Highlights of this tour

Guidance
  • Fully-guided: A tour leader will guide you during the cycling days
  • Semi-guided: Daily briefing by the tour leader, independent cycling but tour leader available ICE.
  • Independent: No tour leader, the ships’ crew does daily briefing, independent cycling
  • Multi guidance: For this tour various types of guidance are available
Independent Individual
Difficulty
  • Level 1: easy tours, very flat terrain
  • Level 2: quite easy tours, mostly flat terrain
  • Level 3: requires a higher level of exertion, medium hilly terrain
  • Level 4: for experienced cyclists, hilly terrain with climbs
Difficulty level 1 Difficulty level 1

Bike through the Green Heart of Holland

Historical cities Amsterdam & Leiden

Rijksmuseum & Delft porcelain studio

Barges with max. 24 passengers

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Bike and Barge The Netherlands: Green Heart of Holland | Jelmar

During this eight day, seven night tour on board the charming barge Jelmar you can cycle individually and at your own pace as you discover the ‘Green Heart’ of Holland, a region steeped in history, natural attractions, world famous cities and beautiful scenery.

Along the way you will visit historical cities such as Amsterdam, Haarlem, Rotterdam, Leiden and Gouda. You will discover many culturally historic attractions and, more importantly, you will be able to immerse yourself in the very heart of this fascinating and very Dutch part of Holland.

Also, if you are an art lover, you will enjoy the visits in Leiden, Haarlem and Delft where painters such as Rembrandt, Frans Hals and Vermeer lived and worked. But far from just being about big cities and Dutch history, this tour is also about the picturesque villages and beautiful scenery of the ‘green lung’ districts of central and South Holland. One thing is certain: by the end of the tour you will not only come away with a new-found appreciation for bike and barge cruising, but for everything that is Dutch.

A bonus during this tour is the fact that the Jelmar docks in and around the city centre of the various cities and villages visited at the end of each day’s cycling, giving you the opportunity to visit and explore at your leisure at night.

Day to day program

Parts that are printed in italics parts will be covered by the ship.

All distances are “approximate distances” of recommended bike tours.
The tour details are barring changes, a.o. as a result of nautical, technical or meteorological reasons.

Day 1 (Sat): Amsterdam

Embarkation and check-in where the crew will welcome you on board is from 2 p.m. in the center of Amsterdam. After unpacking your luggage in your cabin you will still have plenty of time to explore this famous city. Treat yourself to a canal tour, visit one or more museums or simply do some shopping. An introduction to the tour will take place at 5.30 p.m., during which the crew will be presented and your first dinner on board will be served; your rental bicycles will also be distributed at this time.

Day 2 (Sun): Amsterdam – Zaandam | Zaandam – Zaanse Schans – Haarlem (40 km/24 mi. or 55 km/34 mi.)

After a short cruise on board the Jelmar, you are finally off and cycling today after first visiting the lovely open-air museum ‘Zaanse Schans’ in Zaandam where an authentic 18th and 19th century Dutch village has been reconstructed. In the museum you will learn about iconic Dutch traditions such as windmills and cheese and clog making. You will then cycle to Haarlem where celebrated portraitist and genre painter Frans Hals lived and worked in the 16th century. In the evening you can stroll through the lovely city center and the Grote Markt (market square). If preferred, today’s cycling tour can also be extended with a visit to the sea locks of IJmuiden and the Kennemer Dunes. During this cycling tour you can visit some forts of the Defense Line of Amsterdam (UNESCO World Heritage Site).

Day 3 (Mon): Haarlem – North Sea coast – Leiden (42 km/25 mi. or 50 km/34 mi.)

After enjoying breakfast with your newfound cycling friends, you will pedal today along the North Sea coast through seaside dunes via the resorts of Noordwijk and Katwijk aan Zee to the vibrant university city of Leiden, the birthplace of celebrated artist Rembrandt van Rijn. The city’s picturesque old city center is crisscrossed with canals lined by beautiful 17th-century buildings and is very definitely a must to see. The longer cycling tour leads you from Haarlem to Cruquius (steam engine museum) and Hillegom (several flower nurseries) to Leiden.

Day 4 (Tue): Leiden – Delft (35 km/22 mi. or 41 km/34 mi.)

From Leiden you will cycle to Delft, famous for its Blue porcelain (Delftware), where you will have the opportunity to visit a porcelain studio. Another major attraction in the beautiful city center of Delft is the royal crypt of the House of Orange. The longer cycling tour brings you to seaside resort Scheveningen and to The Hague, where you can visit the Binnenhof (Parliament) and the Peace Palace (Vredespaleis) and then continues to end in Delft.

Day 5 (Wed): Delft – Rotterdam – Kinderdijk | Kinderdijk – Schoonhoven – Gouda (several options from 23 km/15 mi. to  66 km/41 mi.)

This morning you will sail from Delft on the Jelmar through the remarkable international port of Rotterdam.  From here you can start cycling or you can hop on the “Waterbus”, a fast ferry that will bring you and your bicycle over the river in 30-40 minutes to Alblasserdam. From there you cycle just a few miles to Kinderdijk, world famous for an impressive row of 19 large windmills. These 19 windmills have a UNESCO cultural heritage listing and are a definite highlight – you will have the opportunity to visit one so don’t forget to bring your camera! From Kinderdijk you will cycle directly to the cheese city of Gouda, or if you prefer, on a longer tour via the silver city of Schoonhoven to Gouda, your destination for the day.

Day 6 (Thu): Gouda – Kudelstaart (45 km/28 mi or 55 km/34 mi)

The highlight of today’s cycling tour is the naturally idyllic beauty of the South Holland landscape. Your destination for the day is the village of Kudelstaart where the Jelmar will be waiting for you. Along the way you will cycle along numerous small canals and past picture-perfect farms and small villages. At the mooring place on the banks of the Westeinder Plassen (‘West End’ lakes) there is a beautiful view to savor while enjoying a wine during or after dinner.

Day 7 (Fri): Kudelstaart – Aalsmeer – Amsterdam (30 km/19 mi. or 37 km/23 mi.)

If you are keen for an early start to the day you can visit the largest trade centre for plants and flowers in the world at Aalsmeer (optional extra, not included). The market is a hive of activity; it is guaranteed that you will never have seen so many flowers in the one place. After a late breakfast you can either stay on board the Jelmar as it cruises through the City of Amsterdam to its mooring place or you can cycle into the city through the city park ‘Amsterdamse Bos’ or along the Amstel river. Once you reach Amsterdam take the opportunity during the afternoon and evening to go for a canal cruise, discover Anne Frank’s House, the Rembrandt House Museum, the Royal Palace of Amsterdam and Dam Square, the very center and heart of the city.

Day 8 (Sat): Amsterdam

End of your tour: Disembarkation after breakfast until 9.30 a.m.

Good to know

Parts that are printed in italics parts will be covered by the ship.

All distances are “approximate distances” of recommended bike tours.
The tour details are barring changes, a.o. as a result of nautical, technical or meteorological reasons.

  • The Green heart of Holland is a non-guided tour.

You will ride individually with the help of a map  and route notes (available on board). GPS tracks will be sent to you 4 weeks before the start date of the tour.

  • Not all mentioned highlights will be visited during the short bike option.
  • In case you prefer a day of rest, you can skip the bike tour and relax on board while cruising to the next town.
  • On the arrival day is it possible to bring your luggage on board from 11 PM.

Prices & information

Prices
Cabin type For May 18 - Sept. 14 Sept. 21 - Oct. 5
Twin (2 single beds) 2 pers. €839 €749 Twin for single use 1 pers. €1169 €1049 Triple (1 bunk bed) 3 pers. €749 €659
Included in this tour

8 days/7 nights

7 x breakfast

Packed lunches

7 x 3-course dinner

Coffee and tea on board

Welcome drink

Use of bed linen and towels

1 x cleaning of the cabin during the tour

Daily briefings by the crew

Maps and notes for cycling tours (1 set per cabin)

GPS tracks

Use of a waterproof pannier bag

Wi-Fi

Excluded in this tour

Drinks

Bicycle rental or E-bike rental

Helmet rental

Personal insurances

Gratuities (at your discretion)

Entrance fees and excursions

Fees for ferries / waterbus

Transfers to/from the docking place

Parking fees

Additional options & information

Rental bicycle: €75 per week
Rental E-Bike: €175 per week (only on request, limited number available)
You can find a description of the bicycles when you click on ship.

Helmets:      
A helmet can be rented for € 10 per week, only on prior reservation and payment.

Canal cruise Amsterdam:
Ticket for a 1-hour canal cruise through Amsterdam
– special price for our guests: € 12,50 (at the ticket desk approx.: € 18). Please book your ticket in advance and you can collect it on board of your ship on the first day of the tour.

Parking in Amsterdam (valet parking): prices and pre-booking on request.



Reviews

Rated 10 out of 10 based on 1 reviews
5 stars

Lori and Dan

We chose this trip based on the small boat size and self-guided tour. It was perfect for us! Great crew with an interesting and fun captain Albert-Jon, and excellent food by Cristiana. The tour routes were very good and the route signs easy enough to follow on our own. Excellent trip!

Read all reviews on Trustpilot

Available ships for this tour

Ship Jelmar Holland, Netherlands
max. 20 passengers
10 cabins
1 tours available with this ship

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