Day 1 Arrive Amsterdam (5 Nights)
Welcome to the picture-perfect city of Amsterdam, buzzing with bicycles and boats. Every alley leads to another cosy bruin café and the canals are more plentiful than in Venice. Delve into the gezelligheid of Amsterdam during a city orientation - to see its beautifully preserved medieval buildings and tree-lined canals. Then, enjoy a Welcome Reception and laid-back city cruise along the winding canals, soaking up the alluring setting as you enjoy a light meal.
Day 2 Amsterdam Sightseeing including the Rijksmuseum
This morning, we enjoy a Small Group Sightseeing tour of the Rijksmuseum, home to masterpieces of Rembrandt, Hals and Vermeer. Spend the rest of the day on your own. End your day with delicious local flavours at one of the city's many cosy restaurants. (Breakfast)
Day 3 Amsterdam – Excursion to Haarlem, Zaanse Schans and Volendam
Take a trip back in time to discover the centuries-old traditions of Holland stopping in the pretty town of Haarlem. We join a 'Local Specialist' this morning for a visit to the Corrie ten Boom House and Museum. Learn how this watchmaker helped countless Jews escape Nazi prosecution during World War II, which ultimately led to her arrest. 'Dive Into Culture' and visit Zaanse Schans to sample delicious Dutch cheeses and investigate the inner-workings of one of the country's many windmills. Along the way, you'll learn about the Zuiderzee, and its incredible story of land reclamation and battle against the encroaching sea. We travel to the fishing village of Volendam on the shores of the IJsselmeer, our gateway into a Holland of yesteryear. This evening, we join some of our local friends on a farm and indulge in a meal of authentic Dutch delicacies. (Breakfast, Regional Dinner)
Day 4 Amsterdam – Excursion to The Hague, Delft, Rotterdam and Kinderdijk
This morning, we travel to the stately capital of The Hague and the heart of Dutch politics, where we will learn about the International Court of Justice, housed within the beautifully designed Peace Palace. The pretty blue and white pottery of Delft takes centre stage next as we 'Dive Into Culture' during an exclusive tour with a 'Local Specialist' to the factory that produces these delicate pieces. Our next stop is edgy Rotterdam, which was almost completely rebuilt after World War II. Ascend the iconic Euromast Tower for spectacular panoramic views of the world's largest port city before returning to Amsterdam, via Kinderdijk, to see the stunning views of a series of 18th-century windmills. (Breakfast)
Day 5 Amsterdam – Excursion to Gouda (Keukenhof excursion included during Tulip Season as an alternative to Gouda)
The powerful aroma of delicious Dutch cheese will infuse our senses today. Seemingly frozen in time with its beautiful 15th-century town hall and medieval cheese weighing station, Gouda's status as a cheese trading town dates back to the Middle Ages. 'Dive Into Culture' and witness this proud tradition first-hand in the town's beautiful market square, before spending the rest of the day at leisure (Please note, during the opening of Keukenhof, an excursion to see the tulip fields will be included instead of the visit to Gouda). Returning to Amsterdam this evening, you'll be treated to a superb Farewell Dinner in the heart of the city. (Breakfast)
Day 6 Depart Amsterdam
The time has come to bid tot ziens to the magnificent city and your fellow travellers after an enjoyable At Leisure encounter with Amsterdam and the surrounding Dutch countryside. Airport transfers are available. Conditions apply. (Breakfast)
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