Hidden Treasures of the Netherlands
Board Rex Rheni in Amsterdam and set off in search of some of the Netherlands lesser-known delights. Enjoy a morning in pretty Hoorn where you can explore on an optional excursion and continue on to the holiday hot-spot of Oudeschild on the scenic island of Texel, where you spend the night and can explore further. From historic Harlingen you might wish to join an excursion to the worlds oldest working planetarium at Franeker while the pumping station at Wouda is the subject of another optional excursion during your time moored in the watersports town of Lemmer.
Cruise to Urk and enjoy an included scenic drive through the spellbinding tulip fields of the Noordoostpolder sure to be a highlight of your holiday while you might wish to explore the Venetian-style town of Giethoorn on an optional tour during an afternoon spent in Kampen. The iconicDutchcapital of Amsterdam provides a fitting finale to your voyage, with an optional city and canal tour available to you.
Day 1 UK to Amsterdam to Hoorn
Travel by coach from Folkestone to Amsterdam via Eurotunnel or ferry and embarkRex Rheni.
Enjoy a welcome reception and dinner as you depart this evening for Hoorn where you arrive late and moor overnight.
Day 2 Hoorn to Oudeschild
Wake up in Hoorn.
This region of Friesland is largely agricultural and particularly famous for its black-and-white Friesian cattle. Step ashore to take a look around and perhaps pause in a waterside cafe and reflect on this fascinating fact When the Dutch navigators Willem Schouten and Jakob Le Maire first sailed past Cape Horn at the southernmost tip of South America back in 1616, Schouten named it after this, his home town of Hoorn.
You might wish to explore further on an optional excursion before you cruise through the afternoon to reach the small fishing port of Oudeschild on the island of Texel. The village of Oudeschild is a popular holiday resort on the south-east coast of the island, with fine sandy beaches nearby.
Day 3 Oudeschild to Harlingen
The largest and most southerly of the Wadden Islands, Texel is part of the province of North Holland and is just 24 kilometres long and nine kilometres wide.
This morning perhaps join an optional island tour with its fields, pine forests, sand dunes and windmills, Texel is like Holland in miniature and many rare and unusual birds have been spotted here.
After lunch set off on a cruise down the Van Harinxma Canal to arrive in Harlingen before dinner and moor overnight.
Day 4 Harlingen to Lemmer
Enjoy the morning at leisure in Harlingen.
Here you can join an optional excursion exploring the province of Friesland and visiting the oldest working planetarium in the world at the university city of Franeker. Alternatively you can explore historic Harlingen independently on foot. This harbour town, the most northerly on the mainland, prospered thanks to fishing and trade with Scandinavia. You can see the merchants houses alongside the canals, where the gable stones indicate the residents trade, before house numbers were thought of!
Cruise through the afternoon to arrive in Lemmer, a popular water sports town, before dinner. You remain moored here overnight.
Day 5 Lemmer to Urk
This morning is at leisure in Lemmer where you might enjoy relaxing in a waterside cafe, alternatively, head off to see its biggest attraction the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Wouda pumping station on an optional excursion.
Your cruise resumes at lunchtime with the short voyage to Urk, where you arrive mid-afternoon and moor overnight. The fishing town has existed for more than a Millennium and was originally an island in the Almere, a lake which became part of the Zuiderzee in the 13th century. Urk was finally connected to the mainland by a dyke in 1939.
Youre in for a treat this afternoon as you can look forward to an included scenic drive through the spellbinding tulip fields of the Noordoostpolder land reclaimed from the sea which is now considered the foremost bulb region in the Netherlands which attracts visitors from around the globe. Look forward to stops for photo opportunities before you return to your ship.
Day 6 Urk to Kampen
Bid farewell to Urk after breakfast and cruise on to arrive in Kampen before lunch.
This afternoon an optional excursion visits Giethoorn, a pretty lake town likened to Venice due to its many canals and bridges.
Return to your ship in Kampen and moor overnight.
Day 7 Kampen to Amsterdam
Set sail before breakfast and arrive in the capital mid-morning.
Perhaps join an optional tour of Amsterdam by coach this morning and see the Royal Palace on Dam Square, the floating flower market, the Central Railway Station, which is built on thousands of wooden piles, and the grand 19th-century Rijksmuseum. This excursion also includes a canal cruise to see the city centre with its pretty bridges and attractive gabled houses up close.
This afternoon and the final night of your holiday are at leisure in Amsterdam.
Day 8 Amsterdam to UK
Disembark your ship after breakfast for your return journey to the UK.