The Low Countries of Holland 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.
The Masters and Artisans Tour will start Holland's 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 Edam, Zaanse Schans and Haarlem one day, to Aalsmeer and Keukenhof 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.
- We will dine in carefully selected restaurants and sample delicious Dutch cuisine along with the classic Dutch beers.
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 both the Gothic and 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 stay at a luxury hotel in the center of Bruges' Old Town.
- We will explore Bruges, focusing on its architecture, history and cuisine.
- We will spend a full day in Europe's capital, Brussels, and another in the romantic town of Ghent.
- We will enjoy the typical Belgian cuisine, as we dine in carefully selected restaurants.
- 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, 2 lunches, 5 dinners, including drinks
- Private guided tours of Amsterdam, Keukenhof Gardens, Haarlem, Edam, and Kinderdijk in Holland
- Museum docent led, private tours of 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 Frank's House, Delft Porcelain Museum, Van Gogh Museum, Frans Hals Museum, and Rijksmuseum in Holland
- 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 Holland 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
Additional/optional costs may include: optional single room supplement, optional travel insurance, meals not included in the itinerary, additional accommodations, optional Tour Director's gratuities, telephone charges, laundry, minibar, personal expenses.
The cost does not include airfare.