower could embody the spirit of an era. Along with art historian Max Put and local expert Frans Buijze, learn about this important period of Dutch history at the Amsterdam Historical Museum and examine the masterpieces of Rembrandt, Vermeer and other Golden Age artists at the Rijksmuseum. Walk through Keukenhof, a massive open-air flower park whose landscaped gardens and tulip beds showcase seven million blooming bulbs each spring.



Coach to Ghent (Belgium)
5 nights
Departure

From medieval Ghent, discover the beauty of Belgium’s top cities and surrounding polder landscapes. Admire an exquisite open-air collection of plants and trees at the Botanical Garden of Brussels then take a field trip to an impressive private garden. A local expert introduces the Flemish Primitive school of painting, preparing you for a field trip to magical Bruges and its Museum of Flemish Primitives.




Accommodations
Haarlem: Comfortable hotel on the outskirts of the city. Ghent: Historic hotel on the River Leie.
Meals and Lodgings
   Hotel Haarlem Zuid
  Haarlem, Netherlands 6 nights
   Ghent River Hotel
  Ghent, Belgium 5 nights
 Hotel Haarlem Zuid
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: Hotel Haarlem Zuid is located on the outskirts of Haarlem about a 25-minute drive from Schiphol airport and 30 minutes from Amsterdam. The hotel has very spacious rooms and is located at the edge of town, a 5-minute bus ride from the center. The city of Haarlem itself is very old and beautiful with a lovely main square and many restaurants, bars and shops.
  Contact info: Toekanweg 2
Haarlem LC,  2035 Netherlands
phone: +31 23 536 7500
web: www.haarlemzuid.nl
  Room amenities: Each room has a hair dryer, safe, television, pay television, telephone and Internet access (for a fee).
  Facility amenities: The hotel offers a restaurant, bar, lounge, pay phone, fax machine, laundry service, Internet access, gift shop and fitness room. There is a public indoor heated swimming pool with a water slide right behind the hotel.
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  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: 3:00 PM

 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 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: 11:30 AM


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Haarlem, Netherlands. 4:00 PM Introduction to program in hotel lecture room. You will be staying at Hotel Haarlem Zuid that night.
  End of Program:
Ghent, Belgium. Breakfast at hotel followed by early morning departure. You will be staying at Ghent River Hotel the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required.
  Parking availability:
n/a
Transportation (For Independent Travelers)
  Train or bus availability: At Amsterdam airport you can take a train to Haarlem. It takes 20 minutes and costs approx. 10 Euro. From there, a taxi to the hotel costs approx. 15 Euro. Or, take Zuidtangent bus 300.
To Start of Program
  Location:  Haarlem
  Nearest city or town:  Haarlem
  Nearest highway: A9, A10
  Nearest airport:  Schiphol airport
  Transportation to site: From Schiphol airport, take the Zuidtangent bus 300 in the direction of Haarlem CS. Get off bus at the Europaweg stop which is located directly in front of the Hotel Haarlem Zuid. The bus runs frequently, at least every 15 minutes, 7 days a week. It takes approx. 40 minutes and costs approx. 10 Euro. Alternatively, take a taxi from the airport to the hotel (approx. 30 minutes, 60 Euro).
  From End of Program
  Location:  Ghent
  Nearest city or town:  N/A
  Nearest highway: E 40, E 17
  Nearest airport:  Brussels airport.
  Transportation from site: Take a taxi from the hotel to the Ghent train station (approx. 10 minutes, 10 Euro). Here take a train to the Brussels airport (approx. 40 minutes, 10 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
(Monday, April 27)
   
 In Transit: Depart on international overnight flight.

Day 2: Arrival
(Tuesday, April 28)
   
 Morning: Arrival at Schiphol Airport, Amsterdam (AMS). Transfer by bus to our hotel. Check in and get settled.
 Lunch: Possibility to have lunch on your own at the hotel buffet restaurant.
 Afternoon: There will be some free time to get over jetlag and relax. Shortly before dinner, we will have an introduction to the program and will hand out information about the program and the area.
 Dinner: Dinner in the hotel dining room.
 Evening: Free time to rest, enjoy the hotel's facilities, or explore the area on your own.
   
Accommodations: Hotel Haarlem Zuid
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 3: Frans Hals Museum
(Wednesday, April 29)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: Enjoy a lecture on the history of tulips.
 Lunch: Lunch in the hotel dining room.
 Afternoon: A guided walk through the beautiful old city center of Haarlem followed by a guided excursion to the Frans Hals Museum, one of the famous painters of the Golden Age.
 Dinner: Dinner in the hotel dining room.
 Evening: Free evening to explore on your own or relax in the hotel.
   
Accommodations: Hotel Haarlem Zuid
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Flower Auction in Aalsmeer / Bulb Farm
(Thursday, April 30)

Note: Today you will walk up to 4 miles, sometimes in very crowded places.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: Excursion to the flower auction in Aalsmeer. Nearly 14 million flowers and 1.5 million plants are sold daily at this auction. You will learn how this auction works and you will walk above a sea of flowers. Afterward, we will visit a former steam pumping station which pumped all the water out of the former Haarlemmerlake.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Field trip to a bulb-farmer who will explain all about his company and bulb growing. We will, of course, tip toe through the tulips! Next we will visit a greenhouse, where every year 200 new varieties of roses are bred.
 Dinner: Dinner in the hotel dining room.
 Evening: Lecture: "Art in the Golden Age."
   
Accommodations: Hotel Haarlem Zuid
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Amsterdam Historical Museum
(Friday, May 1)

Note: Today you will walk up to 4 miles, sometimes in very crowded places.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: Boating excursion through the canals of Amsterdam followed by a walk along the flower market and through the city center.
 Lunch: Set lunch at the museum buffet restaurant.
 Afternoon: Excursion to the Amsterdam Historical Museum to see the glory of the Golden Age.
 Dinner: Indonesian rice table in a restaurant in Amsterdam.
   
Accommodations: Hotel Haarlem Zuid
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Rijksmuseum
(Saturday, May 2)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: Guided excursion to the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam to see the art of the Golden Age, such as Rembrandt and Vermeer.
 Lunch: Explore local fare on your own.
 Afternoon: Free time in Amsterdam.
 Dinner: Explore local fare on your own.
   
Accommodations: Hotel Haarlem Zuid
Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 7: de Keukenhof
(Sunday, May 3)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: Today we will have a field trip to the "de Keukenhof," the most famous open-air flower park with about 6 million blooming bulbs.
 Lunch: Explore local fare on your own.
 Afternoon: We continue our morning field trip.
 Dinner: Dinner in the hotel dining room.
 Evening: Packing for our transfer tomorrow.
   
Accommodations: Hotel Haarlem Zuid
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 8: Transfer to Ghent / Delft
(Monday, May 4)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: Departure to Ghent with a stop at ‘the Porceleijne fles,’ the largest remaining handmade Delftware factory, famous since the 17th century. Enjoy some free time in the city of the House of Orange.
 Lunch: Lunch at a restaurant in Delft.
 Afternoon: We continue our transfer to Ghent.
 Dinner: Dinner in the hotel dining room.
   
Accommodations: Ghent River Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9: Welcome to Ghent
(Tuesday, May 5)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: A guided walk in the city of Ghent, a medieval city where in the 19th century the Industrial Revolution began.
 Lunch: Explore local fare on your own.
 Afternoon: Free afternoon to explore on your own, followed by a lecture on Flemish Art.
 Dinner: Explore local fare on your own.
   
Accommodations: Ghent River Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 10: Bruges
(Wednesday, May 6)

Note: Today you will walk up to 4 miles over cobblestones and uneven pavement, sometimes in very crowded places.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: A guided walk in the beautiful, fairytale city of Bruges.
 Lunch: Explore local fare on your own.
 Afternoon: An afternoon excursion to the Museum of Flemish Primitives with an audio guide provided. Enjoy some free time to explore on your own.
 Dinner: Dinner in the hotel dining room.
   
Accommodations: Ghent River Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 11: Zeeland Flanders / Visit a Private Garden
(Thursday, May 7)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: This morning we drive to Zeeland Flanders where we visit an impressive private garden and meet the two owners who have worked on it for 23 years.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Enjoy a guided coach excursion through the polder (reclaimed land) landscape followed by some free time in the medieval city of Sluis.
 Dinner: Dinner in the hotel dining room.
 Evening: Lecture on Flemish Primitives.
   
Accommodations: Ghent River Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 12: Brussels
(Friday, May 8)

Note: Today you will walk up to 4 miles over cobblestones and uneven pavement, sometimes in very crowded places.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: Guided walk in the city center of Brussels, the capital of the European Union.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant in Brussels.
 Afternoon: Guided field trip to the Botanical Garden in Brussels.
 Dinner: Farewell Dinner in the hotel dining room.
   
Accommodations: Ghent River Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 13: Departures
(Saturday, May 9)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: Transfer to the Brussels airport (BRU) for departures.
   
Meals Included: Breakfast

Free Time Opportunities
 
  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
  Ghent Walk
Explore the architecture of the beautiful city of Ghent, with its cathedrals, belfry and grim medieval castle and famous merchant canal houses.
  Haarlem Floating Amsterdam Flower Market
From Haarlem, we travel to Amsterdam where during free time you may choose to visit the floating flower market, which has been one of Amsterdam's splendid attractions since 1862. It is the only floating flower market in the world with flower stalls on various houseboats! The market sells a variety of flower bulbs. For additional information, visit www.iamsterdam.com
  Van Gogh Museum
From Haarlem, we travel to Amsterdam where during free time you may choose to visit the Van Gogh Museum where you will find works by Van Gogh on display. Also included in the permanent collection at the museum are varied works by other 19th century artists. For additional information, visit www.vangoghmuseum.nl
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


Amsterdam, A History of the World's Most Liberal City


Author: Russell Shorto


Description: Opening with his daily journey, by bike of course, through his neighborhood to drop off his toddler son, Shorto spins a tale of a diverse city (178 nationalities, more than New York), wrestled collectively from the sea, its coffee shops, canals, personalities and politics.



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 amid 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.



Brilliant Orange: The Neurotic Genius of Dutch Soccer


Author: David Winner


Description: A British journalist, Winner interviews football stars -- along with architects, political scientists and novelists -- in this insightful, humorous look at the transformation of Dutch society since the 1970s.



Dutch, A Rough Guide Phrasebook


Author: Rough Guide


Description: An A-Z pocket dictionary, phrasebook and mini-guide to the Dutch language.



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.



Fodor's Amsterdam & the Netherlands


Author: Fodors


Description: The up-to-date, full color Fodor's guide features invaluable recommendations on where to stay and eat and what to do throughout Holland. With side trips to Belgium, it's ideal for either a weekend trip or an extended visit.



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.



Girl in Hyacinth Blue


Author: Susan Vreeland


Description: This finely-crafted novel tells the story of the girl in an imagined, undiscovered portrait by Vermeer. Created in the 17th century, the painting passes through a number of people's hands, and following its path provides a series of tales that reflect the history and character of Holland and Europe through the years.



Good Beer Guide Belgium


Author: Tim Webb


Description: The sixth edition of Webb's invaluable guide to breweries, beers and bars.



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.



The Botany of Desire


Author: Michael Pollan


Description: Four marvelous essays on four plants, all with the common theme of how well each has manipulated humans for its benefit. The plants are: the apple, the tulip, the potato, and marijuana. Pollan's writing is beautiful, and the apple essay alone -- you'll never think of Johnny Appleseed in the same way! -- is as satisfying an essay as we've read in a long time.



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.



Tulip Fever


Author: Deborah Moggach


Description: A surprise bestseller, set in 1630s Amsterdam; in this gripping novel, a man contracts the talented painter Jan Van Loos to paint a portrait of him and his beautiful wife, Sophia. A vivid drama unfolds as a mutual attraction develops between Van Loos and Sophia.



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 desired object in Europe and its key role in the financial follies of 17th-century Holland.





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