The Dutch Burgundy Tour has a significant part of the routing in the catholic southern and south eastern part of the Netherlands. Here the beautiful Meuse (Maas) river forms the border between the provinces of Brabant and Limburg. The history of the times that the Netherlands were part of the grandeur of the duchy of Burgundy can be felt.
Enjoy cycling along and even on the dikes of first the river Rhine, later the Meuse, over viewing the orchards. Admire the traditional farmhouses, surrounded by linden esplanades and amidst fertile river clay pastures. We dock in the oldest city of the Netherlands, Nijmegen, where the Romans established their most northern stronghold of the ‘limes' (border). Set foot in Germany east from Limburg and visit Kleve and the catholic grandeur of the pilgrimage town of Kevelaer, until 1713 part of Dutch Gelderland. Just before we leave the Meuse valley we pay a visit the elaborate castle gardens of Arcen.
After the big rivers we enter Burgundy Brabant through the Zuid-Willemsvaart (South-Williamscanal), dug out in 1826 in commission of King William I, who aimed to modernize the old trading routes. Tree-lined sand grounds and old heather fields mark a significant change in scenery. We visit Nuenen where Vincent van Gogh painted some of his famous sceneries and a statue of him is located in the central park of the town. We are on our way to ‘s Hertogenbosch (Den Bosch), capital of Brabant. Its gothic cathedral is still one the most beautiful testimonies of catholic heritage in the Netherlands. The underground river tour in the evening shows you the medieval set up of the town in a unique way.
On our way back along the Waal, the main arm of the Rhine, we pass the fortified towns of Heusden, Woudrichem and Gorinchem and pay a visit to the medieval Loevestein Castle (1368). The old towns and strongholds are built to protect booming Holland against attacks from the dukes of Brabant and their French allies. We dock in the silver town Schoonhoven and visit Utrecht with all its churches, canals and city castles.
The tour begins and ends in Amsterdam. Your last full day is spent in Amsterdam.
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.