North - South Tour
The North - South Tour is the north and south coastal routing along the North Sea and the IJsselmeer. This popular route includes dunes, windmills and traditional Holland.
Biking through the "Green Heart" we reach Gouda renowned for its 15th century town hall, large gothic St. Jan Church with its beautiful stained glass windows, and famous cheese. In Kinderdijk we visit one of the 19 windmills that are on the list of Unesco World Heritage Sites. Modern Rotterdam is inviting with its grand bridges over the Meuse River. In Delft we visit the Delftware factory to see how this fine porcelain is made and painted. The Hague (Den Haag) is home to the International Court of Justice located in the Peace Palace, the Dutch government, and Noordeinde Palace, the working palace of King Willem-Alexander. Visit the Mauritshuis Museum with its paintings from 17th century Dutch masters, including Johannes Vermeer, Rembrandt van Rijn and Paulus Potter. The Girl with a Pearl Earring by Vermeer is not to be missed. An extra day in Leiden is a great way to taste the local life of the street market, visit museums or roam around the cozy neighborhoods.
The cycling continues to Haarlem, which offers a market square that is known for being one of the most beautiful in the country. The center hosts the Frans Hals Museum, the Ten Boom Museum, subject of the book The Hiding Place by Corrie ten Boom, the Saint Bavo Church and many lovely almshouses. Taste the cheese from the Alkmaar area and bike along the spectacular North Sea beaches and sand dunes. Spend a day on Texel Island, a bicycle paradise where large parts of the island can only be reached by bike paths. Along the IJsselmeer you will fall in love with the old Zuiderzee towns with their rich trading history. 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.