Amsterdam - Bremen, Germany Tour

On the Amsterdam-Bremen route, this two-country tour covers the northern part of the Netherlands as well as parts of Lower Saxony in Germany. We are going to meet the Frisians, descendants of a Germanic tribe, once as powerful as the Saxons and Franks in coastal areas up to the Weser River in Germany. Spectacular are their terps, man made mounts that protect against floodings. We start our cycling on the bottom of the former Zuiderzee, in Almere, settled in the seventies of the last century on reclaimed soil. We pass the island of Urk to reach the terp and lakestrewn landscape of the north. Excavation of the terps delivered fertile grounds, but also archelogical treasures of the Frisian settlements that we admire in the terp museum of Ezinge.

We have a day off in the Saxon stronghold Groningen, which dominates the cultural and economical life of the northern Netherlands and even northern Germany. Historically, Groningen was often more orientated to the east and the relations with Lower Saxony are rekindled as a result of a disagreement with the rest of the Netherlands over the huge amount of natural gas, discovered in the fifties of the last century. Groningen, with its Hanseatic past and university present, is an ideal city for a day off with reknown museums and a lovely and lively historical city center.

We cycle to the hanging kitchens of Appingedam and the harbour of Delfzijl, then sail up the tidal Ems River into Germany and the important harbour city Emden. Interesting are the 35 multistoried bunkers from WW-II, a challenge for modern architects to transform into new uses, including residences. While following the scenic river valley to the beautiful town of Leer, one can find out that the German 'Kuchen' is as delicious at your coffee break as the Dutch 'Appeltaart'.

In Papenburg along the Ems River, we have a guided visit of Meyer Werft, where cruise ships for over 4,000 passengers are built. A detour brings us to the starshaped fortified town of Bourtange, then - passing the cozy lake resort of Bad Zwischenahn - we head for the university city Oldenburg. The flat countryside consists of wooded lands, small towns, half-timbered farmhouses, old peat land and abundant bike trails. The city of Bremen is by itself one of the 16 states of Germany and its town hall is on the Unesco list of World Heritage Sites. In this beautiful and lively harbour city - one of the oldest cities in northern Germany - the Angeline finds her destination for this tour in the Weser River.

The tour begins in Amsterdam and ends in Bremen, Germany. Your last full day is spent in Bremen.

Tours begin on Saturday in Europe; you must leave the USA on Friday to arrive on Saturday. Guests need to arrive at the barge by noon the day the tour starts. On the last day of the tour guests debark by 9:00 am.