All tours on this holiday have now departed. Future departure dates will be confirmed in due course.
Fabulous gardens – at Keukenhof and Leiden
Architecture - you’ll see provincial Dutch gems in Delft, Leiden and Haarlem
Restaurants - Delft’s are excellent
The windmills at Kinderdijk – the encapsulation of Dutch history in one image
Modern Art – at the superb Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam including “Sunflowers”
From sensational Keukenhof with its six million bulbs to the botanical gardens in Leiden and the charm of the Kinderdijk windmills, this tour is a scenic and historic delight.
Day 1: Travel by Eurostar from St Pancras or Ebbsfleet direct to Brussels.
On arrival, transfer by coach to Delft (approx. 2 hours) and the Hampshire Delft Centre Hotel.
Day 2: Early morning visit to the Aalsmeer Flower Auction and walking tour of Delft with the afternoon free.
Early morning (06.30) visit to the spectacular Aalsmeer Flower Auction, set in the heart of the bulb-growing region, a sea of colour at this time of year. Return to Delft for midmorning walking tour. It isn’t hard to see why Delft is one of the most popular attractions for visitors to the Netherlands – firstly there’s Vermeer, then the town’s famous blue and white ceramics and last but certainly not least the gorgeous centre – a jumble of old tiled houses, tree-lined canals, and lovely little bridges, though it’s the feeling of the place that holds most of the appeal. Wandering the narrow streets is a must, and the Prinsenhof, one of a few fascinating old buildings, has a collection of Golden Age paintings.
Day 3: Full day tour to Amsterdam including the Van Gogh Museum.
The largest city and capital of The Netherlands, Amsterdam started life as a small fishing village and became one of the world's most important ports during the Dutch Golden Age. Wander the narrow atmospheric lanes and canals lined with 17th century merchant's houses and visit some of the many cultural and historic sites. In the morning we will visit the Van Gogh Museum, home of the largest collection of works by Van Gogh in the world. The afternoon will be free for you to explore at your leisure.
Day 4: Full day tour to the Keukenhof Gardens.
One of the most spectacular public gardens in the world, Holland’s iconic Keukenhof Gardens were set up in 1949 as a showcase for bulb growers. A 79-acre site is planted with some six million bulbs of narcissi, hyacinths, tulips, Japanese cherry trees, azaleas and rhododendrons.
Day 5: Full day tour to Haarlem and Leiden.
A relaxed pace of life and lovely historic centre makes Haarlem a delightful town to explore. A former centre of cloth-making, in the 17th century Haarlem became the place to be for a flourishing school of painters, much of whose work is displayed in the excellent Frans Hals Museum. Housed in a former almshouse, where Hals himself lived the last years of his life, the museum’s collection consists of works by Hals and a sample of Dutch paintings from the 15th century to the present day. Home to one of Europe’s most prestigious universities and the birth place of Rembrandt, Leiden is a vibrant and appealing city. It’s beautiful and historic old town, crisscrossed by ancient canals and full of lovely antique buildings, is best explored on foot, with its historic, riverside botanic gardens a particular delight at this time of year.
Day 6: Full day tour to Dordrecht and Kinderdijk.
Dordrecht is the oldest town in Holland, dating from 1220 and was the country’s most important port, despite its inland location, until the 1500s. Sites include its Grote Kerk church, Museum Simon van Rijn and city gate, dating from 1325. This afternoon we visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Kinderdijk collection of 19 windmills which encapsulates Dutch history in a single image. Used to drain water from the Alblasserwaard, they are situated where the Noord and Lek converge and serve as an historic reminder of how Holland began.
Day 7: Morning visit to Antwerp. Belgium's second city, Antwerp, is one of the world's largest ports, with a characteristically Flemish old town at the heart of a thriving modern city. Home and birthplace of Rubens, the city has a strong artistic heritage reflected in its host of churches and musuems. Early afternoon transfer to Brussels to board the return Eurostar service to Ebbsfleet and St Pancras.
NB: Exact order of itinerary may vary according to local conditions and tour manager's discretion
Please note the maximum group size on this tour is 49 passengers.
As with most trains, passengers are responsible for carrying baggage onto and off the train. Baggage can be stored on overhead shelves or at the entrance to the carriages. Trollies are available at St Pancras and Lille, but bags do need to be carried on to the platform. Porters are sometimes but not always available at St Pancras. The Eurostar and French trains are very long (18 carriages in the case of Eurostar and nearly 400 metres long) so there can be quite lengthy walks from the station entrance to your seat. On all legs of the journey you have reserved seat and carriage numbers which are shown clearly on your ticket.
LUGGAGE TO YOUR HOTEL
Travel Editions recommends a luggage delivery service called thebaggageman, where your suitcase can be picked up from your home before departure and delivered straight to your hotel; therefore removing the worry about carrying your cases onto and off the trains. Please click here for more information and we have arranged a 10% discount exclusive to Travel Editions clients off the thebaggageman service. Tel: 01844 264890
Hampshire Delft Centre Hotel, Delft
The family-owned three-star Delft Centre Hotel is located - as its name suggests - in the heart of Delft just behind the New Church, so within a few minutes' walk of the main square and all the main sights. Facilities here include bar, restaurant, waterfront terrace, wi-fi and comfortable bedrooms with private bath/shower, air-conditioning, TV, telephone and tea/coffee making facilities.
Hampshire Delft Centre Hotel Website
OUR VIEW ON THE HOTEL
The Hampshire Delft Centre Hotel has been welcoming Travel Editions' guests for nearly a decade now and continue to look after us very well.
We love to receive feedback from our customers. Their views help us to keep improving the ours we offer. If you have been on this tour and would like to submit a review, please log in to our client area here and fill in the short form.
The trip to the Botanical Gardens should be removed from the tour and replaced with 2 days in Amsterdam. The windows in the one glasshouse were filthy. Some plants were dead. The ground beds were covered with dead leaves and the walkways needed cleaning. Outside the water was covered in algae. The hotel was clean and comfortable, charming staff and good food. Terry our rep was knowledgible and entertaining.
Review by Major who travelled 22-April-2018
Review by who travelled 22-April-2018
We did feel it was all a bit full on, but some of that maybe because we did not pay enough attention to described details?! Too many early starts. Would have liked more free time in Delft, & felt 3 town tours was unnecessary,especially Antwerp, even though on route. Along day travelling we would have preferred a later start & just headed home. Terry was enthusiastic, informative & caring. The bulbs, ie Keukenhof was wonderful, & the flower auction a revelation!
Review by MARSH who travelled 22-April-2018
Review by who travelled 22-April-2018
An excellent trip. Tour manager Terry was very knowledgable and considerate and the driver Tom was a mine of local information as well as a very professional driver. The Hampshire Hotel is ideal for this kind of tour. Can't wait to book my next one. (Please include Zaanse Shans in a future trip) Well Done !
Review by Rattray who travelled 22-April-2018
Review by who travelled 15-April-2018
A very interesting and enjoyable programme. Gill, our tour manager, was very helpful and knowledgeable and this made for an excellent trip.
Review by Dean who travelled 15-April-2018
An excellent trip to Holland, the flower auction was stunning, well worth getting up early for. The small towns, Haarlem, Delft and Dordrecht all fascinating places. I was impressed by the range and quality of food available in Delft . Keukenhof in almost full flower was also impressive. Beware of buying tulip bulbs in April, my blue tulips were mouldy and rotting when opened. Gill our guide kept us very well organized and her vast knowledge of the area was incredible. We had a good balance between free time and guided tours. I sent a case with the Baggageman and that worked really well, the only downside being it had to be ready a week before travelling. Perhaps one meal together would have helped us to get to know one another but with a group of 38 this may be difficult to organize.
Review by Whitter who travelled 15-April-2018
Really pleased with every aspect especially the organisation and knowledge of our tour manager. Hotel was excellent and very well situated, a short stroll to the centre of Delft and easy reach of the road network for our other visits. It was a delightful few days in a most interesting and attractive area.
Review by Worsley who travelled 15-April-2018
Good itinerary made special by weather and very helpful coach driver
Review by Mansell who travelled 15-April-2018
A very interesting and enjoyable tour.
Review by Rowlands who travelled 15-April-2018
Review by who travelled 15-April-2018
Your final mailing is rather late to order train tickets to get to St Pancras. The information about CIV tickets is equally late. I was unaware of that and had already bought rail tickets. It might have been crucial. Our early train was cancelled. Fortunately we were able to catch an earlier train. To get to St Pancras in time means a very early start. How about a Eurostar an hour later? The guide, Gill, was excellent. She knew her stuff and managed everything very well. She had a good rapport with the coach driver whose input improved the sightseeing experience. She created a nice atmosphere in which we got to know many of our fellow travellers. We enjoyed the tour very much..
Review by Mr Franz Werner who travelled 13-April-2017
Our tour guide, Jill, was absolutely excellent.
Review by Mr Neville Stangroom who travelled 13-April-2017
We would have preferred more time for musems in Amsterdam, rather than visiting the hortus botanicus. A very enjoyable holiday. Great assistance from Gill who managed a somewhat large group successfully.
Review by Mrs Pam Sumner who travelled 13-April-2017
Gill and the coach driver were excellent, bulb fields very good, Amsterdam poor
Review by Mrs Tania Sharp who travelled 13-April-2017
Thank you, Jill, for a brilliant tour.
Review by Mr John Dodd who travelled 13-April-2017
Thoroughly enjoyed the holiday - The hotel was in a great location and the journey easy. But Jill, our guide, completely 'made' the holiday; she was kind, thoughtful, and gave us just enough useful information, with knowledge and fluency.
Review by Mrs Heather Thompson who travelled 13-April-2017
Ideal timing to visit the bulbfields and gardens. I know that some guests were disappointed no to be able to get access to prominent museums in Amsterdam - waiting time too long. Delfte was ideal location for returning to after a day out - calm picturesque and plenty of eating places
Review by Mrs Julia Hopkins who travelled 13-April-2017
Our tour leader was absolute ace.. Knowledgeable,,precise in her information about arrangements, went the extra mile, made the trip. We would like to go with travel editions to Rome, but so far no tour yet. Thanks for a marvellous time.baerbel and jon grange
Review by Mrs Baerbel Grange who travelled 13-April-2017
We thought Jill did an excellent job with her knowledge of the history, country and art. We were guided but not "herded" as so many other organisations appear to do.
Review by Mrs M Boyle who travelled 13-April-2017
The trips to the Keukenhof Gardens and the Kinderdyke were a delight. Dordrecht was a real discovery.
Review by Mr Martin Gorman who travelled 13-April-2017
Had always travelled independently before and was slightly worried about group travel but this wonderful tour dispelled all my fears. Everything went very smoothly and Gill was excellent in every way.
Review by Ms Alison Burton who travelled 13-April-2017
We think Delft is a fantastic location and the itinerary was very well structured with sufficient variety and free time within the botanical theme. We were very pleased the tour manager ( who was a star) was able to negotiate for us to be transferred back to Brussels by coach when there were unexpected train problems. Actually a combination of coach with Eurostar works better on this particular trip anyway.
Review by Mrs Karen Lesslie who travelled 09-April-2017
Tour Guide Gerard very experienced, dedicated and caring. Coach company and driver for the week assisted greatly especially when rail travel disrupted the first part of the homeward journey due to 'work on the line.' Hotel convenient for the town (Delft) facilities and gave same day attention to minor problems in our room. Amsterdam Botanical Gardens not impressive and Flower Market turned out to be a market of Bulb sellers. These could be left off the itinerary.
Review by Mr Frederick Burrows who travelled 09-April-2017
Dinner in the hotel was disappointing with food uninspired and service slow ie half an hour to receive the menu. The restaurant was under half full so no real excuse. We were far better off dining in restaurants in Delft. However, breakfasts were very good.. Perhaps two Botanic Gardens were unnecessary as Leiden was far superior. Holding the second tour over the Easter weekend ought to be avoided if possible. After four tours with Gill as our manager she was excellent, as always
Review by Mr John Roberts who travelled 13-April-2017
Excellent Tour guide, made the holiday. Put using train again lots of walking between trains, problems with our connections in UK due to weekend travel. Very gad we used Baggageman
Review by Mr David Walters who travelled 09-April-2017
our first trip with you, and all in all every enjoyable. Gerard, our Tour guide was excellent knowledgeable and caring. Also Toon the coach driver was superb. Due to unforeseen circumstances, our return trip included coach from the hotel to Brussells. This was helpful and perhaps could be a feature of future tours.
Review by Mrs M Bedwell who travelled 09-April-2017
The arrangements for trains on arrival at Brussels was ill thought out. We had a worrying time while I was separated from my husband on the train followed by a frightening and potentially dangerous descent from the station at Utrecht.
Review by Mrs Ann Humble who travelled 09-April-2017
A delightful holiday combining places of interest and enough free time to pursue individual interest.
Review by Mrs Judith Towill who travelled 09-April-2017
Gerard dealt very well with the large number of clients.We only had one dinner in the hotel which was just as well as it took a long time to appear. When I asked them to hurry the waitress was rather rude infering it was our fault. However we ate well elsewhere.
Review by Mrs Barbara Jenkins who travelled 09-April-2017
I never saw a brochure so wanted to put N/A! The train journey to Antwerp was good, BUT no one had researched how the wheelchair customer was to reach the ground floor. All very difficult. Thankfully you then understood the problems of two changes on the railway before reaching Brussels on our return. THANK YOU for the coach from Delft to Brussels. The hotel was excellent but offered the same menu (apart from one special dish each day) for the week - not bright. Gerard, the tour manager, was SUPERB. Overall, an excellent holiday. Keukenhof Gardens were STUNNING.
Review by Mrs Mary Davies who travelled 09-April-2017
Review by who travelled 09-April-2017
An amazing week. Couldn't have been better organized.
Review by Bamford who travelled 08-April-2017
Connexions to/from Brussels poor. I appreciate that engineering works disrupted outgoing journey but alternative local train to Antwerp was very crowded and had no space for luggage. Use of Antwerp Berchem station was unsatisfactory as there were only steps down from the platform - difficult with heavy luggage and a particular problem for the wheelchair passenger. Initial return arrangements notified late the day before would have been even worse. Fortunately the tour manager was able to make alternative arrangements which worked well. We would have hoped for better planning on the part of Travel Editions.
Review by Mr David Nash who travelled 09-April-2017
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