10137
Netherlands/Belgium
Tulipmania
From the floor of the world’s largest flower auction to prized botanical gardens to the works of the Golden Age Masters, discover the history of the iconic tulip.
Rating (4.91)
Program No. 10137RJ
Length
13 days
Starts at
2,999
Flights start at
850
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13 days
12 nights
26 meals
11 B 6 L 9 D
Getting There
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DAY
1
In Transit to Program
In Flight
DAY
2
Arrive, Check-in, Orientation, Welcome Dinner
Haarlem
D
Hotel Haarlem Zuid

Activity note: Check-in available from 3:00 PM.

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. Your Group Leader will greet everyone and lead introductions. We will review the program theme, the up-to-date Daily Schedule and any changes, discuss safety guidelines, emergency procedures, roles and responsibilities, and answer any questions you may have. Indicated times are approximate. Program activities, schedules, and personnel may need to change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.

Dinner: In the hotel dining room. Unless otherwise noted, dinners on this program are typically a three-course set menu. Please note that water is included in the program cost at all meals.

Evening: Free time to rest, enjoy the hotel's facilities, or explore the area on your own.

DAY
3
Haarlem, Frans Hals Museum
Haarlem
B,L,D
Hotel Haarlem Zuid

Breakfast: Buffet in the hotel dining room. On this program, breakfasts will offer a typical European style breakfast buffet with breads, cheeses, cold-cuts, yogurt, fruit, cereals, juice, milk, coffee, tea and water.

Morning: This morning, attend a lecture: "Art in the Golden Age." Then enjoy an expert-led walk through the beautiful old city center of Haarlem followed by a visit to the St. Bavo church which holds the biggest church organ of the Netherlands.

Lunch: At a restaurant in town. Unless otherwise noted, lunches on this program are typically a two-course set menu or a sandwich lunch.

Afternoon: Excursion to the Frans Hals Museum, one of the famous painters of the Golden Age.

Dinner: In the hotel dining room.

Evening: Enjoy a lecture on the history of tulips.

DAY
4
Flower Auction in Aalsmeer, Bulb Farm
Haarlem
B,L,D
Hotel Haarlem Zuid

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

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. Then, we visit the Aalsmeer Historic Garden, where you will learn about the history of flower production in the Netherlands. Afterward, we will visit a former steam pumping station which pumped all the water out of the former Haarlemmerlake.

Lunch: At a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Field trip to a bulb-farmer who will explain all about his company and bulb growing.

Dinner: In the hotel dining room.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
5
de Keukenhof
Haarlem
B,D
Hotel Haarlem Zuid

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: In the hotel dining room.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
6
Amsterdam Historical Museum
Haarlem
B,L,D
Hotel Haarlem Zuid

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

Breakfast: Buffet in the hotel dining room.

Morning: Boating excursion through the canals of Amsterdam followed by a walk through the city center, ending near the flower market. Pass by such sites as the Old Church, the National Monument, the Royal Palace, and the New Church.

Lunch: Set lunch at the museum 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.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
7
Rijksmuseum
Haarlem
B
Hotel Haarlem Zuid

Breakfast: Buffet in the hotel dining room.

Morning: Expert-led 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. Take this opportunity for personal independent exploration to see and do what interests you most. Please refer to the list of Free Time Opportunities, which can be found in the first Information Packet. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions.

Dinner: Explore local fare on your own.

Evening: Packing for our transfer tomorrow.

DAY
8
Transfer to Ghent, Delft
Ghent
B,L,D
Ghent River Hotel

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.

Lunch: At a restaurant in Rotterdam.

Afternoon: Before we continue our transfer to Ghent, enjoy an expert-led excursion through Rotterdam to learn about the city's architecture. See such sites as the famous Cubic Houses, or the modern Market Hall.

Dinner: In the hotel dining room.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
9
Welcome to Ghent
Ghent
B
Ghent River Hotel

Breakfast: Buffet in the hotel dining room.

Morning: An expert-led walk in the city of Ghent, a medieval city where in the 19th century the Industrial Revolution began. Walk along the canals, through the historical center with its many squares (Vrijdagsmarkt, Groentenmarkt, and Koorenmarkt), and see such sites as the medieval fortress of Gravensteen, the meat market, and St. Bavo Church, which houses the famous Van Eyck altarpiece. (Please note that we do not go inside St. Bavo Church to see the altarpiece. Perhaps you would like to see this during your free afternoon.)

Lunch: Explore local fare on your own.

Afternoon: Free afternoon to explore on your own. Take this opportunity for personal independent exploration to see and do what interests you most. Please refer to the list of Free Time Opportunities, which can be found in the first Information Packet. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions. Later this afternoon, take in a lecture on Flemish Art.

Dinner: Explore local fare on your own.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
10
Antwerp
Ghent
B,L,D
Ghent River Hotel

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

Breakfast: Buffet in the hotel dining room.

Morning: Today we visit Antwerp. From the medieval riverside fortress to modern waterfront creations, Antwerp is full of enchantments. Take an expert-led excursion of the Rockoxhuis Museum, with a special emphasis on the symbolic meaning of flowers. Many of the flowers and plants in paintings and Western art are easy to recognize; but lesser known are their deeper meanings.

Lunch: At a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Expert-led walking excursion in the old medieval city center of Antwerp, including a visit to the famous Church of Our Lady.

Dinner: At a local restaurant in Ghent.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
11
Zeeland Flanders, Visit a Private Garden
Ghent
B,L,D
Ghent River Hotel

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: At a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Enjoy an expert-led coach excursion through the polder (reclaimed land) landscape followed by some free time in the medieval city of Sluis.

Dinner: In the hotel dining room.

Evening: Free evening to have a stroll into Ghent.

DAY
12
Bruges
Ghent
B,D
Ghent River Hotel

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

Breakfast: Buffet in the hotel dining room.

Morning: An expert-led walk in the beautiful, fairytale city of Bruges. This morning's excursion will take you along the Minnewater park, the Begijnhof (courtyard of the Beguins - secular nuns), the city's medieval street, and finishing at the Belfry of Bruges.

Lunch: Explore local fare on your own.

Afternoon: This afternoon, you will be provided with tickets to explore the Museum of Flemish Primitives (also known as the Groeninge Museum) on your own. This museum houses a beautiful exhibit of paintings by Flemish primitives in the 15th and early 16th centuries. Afterward, enjoy some free time.

Dinner: Farewell Dinner in the hotel dining room.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
13
Departures
Ghent
B

Breakfast: Buffet in the hotel dining room.

Morning: Transfer to the Brussels airport (BRU) for departures. This concludes our program. Please join our Facebook page and share photos of your program. Visit us at www.facebook.com/rsadventures.






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