At home on all the boats: On the road with our logistics hero Erik

At the office, the maps and documents stack up high. Erik takes one quick look at the schedule to see which boats will be heading out today. But that is really just a formality. He knows the routes and the schedules of all 22 tours and 20 ships off the top of his head.    Erik is the beating heart of the logistics operation in the Netherlands. Are all the maps and programs on board? Are cabins ready for our guests? Which boat mores when and where in the harbors…


The difference between Holland and the Netherlands

Did you ever wonder which is the correct name for the land of windmills, clogs and tulips? Well, you’re not alone. And you’re certainly not the first! Here we set the record straight for the true name of this low-lying land. The correct name of the Dutch nation The official and correct name for the home of the Dutch is the Koninkrijk der Nederlanden, or the “Kingdom of the Netherlands”. This is usually shortened to “the Netherlands”. The terms Nether or Neder are derived from Germanic words meaning “low”, which…


How to prepare for a boat bike tour: Our 5 top tips

Laura works in the marketing department at Boat Bike Tours and most recently traveled with her mother on the 5-day Premium Tulip Tour. Here’s her advice on how to prepare for a cycling cruise. Have you booked a bike and barge tour but don’t know what to expect? Here are five good ways to prepare in advance, so that you can make the most of your trip: 1. Make sure you have a basic level of fitness Of course, with a bit of grit you’ll get along, whatever your fitness…


A travel report from our Sail & Bike Tuliptour

Tamara Veenendaal is one of our most experienced tour leaders. For seven years she’s been leading boat bike trips with us. But that doesn’t mean she’s seen it all. Far from it. This year she stepped aboard one of our sailing ships for the first time. Here she shares what she learned from the Sail & Bike Tulip Tour, and why she liked it so much. Hello, Tamara! You already have lots of experience with cycling and boat tours, but this was your first trip on a sailing ship. How…


5 things you need to know about the IJsselmeer

Besides being the biggest lake in the Netherlands, the IJsselmeer (IJssel Lake) boasts some other remarkable facts thanks to its dramatic transformations through time: from when it was the stormy Zuiderzee to its modern identity as a freshwater lake. Here are five fascinating things about the IJsselmeer, truly one of the Netherlands’ most incredible combinations of nature and engineering: 1. The IJsselmeer was a lake, then the sea, then a lake again In ancient Roman times, a body of water quite separate from the sea, known as Lacus Flevo, was…


More please! Plan your 2020 vacation with one of our new tours

It’s glorious summer and whether you’re basking in sunshine or already at your desk again, the prospect of going back to the usual routine is never very appealing. But there’s a bright side. One of the few consolations of returning home from a vacation is… looking forward to the next one! That’s why this summer we’re already busy with one of our favorite activities: travel planning! Our tours have become so popular that they’re being booked a year in advance. To keep up with demand, we’re introducing a bunch of…


The pros and cons of e-bikes: Find out your bike type!

To e-bike or not to e-bike? That is the question! Some people turn their noses up at the idea, while others are crazy about it: with e-bikes, opinions are divided. In this blog we look at the pros and cons of motorized bicycles, and ask the fundamental question: are e-bikes really just for lazy people? How an e-bike works First of all, the defining feature of an e-bike, also known as a “pedelec”, is the small, battery-powered electric motor that makes pedaling easier. An electric bicycle does not ride by…


What should I bring on a cycling vacation? A handy equipment checklist

At Boat Bike Tours we offer full-service boat and bike tours in 14 countries across Europe. Our multi-day tours are fully-catered-for in every way, from gourmet meals to cycling equipment. European cycling vacations offer the curious traveler an inexhaustible wealth of experiences and adventures, but the huge range of possibilities can be overwhelming: what equipment do you need to bring for day trips, bike-packing, bike touring, or even a boat and bike tour? Seven things you need for bike touring Luckily, at Bike Boat Tours we have more than 40…


Meet the Chef: Bas on the Magnifique II

First course was the most divine zucchini soup I’ve ever tasted; second was perfectly seared salmon and fennel with a mustard cream sauce; and dessert was homemade chocolate cake garnished with strawberries and a passionfruit coulis. After our first delicious dinner, I found a new appreciation for one of the most important ingredients on a cycling cruise: the chef! The next day I sought out Bas van Os, chef aboard the Magnifique II on our Tulip Premium Tour, to learn a bit about his background, how he plans the menu,…


Divine delights: Why discovering the landscapes of France is a great idea

Do you ever have an insatiable yearning to be in a particular country? For many of us Francophiles around the world, that country is la belle France. Why, I hear you ask? Maybe it’s because of the warm summer evenings with their aroma of lavender and pine trees. Or perhaps it’s the incomparably beautiful landscapes, the atmospheric historical cities, or the good wine… Or maybe it’s just the dangerously good pastry shops that keep calling us back. There are so many great reasons for a holiday in France that it’s…