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Netherlands

Bountiful Holland: Tulips & Gardens by Riverboat

The story of Dutch tulips is one of mystery, intrigue and a springtime symphony of more than 7 million bulbs in bloom. Voyage the rivers of Holland to experience this fascinating story.
Rating (4.75)
Program No. 22231RJ
Length
10 days
Starts at
3,299
Special Offer
Click on Dates & Prices below to see special offer details.
Flights start at
675
Netherlands

Bountiful Holland: Tulips & Gardens by Riverboat

The story of Dutch tulips is one of mystery, intrigue and a springtime symphony of more than 7 million bulbs in bloom. Voyage the rivers of Holland to experience this fascinating story.
Length
10 days
Starts at
3,299
Special Offer
Click on Dates & Prices below to see special offer details.
Flights start at
675
Program No. 22231 RJ
Prefer to enroll or inquire by phone? 800-454-5768
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Prices displayed below are based on per person,doubleoccupancy.

DATES & PRICES

Ship Outside
Details
Accommodation Details
A cabin with a window or porthole to view the outside.
Apr 12 - Apr 21, 2021
Ship Outside 3,299
Special Offer

OFFER EXTENDED: Enroll by Dec. 31, 2020 to take $300 off the price shown!

Apr 16 - Apr 25, 2021
Ship Outside 3,299
Special Offer

OFFER EXTENDED: Enroll by Dec. 31, 2020 to take $300 off the price shown!

DATES & PRICES

Ship Outside
Details
Accommodation Details
A cabin with a window or porthole to view the outside.
Apr 12 - Apr 21, 2021
Ship Outside 4,999
Special Offer

OFFER EXTENDED: Enroll by Dec. 31, 2020 to take $300 off the price shown!

Apr 16 - Apr 25, 2021
Ship Outside 4,999
Special Offer

OFFER EXTENDED: Enroll by Dec. 31, 2020 to take $300 off the price shown!

At a Glance

Imported from Turkey in 1593, tulips were once so prized that the Dutch used flower bulbs as currency. On this voyage through Holland, learn about the history of tulips while delighting in their vibrant splendor. Walk amid a vivid palette of colors in one of the world’s largest flower gardens, learn about tulips with a bulb farmer and explore the grounds where these now bountiful blooms first arrived in the Netherlands.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Walking up to two hours/two miles at a time, sometimes twice per day; cobblestones and many unavoidable stairs.
Small Group
Small Group
Love to learn and explore in a small-group setting? These adventures offer small, personal experiences with groups of 10 to 24 participants.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Experience the world-famous Keukenhof Garden, where more than 7 million bulbs bloom each spring.
  • Learn about the history and impact of Delft blue pottery.
  • Meet a tulip bulb farmer and explore a bustling flower auction.
Featured Expert
All Experts
Profile Image
Balázs Füzesi
Balázs Füzesi was born and raised in the city of Pécs, in southwestern Hungary. He has earned bachelor’s degrees in communications and in business administration and has also completed a license for leading educational excursions in his native country. He has pursued study and work with members of other nationalities whenever possible, spending a high school year in Denmark and working abroad in Greenland, London and the U.S. He credits his grandmother for his love of travel and exploration; she was an avid traveler throughout her entire life.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

Profile Image of Péter Szakács
Péter Szakács View biography
Péter Szakács is a native of Hungary and lives in Pécs, a World Heritage Site under UNESCO protection in the south of the country. His love of his home city initially led him to share educational explorations there, before eventually leading groups up and down the lower Danube.
Profile Image of Max Put
After studying painting and graphic art and working as an artist, Max Put attended Leiden University and earned a master’s in art history. In 1995, while still at university, he started giving talks on Dutch art and culture. He has been a charismatic figure leading Road Scholar groups for more than 15 years.
Profile Image of Nemanja Ciric
Nemanja Ciric View biography
Nemanja Ciric was born in Belgrade, Serbia, and graduated from the University of Belgrade with a major in history. He has been working as an educational excursion leader for the past 13 years. Nemanja is often hired by different ministries of the country’s government during visits of foreign delegations. He has been awarded numerous acknowledgments for his work by various domestic and international institutions.
Profile Image of Balázs Füzesi
Balázs Füzesi View biography
Balázs Füzesi was born and raised in the city of Pécs, in southwestern Hungary. He has earned bachelor’s degrees in communications and in business administration and has also completed a license for leading educational excursions in his native country. He has pursued study and work with members of other nationalities whenever possible, spending a high school year in Denmark and working abroad in Greenland, London and the U.S. He credits his grandmother for his love of travel and exploration; she was an avid traveler throughout her entire life.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Girl in Hyacinth Blue
by Susan Vreeland
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, providing a series of tales that reflect the history and character of Holland and Europe through the years.
Tulipomania
by Mike Dash
The story of the world's most coveted flower and the extraordinary passion it aroused, this vivid history traces the tulip from its origins on the Turkish steppes to its status as an absurdly desired object in Europe and its key role in the financial follies of 17th-century Holland.
Benelux Map
by Michelin Travel Publications
Covering the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg at a scale of 1:400,000.
Travels in Vermeer, A Memoir
by Michael White
In the wake of a vengeful divorce, an American poet travels to Amsterdam, The Hague, Delft, London, Washington and New York to find solace and inspiration in the paintings of Johannes Vermeer.
Amsterdam, A History of the World's Most Liberal City
by Russell Shorto
Russell Shorto opens this delightful ode to an adopted city with his daily journey, by bike of course, through his neighborhood to drop off his toddler son. He spins a tale of a diverse city wrestled from the sea, its coffee shops, canals and its personalities and politics, with panache.
In the City of Bikes
by Pete Jordan
Pedaling around the city on a "lumbering and sluggish" single-speed bicycle named Brownie, American expat and bike nut Pete Jordan turns his love of Amsterdam -- and of bicycles -- into an acutely observed cultural history of the city.
Why the Dutch are Different
by Ben Coates
Mingling history with travelogue, Coates speaks to why the Netherlands is such fascinating country. He explains the significance of milk, beer and the color orange in the lives of the Dutch, their world-famous culture of tolerance and much more.
Rembrandt, Master of the Portrait
by Pascal Bonafoux
With over 200 illustrations, this pocket-size encyclopedia traces the life and career of artist Rembrandt von Rijn. It offers insight into his influence on the art of the portrait -- an illuminating companion for any visit to Amsterdam and its museums.
The Netherlands in a Nutshell
by Frits Van Oostrom
With information on the Dutch East India Company, Huygens, Spinoza, Van Gogh, the Great Flood, the Dutch overseas colonies and much more, Van Oostrom's popular primer covers the essential highlights of Dutch history.
Tulip Fever
by Deborah Moggach
In this surprise bestseller, set in 1630s Amsterdam, 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.
Brilliant Orange: The Neurotic Genius of Dutch Soccer
by David Winner
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.
Delftware, History of a National Product
by Marjoleine Groen, Titus M. Eliens
An illustrated, hardbound history of De Porceleyne Fles, the famous Delftware manufacturer that has been in operation for 350 years.
Girl With a Pearl Earring
by Tracy Chevalier
Chevalier's richly drawn novel imagines the story behind Vermeer's mysterious portrait of a turbaned girl with a pearl earring.
The Autumn of the Middle Ages
by Johan Huizinga
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 Undutchables
by Colin White
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.
The Embarrassment of Riches
by Simon Schama
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.
A Worldly Art
by Mariet Westermann
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 Old Masters.
An Island in Time, The Biography of a Village
by Geert Mak
Mak returns to Jorwerd, the small Netherlands village of his childhood, to spend time with the villagers and learn both the pleasures and contemporary challenges of small town life.
The Anatomy Lesson
by Nina Siegal
A fictionalized account of the events surrounding Rembrandt’s first commissioned piece, the Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp. Well-researched and vivid with period details that transport the reader back to 1600s Amsterdam at the height of Dutch artistic vigor.
Fodor's Amsterdam with the Best of the Netherlands
by Fodors
The up-to-date Fodor's guide features invaluable recommendations on where to stay and eat and what to do throughout the Netherlands. Compact and portable, it's ideal for either a weekend trip or an extended visit.
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10 days
9 nights
17 meals
8 B 3 L 6 D
DAY
1
In Transit to Program
In Flight
DAY
2
Arrive Amsterdam, Check-in, Welcome Reception, Orientation
Amsterdam
D
CroisiEurope's Mona Lisa

Activity note: Embarkation is at 3:45 p.m.

Afternoon: After checking into your room, take some time to relax and get familiar with the ship before Orientation. Orientation: 5:00 p.m. The Group Leader will greet everyone and lead introductions. We will review the up-to-date program schedule, discuss roles and responsibilities, logistics, safety guidelines, emergency procedures, and answer questions. Breakfasts will typically be European-style buffets with cold cuts, cheeses, cereals, yogurt, fruit, breads, milk, juice, coffee, tea, water. Unless otherwise noted, lunches are 2-course plated meals, and dinners are typically 3 or 4-course plated meals. This is a Road Scholar Adventures Afloat program. In addition to Road Scholar exclusive lectures, field trips, and activities, you are invited to take advantage of activities and events offered by the cruise line that are separate from Road Scholar. Please note that routes, field trips, and excursions are subject to change as weather and river conditions could require altering the itinerary and/or the progress of the vessel, making it run late and possibly miss ports if it cannot dock. The operators reserve the right to change the itinerary and the content of field trips and excursions if/as needed due to local circumstances. The time available in each port is set by the cruise line in conjunction with the local maritime authorities, and may change on short-notice. Periods in the schedule designated as “Free time” and “At leisure” offer opportunities to do what you like and make your experience even more meaningful and memorable according to your personal preferences. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions. Program activities, schedules, personnel, and indicated distances or times may change due to local circumstances/conditions. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.

Dinner: Aboard the ship, we’ll have a tasty 3-course plated welcome dinner with coffee, tea, water, fruit juice, house wine, and beer included on all lunches and dinners on board; other beverages available for purchase.

Evening: At leisure. Continue getting to know your fellow Road Scholars, settle in, and get a good night’s rest for the day ahead.

DAY
3
Amsterdam Canal Cruise, History of the Netherlands
Amsterdam
B,L,D
CroisiEurope's Mona Lisa

Activity note: Minimal walking throughout the day. Getting on/off riverboat and smaller canal vessel; ride is a minimum of about 1 hour, depending on canal traffic.

Breakfast: Aboard the riverboat, the breakfast buffet offers choices such as cold cuts, cheeses, cereals, yogurt, fruit, and breads, plus milk, juice, coffee, tea, water.

Morning: Once off the riverboat, we will board a smaller vessel and enjoy a canal cruise through Amsterdam, during which we will learn all about this fascinating city from a local expert. General subjects will include aspects of Amsterdam’s history, water management practices, its iconic architecture, and details of daily life. Afterwards, we’ll re-board the ship and begin sailing towards Gouda.

Lunch: Aboard the riverboat, we’ll have a 2-course plated lunch with coffee, tea, water, fruit juice, house wine, and beer included on all lunches and dinners on board.

Afternoon: Continuing our journey, we’ll enjoy sailing through the Dutch canals and waterways as we take in a lecture about Dutch history given by our Group Leader.

Dinner: Aboard riverboat.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
4
Keukenhof Gardens, Gouda
Gouda
B,D
CroisiEurope's Mona Lisa

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach; driving about 15 miles each way; approximately 1/2 hour. Walking about 3 miles; approximately 1.5 hours total; periods of standing; flat terrain including pavement and cobblestone sections.

Breakfast: Aboard riverboat.

Morning: Getting on/off the riverboat, we'll board a motorcoach and transfer to spend the day at the Keukenhof Gardens where we will set out on a walk with a local expert to admire the wide variety of tulips, narcissi, and daffodils. As one of the world’s largest flower gardens, it is also one of the main destinations for Tulip travelers. Afterwards, we’ll take some time for independent exploration at the gardens.

Lunch: This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to enjoy what you like in Keukenhof. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions.

Afternoon: In the late afternoon, we’ll transfer to Gouda for an expert-led educational walking field trip through this charming town, made famous for its cheese. We’ll then return to the riverboat.

Dinner: Aboard riverboat.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
5
Sailing, Rotterdam, Free Time
Rotterdam
B,L,D
CroisiEurope's Mona Lisa

Activity note: Walking about 2 miles throughout the day’s group activities; approximately 3 hours; cobblestones and pavement. Extent and duration of walking and other activities during free time according to personal choice.

Breakfast: Aboard riverboat.

Morning: Upon arrival to the dock in Rotterdam, we will see and learn about the city's architecture during an expert-led bus and walking field trip. During our exploration, we will see the Cube House, the Erasmus Bridge, and the Market Hall, among other iconic sites.

Lunch: Aboard ship.

Afternoon: Free time. This period of time has been set aside for your personal independent exploration to see and do what interests you most in Rotterdam. Please refer to the list of Free Time Opportunities. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions. In the late afternoon, we’ll return to the ship and start sailing back to Amsterdam. The ship will pass the iconic, UNESCO protected, traditional Dutch windmills of Kinderdijk.

Dinner: Aboard riverboat.

Evening: At leisure. Prepare for check-out, disembarkation, and transfer in the morning.

DAY
6
Disembarkation, Amsterdam, Free Time
Amsterdam
B,D
Hotel Park Plaza Victoria

Activity note: Disembarkation by 9:00 a.m. Luggage will be transferred to the hotel separately from the group; hotel check-in from 2:00 p.m. Walking up to 3 miles throughout the day; cobblestones, pavement, and through occasional crowds. Extent and duration of walking and other activities during free time according to personal choice.

Breakfast: Aboard riverboat.

Morning: After check-out and disembarkation, we’ll set out with our Group Leader for walk through Amsterdam as we learn about the unique architecture of the city. We’ll conclude in the center of Amsterdam in the late morning, around 11:00 a.m. The remainder of the day will be free for independent exploration until dinner. If you are interested in visiting the Anne Frank House, this would be a good opportunity to do so, but you must book your tickets online for a specific time slot in advance.

Lunch: On your own to explore more of the local fare.

Afternoon: Free time.

Dinner: At the hotel, we’ll have dinner together with coffee, tea, water included; other beverages available for purchase.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
7
Lecture on Dutch Art, Rijksmuseum, Free Time
Amsterdam
B
Hotel Park Plaza Victoria

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach; minimal driving throughout the day. Walking in the Rijksmuseum; approximately 2 hours; periods of standing. Extent and duration of walking and other activities during free time according to personal choice.

Breakfast: At the hotel, the breakfast buffet offers choices such as cold cuts, cheeses, cereals, yogurt, fruit, and breads, plus milk, juice, coffee, tea, water.

Morning: Gathering with our Group Leader at the hotel, we’ll attend a lecture focused on the Golden Age of Dutch art. Afterwards, we’ll take a short transfer via motorcoach for an expert-led field trip to the Rijksmuseum to see masterpieces by Rembrandt and Vermeer.

Lunch: On your own to explore the regional cuisine.

Afternoon: Free time. You might like to go to the Van Gogh Museum.

Dinner: On your own to enjoy what you like.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
8
Leiden History, Puritan Separatists, Free Time
Amsterdam
B
Hotel Park Plaza Victoria

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach; driving about 50 miles total; approximately 1.5 hours. Walking about 2 miles throughout the day’s group activities; cobblestones and pavement. Extent and duration of walking and other activities during free time according to personal choice.

Breakfast: Hotel buffet.

Morning: We will drive to Leiden, home to the oldest university in the Netherlands, Leiden University, founded in 1575, and the hometown of Rembrandt. It is also where the Puritan Separatists—better known as the Pilgrims—lived for 11 years to escape persecution at home before setting out for North America to establish the Plymouth Colony. In this fascinating city, we will take a walking field trip with a local expert to learn about the history of the city, the Pilgrim Fathers, and more.

Lunch: On your own to explore the local fare in Leiden.

Afternoon: Free time before transferring back to the hotel in Amsterdam.

Dinner: On your own in Amsterdam.

Evening: At leisure. Prepare for check-out and departures in the morning.

DAY
9
Aalsmeer, Flower Auction, Bulb Farm
Amsterdam
B,L,D
Hotel Park Plaza Victoria

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach; driving about 30 miles total; approximately 1 hour. Minimal walking throughout the day; periods of standing totaling up to about 3 hours.

Breakfast: Early hotel buffet.

Morning: Early this morning, we’ll transfer to Aalsmeer where we will enjoy a visit to the Royal Flora Holland flower auction. While here, we’ll learn from a local expert about the history of flower production in the Netherlands. Later, we’ll take a short drive to visit a Dutch greenhouse where we’ll learn from a local expert about the growing of plants and flowers in the Netherlands.

Lunch: At a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Next, we’ll enjoy a field trip to a local farm, during which we will meet a bulb-farmer who will teach us about tulip-specific farming and what it takes to grow healthy flowers.

Dinner: At the hotel, we’ll enjoy a tasty farewell dinner together. Share some of your favorite experiences with new Road Scholar friends.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
10
Program Concludes
In Flight
B

Activity note: Hotel check-out by 12:00 Noon. See your program’s “Transportation Information” regarding transfers.

Breakfast: Hotel buffet. This concludes our program.

Morning: If you are returning home, safe travels. If you are staying on independently, have a wonderful time. If you are transferring to another Road Scholar program, detailed instructions are included in your Information Packet for that program. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Don’t forget to join our Facebook page and follow us on Instagram. Best wishes for all your journeys!






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