Netherlands, Belgium & Luxembourg:  Benelux Gems

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Netherlands, Belgium & Luxembourg: Benelux Gems



Tour Description:

Venture off the beaten path to explore some of Europe’s hidden
gems as you take in the tranquil landscapes of the Lowlands, explore
pivotal moments from the Battles of Waterloo and the Bulge, and
unearth the legacy of Charlemagne’s former capital, Aachen.

Map for Netherlands, Belgium & Luxembourg:  Benelux Gems
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Dates & Pricing

Wednesday 24 May 23 — Friday 02 Jun 23Starting at $7,495 Get a Quote
Wednesday 05 Jul 23 — Friday 14 Jul 23Starting at $7,495 Get a Quote
Wednesday 06 Sep 23 — Friday 15 Sep 23Starting at $7,495 Get a Quote
Wednesday 20 Sep 23 — Friday 29 Sep 23Starting at $7,495 Get a Quote


ITINERARY

Day 1 - Arrive Amsterdam, Netherlands
Arrive in Amsterdam, where you are met and transferred to your boutique hotel set alongside the city’s iconic canals. This evening, gather for a welcome reception and dinner.

Day 2 - Amsterdam
This morning, join a local expert as you cruise Amsterdam’s historic canals, revealing the waterways that form the nexus of this historic city. Continue on foot through the city center, pausing at the Willet-Holthuysen House, a sumptuous townhouse built for the mayor of Amsterdam around 1685. The on-site museum preserves the canal house’s impressive art collection, interiors and garden, affording a glimpse into the lifestyles of the city’s wealthy and powerful elite. Afterward, enjoy the remainder of the day at leisure for your own explorations.

Day 3 - Liège, Belgium
Depart this morning for historic Utrecht, pausing at a local dairy farm for a tour and a tasting of Holland’s world-renowned cheeses. After lunch in Utrecht’s charming old town center, continue to your hotel in Liège, Belgium.

Day 4 - Aachen, Germany
Cross the border to nearby Aachen, Germany’s westernmost city. Once a Roman settlement, Charlemagne chose this city as his capital, and it remained the seat of the Holy Roman Empire for centuries. Tour the impressive cathedral and see Charlemagne’s original Palatine Chapel within. After lunch at leisure, embark on an e-bike ride through the countryside outside Maastricht, pausing in the ancient cellars of Château Neercanne to savor a wine tasting and view the Maastricht Treaty, the founding document of the European Union. Return to your hotel for an evening at leisure.

Day 5 - Bastogne
Delve into a pivotal chapter of World War II history as you pause at the Henri-Chapelle American Cemetery and Memorial. This site marks the final resting place of nearly 8,000 American servicemen, many having fallen during the Battle of the Bulge nearby. At the Bastogne War Museum, explore this history through scenography, witness testimonial and multimedia installations. Then, join a local guide to tour nearby battle sites aboard an authentic U.S. Army Willys Jeep. Continue to Luxembourg, where you check into your castle hotel. At dinner, discover why the geographically diminutive state of Luxembourg is a giant on the global gastronomic scene.

Day 6 - Luxembourg City, Luxembourg
Today, explore the capital of one of Europe’s smallest states, Luxembourg City. Perched dramatically on a cliff overlooking the confluence of two rivers, Luxembourg City juxtaposes its cosmopolitan lifestyle alongside fairytale castles, meandering casements and the trappings of its venerable grand duchy roots. Visit one of the largest castles west of the Rhine, magnificent Vianden Castle. With origins dating to the 10th century, the Romanesque castle was one of Europe’s grandest, most luxurious feudal residences of the Middle Ages.

Day 7 - Ghent, Belgium
This morning, cross the idyllic countryside back to Belgium, pausing in Dinant’s Maison Leffe Museum for a tasting of the local beer that’s been brewed here since the 13th century. After lunch, continue to Ghent. Filled with cathedrals and museums, Ghent traces its roots to Roman times. It’s now the capital of the province of East Flanders and one of Europe’s largest inland ports. Here, a local expert reveals the town’s pedestrianized city center lined with medieval architecture, pausing to take in the storybook grandeur of Gravensteen Castle.

Day 8 - Brussels
Drive to Brussels for an introduction to Belgium’s busy capital, where medieval architecture mingles with shimmering high-rises. Throughout its tumultuous history, Brussels has been occupied by the Romans, Vikings, Spanish, French, Austrians and English. Today, Brussels is home to both the European Union and NATO. Explore this culinary enclave known for its fine chocolates, double-fried frites and distinctive beers. Delve into a hands-on workshop devoted to the artistry of fine Belgian chocolates. Here, learn how Flemish butter and cream become more than the sum of their parts using time-honored, slow-food techniques. After time for lunch at leisure, return to Ghent via Waterloo for views over the battlefield where, on June 18, 1815, British and Prussian forces defeated Napoleon Bonaparte, marking the end of an era of French domination in Europe.

Day 9 - Bruges
Drive to Bruges, the West Flanders capital known for its canals, cobbled streets and medieval buildings. Here, observe the traditional craft of lacemaking at a private demonstration, followed by lunch at a traditional restaurant. Cap off your day with time at leisure to explore Bruges before returning to the hotel in Ghent. This evening, gather for a farewell dinner.

Day 10 - Depart Brussels
Today, you are transferred to the airport for your departure.