Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Spring Vacations 2011

 Holland and Belgium in Spring
 April 20th and the 21st, 2011
Depart on an overnight flight to Brussels, Belgium. Upon arrival, transfer to our elegant hotel, located just steps from the Grand' Place, one of Europe's most beautiful market squares. After time on your own, meet fellow travelers for a welcome reception and dinner. Hotel Amigo (D)
 April 22nd
Journey to Brugge, the birthplace of Flemish painting, where much of the remarkably preserved old town dates back to the 13th century. On a walking tour admire celebrated Gothic architecture, venture down narrow cobbled lanes, and cross arched bridges over canals dotted with swans. Stop to see Michelangelo's "Madonna and Child" sculpture at the Church of Our Lady Enjoy time to explore Brugge on your own before continuing to Antwerpen, where our riverboat awaits. Sample Belgian ales and local specialities at dinner on board tonight. M.S. Swiss Jewel (B,D)
 April 23rd
Spend the morning exploring Antwerpen, from the ornate railway station-considered one of the finest in Europe-to the opera house and City Hall. Visit the Rubenshuis, a museum in the home of 17th-century artist Peter Paul Rubens. Then learn about Belgian chocolate making and enjoy a tasting at a local chocolatier. This afternoon, cruise the Albert Canal and join the captain for a welcome reception and dinner on board. (B, L, D)
 April 24th
In charming Maastricht, our walking tour includes Vrijthof Square and the 16th-century Spanish Government House. Pass through Helpoort, an imposing gateway built in 1229, and visit the Basilica of St. Servatius, where portions of the church date back 1,000 years. Pay your respects at the Netherlands American Cemetery and Memorial, final resting place of some 8,300 U.S. soldiers who lost their lives during World War II. Then head into the countryside for a specially arranged culinary experience at Chateau Neercanne, a 17th-century castle set among renowned terraced gardens. Meet the chef in the kitchen before sitting down to an extraordinary meal in the castle's wine cellar. Later, enjoy time to explore Maastricht on your own. (B,L,D)
 April 25th
Sail the Maas River north to Nijmegen, one of the country's oldest towns. Stroll among the ruins of the Valkhof, Charlemagne's 8th-century stronghold, and see art and ancient artifacts at the Museum Het Valkhof. Visit St. Stevenskerk, a 14th-century church, and wander through the Grote Markt. Cruise to Arnhem, where local performers come abroad for an evening of traditional music and dance. (B,L,D)
 April 26th
Choose between two excursions today. Delve into the history of the World War II Allied airborne assault on Arnhem and visit the Airborne Museum in Oosterbeek. Or spend the day in De Hoge Veluwe National Park and examine works by Vincent van Gogh and other renowned artists at the park's Kroller-Muller Museum. Later, meet the ship at Devemter and glide along a branch of the Rhine called the IJssel River, enjoying a performance of classical music as you go. (B,L,D)
 April 27th
The day begins in the picturesque seaside town of Enkhuizen. Step back in time at the Zuiderzee Museum and see a reconstructed 19th-century fishing village. Continue to the legendary port of Hoorn, which saw its heyday during the Golden Age of Dutch exploration. Learn on a walking tour, or take an excursion to the Alkmaar region to visit the Schermer Museum Mill and watch a cheese-making demonstration at a local farm. (B,L,D)
April 28th and 29th
Dock in Amsterdam, and journey overland to the gardens of Keukenhof. Once the tidy herd garden for a castle kitchen, Keukenhof is now known for its dazzling patchwork of tulips, daffodils, and hyancinths. In the afternoon, discover the treasures of Amsterdam on your own. The following day, gaze at the works of Rembrandt and other Dutch masters at the world-renowned Rijksmuseum before a lucheon cruise along the city's canals. After a final afternoon to explore Amsterdam, enjoy a festive farewell reception and dinner on board. (B,L,D daily)

April 30th
Disembark after breakfast and transfer to the airport for your flight home. (B)

Information Expedition Cost:
Category 1 $4,190 (located on Emerald Deck)
Category 2 $4,475 (Located on Emerald Deck)
Category 3 $5,160 (Located on Ruby Deck)
Category 4 $5,500 (Located on Ruby Deck)
Category 5 $6,185 (Located on Diamond Deck)
Category 6 $6,985 (Located on Diamond Deck)
**prices are per person, double occupancy. For single cabin, add $1,676 in Category 1 and $1,790 in Category 2. Call for single prices in other categories. Gratuities to the ship's crew are included in the expedition cost. Airfare is not included  in the expedition cost.

Email me for more information or to get a trip quote
or call me at 619-464-6426 or 800-879-8635

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