Experience the colorful beauty of spring in western Europe with this tulip time journey. Board your ship in Amsterdam, and spend time getting to know the cafes and canals of this historic city. Travel to Rotterdam and join a bike tour around the city; view stunning paintings and architecture from the Dutch and Flemish Renaissance in Ghent and Antwerp; and bask in vast fields of brilliant tulip blossoms in the Dutch countryside. Return to Amsterdam to board your train to Paris, where you'll find broad boulevards lined in stately golden buildings, vast historic palaces and museums full of iconic artworks. This journey offers beauty and history at every turn.
Explore the breathtaking Keukenhof, known as the Garden of Europe
See the central Grote Markt lined with 16th-century guildhalls
Enjoy the sightseeing tour in Ghent showcasing the medieval Flemish wealth
Explore the art and history of Paris, the "city of light"
Welcome to Amsterdam! Explore the city at your leisure. You may choose to join a guided optional excursion to beautiful Zaanse Schans where you’ll see a wonderful collection of well-preserved historic windmills and Dutch houses. This afternoon, board your ship and settle in. Set sail while enjoying dinner on your first night onboard.
Join a full - or half-day Guided Tour of breathtaking Keukenhof—known as the “Garden of Europe”—for its 70 acres of lush parkland, lakes, and the world’s largest flower gardens—with more than seven million tulips, daffodils, and hyacinths as well as other bulbs, planted each year. Take some free time to relax on the harbor-side in Rotterdam with an artisan beer, a slice of apple tart and a koffie verkeerd, a typical Dutch drink of half coffee, half milk. Take a bike from your ship to explore Rotterdam and the surrounding area. Before dinner, enjoy a cruise through Rotterdam harbor. Later, enjoy live entertainment onboard.
Take a Guided Tour of this sophisticated city to visit the central Grote Markt, lined with 16th-century guildhall houses. You’ll also see the beautiful city hall, the Cathedral of Our Lady with its stunning altarpiece paintings by Rubens. You may choose to join a guided optional excursion to the nearby capital, Brussels—considered home to the European Union, and admire its magnificent palaces and cathedrals. You might prefer to take time on your own to indulge in Antwerp’s signature Belgian waffles and crêpes—or explore this bike-friendly city from its old wharves to its legendary diamond district.
You’ll have time for an early-morning walk (or jog) to explore the architecture and canals of Ghent—“Belgium’s best-kept secret.” Explore Ghent—“The Diamond of Flanders”—with a Guided Sightseeing Tour of this showcase of medieval Flemish wealth. You’ll visit St. Bavo’s Cathedral—with its remarkable Flemish artwork. You may choose to join a Guided Optional Excursion of Bruges to explore its canals, cobbled streets and medieval buildings. You’ll see its crisscrossed canals, the 13th-century belfry of Market Square, and charming patrician houses.
Join a guided walking tour of the historic merchant city of Middelburg—with its 15th-century gothic Town Hall. You’ll learn about the spice trade of this Dutch harbor capital of Zeeland, its prosperity in the Dutch East India Company trading, and origins as a stronghold city. Enjoy its winding cobbled streets and canals that circle Old Town. Spend some free time biking or walking through Middelburg to sample Babbelaar cookies, fries, or beer before cruising to Veere this afternoon. Alternatively, join a guided tour of the Delta Works, the largest flood-protection system in the world, and a miracle of modern technology.
For an active outing, join your Avalon Adventure Host for a Nordic Walking excursion in Willemstad. Or opt to join a Guided Walking Tour of Willemstad and discover its many beautifully restored buildings from the 17th and 18th Century. Later, enjoy a Cheese Tasting on board as you prepare to sail to Amsterdam.
Discover Aalsmeer Flower Auction—the largest in the world, where around 20 million flowers are sold every day. Later enjoy a typical Dutch breakfast.Explore the iconic waterways of Amsterdam on a Guided Canal Cruise past stately homes of Amsterdam’s “Golden Age.” This afternoon choose among the many Guided Optional Excursions available.Take some free time to explore Amsterdam’s colorful streets and canal houses, galleries, and shops.
Day 8: Amsterdam, Netherlands | Disembark | Paris, France
Transfer from your Avalon Ship to the train station, to begin your Monograms package. Travel to Paris by high-speed train (first class).
Day 9-11: Paris, France
Morning guided sightseeing includes a drive past the Latin Quarter, Les Invalides, Place de la Concorde, the Arc de Triomphe and a stop to take photos of the Eiffel Tower from one of the best panoramic viewing points. Also admire the heart of the city from a different perspective on a Seine River cruise. Embark your comfortable boat near the Eiffel Tower and spend a relaxing hour gliding by many of the city's important landmarks such as the L'Institut de France; Notre Dame Cathedral; Hôtel de Ville, the city's municipal headquarters; the Conciergerie, formerly a notorious prison where Marie-Antoinette spent the last days of her life; famous Louvre Palace and museum; and much more.
Daily four-course a la carte dinner in the Panorama Dining Room with choice of appetizers, soups, salads, entrees, and desserts. Includes selections of regional recipes, Western dishes, and vegetarian options.
Enjoy a tasting menu with a view in the Panorama Bistro - a less formal "sit-down" atmosphere while lingering over several satisfying selections
Captain’s welcome & farewell receptions and dinners with sparkling wine and canapés
Panorama Lounge featuring premium spirits and Avalon specialty cocktails, along with local entertainment special guests
Cocktails available on the Sky Deck
Fresh fruit available throughout the day
In the event of water level problems or any problems of a technical nature, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or to alter the program.
Included visits and special features are subject to change. If a change is necessary, a substitute will be offered.
Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); responsibility for obtaining visas rests with the traveler.
Avalon has designedincluded activitieswith a choice of experiences.
Initial deposit is $450, and most travelers will call our office and pay the deposit with a credit card.
Final payment is due 100 days prior to departure by check, money order, Visa, MasterCard, Discover/Novus, and American Express. All final payments by credit card may be subject to a surcharge and maximum of $20,000 charge
Our guide and driver were very good with their knowledge and were very helpful with our questions. It was a very pleasant visit that would have been impossible to do on our own. Hotels and restaurants were fantastic. The special places we got to go to, like the kitchens, were great. Enjoyed the entire trip!