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HOLLAND & BELGIUM 
Masters and Artisans Tour - Overview
DATES & COST 

April 30 - May 8, 2020
9 Days / 8 Nights

Tour starts in Amsterdam and ends in Brussels Airport

$3,880 per person/double occupancy
$1,300 optional single supplement
$380 extra night, single or double, including airport transfer
Includes all fees and taxes

TOUR DIRECTOR 
TOUR MAP 
Click on the image to enlarge the map

THIS TOUR IS FULL. WE ARE ACCEPTING STANDBY RESERVATIONS.

The Low Countries of the Netherlands and Belgium embrace the North Sea which over the centuries has become a vital part of their cultural and even physical fabric. These two small countries in Northern Europe are bursting with cultural and artistic riches, offering a journey through the Old World that is unlike any other part of Europe. The region is home to innumerable quaint towns with gravity-defying houses built on top of labyrinthine canals, golden cities with celebrated museums featuring some of history’s greatest masterpieces, fairy-tale castles, unspoiled farmland cut with waterways and dotted with windmills, and picture-perfect countryside carpeted with millions of flowers, all straight from the pages of a storybook. Fabulously historic, filled with the cutting-edge art, both old and new, the cities of Amsterdam and Bruges are full of unexpected riches: romantic canals, watery landscapes which inspired Vermeer and his contemporaries, imposing architecture and creative cuisine (topped with the world's best chocolate!), and getting to know this part of Europe offers unforgettable rewards of having truly experienced the Old World.

Holland 

The Masters and Artisans Tour will start in the Netherlands' fabulous capital city of Amsterdam. From our base of an upscale, boutique hotel in the city center, we'll experience both the most famous and the most unique aspects of this city. We'll take a dinner cruise in the labyrinth of the magically lit canals, visit Anne Frank's House, the Rijksmuseum and the Van Gogh Museum, set out to explore Delft and Haarlem, witness a flower auction in Aalsmeer, visit the world's most beautiful spring flower garden in Keukenhof, tour the storybook Dutch countryside and be awed by the windmills of Kinderdijk.

  • We will stay at a boutique hotel in the center of Amsterdam, conveniently located in the museum district.
     
  • We will venture out to Aalsmeer, Keukenhof and Haarlem one day, to Edam and Zaanse Schans another day, and to Delft and Kinderdijk still another day.
     
  • We will explore the city, including its many museums and historical sites, by foot and by boat.
     
  • We will enjoy the typical Dutch pastime, as we ride on the canals in the shadow of old windmills.
     
  • Throughout the tour we will dine in carefully selected restaurants and sample delicious Dutch cuisine along with the classic Dutch beers.
Belgium 

The second part of the Masters and Artisans tour will take us to Belgium, where from the base of our hotel in the historical center of medieval Bruges, we'll explore Brussels and Ghent, as well as the ancient city of Bruges itself. We'll take a walking tour focusing on the Art Nouveau architecture in Brussels, tour a chocolate museum and even make some of our own chocolate. We'll take a romantic cruise on the peaceful canals of Bruges while admiring the traditional lifestyle of its people, and while in Ghent, we'll bask in the town's youthful energy, reflected in its mix of Gothic and contemporary architecture.

  • We will explore Bruges, focusing on its architecture, history and cuisine.
  • We will venture out to Europe's capital, Brussels one day, and to the romantic Ghent the next day.
  • We will enjoy the typical Belgian cuisine, as we dine in carefully selected restaurants.
INCLUDED IN THE PRICE 
  • 4 nights at a boutique hotel in the center of Amsterdam; 4 nights at a historic luxury hotel in the center of Bruges
     
  • Delicious meals - traditional European or vegetarian menu: 8 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 5 dinners, including drinks
     
  • Private guided tours of Amsterdam, Keukenhof Gardens, Haarlem, Edam, Delft, and Kinderdijk in the Netherlands
     
  • Museum docent led, private tours of the Van Gogh Museum, the Rijksmuseum, the Frans Hals Museum and the Royal Dutch Delftware Manufactory in Delft
     
  • Private tours of Brussels, Bruges and Ghent in Belgium
     
  • Private dinner cruise on the canals of Amsterdam, canal cruises in Bruges and in Ghent
     
  • Admission to the flower auction in Aalsmeer, Keukenhof's Gardens, Anne Franks' House, Delft Porcelain Museum, Van Gogh Museum, Frans Hals Museum, and Rijksmuseum in the Netherlands
     
  • Admission to the Chocolate Museum and the Chocolate Making Class in Brussels
     
  • Private chauffeured airport transfers on arrival and a group airport transfer on departure
     
  • Private bus transportation in the Netherlands and in Belgium
     
  • Excellent local guides and a professional tour director
     
  • All guides', drivers' and restaurants' gratuities
     
  • All sightseeing fees and cultural activities, as per itinerary
NOT INCLUDED 

Additional/optional costs may include: optional single room supplement, optional travel insurance, meals not included in the itinerary, additional accommodations, optional tour director gratuities, telephone charges, laundry, minibar, personal expenses.

HIGHLIGHTS 
  • A private dinner cruise on Amsterdam's canals
  • Touring the world famous Rijksmuseum
  • Docent led tours of Van Gogh Museum and Frans Hals Museum
  • Exploring the historic Haarlem
  • The windmills of Kinderdijk
  • Watching a flower auction in Aalsmeer
  • Seeing Keukenhof Gardens (open only two months a year)
  • Visiting Anne Frank's House
  • The storybook Dutch countryside and the village of Edam
  • A tour of the Royal Delftware Manufactory
  • Staying in the frozen-in-time, medieval Bruges
  • Experiencing the Gothic and modern Brussels
  • Learning about and making Belgian chocolate
  • Comparing the old and new architecture of Ghent
  • Belgian culinary specialties (chocolate, mussels, beer, waffles)
  • Flowers, flowers everywhere!
What Makes This Trip Special  
  • Accommodations in an elegant, boutique hotel in Amsterdam
  • Staying at a historical boutique hotel in Bruges' Old Town
  • Upscale restaurants and a la carte dining, including drinks
  • Knowledgeable and passionate local guides
  • Exclusive experiences, not available to larger groups
  • A small group of maximum 16 women
  • Knowledgeable and experienced tour director
  • No forced shopping
Testimonials 

The best experiences during the tour were the flower auction and Keukenhof. It was a great trip. – Nera from North Carolina

This was my first “solo” trip. I enjoyed the company of the other women and always having someone to tour or eat with if I chose. I really enjoyed having to only change hotels once. I especially like the hotel in Bruges. The rooms were fabulous! I enjoyed being able to walk around the historic district in my free time. – Suzann from Texas

The best experiences were all the “factories” – flower auction, cheese, Delft and chocolate; Anne Frank’s house was profound; Keukenhof was gorgeous; and all the canal rides were fun, and face another perspective of a city. This was a wonderful trip – very well organized with two interesting countries. My favorite meal was at Le Petit Grand in Bruges – yum!! Both hotels were excellent. Special kudos to Grand Hotel Casselbergh for opening their full breakfast buffet at 6:00AM for our oh-so-early departure to Brussels airport. I liked having the Vamoos and WhatsApp for use on the trip. April’s pre- and post-emails were both helpful and caring. I really like the limit of 16 women. – Ellen from North Carolina

The tour had nice women, and a wonderful tour director. The best experiences were the Flower Auction, the bike tour in Kinderdijk and Keukenhof. – Valerie from Florida

Biking through the windmills was an amazing experience. The hotels and restaurants were very nice and the food was delicious. My first Sights and Soul trip was a wonderful experience. I went on the trip not knowing anyone and have never traveled to Europe before but everyone on the tour made me feel like we have known each other forever. - Ashley from Pennsylvania

Precious moments, biking along the windmills and beauty, plus everything offered! Five-star meals! Every day a wonder! Renata is a gift! I loved her sincere and gentle manner. That coupled with her genuine care and knowledge makes her so special. Thank you for your professional staff and I look forward to each and every adventure ahead! - Karen from New York

Wonderful tour. Lots of variety, both urban and rural. It was nice to only move hotels once. Good choice of hotels and restaurants.
Mary-Louise from Minnesota

Can't say enough about the wonderful trip.  From the hotels to the tours and the restaurants, everything was top notch and I could tell that there was a lot of thought and planning into the process. Our tour guide Kerry was fabulous, she really went above and beyond in making sure we were all well taken care of.  I will be recommending Sights and Soul and look forward to taking another trip. I have traveled with another women's travel group and Sights and Soul is by far a better company in so many ways.  Thanks for making  the trip to Holland & Belgium a memorable experience!
Kathleen from Illinois

This was a great tour. Excellent excursions were included, great guides, restaurants were fantastic. Other tour participants were friendly. We had a great time.
Tina from Massachusetts

I loved this tour! The combination of natural beauty, artistic perfection, wonderful cities and small towns was just great. Each day brought more adventures to be excited about. The hotels, especially in Bruges, were wonderful. Adored Grand Casselburg Hotel. Food was glorious. The restaurants were so well chosen, great food and atmosphere. Finally, what a great group of women were on this tour! I’ve made a bunch of new friends with whom I look forward to traveling.
Amy from Massachusetts

This tour was amazing, from the food, sights, smells and the group of people. I have wanted to see the Netherlands and Belgium for as I can remember, and this trip exceeded my expectations and will be the trip I will always remember. Marta was amazing. She brought the tour to life and has the patience of a saint!
Tiffany from Wisconsin

Everything about this trip was well planned, the hotels, the restaurants, the activities, the sights, our tour leader – all outstanding.
Cynthia from Pennsylvania

If a picture is worth a thousand words, than being there is worth a million. This was an exceptional trip. I was swept over with emotion at the beauty of the tulip fields and the flowers at the Keukenhof Gardens. The entire tour was one great experience after another, I will definitely go with Sights and Soul Travels again. Thanks again to Marta, she was a wonderful tour guide.
Beverly from Florida

The trip was Awesome! Marvelous! Fantastic---as always. The choices of activities, accommodations, and restaurants were superb.  On a scale of 10, this trip gets an 11.  Thank you and many thanks to Marta who made this trip a success.  The choreographing of schedules  is complex and Marta made it seamless and transparent and did so cheerfully.  She is a real pro at herding cats !  I can't wait for the next trip with Sights and Souls.
Connie from Oregon

You do everything upscale. I like that. From the moment you land until you take off for home. Everything is planned and everything is the best that there is.
Meg from New York

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Why travel with other women?
Many women do not have families or compatible friends who wish to travel. When going on a main-stream tour, women often find that most activities are geared towards couples and quite often they feel left out. Singles' tours are not always what women are looking for. If you do not have a traveling companion, there is also the issue of the expensive "single supplement", sometimes as much as 50 or even 100 percent of the tour cost. By going on women-only tours, women can easily avoid paying for the single supplement by sharing a room with another woman traveler.
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