With bike and barge you will visit famous historical towns, picturesque cities and beautiful landscapes in the surprising varied “Green Heart” of Holland. Highlights are Amsterdam with its beautiful canals, the Dom-city Utrecht, the harbor of Rotterdam, Delft with its famous Delftware factories, the cheese town Gouda, the windmills of Kinderdijk, the silver town Schoonhoven, the historical town center of Haarlem, the dunes and the North Sea beaches and the open air museum “Zaanse Schans”. The tour through South Holland is the perfect tour to enjoy the different varieties of areas and landscapes in the central part of the Netherlands with its small canals and lakes, beautiful old cities and the various highlights of this country.
Day 1: Arrival in Amsterdam
Embarkation and check-in from 2 p.m. in Amsterdam. Take the opportunity to go shopping, to explore downtown Amsterdam, to make a canal cruise or to visit a museum Welcome drink, dinner and first briefing on board. First night on board in Amsterdam.
Day 2: Amsterdam - Rotterdam, ~25 or 40 km
Your first cycling tour starts in Breukelen. You’ll tour along the beautiful and winding river Vecht with its enchanting background of imposing castles, country houses and quaint tearooms. You will follow the Vecht into the center of Utrecht where you will have the opportunity to explore the beautiful historical city center: the Dom Cathedral with its tower, the canals, special shops and nice cafes. In the afternoon you will continue by ship from Utrecht to Rotterdam.
Day 3: Rotterdam - Rotterdam, ~28 or 50 km
Today you will cycle via the “jenever city” of Schiedam and through the Delfland area to Delft, famous, of course, for its blue pottery. Visit the beautiful city center with its small canals, picturesque streets, bridges and alleys. For many of our guests a visit to the Delftware factory is one of the highlights of their tour. Afterwards, you will cycle back to Rotterdam, where you can enjoy a short city walk in the evening.
Day 4: Rotterdam - Schoonhoven, ~30 or 58 km
Today you can cycle the first part or the “waterbus” will take you and your bicycle to Alblasserdam. After just a few minutes of cycling you will reach Kinderdijk (UNESCO cultural heritage, with its impressive row of 19 large windmills). You then have the choice between a longer cycling tour with a visit to the beautiful cheese city of Gouda and a short cycling tour through the Alblasserwaard. Both tours end in the “silver city” of Schoonhoven, where you can visit a silversmith.
Day 5: Schoonhoven - Haarlem, ~45 km
Today you will cycle from Schoonhoven through the beautiful “Green Heart” of Holland along small villages and quiet roads to Utrecht. On your way you can visit a traditional cheese farm and in Oudewater you can visit the Witches Weigh House. In the late afternoon the ship will sail from Utrecht to Haarlem.
Day 6: Haarlem - Zaandam, ~40 or 50 km
Today you can choose from 2 cycling tours. Both tours takes you through the beautiful Kennemer dunes, a national park where you can spot several bird species, Scottish Highland cows and Shetland ponies. After a visit to the seaside resorts Bloemendaal and Zandvoort you cycle through the forests and the center of Haarlem back to the ship. The longer cycling tour leads to the largest steam engine of the world, the Cruquius pumping station and back to Haarlem. During dinner your ship will cruise to Zaandam.
Departures dates between April 14 and May 5:
On Thursday you have the opportunity to visit the world famous Tulip exhibition park “Keukenhof” in Lisse (by bicycle or public transport; transfers/tickets/entrance fee not included).
Day 7: Zaandam - Amsterdam, ~30 or 45 km
From Zaandam your final day of cycling will take you to the open air museum the Zaanse Schans (free entry), with its beautiful windmills, an Old Dutch village with traditional wooden houses, a cheese farm and a traditional wooden clog maker. After exploring the museum you cycle through the recreational area “Twiske” back to Amsterdam. The afternoon and evening are yours to enjoy everything Amsterdam has to offer. If you didn’t go for a canal tour on the first day, you will have the opportunity to do so today.
Day 8: Departure and 'Tot ziens' (good bye)
After breakfast there’s the debarkation at about 10 a.m.
Your Ship - de Amsterdam
De Amsterdam is a very well equipped river cruise ship, built in 1991 and last refurbished in 2017. In recent years, the vessel has been operated for river cruises (4 star category) in Germany. In 2018, De Amsterdam make her first cycling cruises on the Southern Tour of Holland! The ship sails under German flag and Dutch management.
Description of the cabins
The lower deck offers space to 8 twin cabins and 22 superior twin cabins (11 m² - 135 sq.ft.).
The upper deck has 18 superior twin cabins (11 m² - 135 sq.ft.) and 8 spacious suites (15 m² - 200 sq.ft.).
The difference between twin and superior twin cabins on the lower deck is their location in relation to engine room, stairs and salon. All twin cabins have two separate single beds (200 x 80 cm - 78 x 31 inches), the suites have two separate beds set next to each other as a hotel style bed (200 x 160 cm - 78 x 62 inches) which, on previous request, can be arranged as two separate single beds.
All 56 cabins aboard De Amsterdam have an individual climate control system, digital TV, wardrobe, mini-safe, hair dryer, 230V and 115V sockets and a private bathroom with shower, toilet and basin.
The twin cabins have a large picture window (140 x 90 cm - 55 x 35 inches) that can be partly opened. The suites have the same amenities as the twin cabins, but are larger and - in addition - also have a minibar, a “French Balcony” (floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors) instead of a window.
Description of the ship
De Amsterdam has a spacious restaurant on the lower deck. The pleasant lounge on the upper deck has large windows around, which offers you a great view of the surroundings. There is also a bar with a dance floor. Wi-Fi is available. On the partially roofed sun deck, chairs and sun loungers invite for a stay. Here you can relax and have a drink and enjoy the scenery while sailing. Bicycles will be stored on a separate part of the sun deck.
Facts about the ship
Length: 94.8 m (311 ft.), Width: 11 m (36 ft.), Crew: 21, Cabins: 56, Passengers: 112 (max.)
7 nights in cabin of booked category
7x copious breakfast
6x packed lunch
7x dinner (3-plate-menu)
towels and bed linen
daily cabin cleaning
guide on boat
some short walking tours
music evening on board
detailed documentation and maps
Wi-Fi on board in lounge
guided tour - 8 days / 7 nights
arrival on Saturdays
Saison I (739 €/person in double cabin, lower deck)
25.03., 01.04., 08.04. and 07.10.2023
season II (+160 €/person)
15.04., 22.04., 23.09. and 30.09.2023
season III (+290 €/person)
29.04., 09.09., 16.09.2023
season IV (+360 €/person)
route (1): ~200-290 km/125-180 miles
flat and on cycle paths along the canals that anybody can do
how to get there
by car: motorway to Amsterdam
by train: station Amsterdam
by plane: airport Amsterdam
Park & Ride in Zeeburg, on request
canal cruise Amsterdam
ticket for a 1h cruise for 15 € (at the ticket desk ~20 €), to book in advance, to collect on board on day 1
if you bring your own bikes there is a fee of 10 €/bike for the parking and 25 €/electric bike.
some of our bike tour suggestions