• Ghent
  • Belgian Chocolate Tasting
  • Bruges Canals
  • Delft
  • Spring Flowers in Holland
  • Museumplein, Amsterdam, Netherlands
    Amsterdam
  • Canal bridge, Amsterdam, Netherlands
    Amsterdam's Gabled Houses
  • Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, Netherlands
    Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam

Tour Questions? See our FAQ | Call 425-608-4217

Heart of Belgium & Holland in 11 Days Tour

from $3,295 per person + air

Optional Single Supplement $925

See Tour Dates

The cities of the Low Countries are a delight to experience. Beginning in the medieval masterpiece of Ghent, your Rick Steves guide will take you on story-filled walks through the hearts of Ghent, Bruges, Delft, and Amsterdam. You'll also visit a traditional Belgian brewery, thought-provoking Flanders Fields, a high-tech sea barrier project, and the world's largest flower auction — ending in Amsterdam with the inspiring Dutch Resistance Museum, and brilliantly restored Rijksmuseum. Join us for the Heart of Belgium & Holland in 11 Days!

Dates & Prices

2019

    • Apr 10–Apr 20 (We–Sa)
    • $3,595 + Air

    Visits Keukenhof Gardens in lieu of Aalsmeer Flower Auction

    Filling Fast
    • Apr 13–Apr 23 (Sa–Tu)
    • $3,595 + Air

    Visits Keukenhof Gardens in lieu of Aalsmeer Flower Auction

    Join Waitlist
    • Apr 20–Apr 30 (Sa–Tu)
    • $3,595 + Air

    Visits Keukenhof Gardens in lieu of Aalsmeer Flower Auction

    Join Waitlist
    • Apr 24–May 4 (We–Sa)
    • $3,595 + Air

    Visits Keukenhof Gardens in lieu of Aalsmeer Flower Auction

    Join Waitlist
    • May 15–May 25 (We–Sa)
    • $3,295 + Air

    Join Waitlist

What's Included

  • A small, friendly group of 24–28 people — half the size of most tour groups
  • Full-time services of a professional Rick Steves guide and local experts who will make the fascinating history, art, and culture of Belgium and Holland come alive for you
  • All tours and admissions — at no extra cost — covering at least 18 group sightseeing events • Ghent canal cruise • Ghent walking tour • St. Bavo's Cathedral • Ghent Museum of Industry • Flanders Fields WWI sites • Bruges walking tour • Bruges Memling Museum • Chocolate demonstration and tasting • Bruges Museum Pass • Belgian brewery tour and tasting • Deltaworks and Maeslant sea barrier • Delft walking tour • Delft Old and New Churches • Delftware demonstration • Aalsmeer Flower Auction • Dutch Resistance Museum • Rijksmuseum • Historic Amsterdam walking tour…and more
  • All group transportation from Ghent to Amsterdam
  • 10 nights' accommodations in memorable, centrally located hotels
  • All breakfasts and half your dinners
  • All tips for guides and driver
  • A tour kit including a guidebook (or books) and a moneybelt
  • Guaranteed tour price, locked in the moment you make your deposit
  • Optional single supplements — this tour has a limited number of private rooms for solo travelers for an additional fee
  • Tour alum discount of $50 for each tour you've taken prior to 2019
  • 50% discount on a consulting appointment with our in-house experts to assist with your pre- or post-tour travel plans
  • Flexibility should you need to transfer or cancel your tour

Fine print: You are responsible for the cost of your drinks and free-time sightseeing. See our Tour Conditions for important details regarding everything listed above

Itinerary

Daily Activity Key
  • Light = 2–4 miles of mostly level walking throughout the day.
  • Moderate = 2–6 miles walking throughout the day with some hills and stairs.
  • Strenuous = 2–8 miles of walking throughout the day with lots of hills, stairs, and uneven terrain.

Day 1: Welcome to Belgium

Our adventure begins in medieval Ghent. We'll gather at our hotel at 4 p.m. for an introduction meeting. Then we'll hop aboard a fun and informative canal cruise through the city. Our evening ends with a traditional Belgian dinner together. Sleep in Ghent (2 nights). Boat: 1 hour. No bus. Walking: light.

Day 2: The Medieval Masterpiece of Ghent

This morning we'll meet with a local expert for a walking tour of the historic center of Ghent. Together we will visit soaring St. Bavo's Cathedral, home to Van Eyck's sublime altarpiece, The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb, which was stolen and hidden by the Nazis during World War II. We’ll also visit the city’s newly-restored Museum of Industry. Housed in an old cotton mill, this interactive museum weaves through Ghent's history as an international powerhouse in the textile industry. Your afternoon and evening are free for more exploring at your leisure. No bus. Walking: strenuous.

Day 3: Flanders Fields and Beautiful Bruges

Today we'll meet our driver and board our bus for a drive to the WWI battlefields around Ypres. Half a million soldiers were killed here, making it one of the deadliest — and today the most hallowed — stretches of land along the Western Front. With the aid of a local expert, we'll tour the American Cemetery, visit a thought-provoking museum, and see "the fields where poppies grow." After lunch together, we're off to Bruges and our lovely canal-laced and ivy-draped hotel. After check in and some time to relax, we'll regroup for an orientation walk and dinner together. Sleep in Bruges (3 nights). Bus: 5 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 4: Gothic Bruges

We'll meet our savvy local guide who will introduce us to the pedestrian-friendly streets and alleyways of Gothic Bruges, including a tour of the Memling Museum — showcasing several of Hans Memling's masterpieces, all housed within one of Europe's oldest medieval hospitals. Our afternoon continues with a visit to a Bruges chocolatier, where we'll learn about the artistry and traditions of Belgium's most mouth-watering export. After a free afternoon, we'll regroup for a brewery tour to learn about what makes Belgian beer famous around the globe and enjoy a taste ourselves. The remainder of the evening is free to find the perfect Belgian dinner. No bus. Walking: strenuous.

Day 5: Free Day in Bruges

Today is yours to explore Bruges. Armed with your Bruges Museum Pass, you'll have free entry to any four museums — including the masterpiece-packed Groeninge Museum. You may decide to go on a culinary scavenger hunt tasting your way through a myriad of Belgian specialties. Or you can hop on a bike and take a wonderful hour-long ride along a tree-lined canal to the nearby small town of Damme. The choices today are endless. No bus. Walking: light to strenuous (your choice).

Day 6: Challenging the Sea

Today we'll discover how a country stays dry when nearly half of its land is below sea level. Over centuries, the Dutch created an immense system of dams, barriers, and dikes for protection from the North Sea — the Deltaworks. We'll explore these feats of modern engineering culminating with a tour of one of earth's largest moving structures — the Maeslant storm surge barrier — and gain a better appreciation of the fragility of the Low Countries. We'll continue on to the traditional Dutch town of Delft for an orientation walk and dinner together. Sleep in Delft (2 nights). Bus: 5 hours. Walking: light.

Day 7: Delectable Delft

This morning an in-depth walking tour with a local will give us a personal introduction to Vermeer's hometown, including the massive, Gothic New Church, where generations of the ruling House of Orange are buried and revered. We'll also visit a workshop to discover the qualities that make Delftware so dear. The rest of your day is free to explore the many other charms of Delft or take a short tram ride to The Hague, where you can get up close and personal with paintings by Rembrandt and Vermeer at the Mauritshuis, or travel back to an 1880 seaside at the Panorama Mesdag. No bus. Walking: light.

Day 8: Tulips, Countryside, and Bustling Amsterdam

We'll begin our day in Europe's biggest building — filled with acres of flowers — learning about the worldwide distribution of beauty that begins each day at the Aalsmeer Flower Auction. Then we'll stop for lunch on our way into Amsterdam. Upon arrival, we'll dodge bicycles and hipsters on our neighborhood orientation walk, as we adjust to the pace of this progressive world capital. We will end our day with a traditional rijsttafel dinner together. Sleep in Amsterdam (3 nights). Bus: 3 hours. Walking: strenuous.

Day 9: Vibrant and Historic Amsterdam

This morning get chummy with this great city's gabled houses, bridges, and canals while learning why the Golden Age glimmered so brightly here. We'll take an historic walk through the heart of the city, stopping to visit the Dutch Resistance Museum for a thought-provoking look at how average, everyday people resisted — or collaborated with — their Nazi occupiers. We'll continue on to a local "coffeeshop" to learn about this nation's creative, pragmatic approach to drug policy. The rest of the day is yours to tackle any number of Amsterdam's wonderful museums, including the Anne Frank House*. No bus. Walking: moderate.

Day 10: Amsterdam's Art

We'll start the day with a thrill: getting up-close and personal with Rembrandt and Vermeer on our tour of Amsterdam's remarkable Rijksmuseum. You can continue your encounter with artistic genius at the nearby Van Gogh Museum*, home to 200 of Vincent's works, or enjoy the nearby charm of Vondelpark. This evening we'll meet for our farewell dinner, where we'll share memories and toast new friends. Proost! No bus. Walking: moderate.

Day 11: Tour Over After Breakfast

Breakfast is provided, but there are no group activities today. Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport is an easy bus ride away. Your guide will help you with any post-tour planning, leaving you well prepared for the road ahead. Tot ziens!

 

*Reserve a time before you leave the US

Itinerary specifics subject to change.

Physical Demands

Our tours are physically active! It's an essential part of the Rick Steves tour experience. On our Heart of Belgium & Holland in 11 Days tour — among other things — you'll need to happily…

  1. Carry/roll your luggage over uneven pavement (possibly several blocks), on and off public transportation, and up stairways to reach your hotel.
  2. Sleep comfortably in historic canal houses with several flights of steep, narrow staircases to reach your room, with street noise and no (or weak) air conditioning.
  3. Be on your feet, walking and standing for up to three hours, indoors and outdoors, in all weather conditions.
  4. After orientation and transportation lessons, be able to navigate towns and cities on your own.

Reviews

Jim

Bowdoinham, ME

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We had a very enjoyable and enlightening tour experience. We had a great guide, a good group of fellow travelers and the arrangements were very well organized.

Stephen

Mogadore, OH

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Enjoyable,interesting,organized. Very good group - always on time, mobile, friendly. Guide was very good. Good local guides in Ghent and Bruggs but average in Delft. Too much free time in Amsterdam.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Water control gates. Also being offered seats on the tram, number of bikes in Amsterdam"

Randal

Maple Valley, WA

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Ellen was a great tour leader. It was a nice variety of experiences.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"American memorial at Flanders Field. Brugge"

Patricia

Phoenix, AZ

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was not only fun, but very educational. I especially acquired a new appreciation for art, as the guides explained everything in detail. We had just the right amount of free time to explore on our own. Very well organized & thought out.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The flower auction. It wasn't necessarily the best, but it sure was a big WOW! Hard to imagine the acres of flowers in that one building , with all the small vehicles zipping around, moving flats from here to there."

Richard

Highland Park, IL

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent in every respect---strong but not domineering guidance, thorough daily planning, covered cultural, social, economic, political and environmental aspects of all sites. Good social interactions with guides and fellow tourist members.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Many although I responded to the Ypres/WWI day---the cemeteries, trenches and artillery craters were moving."

PJ

Airlie Beach, QLD

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I don't think it could have been any better [INVALID]-oh maybe warmer weather would have been nice. Ellen was friendly & knowledgeable - perfect really. Ditto for the local guides. Rick Steves way of doing things can't be beat....enough group touring and plenty of time for self 'touring'...doing those extra things, going back to museums etc.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favourite was the Van Gogh Museum BECAUSE WE GOT IN EARLY BEFORE THE CROWDS! I'm a huge fan so went straight up to the top where the artwork is - hardly anyone there...most start at the bottom floor, work their way up & by then, the hordes have arrived. By getting in an hour early, heading up to level 3 made an amazing experience. 'Challenging the Sea' was also a VERY unique adventure that I don't imagine hardly any tourist usually see. The feat of this engineering should be a most see."

Dawn

Urbandale, IA

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was a very good tour. I enjoyed stopping in some less touristed cities, I probably would have never seen otherwise, and getting up in close with Ver Meer was a particular highlight as was seeming the Ghent Alterpiece being restored. I enjoyed all of the walks along the canals and seeing the windmills, old and new, as we drove through the countryside. While this tour didn't have the wow factor of the other tours I have taken, I did enjoy the less hectic atmosphere.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The day spent at Flanders Field was very moving. It was good to be reminded of the war we all forgot about. I found myself tearing up several times throughout the day. Wandering through the actual trenches was an experience I'll never forget."

William

Mississauga, ON

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Well planned and interesting itinerary, great guides, great hotels, great food. Overall excellent experience for our first tour with Rick Steves' organization.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our arrival at our hotel on the canal in Ghent was our first WOW moment. Each day thereafter we experienced new/additional WOW moments."

Michael

Vadnais Heights, MN

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It offered a very nice balance between free time and tour time. It presented us with history, culture, art, and food experiences.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Two surprising moments were: 1) the tour of Flanders Field and the WWI cemeteries and how it is still alive in the residents of the area. 2) was the stop at the flower auction - just the scale and logistics of the operation was truly memorable."

Peter

Wauwatosa, WI

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was excellent. The cities that we visited were beautiful. The only comment that I would make is that the first three cities were very similar and looking back I have a hard time distinguishing between them. The food provided at the group dinners was excellent except in Ghent where it was definitely sub-par.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The tour of the surge barrier was great. The guide gave us an excellent overview of the entire flood control system."

Sally

Wauwatosa, WI

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

My husband and I were very excited beforehand about our upcoming trip after we had had such a wonderful time last year on our Southern Italy trip.We found on this one that an engaging tour guide can make all the difference in your experience.I don't know if there was a problem back at home for Ellen or whether she was just looking forward to the end of the season or if it's just a Dutch personality thing but everyone got the impression that she was "phoning in" her job.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I would say the Rijksmuseum was the wow moment for me."

Donna

Melbourne, IA

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Heart of Belgium and Holland was a nice blend of museums, local interests and unique learning opportunities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There are so many "wow" moments. How do I pick just one? Probably our stop at the North Sea. It was such a nice change from all of our other stops. It was both beautiful and refreshing."

Louise

Plymouth, MN

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed every moment. Thank you!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Many "wow" moments - e.g. Ypres cemeteries; Deltaworks; Aalsmeer Flower Auction; Amsterdam "coffeeshop"; every art museum."

Hans

Plymouth, MN

Tour: 09/19/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As usual, the right balance of group vs free time, food vs culture, active vs slow days.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Going through the Rijksmuseum with a deeply engaging guide who brought out the history, social meaning, and technique of the art."

Leigh

Los Angeles, CA

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a fantastic trip. Good hotels, good food and a great group of fellow tour members. I enjoyed learning about using the rail system in Belgium and Holland and being more of a "local".

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "wow" moment was visiting the surge barrier at Rotterdam Harbor. It showed the determination and ingenuity of the Dutch people. It's a also a cautionary tale of preparing for rising sea level."

Jessica

Oak Park, IL

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Hilbrun was very well-informed and conveyed his understanding well. He was very charming (perhaps too scripted), and pleasant. On the down-side, I found him a bid negligent. He did not make an effort to account for all the people in the tour, and at several junctures people were left behind, and he did know it. His directions were somewhat perfunctory. Amsterdam has a difficult street layout, and telling us to meet at a restaurant by showing its location on the map, without even a street addre

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The WWI tour. Also the art."

Eric

Altadena, CA

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour began in Ghent, Belgium, but we flew into Brussels and spent 3 days seeing that city on our own. Brussels is worth a visit. Many of us felt that the tour should have begun there. Our tour was well paced, offered diversity in activities, food, culture etc. and allowed a fair amount of free time. Saw and learned of many things we perhaps would not have even known about had we traveled on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Aalsmeer Flower Market was fascinating. Had no idea of the magnitude, nor the speed in which the Europe's wholesale flowers are purchased and distributed. My "wow" moment was at the historical botanical garden in Aalsmeer. I will never complain about the price of lilacs now that I understand the care and labor that goes into getting them to bloom. My spouse would say that our riding bikes in Bruges was his highlight. We took the outside parklike path of the city which had less traffic."

Ruth

Somerville, MA

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was only my second RS tour, I am quite sure i rated last year's tour of Basque country as outstanding. this one i would call very good. I did not find tour guide as helpful this time, and perhaps the Basque culture made last year's trip hang together better.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to pick one: Flanders Field and cemetaries Anne Frank house"

Judi

East Hampton, CT

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

This was a good tour with a nice group of tour members. There was a lot of history and art. We enjoyed our free time at the Hague and in the Van Gogh museum in Amsterdam. It was one of the calmer tours than the others tours we have been on.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Flander's field trip was an eye opener. Going through the trenches in the Sanctuary Wood was a very moving experience. The Aalsmeer flower market was a wonderful example of a fun and organized chaos of flowers and their delivery. I learned a lot about Flemish art in the museums."

David

East Hampton, CT

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The Heart of Belgium & Holland was a very good tour for me, a perfect balance of the history and art between both countries. Everyone forgets that Belgium and The Netherlands are two separate countries with a common history. Hilbren did a great job giving us the history from the past to the present on both countries.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Again, two many WOW moments to choose from on this tour. But being from a technical background, I would vote for our tour of the Deltaworks and the Maeslant Storm Surge barrier. what an engineering marvel! A close second would be the Aalsmeer Flower Auction, I knew that Holland was big on flowers but this site amazed me for it size and the amount of flowers being auctioned and moved!"

Marianne

Oak Park, IL

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I learned so much about Belgium and Holland, and saw things I wouldn't have seen on my own. There was a tour or two I didn't care for, (the brewery) but it was worth the enjoyment and experience of other tours. Our hotel rooms were comfortable for us, and the other tourers were pleasant. We had mostly good weather,and our meals were good.There were a few missteps, detailed below.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was riveted by the trip to the Flanders Field and Ypres area. It brought history to life for me, and the farm lunch there was incredibly charming. I will never forget the "crosses row by row" and being able to walk in the trenches from World War I."

Cheryl

Bozeman, MT

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a great first Rick Steves' Tour experience for me! I had a great time, and as a solo traveler felt welcomed by the other participants in our group who were congenial and generally very compatible. We had a lot of fun traveling together. The tour was well balanced with group and free time, historical & current sites. This tour was very educational, and I feel I know more about world history, art, & culture than ever before. This was a very valuable travel experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Favorites for me were: Aalsmeer Flower Auction - WOW! - so impressive, and truly demonstrated global commerce in a fascinating way. Maeslant Storm Surge Barrier - marvels of engineering & needed technology in many areas of the world today. Beach Stop - putting my feet in the North Sea. Ypres & the war trenches - every person who has the power to send our nations into war needs to tour these places. Ghent - what a wonderful place - glad I had a couple extra days to spend here prior to the tour."

Carla

Mahwah, NJ

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tour was excellent. The cities we visited were great, very walkable, with medieval buildings and canals. We learned a lot about history and art, especially with local guides and experts, but we also saw current sights such as the storm surge barrier and the flower market. Also enjoyed free time/lunches in seaside towns. I was more intrigued about Flemish and Dutch culture following this tour than I had been originally.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Flanders Fields: This was my primary reason for selecting this tour, and I was not disappointed. It was very moving to see the cemeteries, the trenches, and the town of Ypres, and to hear our local tour guide talk about his family's experiences. I also found it very interesting to learn about the Dutch and Flemish artists and to see many of these original paintings in the various museums."

Nancy

Falls Church, VA

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I enjoyed seeing the medieval towns in Belgium. I really loved Amsterdam, though! I found some of the scheduling problematic, especially in Bruges. I was forced to listen to a drawn out, uninteresting to me, lecture on Memlingen (sp?), because I didn't know the location or exact time of the chocolate demonstration. The experience kind of ruined my first day in Bruges because it meant I had to skip some things I wanted to do and rush through others. The problem could have been avoided.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I would say the flower auction. That was definitely not what I expected."

Richard

Falls Church, VA

Tour: 09/12/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was an interesting and enjoyable trip. I felt like I saw a good sampling of Dutch and Belgian history, art, culture, and countryside, and I didn't feel oppressed by too much time spent in transit.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Strangely, one of my favorite "wow" moments of the tour was standing on the observation deck at the giant flower market, watching dozens of flower carts buzzing around like bees. It was unique and unexpected!"

Richard

Parker, CO

Tour: 09/05/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I found the tour to be very educational and informative. The guides were professional and very entertaining.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wow moments came at the WW1 locations and the actual trenches used in the war."

Kathryn

Parker, CO

Tour: 09/05/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was very well organized with a terrific guide. All provided meals were excellent, hotels were fun and interesting places with wonderful customer service, local tour guides were extremely knowledgeable and well spoken. Having experts talk about the medieval and Renaissance architecture and art created great learning experiences. Talking with locals and tourists from all over the world was fun, too.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to Sanctuary Wood was a very moving experience. My grandfathers both served in WWI in Europe and the displays and trenches made me feel a little connected to them."

Laura

Wilmington, DE

Tour: 09/05/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Ellen was a wonderful guide. I know all the RS guides are wonderful, so it's hard to say she's the best ever, but I really do enjoy her. The tour was a nice mix of history, art, architecture, engineering marvels, free time, beer, cheese, chocolate, boat tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Nothing really wow, except I loved seeing all the great art. I made the extra trip to The Hague to see "Girl with a Pearl Earring" by Vermeer and it was so lovely - much better than Mona Lisa - I highly recommend it. I rode a bike for the first time in almost 20 years - no, I had not forgotten how, and I so enjoyed it. For me, this was really a more calm tour - lots of wonderful things, but not one really great thing (except, as I said, all the art)."

Cynthia

Plainview, NY

Tour: 09/05/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Even though this area does not have the drama of many other European countries, this was still a pleasant and enjoyable trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The two experiences, while maybe not a "wow", that certainly stood out for me are: 1. the Aalsmeer Flower auction which was fascinating, colorful, and dizzying with it's activity - all at the same time. The fact that these flowers will find there way around the world within 12 hours is amazing. 2. Robert, our docent at the Rijks Museum, brought the paintings alive for me. He is outstanding and probably should have his own television show!"

Alan

Issaquah, WA

Tour: 09/05/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Tour itinerary was quite interesting and a great experience. Belgium and Netherlands are very scenic with canals and abundant seventeenth and seventeenth century architecture. Museums in Ghent and Amsterdam were excellent. Excellent beer. Our guide was knowledgeable and enthusiastic, and the local guides were really helpful to understanding regional culture and history.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Netherlands Delta project and Maeslant storm surge barrier were a real highlight. Also enjoyed Amsterdam with its canals, architecture and museums."

Cathy

Gainesville, FL

Tour: 09/05/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Superb tour guide! Ellen is an excellent guide & the group responded to her from day 1.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment was our visit to the Maeslant storm surge barrier. I am somewhat of a geek over projects like this. From the disaster from Hurricane Katrina to the Thames Barrier & now the Maeslent barrier, the world is learning important lessons for the future. I could have spent an entire day at the Maeslent barrier! My thanks to Ellen for insuring that we all had the opportunity to experience it."

Kathrine

Portland, OR

Tour: 09/05/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Enjoyed the pace of planned activities and free time. Liked scenery and history lessons. Ellen was so special in giving information and making us feel like her friend. Great sense if humor.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"All the moving carts at the flower auction building."

Susan

Watauga, TX

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Thoroughly enjoyed Belgium and Delft. The people on the tour were great, friendly and fun. We had to leave the tour early due to death in my family. Hillbren was very helpful as well as the Rick Steves crew in getting us back to the US 3 days early. Appreciate the thoughtfulness and help.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The 'oldness' of the country, how they have learned to live under the water table. The storm surge prevention."

David

Albany, CA

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

It was informative and fun. The group of participants is really what made it a great trip. We all got along so well and many of us stayed together during 'off' scheduled times including after the official tour was over. Most of the chosen touring sites were excellent and well presented. Some could be left out. Had the group not gotten along as well as we did I think the 'off' scheduled times would have been more challenging.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"How social it was."

Susan

Arlington, MA

Tour: 08/22/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved the variety of activities, the pace, the overall organization of the tour, facilities, quality of bus transport.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Flower distribution center in Amsterdam"

Craig

Ocoee, FL

Tour: 07/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our third tour with with RS. As with the other tours, our trip to Belgium and the Netherlands this year was full of history and fun. Nina, Jennifer and all the local guides did a very good job.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the art in museums."

Elizabeth

Sarasota, FL

Tour: 07/11/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

I enjoyed this tour but some of the hotels were not air conditioned and because of the extreme heat it was very difficult to sleep .One of our rooms was on the street with people walking by so we could not leave the window open at night and it was very stuffy and hot. There was a VAST differences in the hotel rooms . Since we all paid the same price , it is very unfair that some rooms were huge with jacuzzis , while some were too small to find a place for your bag. Not big enough for 2 persons.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the flower auction and would have happily gotten up earlier to see more of the buying action. We arrived when a lot of folks were leaving ."

Leba

Larchmont, NY

Tour: 07/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My recent tour of Heart of Belgium & Holland with Nina and Jen exceeded expectations. The enthusiasm and spirit of the guide and tour assistant helped create a smooth and effortless flow of experiences and a unity among our group. The flow was relaxed and organized. A very nice group pleasure to travel with.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many wow moments. From the first hotel room with a canal view from sky lights allowing me to see the night lights in Ghent, I was so grateful to have that top floor room. The morning walks tours of each new town allowed a wonderful preview of the beautiful architecture and get a visual feeling of where we were in relation to our hotel. Bike rides in Bruges all over and then to Damme were dreams come true and brought to life photographs that I have collected from the 1990s."

Michael

Brandon, FL

Tour: 07/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My wife and I really enjoyed our tour. The mix of art and history kept us both active and involved. The amount of free time was good as well to allow us to explore on our own. Our favorite time though was actually not part of the tour. In both Ghent and Bruges, we bought cheese, wine, and cigars, and sat outside the hotels in the cool shade and enjoyed hours of conversation and visit time with our fellow travelers.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Many Wow moments. I think the Ghent altarpiece being restored at the museum in Ghent had to be on the top of the list. Van Gogh museum another. Clams and fries. The north sea and the smoked fish sandwich I had while there. Pickled herring. How about most all of the food i general."

Edward

Carnation, WA

Tour: 07/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We loved all the places we visited and saw in both countries. Our guide, Nina, made all the stories come to life winding the history and contemporary issues together. The hotels were great and we thought the round bed in the Garden of Eden themed room in Delft was hilarious, yet comfortable! The balance of scheduled time and free time was great.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many! We loved the canals and architecture in Belgium, meeting the locals, seeing the Madonna and Child statue as well as the restoration of the Mystic Lamb was FABULOUS!!! I loved seeing the care and precision spent on the Mystic Lamb. Loved wading in the North Sea! I loved the shop with real Delft and the shop with REAL Belgium chocolate. I could roll in that stuff! I loved the reverence inside the Anne Frank house. I loved seeing the real trenches from WWI. Amazing."

Rosemary

Qualicum Beach, BC

Tour: 06/27/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Enjoyed most things, including the odd day to do what we liked. Enjoyed the history, guided talks along the way, visits to museums etc. Although our guide was very good and very helpful, sometimes it was difficult to listen to her commentary on trams, or while walking along streets, when a bit of silence would be helpful while trying to concentrate on keeping up with the group, or watching where to get off a tram. 500 characters isn't enough to express what I want to say!

Ben

Henderson, NV

Tour: 06/27/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a great tour. The itinerary far surpassed whatever expectations that I had anticipated. I found the locals in every community we visited to be welcoming. All group tour dinners were excellent. We saw and experienced so much on this tour it took awhile to process it all upon our return home. Things like the day we spent visiting WWI memorials realizing the unimaginable cost to the inclusiveness of Amsterdam. I would highly recommend this tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I would have to say there were 2. The day spent touring and visiting the WWI memorials and battlefields, especially the the American cemetery memorial. Now we know what "In Flanders Fields the Poppies Blow...". means. On the free day in Bruges we borrowed bicycles from the hotel and peddled out to Damme. Riding along the canal with old growth trees overhanging both sides of the bicycle path was amazing. It was so much fun taking our time and saying hi and waving to other bicyclists."

Elizabeth

Henderson, NV

Tour: 06/27/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

What a tour! So much to see, so much to do in each of the cities on the tour! Our guide, Nina, made the trip for me. So much knowledge in her brain communicated with passion. Enjoyed the fact there was free time, just enough for us to schedule those side trips we wanted to see. The food was outstanding...one of those important things For me to experience. There was local cuisine as well as an outstanding dinner of Indonesian food. Enjoyed the use of planes, trains, buses, trams, and boats.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"WOW 1: bike ride to Damme. These old bones got on a bicycle cycled to Damme and returned safely! WOW 2: the WW1 battlefields and memorials. This has truly become the forgotten war. The devastation and human loss were shocking and sobering. WOW 3: got to splash about on the shore of the North Sea."

Terry

Qualicum Beach, BC

Tour: 06/27/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Tour was very good, and guide was very good. Enjoyed the places we visited.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Enjoyed Ghent and its medieval and renaissance buildings better than the other places we visited."

Jon

Chicago, IL

Tour: 06/27/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall it was very good. Nina was a terrific guide and I learned more about art than I ever knew (just to be clear: that's a good thing). The coverage of cultural and historical topics had a very nice balance and we had just the right amount of free time. But, two of the hotels were so poor, that I question whether or not I want to take another Rick Steves tour (and I do not make that comment lightly).

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were a couple: watching the very patient technicians restore the Ghent Altarpiece was incredible. The Alsameer Flower Auction was hilarious and very fun (rarely see anything that funny on tours). And viewing the excellent Belgian towns, especially Ghent, was very exciting."

Pamela

Portland, OR

Tour: 06/27/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was an extremely well guided trip led by Nina. She made the trip with her enthusiasm, knowledge of the two countries and their differences, and excellent information on how to get around the cities, what to see, where to eat. She was absolutely terrific and added so much value to our time spent in Ghent, Brugge, Delft, and Amsterdam.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's hard to give a "wow" moment. We loved Bruges, Flanders area, Delft, the storm surge barrier in Maeslant, and the museums in Amsterdam. If I were to say just one day, it would be the battlefields around Ypres. Our guide was absolutely outstanding and informative. To see the countryside and know what it had been was a powerful experience."

Marcy

Chicago, IL

Tour: 06/27/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall I loved this tour. The places we visited were just what I was hoping to see, from the picturesque towns of Ghent and Bruges to the larger city of Amsterdam. The pace of tour and the amount of free time were perfect. I'm giving an overall rating of "very good" instead of "outstanding" because of the lousy quality of 2 of the hotels. See that section for details.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had several. 1-Seeing the art restorers working on the Ghent altarpiece was amazing. 2-The Aalsmeer flower market was fun. Watching all the carts maneuvering on the warehouse floor was like a live Pac-Man game. 3- Seeing the Anne Frank House was one of the main reasons I wanted to go to Amsterdam. It was incredible and well worth the visit."

Eva

Edmonton, AB

Tour: 06/27/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall, I thought the tour experience was wonderful; e.g. information, tours, etc.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I would not say, there were any "wow" moments; but I did quite enjoy the following (in no particular order): - Canal/Boat Cruises - Enjoyed ALL the tours; however, I would have liked to have the Van Gough Museum included - Indonesian meal at Kantjil En De Tijger was GREAT!"

Kade

Houston, TX

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Let me start out by simply stating Nina was an amazing guide. Always willing to help, advise, and share her knowledge. Going through the Heart of Belgium and Holland was an amazing experience but without Nina it would have only been a vacation without the "experience". I am so thankful my wife and I were along for the experiences that Belgium and Holland had to offer!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"This is obviously a difficult question because there were so many wow moments. However, Flanders Fields filled me with more emotion than I could have ever planned for. It was an amazing experience to walk through that beautiful cemetery and view the video of the Belgium people adopting and researching some of the fallen soldiers. I had no idea of the appreciation the Belgians felt towards the Americans involved in WWI. Words fall short, but this is something I won't forget."

Thomas

Hendersonville, NC

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The overall experience was outstanding, Nina, being a native of Belgium could deliver an unparrelled perspective of the history and evolution of the Dutch Belgium culture. Every stop offered great points of interest. Nina always gave a good orientation of each town and how to get around on our own. The food was fabulous and hotels we helpful and welcoming. The small group of 15 was perfect.

Ammie

Littleton, CO

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our guide, Nina, was delightful, informative & fun. She had experience and knowledge to provide us with unique experiences. She knew her history of each area and now I know more of it too! Nina was also very helpful in extenuating circumstances, like a minor cold and offers of where to get help. She was great to talk to and treated everyone individually and showed us some great hidden gems in each city.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our herring experience. Nina knew a shop owner and was able to contact him beforehand. We had a unique herring tasting moment. It was a very short visit. I can't say I like herring, but the forethought and her connections made for a great experience."

Michael

Sanford, NC

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Nina did an excellent job on this tour. I learned a great deal about the countries and enjoyed the museums.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The museums were a high point and the museum guides were excellent. The Flanders Fields tour was moving."

Pamela

Hendersonville, NC

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I thoroughly enjoyed this tour. Nina was a fantastic guide, offering insights not only into the history but the culture of both Belgium and the Netherlands. It was a pleasure having her expertise to guide us.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Most likely the Anne frank house. Such a powerful statement in such a small place."

Renee

Saint Louis, MO

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We were very happy with this tour. Loved our tour guide Nina, the small size of the group, the accommodations and the special experiences throughout the trip,

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to the flower market near Schiphol Airport was certainly a "wow" moment. The variety of flowers and seeing the logistics of moving the flowers was amazing."

Larry

Malone, NY

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great tour. As with all RS tours there was a good balance of scheduled activities and free time, giving both a learning experience and a relaxing vacation amid old world charm. Nina is a fantastic guide. Beyond the usual background & facts expected of a guide, Nina was able to convey the similarities & differences (conflicts?) between Flemish and Dutch culture. A bonus was the small group of 15, which seemed to bond early and well, creating an atmosphere of shared experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Difficult to say. It might be the WWI sites(sobering), seeing this spring's crop of ordnance plowed up by a local farmer (eye opening), the flower market (structured chaos),or the hotel room in Delft (jaw dropping). But it just might be the happy hour arranged by Nina at the hotel in Bruges. The chance to share conversation and laugh with your fellow travelers can be the difference between a travel experience and a travel documentary."

Ramon

La Mirada, CA

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Totally wonderful tour experience that exceeded all our expectations. Our guide Nina was superb, so generous with her time; learn a lot about the history, culture, and art of the countries. Everything about the tour was great not the least of which were the fantastic and friendly people in our group.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Standing face to face with the Ghent Altarpiece in the the chapel at St. Bavo Cathedral and then saw the restoration of the some of the panels at the Ghent Museum of Fine Art are memories I'll never forget."

Janette

Shoreline, WA

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Liked the small places we stayed and the sites we visited. Thought the folks who guided the visits were excellent.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Bruge and the lace museum"

John

Shoreline, WA

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was great and we saw things ane went places we would not seen or gone had we been trying to figure it all out ourselves

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Taking a tour of the Flanders Fields cemeteries."

Mark

San Antonio, TX

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

The trip was not as good as my prior Rick Steves trips. Hotels were below standard and one in particular, the hotel in Delft, the staff was downright rude when I asked for a fan in our extremely hot, un-airconditioned room. I was told that "you do not need a fan" and that they "could not wake up the manager to ask for one." I had requested one at 3:00 pm when we checked in. This conversation was at 11:00 pm, and the temperature in our room was well over 80 degrees.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"a 3-way tie. The WWI trenches. The flower market in Alsmeer. The Rikesmuseum in Amsterdam (especially our local guide there)."

Walter

Potsdam, NY

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our second of many Rick Steves' tours, and we used the books to plan our Paris vacation about five years ago. Our high expectations are met or exceeded. We embrace the backdoor philosophy so these tours are perfect for us. Wonderful guides and tour members. Saving time is important to us and having easy access to museums and other venues is of great value.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"When my wife and I were alone together in the room with Vermeer's "Girl with the Pearl Earring" at the Mauritshuis in The Hague."

Bradley

Lake Tapps, WA

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall I was very happy with our tour guide, the itinerary, the food, culture and friendly locals! Most of the hotels were fun to stay at but I wouldn't have minded paying more to stay in nicer places. This DID NOT change how I felt or enjoyed my experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "WOW" moment was Flanders Field. I felt I knew a lot about WWII but I didn't know much about WWI. Now I feel better educated about the cause, the struggle, and the reasons."

Carol

Ardmore, PA

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I felt like this was an excellent college course in art, architecture and Northern European history. Our guide was so knowledgable and the local guides were excellent and enthusiastic. They left me wanting to know more. Even our bus driver was an asset, stopping at the North Sea so we could remove our shoes and wade a little. Our guide spoke perfect English and spent time with everyone. Meeting his wife, daughter and "boat" made everyone really connect with our guide. One

Favorite "WOW" moment

"One of my favorite wow moments was the explanation of the dykes system and how willow trees were used in the beginning. Another wow moment was the tour of the war cemeteries."

Susan

Morristown, NJ

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

A wonderful experience - "making memories" for myself and my spouse, my parents and my two college-aged children!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"One moment that has really stayed with me was watching my 20 year-old son contemplate the WWI trenches near Flanders Field - how 100 years ago young men his age were living and fighting for survival there. He told me he learned more about WWI that day than he had ever learned in school."

Edie

Beaverton, OR

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I enjoyed it very much. It was a little too energetic for me, but I knew that it would be. Nice group of people. The Rick Steves program has some magical way of turning a group of strangers into friends in just a few days. I also enjoyed interacting with the local people, especially the people in Holland.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I don't recall a specific moment but I loved learning about and seeing the giant deltaworks flood gates and the Aalsmeer flower auction. I expected to learn how the Dutch protect their land and the people from inundation, but the scale of the flower auction was a complete surprise."

Lynda

Portland, OR

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Every aspect of the tour was amazing! Except for Amsterdam in 1972, this was a part of Europe that I had never been to so each day was a new experience. I liked the mix of WWI, WWII, and medieval history as well as learning about how canals, dikes, windmills, mechanical pumps, and movable arms can be used to keep the sea at bay, and, of course, the incredible artwork everywhere. I also enjoyed learning about the handicrafts like making beer, chocolates, lace, and Delft pottery.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was most "wowed" by the exhibit in the museum in Bruges of the first books printed from 1457 to 1484. The Guttenberg press was first used in Germany in 1455 and by 1457 a Bruges scribe and now printer began to make metal letters using his own handwriting as the font (!) for the letters and then typeset them to print the text in French. For one book in the exhibit, they weren't sure if it was written in his handwriting or had been printed. In all he printed and bound 26 books and most survived!"

Walter

Naples, FL

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Thouroghly enjoyed this tour - Ellen did a fantastic job of putting it all together for us. I especially enjoyed her "history lessons" on the bus and giving us her perspective on the Dutch/Flemish/French/Belgian relationships.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Beer!!"

Brian

Washington, DC

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My wife and I had a wonderful time! We had very little idea of what to expect from this region, but we loved everything about the Low Countries. The food was great, the beer quality and variety was second to none, and the places we visited were all so beautiful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our favorite place was definitely Bruges. So picturesque and lovely, and a short bike ride around the city showed even more to appreciate from it. Despite the crowds we competed with, this city was definitely among our favorite."

Patricia

Redmond, WA

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As in other RS tours, tour was balanced with good mix of organized vs free time, variety of sites, customs or food local to area.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Delta Works was great, but loved Flanders, Hill 62/Sanctuary Woods, Tyne Cot, and German cemetery."

Rose Mary

Arlington, VA

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our guide, Ellen set a tone of joy and acceptance. Our group was very cohesive and open to all experiences. We not only toured these countries, but tasted the cultures. It was fantastic!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I particularly like the surprises where we get to taste a specialty of the region (beer, cheese, chocolate, etc.) It is so much more than museums and history (which I love)"

Richard

Redmond, WA

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

A wonderful time with the usual Rick Steves tour crowd. They are enthusiastic, energetic, and deeply interested in the history and culture of the countries we visited.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the Delta Works storm surge barrier outside of Rotterdam. It was immense. Learning about how it worked and is used was fascinating to a geeky retired engineer like me."

John

Los Altos, CA

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Excellent tour. People were friendly (no grumps). Guide (Ellen) was outstanding. I was disappointed that we did not visit an authentic windmill. Otherwise tour content was good. Least favorite stop was the "coffee shop". I hope that stop was made due to popular tour demand instead of Rick's bias for drug legalization. The local guides were all excellent.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"WW1 cemeteries were eye opening and really put a perspective on the horrors of war. The engineering involved with the ship channel closing gate was incredible. Flower market was hard to believe."

Steven

Hartsdale, NY

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall, very good. Some downsides: - some of the group meals were, at best, okay, e.g., the seaside restaurant at the North Sea. All too loud. - in fact, that entire trip to the North Sea was a junk filler. - only the hotel in Amsterdam had a decent shower. - the strange hotel rooms in Delft hotel fun for ten minutes, then annoying, as not functional - too much tiring standing for long periods. Upsides: good itinerary, though by Delft, I felt I had seen it all already

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Maybe the WWI American Cemetery near Ypres (Flanders). Part of a very moving day. The canal boat ride in Ghent was lots of fun, but the canned spiel of the one in Amsterdam was boring. The MIAT (Museum of Industry and Textile) in Ghent really put the European development of a social contract into context."

Diane

Hartsdale, NY

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

A most enjoyable tour. As with most Rick Steves tours, fast paced, interspersed with free time and time to explore on our own. A good mix of expected traveler's experiences and stuff we would never have thought of or been able to arrange on our own. Going with a RS tour definitely added value to our experiences in Belgium and Holland.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Always tough to answer. For me it was the WWI trenches and cemeteries. Considering this year is the 100th anniversary of the end of WWI, seeing the memorials was quite moving."

Teresa

Scottsdale, AZ

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Enjoyed all of the planned activities and the free time was staggered well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Anne Frank House"

Rafaele

Port Coquitlam, BC

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was everything I would have hoped for and more from this experience. It was my first Rick Steves tour ever and I travelled alone. Everything went so smoothly and every experience was phenomenal. From our tour guide Ellen to each individual local guide that we had, it was a perfect trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Either our canal cruises through Ghent and Amsterdam or our trip through Ypres and seeing all the WWI memorials and graveyards. The German memorial and graveyard site was particularly powerful. The whole town of Bruges as a preserved heritage site was mind blowing and both Belgian cities were gorgeous and interesting."

Mark

Scottsdale, MS

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

very good

Mark

Odessa, FL

Tour: 05/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Even though I traveled extensively through Europe (always using Rick Steves guide books) this was my first tour. I enjoyed the history, the convenience of having hotels and transportation worked out. Hilbren was terrific, as were the guides in the cities we visited; they brought the history alive. I appreciated the mix of scheduled meals and tourist sites with the free time available to explore on my own. I enjoyed meeting and making friends with the others taking the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Aalsmeer Flower Market."

Lynn

Boise, ID

Tour: 05/09/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

A really good tour with interesting, varied itinerary with several additional activities that were unexpected and added to the whole experience. I enjoyed every one of the tour group participants. Low point was the DePlataan Hotel in Delft (ignoring the quirky décor) that I found to be very lacking in many basics and didn't have a privacy door on the bathroom.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Wow moments were many, but the WWI sites probably top the list. Others were the Maeslantkering storm surge barrier, Aalsmeer Flower Auction and of course the great art work in the museums."

Mary

Odessa, FL

Tour: 05/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My husband and I have traveled to Europe many times always using the Rick Steves guidebooks. We were hesitant to try a tour but found it to be absolutely wonderful. Our fellow travelers were kind and like minded as far as the tours emphasis on history and art and our guide, Hilbren, was organized, extremely knowledgeable and a joy to be with.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"As an avid gardener, my favorite was the visit to the Alsmeer flower auction and historical gardens."

George

Scottsdale, AZ

Tour: 05/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was very informative. Hilbren was an excellent tour guide. His knowledge of the history of the two countries we visited and the specific towns was incredible. He laid the foundation of understanding and walked us through the history. The days of travelling on the bus were long but very informative with the places that we saw. We had sufficient time in each location except the memorial to the flood victims after leaving Ghent on the way to Brugge was rushed because of a bridge open.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The discussion of the Flanders Field battles and how many men all sides lost their lives over very little actual territory. The description by Hilbren while on the bus and at the cemeteries was moving and painted a picture of what it must have looked like at the time. Then seeing the graves including the German mass grave put it all into perspective especially considering the changes in weaponry during the war."

Rebecca

Columbus, OH

Tour: 05/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Highly enjoyed this tour. Loved both countries. We had surprisingly beautiful, sunny weather. Hilbren was a wonderful guide. The other tour members were interesting, friendly, easy to talk to and often well traveled. Food was delicious especially in Belgium. Enjoyed the typical/expected spots but pleasantly surprised by some extra, more unusual stops a long the way. Appreciated the instruction and guidance that allowed us to be comfortably independent during on our own time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Riding a bicycle along a tree lined bike path next to a canal through the Belgium country side from Bruges to Damme. Sitting in an open roof top cafe for lunch to enjoy the sunshine and views. Visiting a working, old fashioned windmill on the ride back to Bruges and climbing a ladder up to the top. A wonderful way to spend a sunny Saturday afternoon."

Michaelyn

Marshall, NC

Tour: 05/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a very balanced tour, with history, art, architecture, food and beer, and even engineering being highlighted at different times. This plus a good group of fellow travelers and a knowlegable and personable guide made for an outstanding tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I can't say that I had one favorite "wow" moment but there were several memorable moments and experiences that I won't forget. The beauty of Ghent and Bruges, especially at night when the buildings were reflected in the canals; seeing Vermeer's Girl with the Pearl Earring at The Hague; having a beer with a couple from Bruges in a pub; seeing the video of Belgian children singing our National Anthem at the Flanders Field American Cemetery (very moving); walking through the Anne Frank House."

John

Marshall, NC

Tour: 05/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first trip to Belgium and the Netherlands and I enjoyed the mix of museums, churches, current historical activities and the custom/culture. Too much museum and/or church touring can become stale after a while. I looked forward to the good Belgium beers and was not disappointed. The food was also interesting and good. Enjoyed the Indonesian foods, the seafood, the waffles and frites. All our encounters with the Belgians and Dutch were positive.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We had many special moments, but my best moment was when we spent some time with a local couple in Bruges, who invited us to join them when we were about to give up looking for a seat at a very popular/crowded Pub. Mikie was tired, exhausted and hungry after walking all morning and into the early afternoon. As we were about to leave the bar, a delightful couple asked us if we wanted to join them. We spent close to 30 minutes talking to them about Bruges and Belgium until they had to leave."

Mark

Atlanta, GA

Tour: 05/02/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip was fantastic, and I highly recommend all the towns and cities we went to, most of the sights, and our tour guide, Hans de Kiefte.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We were fortunate to have several "wow' moments. These include: the Keukenhof gardens the outstanding transportation systems in Amsterdam (bike lanes, bike garages, trams everywhere, electric car charging stations everywhere, and of course, the canals) the Harmony hotel in Ghent views from the Bell Tower in Ghent Learning about flooding and water control throughout the Netherlands the art in the Rijks Museum and Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam"

Laura

Dublin, OH

Tour: 05/02/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

It was a lovely tour. I think my favorites are still the ones in Spain and Italy. Great Art museums and interesting history.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Flanders Fields"

Cathy

Council Bluffs, IA

Tour: 05/02/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We enjoyed our first official Rick Steves tour. We've been using Rick's tour books and traveling on our own for several years. We had a small group, so that made our trip even more enjoyable. We had a very friendly and knowledgeable guide in Hans, so we learned so much more than we would have on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I don't know if this was a 'Wow' moment, but it was surprising to me how much I enjoyed the afternoon touring the WWI memorials. History isn't my favorite subject, but Raoul made learning so much history very enjoyable!"

Paula

Kirkland, WA

Tour: 05/02/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Well-chosen destinations and experiences. Informative tour guide and local guides. Fun tour group! Tasty food, beer, and chocolate. Observed that many locals get around on bikes. Learned that some Belgians live with daily reminders of WWI and are still grateful to the US. Admired Dutch expertise in controlling water with dikes, dams, and giant floor surge barriers. Experienced the art, history, and waterways of vibrant Amsterdam. And the tulips of Keukenhof - unforgettable!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Canals. Scenic canal cruises. Views and photos from bridges. Light and reflections on water changing throughout the day. Coffee at a canal-side cafe in Ghent. Art installations along Bruge canals. Leisurely dining aboard small canal barges in Delft. Gorgeous colors of flower beds along the canals of Keukenhof. Walking along quiet side canals in Amsterdam where residents come out to relax in the evening."

Marlene

Atlanta, GA

Tour: 05/02/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I thoroughly enjoyed the Belgium/Holland tour--our guide, the itinerary, hotels, and food.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many "wow" moments on this tour - the smells of waffles and chocolate in Ghent, the brilliant engineering of Delta Works dam system and the Keringhuis storm surge barrier, the nine million tulips in the Keukenhof gardens, our visit to the "coffee" shop, even just walking around in a bicycles-everywhere culture!"

Patricia

Wauwatosa, WI

Tour: 05/02/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My husband and I thoroughly enjoyed both countries. The history, the culture, the food, and, of course, the beer. We always appreciate the fact that we are given a good overview of a location and then have free-time to explore on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We had several "wow" moments including the day at the WWI sights, the unexpected tour of the windmill and Keukenhof, and the Guide's hometown."

Ruth

El Dorado Hills, CA

Tour: 04/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first Rick Steve's tour. I had an exceptional time. Our guide was Alan she was very personable, approachable, and knowledgeable. The hotels were great. It was worth every penny I spent on it.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My while moment has to be the Keukenhof. We were the last tour to see the tulips and they didn't disappoint. I took so many pictures there because everything was so beautiful"

Deena

Pontiac, IL

Tour: 04/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed this tour immensely. I loved the canals, bikes, beautiful buildings. Ellen was an awesome guide- funny, knowledgeable, always surprising us with little treats from the area we were in. Flanders Fields was amazing and Deltaworks very interesting. The food was great and plenty of free time to explore on our own. The hotel in Delft was quirky and fun.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof Gardens was completely awesome! The tulips were overwhelmingly beautiful! I would return to that area just to visit there again!"

Patricia

Inver Grove Heights, MN

Tour: 04/28/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The gardens were spectacular"

Francis

Fallston, MD

Tour: 04/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Exceeded my expectations...Good people....Good food.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Children singing USA national anthem at Flanders Field. Waving American flags. I had to walk out of the room...TOUCHING."

Sharon

Rye Brook, NY

Tour: 04/28/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Great tour. Ellen was a terrific guide. She always had little surprises to enhance our tour experience. The itinerary was all I expected. I liked that we were given the tools to explore on our own like transit and city passes. Also, nothing was skimped on. For example, at the Anne Frank house we had a background lecture as well as the annex tour. Group meals were good and in local restaurants. My only negative is the hotels. Ghent and Bruges were good. Delft awful. Amsterdam barely passable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"WW1 day. This is one of the reasons I took this tour. All the local guides were very good, but she (Janet?) was exceptional. The tour was very organized chronologically and she made the war come alive. Also the farmhouse lunch was excellent. Other highlights. Smoking a joint in Amsterdam and our meal on our own at the Rock Fort? restaurant in Bruges. One of the owners, Peter, went out of his way to make our meal truly memorable."

Valerie

Lancaster, PA

Tour: 04/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was the perfect combination of visual beauty, culture, history and contemporary ingenuity. It expanded my appreciation for these two small countries that often go unnoticed next to their larger, more commanding neighbors.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Without a doubt, the Keukenhof Gardens. It was even better than my wildest dreams."

Richard

Rye Brook, NY

Tour: 04/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my very first Rick Steves Tour. After viewing his countless programs on PBS stations as well as his DVD's my wife and I were anxious to be able to partake in one. We have done ocean cruising, river cruising, guided land tours and on our own land vacations, nothing is quite the same as Rick's tours. We look forward to another tour in the future.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The day we spent touring the World War 1 Flanders Fields cemeteries and battlefields. Our local guide was fantastic, knowledgeable and personable. I learned so much more than I already knew. Keukenhof Garden follows a close second."

Nancy

El Dorado Hills, CA

Tour: 04/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my 5th Rick Steves tour and as always, it did not disappoint. Our guide Ellen was outstanding, the group was congenial, the experiences were exceptional and it left me with memories I will never forget. Can't wait to go on my next Rick Steves tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many, but I think the visit to Keukenhof would be one of the highlights of the tour. It was like visiting Disneyland for tulips, and I'm so happy we took the Rick Steves tour at a time when the gardens were open. It is unbelievable how many different varieties of tulips they have, all planted to showcase the beauty of each one. I ordered a package of tulips to be shipped to my home, and I can't wait to see them bloom next year as a reminder of a wonderful trip."

Martin

Inver Grove Heights, MN

Tour: 04/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very informative and well paced

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The canals were beautiful !"

Jennifer

Waukegan, IL

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As always, I'm impressed by the Rick Steve's tour experience. They have timing down to a science which allows us to be the first groups in or arrive right before closing when there are the fewest other tourists. I loved my time in Belgium and Holland! Ghent and Delft were my favorite cities, mostly because I really felt like we had a home base in each city. This coziness was provided by exceptional local guides and our incredibly knowledgeable tour guide, Nina.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The day we spent at the Keukenhof was a WOW moment. The gardens were overwhelmingly beautiful. The different types of tulips and the sheer number that were planted took my breath away. The artistry displayed in flowers really brought tears to my eyes. The other WOW moment was the art we saw. It was simply phenomenal. Jan van Eyck and the Ghent altarpiece was transformational."

Barbara

Tucson, AZ

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to say, each place we went what interesting. Flanders Fields was unexpected and very moving. Guide was great. Loved learning about the dutch environment and technology and their forward thinking ways. Delft and Ghent were small enough that I enjoyed being in those places very much."

Brenda

Shoreline, WA

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a wonderful combination of a dynamic, unflappable guide, great group of travelers, and a variety of experiences involving history, art, and cultural specialties like chocolate, beer and bulbs, pottery and fabric and how their production have become important to the economy of these small countries. There was a very fine-tuned balance of group time and free time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Many wonderful moments on this trip, as I love art history and we saw many treasures in churches and museums and the historic sites of Flanders Field and the Anne Frank house were meaningful and sobering. But no question, the biggest WOW was the Keukenhof Garden. It was stupendous, beyond belief, and the continuing and unfolding displays of flowers, landscape features, and sculptures made it the winner of the WOW contest."

Don

Shoreline, WA

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is my 6th Rick Steves' Tour and all our guides have been very good. However, Nina was outstanding. I especially enjoyed Nina's humor and organizational skills. Her knowledge of Belgium and Holland was amazing-provided insights that enhanced my understanding of both countries.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Flanders Battlefields-especially Flanders Field American Cemetery and Memorial Watersnood Museum and Maesiant Storm Surge Barrier Rijksmuseum-our local guide, Robert, was exceptional. Keukenhof-amazing. Surprise of the Tour. Anne Frank House. Van Gogh Museum"

Linda

Skillman, NJ

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We loved the itinerary, the size of the group [20 people was a perfect number], and Nina was a fantastic guide - knowledgeable, funny, tireless and generous with her time. The location of the hotels was very good, although some of the "quirkiness" bordered on "difficult to manage" [e.g. Bruge - the bathrooms were not geared for seniors. We had to navigate high, slippery bathtubs equipped with only a hand-held shower head].

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So, so many... One that comes to mind is seeing the seeing Van Eyck's wonderful altarpiece in St. Bavo's Cathedral, then heading to the Ghent Museum of Fine Arts, where we were able to watch skilled artisans restoring some of the panels of this beautiful medieval work of art. Another: wandering through Keukenhof at the height of tulip season was an spectacular, almost mesmerizing experience. And roaming through picturesque Ghent and Bruge, among buildings that are 500-800 years old - Wow!"

Alan

Skillman, NJ

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was amaging to visit the medieval villages Ghent, Bruges and Delft and experience the art and history there. Loved the interaction with the other tour guests. The list goes on. The flowers in Keukenhof alone made for an outstanding trip. The museums, the specialty guides and our tour guide Nina all contributed to a very enjoyable 11 days. The WWI visit was moving. Of course Amsterdam and the Rijksmuseum were a wow. I could go on writing for hours but you have got to go in person.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Maybe Flanders field..maybe the Van Gogh art ..maybe the canals..maybe the Anne Frank visit..maybe the beer and chocolate etc."

Timothy

Atlanta, GA

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We had a very nice time; good group of people and a great tour guide. We really enjoy these tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"tulips!"

Andrew

Kent, WA

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Another great Rick Steve's tour. Starts with a well planned itinerary and we felt this tour, with the focus on the small towns in the low country (Ghent, Bruges, and Delft), was a relaxing but engaging way to see Belgium and Holland. Of course a great guide makes it all happen, adds the narrative, and turns strangers into friends in the matter of days -- Nina did all that.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof was probably the biggest wow moment (and good planning to get to the park early before the the huge crowds showed up later in the day). Anne Frank house and watching the video of the school children sing at the American cemetery in Flanders Fields were probably the most moving."

James

Minnetonka, MN

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The balance of guided time and free time seemed about right. Nina's orientation to things was excellent. She helped create a sense of fellowship among us. There was no problem finding people in the group with which to share time. Bus driver was quite good, both as a driver and personally. We were seeing all these places for the first time and the trip exceeded our expectations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"One was the day driving along the Dutch coast, learning about flood control, the water surge barrier, etc. Seeing what they are doing to protect the land they have was informative. The Rijksmuseum was a highlight, as was the day in Flanders Field area...sobering but a reminder of what we humans too often do to each other. The American cemetery made me aware of the USA commission that cares for these cemeteries outside the USA."

Richard

Roswell, NM

Tour: 04/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Another great tour with a great tour guide and great tourists.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The tulips at Keukenhof and Flanders' Field."

Judy

Boise, ID

Tour: 04/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour had so many different places to visit from wonderful museums and art to battlefields to medieval cities and so much more. I love all the history that is involved with this tour and to learn and see in person is so much fun. Also to experience local traditions, the regional foods and mingle with the locals is such a bonus to travel. The guide books are well written and we use the maps,restaurant suggestions and city walks. We had a great group of tour people.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Keukenhof Gardens were amazing. I have been here before but still there is this thing about beautiful, colorful flowers in a huge garden that brings so much tranquility to ones self. The day included some rain but that just enhances the beauty of the garden. So glad to have taken the tour when the gardens were in their height of glory."

Danny

Nampa, ID

Tour: 04/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very fast paced , very good history information. There was something for everyone. Limited bus time, which is good. Outstanding tour. Rolinka was very knowledgeable about the con tries, especially the Netherlands.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Architecture, especially the Art Nouveau designs in Amsterdam. And of course the acres and acres of bicycles at the train station in Amsterdam and all over that city, fiete!!, Brom fiete!!. Another wow moment was drinking a bottle of Westvleteren 12 beer in Brussels prior to the tour. Have you had one Rick? Another wow moment was seeing all the windmills and thinking about how many there used to be."

Diane

Kenmore, WA

Tour: 04/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a wonderful time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment was climbing up into a tall windmill in Bruges, which was set up to operate with rigging like a sailboat."

Susan

Columbia, SC

Tour: 04/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This experience was another rave for the Rick Steve's model. I do think your tours are developing cult status and deservedly so. I've thought and thought and have no ideas about what could be different. I saw the art I have longed to see. The four cities on the tour were perfect and distinctive and we saw all the must-see sites.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Ghent Altarpiece. The Kukenhof Gardens were a bonus."

Dianna

El Dorado Hills, CA

Tour: 04/21/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I enjoyed the museums, Flanders fields, and FLOWERS!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Flanders fields...to my surprise."

William

Belden, MS

Tour: 04/21/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Very good

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Tulips"

Linda

Belden, MS

Tour: 04/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was fabulous!!! Rolinka was amazing! I was not that interested in the water system, but everything else was great.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Definitely Keukenhof Gardens!!!!!!! It is the reason we went on the trip, and it was MUCH MORE than I expected!I also loved Bruges."

Janice

Columbia, SC

Tour: 04/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had not been on a tour in 20 years because the first one I went on (with another company) was not good. I have recommended Rick Steves' Tours to everyone I know since I returned home. Rolinka was an excellent tour guide. She went out of her way to make the tour special for us. She was always looking for ways to give us the options for more experiences. She was knowledgeable, smart, kind, thoughtful, and hardworking. I would go on another tour with her to anywhere. She is that good.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many "wow" moments so its hard to say which one was the most memorable. I had been to almost all the places we went to before but the additional information, the out of the way places, knowing which restaurants, and the information shared were all very memorable. I was fascinated by the water management system in The Netherlands and that trip taught me a lot about the technical stuff done to maintain land and prevent flooding but the knowledge I learned about culture, values was best."

Doreen

Auburn, CA

Tour: 04/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed touring the medieval cities, canals, gardens, museums and sampling the beer, waffles and chocolate. The day at the Keukenhof was amazing in spite of light rain. So much color and variety! Our tour guide, Rolinka, paired me with a wonderful roommate and all the hotels were great, even the quirky one in Delft. I liked the stop in Zeeland and the storm surge barrier was interesting, but very windy outside. The museums in Amsterdam were special. All meals were great.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Its tough to pick one, but the exhibit at the Van Gogh museum was great. I'm an artist so I loved all the art museums, including the Mauritshuis in The Hague. The guide for the Rijks Museum was excellent also."

Mark

Kenmore, WA

Tour: 04/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour experience was very good. Our guide was knowledgeable and enthusiastic, the food was great, the hotels ranged from beautiful to quirky (but good), and the tour sites were some of the best you'll see in Europe.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We took a side trip to The Hague to visit the Mauritshuis Museum. Standing alone in front of Vermeer's "Girl with a Pearl Earing" without jostling with hundreds of other tourists was a "Wow" moment. Try that with the Mona Lisa. Also, our visit to the Maelant Storm Surge Barrier was amazing."

Judy

Rockford, IL

Tour: 04/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was everything I expected it to be. The distance between all the cities we visited were such short distances. The hotels were all great. The most distinctive décor I had was in our room in Delft. It was decorated with a theme of Delft Pottery. I enjoyed having Rolinka as our tour guide. She is a great guide and provided us with all the necessary learning experiences we could have. She provided excellent information on what to do, where to go, and places to eat when we were on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had so many great moments on this tour. I enjoyed seeing the Ghent Alter Piece, Vermeer's Girl with the Pearl Earring, Michael Angelo's Madonna and Child sculpture in Bruges, and I think my ultimate favorite moments were seeing all the flowers at Keukenhof flower gardens. Just gorgeous! The flowers in the field's around Keukenhof were fabulous as well."

Priscilla

Greenback, TN

Tour: 04/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Always a great experience, we love the RS tours for the complete package - history, art, food, people, Europe! This was no exception. Beautiful canals, spring flowers, King's Day in Delft, a marvelous guide, and Belgian chocolates and beer!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof! Even more beautiful than we expected!"

Jerry

Ashland, OR

Tour: 04/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved the history of World War I and the trenches. The tulips and the Keukonoff (sp) park was fabulous. Rolinka was outstanding and very much fun as a guide

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The water protection system in the Netherlands"

Christine

Nampa, ID

Tour: 04/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I really enjoyed this tour. There were so many different things to see, history to learn, food to sample, and very nice group of fellow travelers. Museums, artwork, architecture, Delftware, chocolate, canal cruises, cheese tasting, Flanders Field history, Kings Day celebrations, windmills, storm surge barrier, waffles, Anne Frank house, and much more. Excellent guides brought these things to life, so we could understand why we are seeing these places and things.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof. This was my second time there, and it was just as "wow" as the first time, because different flowers were blooming. My previous visit was earlier in the spring. Even with the mobs of tourists, it was a beautiful place on a drizzly day. The tulips planted with other flowers make wonderful displays. Wow. I said that many times that day! It was nice to explore on our own at our own pace. We saw some big groups in a line going through, which would not be fun. Glad we went early."

Glen

Davis, CA

Tour: 04/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Experiencing the Dutch and Belgian cities, exploring their numerous museums was wonderful. The food, drink and scenery were all much enjoyed. The local knowledge imparted by the guides was a big plus. Now that some time has passed and I've had time to reflect, seeing Flanders Fields, the trenches and the graveyards was the heart of the tour for me.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Though the Tulips were beautiful and the museums and streets of Ghent, Bruges, Delft and Amsterdam were wonderful, the time at Fanders Fields will be with me forever. Andre' was the perfect guide for the subject matter."

Craig

Chicago, IL

Tour: 04/14/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour had an excellent balance of time and activities in each town, and the tours provided an excellent overview of the key things that stand out in the town and area. Providing a full free day half-way through the tour in Bruges (at a hotel that offered cheap laundry service!) was an excellent break in a beautiful city on a beautiful, sunny day.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Walking through the market square in Bruges at night, past the soaring belfry, and hearing the college cantus in the courtyard belting out international favorites while they drank the night away. Walking through the Anne Frank house was very emotional, especially seeing her room with the photos still pasted on the walls. Keukenhof on a brilliantly sunny day, arriving when the doors opened so there was little traffic, was breathtaking."

Richard

Portland, ME

Tour: 04/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My hopes for the tour focused on tulips, canals and art. My experience met or exceeded expectations. And our tour guide Nina was wonderful. Overall another great Steve's tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Keukenhof Gardens were a highlight for me, but the art galleries were also amazing."

Mike

Oshkosh, WI

Tour: 04/14/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We had a wonderful time with a good balance of scheduled activities and free time. Nina was an excellent guide and the local guides were also very good.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof gardens was spectacular and our timing was perfect. Nina and our driver, John got us there early before the crowds slammed in. Now if we could just keep the other 100,000 visitors out of garden..."

Darcy

Oshkosh, WI

Tour: 04/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our second Rick Steves tour did not disappoint. Nina was a great guide with knowledge and experience about Belgium and Holland and gave us the background needed to learn and appreciate these countries. The local guides were also informative and interesting. I enjoyed the cities we visited-- all beautiful and full of character with churches, museums and CANALS and so much to learn about them.! Also enjoyed the company of fellow RS travelers.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Flanders Fields and Keukenhof Gardens stand out as the most impressive parts of the trip. The cemeteries we visited were sobering with Andre as our terrific guide. The gardens were the reason we picked this tour at this time and they did not disappoint! Absolutely stunning in size and layout of the gardens with the explosion of color and variety. Perfect weather just enhanced the visit."

Lesley

Davis, CA

Tour: 04/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is my third RS Tour and it certainly lived up the high expectations I had after the first two. I was particularly interested in the historical aspects, especially the visit to Flanders Fields and was awed by that sobering experience. Nina is a fantastic and well-organized guide and told us many wonderful stories about the people and the culture. We were also lucky to have fantastic weather and the tulips were in full bloom. A good selection of the four cities we visited. Good group too!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wow moments range from the sobering, Flanders Fields, to the sublime, Keukenhof Gardens with the tulips in full bloom. Seeing the graves of so many men (and women) as well as remaining trenches emphasized the horror of all wars, but WWI in particular. And a few days later enjoying the splendor of the gardens reminded us of the beauty in our world."

Terri

Portland, ME

Tour: 04/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a great group on this tour, and our guide, Nina, was funny and informative. We appreciated the small towns and out of the way places we visited. It was a great combination of history, science, culture and food in places we had never been.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's hard to choose, as always. I thought the Netherlands waterworks was a real "wow" moment, but the Keukenhof Gardens have to be the winner. Over 7 million bulbs, and Nina got us in first thing in the morning and told us to start at the back before the crowds got there. Great advice! We practically had that area to ourselves for an hour. Absolutely stunning gorgeous flower displays."

Mary Kay

Chicago, IL

Tour: 04/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was an overall great experience. The itinerary was perfect, people in the group fun, Nina always on her toe. I came home appreciating much about Belgium and Holland. The only not-great thing was I thought we were not always good travelers. We were loud in churches; we blocked thruways; we hogged spots in front of attractions. When I am traveling with a group, I pick Rick Steves over other tours because I feel the groups are more aware of the surroundings. This trip I wasn't sure we were.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were certainly many memorable moments – the Madonna of Bruges, the Keukenhof – and many moving moments – the Anne Frank House, Hill 62. But if I am to be honest, my favorite "wow" moments involved Belgian beer, chocolate, waffles, and fries, in that order!"

Lois

Wheaton, IL

Tour: 04/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first trip with Rick Steves. I had some apprehensions about the pace of the tour, being a senior citizen, but all went well. Cobblestones and uneven streets are challenging, but I was able to do it. We had a nice mix of educational opportunities and social events. Nina was an excellent guide and very accommodating.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"European churches and their art and statutes. Michelangelo's Madonna was awesome. The ladies in the Lace Center were amazing with their craft. The natural beauty of the area was wonderful. The Keukenhof Gardens were gorgeous!"

Peri

Denver, CO

Tour: 04/14/18

Overall rating: rating 2 of 5

This was our first and probably our last Rick Steve's tour. Even though you get a lot of "bang for your buck" on this tour, we need a less structured, more layed-back vacation.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The museums, the flowers, the dam at Hook van Holland, Flanders field, and the sink at the hotel in Delft (I wish I could attach a photo!)"

Mark

Norfolk, MA

Tour: 04/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour guide always makes or breaks a tour. Rolinka made this tour memorable and fun. She's a pro! The itinerary was a perfect blend of geography, history, culture, arts and eats. Well paced and comprehensive.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"What else.....Keukenhof Gardens!"

Mark

East Aurora, NY

Tour: 04/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first tour with Rick Steves, and it was even better than we had hoped! The tour had a nice balance between structured group time and individual free time. Rolinka is a top-notch guide -- very warm, funny, professional, and knowledgeable about the areas we visited. She seemed to know all the hidden courtyards and gardens that we never would have found on our own. The local guides gave us an excellent first-hand perspective on life in Belgium and the Netherlands.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many, but the three that made the biggest impression: 1.) The heartbreaking epitaphs on the gravestones at the Tyne Cot WW1 Cemetery, 2.) The "Blue River" of grape hyacinths at Keukenhof Gardens, and 3.) "Still Life with a Gilt Cup" by Willem Claesz Heda in the Rijksmuseum."

Scott

Kirtland, OH

Tour: 04/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

TheWife and I had a GREAT time. She has filled out this questionaire very well, so I can be lazy and just make a few comments, other than I agree with everything she's said.

Jo

Kirtland, OH

Tour: 04/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent value for the money. Rolinka kept us moving, and we saw/did things we wouldn't normally have done under own power(like the storm surge barrier and Watersnood). But that's the beauty of Rick Steves tours! Fun, learning, experiencing - all good stuff.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I knew I'd love the Keukenhof Gardens (the main reason for choosing this tour) and the Belgian chocolate tasting. The "wow" surprise, though, was the great lunch at a country inn on the Flanders Field Day. The host was very charming, told wonderful stories, and showed us his museum of war materials pulled from his fields. Plus I adored his friendly dog."

Joyce

Kirkland, WA

Tour: 04/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

great trip, wonderful guide, interesting and friendly tour mates

Favorite "WOW" moment

"the garden, the North Sea, all the art museums"

Dave

Kirkland, WA

Tour: 04/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour was expertly guided by Rolinka. We saw all of the highlights we wished for and many we would have missed on our own. We had adequate time to explore on our own to balance the times we were together. Local guides were all of Rick Steve's tour quality (outstanding). All in all, we enjoyed it very much.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Walking into the room where Rembrandt's "Night Watch" was displayed. or maybe... The sunny day we spent at the tulip garden. Hard to pick just one or two."

Catherine

Alameda, CA

Tour: 04/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Enjoyed the sights and the tour guide. I appreciated the choices for hotel and locations. Our guide was exactly what she said she was - informative, direct, and there for us.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof"

Terrance

Evanston, IL

Tour: 04/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Hotels were great. People on the tour were really nice. Rolinka, our tour guide was very informed. Good mixture of different cities and sights.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Maeslant storm surge barrier, Keukenhof Gardens and the Beer!"

Susan

Evanston, IL

Tour: 04/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

2nd Rick Steves Tour & it didn't disappoint. Rolinka was an awesome tour guide, informative & most helpful. Ronnie our bus driver was most diligent to protect our safety in a timely manner. Our tour of 26 people were well taken care of and enjoyed many fun times together & adventures on our own. Belgian & Holland are lovely countries and we were most welcome by their people. Yummy beer, chocolates, waffles, boat rides, wind mills and tulips made this trip one for the ages.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Michelangelo's sculpture, Madonna and Child in Bruges. Keukenhof Gardens was a beautiful sea of spring-flowering bulbs...breathtaking! The Anne Frank House with the tour and the 17th-century Portuguese Synagogue on our own were moving beyond words."

John

Madison, NJ

Tour: 04/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved the personal touch and attention throughout the tour. Rolinka's knowledge about the places and engagement with the individuals in the group made every day totally enjoyable. The itinerary seemed perfect, with just the right amount of time allocated to each city and activity. Free time was thoughtfully and adequately interspersed. Would like to have had a proper shower in the hotel in Bruges, but this wasn't our first experience with a European style bathroom so we adapted.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Both my wife and I were stunned by the variety and beauty of the tulips. That was the primary reason for us booking this trip and we were not disappointed."

Cynthia

Madison, NJ

Tour: 04/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a great time. Rolinka was a great tour guide. Wonderful to have someone who lead us who was a native of one of the countries. She was extremely helpful and caring with any/all personal/travel issues that arose during the trip. She shared her life with us as we shared ours with her. In general the lodging, meals and city & museum tours met or exceeded our expectations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard for me to answer. Saw and did so many great things. I guess the Indonesian dinner in Amsterdam really blew us away."

Joan

Norfolk, MA

Tour: 04/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This Tour easily met the high expectations we had based on our two previous Rick Steves tours. We were incredibly fortunate to have glorious temeweather the entire trip. I particularly enjoyed the quaint, charming architecture and canals, The WWI sites at Flanders Fields, the Delta works, Keukenhof, the art, and all the excint in Amsterdam. (In other words, the entire trip!) There was a perfect balance of structured and free time. Our guide Rolinka was key to our enjoyment of this trip

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We chose this trip specifically to visit Keukenhof at tulip time, but we never in our wildest dreams expected the beautiful warm sunny day we had there! It was truly spectacular."

Peter

Guerneville, CA

Tour: 09/20/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We went to Belgium and Holland without a great deal of expectations. Belgium was gonna be about the beer and Holland about controlling water. Being canal countries there was lots to photograph. For people expecting to spend a lot of time on the bus, this was a different experience. We were at the same hotel a couple of times for three nights.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The day we spent in Holland touring the water control facilities was exceptional. There was a problem with the bus in the morning which cost us an hour and a half that could not be made up but this was still the most interesting day of the tour."

Al

Kansas City, MO

Tour: 09/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The WWI cementaries and monuments. I have a new appreciation of that part of America history. We found Boulevard Brewing beer sold in Ghent! It's made in Kansas City, MO. That's where we are from. Belgium bought the craft beer brewing company from KC!"

John

Dix Hills, NY

Tour: 09/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was well organized and covered a good cross section of the low country. There were sobering moments as well as moments to appreciate fine art and Dutch engineering. The guide was fantastic and the hotels were comfortable and centrally located within walking distance to all city centers.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think my favorite wow moment was the visit to the Anne Frank house. It was a sobering reminder of how cruel and inhumane humans can be to one another. It reminds us that we cannot allow things like this to happen on this earth. I was particularly moved by the video of the woman telling, in her own words, the illicit barbed wire fence meeting she had with Anne while Anne was imprisoned in the camp before she died."

Carol

Cohoes, NY

Tour: 09/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip to Belgium and Holland had been on my list for quite a while. Arriving in Ghent to our hotel on the canal provided an exclamation point to my anticipation of the trip. I loved the small town feel of Ghent, Bruges, and Delft as well as the architectural delights of the medieval cities. The hot chocolate warmed my heart as did the casual conversations we had with local people. Members of the tour group were so pleasant as well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"What impressed me was the long term remembrances of the Belgians and the Dutch who have been keeping alive the life experiences of WWI and WWII battles as well as their appreciation for the assistance they received from their allies. Continuing to hold final call in Ypers for 100 years and young people adopting grave sites in Flanders Field was so touching."

Donna

Latham, NY

Tour: 09/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip was a highly enjoyable experience. Our guide Ellen and her assistant Soraya were both extremely knowledgeable, friendly and helpful. Our travel companions were wonderful and inclusive and we all shared lots of stories and laughs. The pace of the trip was comfortable, the learning experiences were rewarding, and the group dinners and lunches were quite good. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My WOW moment was chocolate...I never saw so many chocolate stores! For a chocolate lover, I was in heaven! On a more serious note, seeing the cemeteries in Ypres was very moving. I learned so much about this period in history. The Anne Frank House and the Dutch Resistance Museum in Amsterdam were also very thought provoking. I really enjoyed strolling around Ghent in the evening. The buildings were lit and so beautiful! Lots of wow moments for me!"

Bruce

Palo Alto, CA

Tour: 09/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a part of Europe that I have not visited before except Amsterdam in the early 70s. The tour guides and local guides were excellent.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The water control installations in Holland and their enormity."

Terri

Port Coquitlam, BC

Tour: 09/20/17

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

This was a good tour, not exceptional however as were our previous Rick Steve's tours. There were lovely sights to see in Ghent and Bruge. The Delft waterworks were impressive; The Delft hotel Plantaan absolutely was not. All the local guides and demonstrations were terrific. And Amsterdam was very interesting.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The canals of Ghent and Bruge were lovely, and the Delft Waterworks were impressive."

Lynne

Guerneville, CA

Tour: 09/20/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Every once in a while, I say we should do a different tour. Well we tried an Alaska tour, and the guides were students for the summer they had boned up. The bus had only one door, the tours were just not inspiring. And I look at the itinerary, they may look the same at first, but seldom have those little surprises - the out of the way farm, or visit. We will be back for our 11th and 12th.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to the amazing dam in The Netherlands (I still can't figure out the name of it) was a wow moment for me. Understanding the entire water system, how it works, what it does, and how that small country is planning and building for the future. (Although we were disappointed to have so little time at the dam as the bus was lost for an hour). But there were many wow moments in those adorable small towns, Amsterdam was a shock at first after that, but soon became familiar. A general WOW"

Claire

Fairhaven, MA

Tour: 09/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our second Rick Steves tour and did not disappoint. We especially liked the diversity of experiences, providing us with a fuller understanding of the history and culture of Belgium and Holland. The pace was excellent, our travel companions were very compatible, and the local guides were universally excellent.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were too many to single out just one. Highlights for me included the architecture and art of the region, the lovely canals and the moving experiences related to WWI and WWII, especially Flanders Fields and the Ann Frank House. As always in Europe, love the cafe culture."

Raymond

Tigard, OR

Tour: 09/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was good. As usual, a few things I didn't think would be fun (flower market) were a blast. Would recommend it.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the Vermeer paintings in the Hague (on free time) and in Amsterdam."

Marta

Minneapolis, MN

Tour: 09/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Every day was a surprise and a delight. Loved spending most of our time in beautiful and historical places and not on the bus. This tour has so much going for it. The people we traveled with were the best.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Anne Frank house was very moving. WWI day in Flanders and Ypres was incredibly informative--seeing the trenches, learning about the war being fought in those very fields should be required for every citizen."

Sandra

Concord, CA

Tour: 09/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was an valued experience as I learned so much more about the conflict of two World Wars that took a toll on so many. Standing in Flanders Fields on a drizzling afternoon under chilly gray skies gave me the opportunity to thank the many who are memorialized at each white marble grave site. It is honorable of the Belgium and Netherland people to not have forgotten.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I found my way to Rembrandt's House to visit after seeing his work in the Rijksmuseum. It was amazing to be standing in his studio and actually see how he made his paints by grinding the powders from precious stones, and see the paint brushes that he held to apply strokes of beauty to a canvas. I could not believe that I was sharing in the space that he once occupied."

Maxine

Rocky River, OH

Tour: 09/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Met and exceeded all expectations I had from watching the R. Steves video of this trip. Very well organized. Your company is really selling "Trust". Trust that all aspects of the trip will efficiently occur as planned. Well done.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"This may surprise you but the first image that comes to mind is the charming historical flower farm. I am a landscape artist and avid flower gardener and this farm spoke to my heart. This trip was like a rapidly moving stream of consciousness with visual images that I could not completely absorb. I wanted to see everything I read about and thus find it difficult to rank one sight over others. The great gates that hold back the North Sea; the flower market for its size and scale."

Paul

Broomfield, CO

Tour: 09/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very enjoyable - a great learning experience - well guided - many times surprising - comfortable, yet challenging - transformative.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Learning about the history and development of the Netherlands and its culture."

Fredric

Portland, OR

Tour: 09/06/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Despite some rainy days, I especially enjoyed the company of our tour group, a lot of friendly, open minded and helpful people. The museum tours were great, with outstanding guides and impressive works of art. The trips to Ypres, Flanders' Field, the trenches were all very moving as was the visit to the Anne Frank House. Seeing the challenges that face the Low Countries with managing all the water was very eye-opening, things I thought I realized but not to this extent.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I would say there were two of them: the Maeslant storm surge barrier and the Alsmeer Flower Auction. The storm surge barrier was visited on a rainy, windy day and made us appreciate the necessity of it. The flower auction was impressive for all of its organized chaos."

Marcela

Broomfield, CO

Tour: 09/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was truly a wonderful tour, so well-organized and informational. We visited lovely cities and learned so much about the fascinating history and current affairs of this very interesting, beautiful part of Europe. Our guide Hilbren was excellent. THE BEST!!! Being a history professor, he provided such a wealth of cultural and historical background about each location. The local guides were also great, especially: Gabriele in Ghent and Robert Uterwijk at the Rijkmuseum.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Arriving at Ghent and looking out from the balcony in our lovely hotel room. This is such a beautiful, romantic city, and not as touristic as Bruges. People were very friendly and the food was fantastic. Other WOW moments were: the Delta works in Holland, the chocolate tasting in Bruges and the tour of the Rijkmuseum by Robert Uterwijk. He is so knowledgeable in art history and did such a wonderful presentation. This museum also has a beautiful old library. I highly recommend it for book lovers."

Marianne

Zionsville, IN

Tour: 09/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very well organized. Yet again a top notch tour guide with a splendid background in history, artchitecture and art. Local guides were very bit as good as our tour leader.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "wow" moments are never the ones I expect. They are always the unexpected. This trip, expecting the art to the highlight,I was wowed by the way the Low Countries were able to control the North Sea."

Marie

Pittsburgh, PA

Tour: 08/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

There were a plethora of pleasures - opportunities to learn. to taste excellent food and drink, to see great art, and to relax, talk, and laugh in good company.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had expected to admire the van Eyck and Memling altar pieces but I was astounded by their beauty. There were two Holbein portraits of men with falcons in the Mauritshuis that were stunning. The Vermeers took my breath away, There was a once in five year medieval inspired parade in Bruges that was a spectacular cavalcade of color."

Martin

New York, NY

Tour: 08/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was awesome. Perfect. Hilbren, our guide, was friendly, totally knowledgeable, helpful. Everything one would want in a guide. The tour sites were fantastic, as were the local guides. Hotels were perfect. And my fellow tourists were super friendly. I travel without a partner, but I never was at a loss for dinner partners.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"When I first arrived in Ghent, seeing the 'Dutch architecture'. The narrow canal houses along the canals. Also, the streets of Amsterdam! I live in Manhattan, NY. I have never experienced such difficult streets to walk on and cross! All the bicycles! And of course, the canal rides in Amsterdam and Ghent."

Philippe

Pittsburgh, PA

Tour: 08/16/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

In this tour, I especially valued learning about the complicated history of these two countries. I also acquired a new appreciation for the outstanding quality of the art and architecture of these regions in the late middle ages (in Belgium) and the 17th century (in the Netherlands). We saw and did many things, were on the go all the time, and yet I now have the feeling that we only scratched the surface of the richness that permeates those regions. This tour was an excellent introduction.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I remember feeling strongly the great beauty of the "night watch" by Rembrandt as displayed at the far end of the long gallery in the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. I had a similar feeling when I came upon the St John altarpiece by Memling in the former hospital in Bruges."

Joy

Raleigh, NC

Tour: 08/16/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Our fellow travelers were the best...no friction, all respectful. Amsterdam was chaotic...no helping that, I suppose. We saw a lot of interesting things, with time provided to explore on our own. Typical of other RS tours we've taken. Would recommend it!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We have traveled extensively in Europe, so much of their history, architecture and art are shared. We were WOW'd by the Royal FloraHolland and the Keringhuis waterworks visits."

Sue

Cape Coral, FL

Tour: 08/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I loved the medieval cities, learning about the culture, history and how people lived then and now. Our guides were a treasure chest of information and such enjoyable company. I enjoyed the pace (2-3 nights in each hotel), the mix of hotels and especially the bikes available for our use at our hotel in Bruges.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I wouldn't call it a "wow" moment, as in pleasant surprise, but I believe that we were all deeply affected by the history we learned and experienced around Flanders Field and Ypres."

Netta

Mukilteo, WA

Tour: 08/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a delight to learn about and explore Belgium and the Netherlands [INVALID] especially with such a knowledgeable and enthusiastic guide from the region. The Rick Steves Tour format affords the best of a social, personal, aesthetic and didactic experience. I liked the variety of activities of this tour, involving not only history, artwork and churches, but interesting current endeavors such as the flower distribution plant, lovely small organic garden, and water management engineering.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Several... The sheer beauty of the canals with the fascinating houses lining them; the consistently fresh and good-tasting food; and the opportunity to develop new views on the social and political structures, history and artwork of Belgium and the Netherlands. Oh, and our guide Hilbren's mussels cooking demo!"

Peggy

Vancouver, BC

Tour: 08/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first time travelling in a group tour and I was amazed at the wide range of things covered to satisfy a diverse group of people. Travelling alone or as a couple, I would not have chosen some of the items on the tour and would have missed out on some wonderful experiences.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was wowed by the visit to the Royal FloraHolland. The sheer size plus the hive of activity was unexpected and fantastic!"

Judy Lynn

Berkeley Springs, WV

Tour: 07/12/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a special trip for our Grandson and it was his choice. This was our second Rick Steves tour and it was great. All the hotels were fantastic and comfortable. We enjoyed our free time to explore on our own. The history of the area Is always interesting, the churches and museum outstanding. The canal boat rides added to the history. This trip was absolutely fantastic. Our guide Nina was exceptional. All our local guides were very thorough in all regards.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had two wow moments. Visiting the WWI battle fields and cemeteries. All were quite moving. The visit to the Aalsmeer Flower Auction. As a gardner, it was amazing learning and watching how the distribution and movement of all the flowers is managed."

Conrad

Tucson, AZ

Tour: 07/12/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved all these local guides and others who added to the Tour. Ghent boat captain: Edward Ghent City walk and St. Bavo Cathedral: Mieke Museum of Fine Arts, Ghent: Lieve & Hilde Flanders Battlefields: Christine Bruges walking tour: Daniëlle Chocolate demo in Bruges: Anne Maeslant Storm Surge Barrier: Nino Delft ceramics demo: Steffan Paradox Coffeeshop: Ludo Rijksmuseum guides: AnneJulie I especially enjoyed the way Nina shared her own stories. I was moved by the tour of the Anne Frank house.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Anne Frank house and Vermeer museum."

Lisa

Simi Valley, CA

Tour: 07/12/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was my first tour and I found the amount of time that is scheduled and free to be balanced.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"GHent, the hotel and town were perfect."

Nicki

Saint Louis, MO

Tour: 07/12/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My tenth tour was as expected-great. Nina was a wonderful, extremely well organized guide.We had the right amount of free time which we don't always get. Hotels were small, local, in location close to transportation, which we quickly got the hang of or walk-able to city center. I did not enjoy the Indonesian dinner. It was 75% meat and other members felt the same way. Love getting in early before the crowds or having the pass that lets us in the other door.All guides and Henri were great.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Bruges is the place to go. Beautiful architecture. Wander around and find more and more houses that are works of art. Canal rides show you scenes you can't see from the street. So old it puts your imagination to work to see the way it use to be."

Barbara

Wynnewood, PA

Tour: 07/12/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Lovely trip. Nina was a terrific, knowledgeable and attentive guide. Other guides were great, for the most part, especially those in the art museums. The group was made up of nice people. We visited lots of interesting sites including the wonderful medieval cities in Belgium and the WWI sites, the flood and water management sites in the Netherlands and the contrasting frantic pace in Amsterdam and its fabulous museums. Driver, Henri, was also first rate.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to choose one, but among the highlights were Anne Frank House, Rijksmuseum, WWI trenches and Ghent (before it was overrun by the prep for the festival)."

Amy

Metuchen, NJ

Tour: 06/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We loved our first Rick Steves Tour! Very much enjoyed all the cultural and historical tours and activities, mix between group and independent meals and activities, and our fellow like minded travelers. The tour guide and all the local guides really helped us learn and enjoy so many new experiences.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many memorable experiences - Walking tours of Ghent, Bruge and Delf, all the Flanders Fields activites including farm lunch, visit to Aalsmeer Flower Auction and the unplanned North Sea beach walk and lunch at Noordwijk aan Zee, and finally, rijstafel dinner, Rijksmuseum tour and learning to ride trams and watch out for bicyclists in Amsterdaym"

Shari

Bonney Lake, WA

Tour: 06/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Terrific! We didn't know a great deal about either Belgium or the Netherlands before we booked this trip so we learned a great deal. We were particularly interested in the World War One sites and Flanders Fields since both our grandfathers survived WWI. Seeing these sites and hearing about these times was illuminating, if sad. My favorite parts of the trip were 1. The ART! Flemish Primitives and Dutch Masters! (5 Vermeers!) And the distinctive medieval architecture with canals. So beautiful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing The Girl with a Pearl Earring. Also, the night views in Ghent and Bruges. And I have to add the Maelstrom storm surge barrier in Holland--truly a wonder of the modern world."

Hellen

Sarasota, FL

Tour: 06/28/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The trip was most enjoyable - it was filled with diverse experiences.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The beauty of towns like Delft surprised and delighted me. I liked the smalll town experience most of all."

Nancy

Millstone Township, NJ

Tour: 06/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Nina is an extremely knowledgeable guide with a keen sense of humor. Our bus driver Rene is a great driver and was an integral part of the group. As with each of my 4 previous RS tours, this group quickly became a family of travelers. I particularly enjoyed Ghent and Delft, the smaller towns. Bruges had it's charms, but more touristy. Would have preferred an extra day in Ghent, which I realize wouldn't happen so early in the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the Flemish Masters up close and personal. The architecture, the locals guides, especially Robert, our guide in the Rijksmuseum. The small towns. Mussels in Bruges. Learning about the somber history of WWI in Belgium. The chocolate demo and tasting. The 500 year old pub close to our hotel in Bruges. Rik, the concierge at the Hotel Adornes. The boat ride down the canal in Ghent. The lace store in Bruges, which Rik guided me to.."

Theresa

Seattle, WA

Tour: 06/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved the trip, from all the helpful information coming out of the Rick Steves' team, to the first hotel, the tour guide, the guides hired in every city to enhance our understanding of the Belgian and Dutch cultures. To visit the war memorials of battles fought over a century ago, to see city ports hundreds of year old, to walk, eat, and view beautiful architectural details that survived the battles made this a living history trip. We loved Nina, our guide, and felt safe with our driver, Rene.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were several: the Anne Frank house, and hearing the bells in the historic town centers we were in, seeing structures still standing for nearly 100 years. Alsameer Flower Auction: the carts and drivers careening through the huge building without colliding. Bike riding along the canal to Damme in the rain. See? I there was way more than just one "wow" moment."

Gary

Calgary, AB

Tour: 06/28/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overalll a great experience. Lots of information, eye candy, history. Travel was easy with not too many early starts! Nina was a great host and the Group were easy to live with. It helped that the weather was more than cooperative! It has been a few years since our previous trip, blame the economy and US dollar exchange rates, but this trip reminded me why I recommend Rick to others thinking of European travel. Keep on travelling!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Ghent really stood out. The Battlefield tour was great and overwhelming in so many ways. The Lunch at the Varlat Farm really brought the First World War home. The Anne Frank House in Amsterdam was disturbing. Overall the tour was excellent, it told a story of the 'low countries', the history, economy and the area's unique links to the sea in a human setting. The Netherlands Surge Barrier... wow! And the Bikes in Amsterdam, a wow for a different reason! Talk about a bike culture!"

Stephen

Kingwood, TX

Tour: 06/14/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent tour with a good variety of activities!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The 30+ kilometer round trip bike ride from Bruges to Sluis (awesome scenery, people, and culture)! Flanders Fields also excellent!"

Noreen

Kingwood, TX

Tour: 06/14/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great tour with an amazing variety of places to explore and experience, from battlegrounds to flower markets with canal trips and lots of wonderful museums.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were a few- Flanders Fields, Alsmeer Flower Market, Maeslant surge protector, the Anne Frank House, and the Van Gogh museum."

Gary

The Woodlands, TX

Tour: 06/14/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall the tour was very good from our Tour Guide to the local guides and all the sites we visited. The schedule allowed for tours, additional sight seeing, and evenings to eat, visit with new friends, and enjoy the cultural surroundings.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were several "wow" moments. One being the somber American cemetery in which our guide has dedicated his time to its pristine maintenance, educating students, and the magnitude of personal respect for all of the fallen soldiers. The second "wow" moment was the amazing engineered dike in Amsterdam. To think that this country took a positive approach to what existed after the devastation in 1953, all consideration long term, and strategically redeveloped The Netherlands landscape."

Theresa

Albuquerque, NM

Tour: 06/14/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I like the variety of activities. The hotels were fine .

Retta

Nipomo, CA

Tour: 06/14/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our third Rick Steve's tour and the best. My husband and I both agree. This tour was packed full of interesting tours. Belgium and the Netherlands are incredibly beautiful, and very interesting countries to visit. Prior to going on this tour, I only knew about Amsterdam.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Prior to going on this tour, I couldn't tell you anything about WW I. So to see Flounders Field and the cementaries was very powerful."

Charles

Fort Thomas, KY

Tour: 05/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

There was a good variety on this tour. Hilbren was an excellent guide. I like that Rick Steves' tours forces us to operate on our own. We found our way from Brussels to our Ghent hotel. We learned the tram system of Amsterdam. Your tours build our travel maturity,

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Anne Frank house. (She might have been a relative.) It reaffirms that we must live for the good of others."

Glenn

Wilmington, NC

Tour: 05/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved the sights we saw, our guide and the other tour members. We will be back for more tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The highlight for me was the Rebrandt paintings in the Rijkmuseum. "The Night Watch" because it is so quickly recognized and is so large that it just captures your complete attention immediately."

Mary

Pismo Beach, CA

Tour: 05/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Hilbren was an excellent guide; knowledgeable, personable, and diplomatic. The pace of the trip was just the right speed, with plenty of activities and walking. There was a good balance of organized group activities and individual free time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I especially enjoyed the guided tour of the WW 1 sites in Belgium."

Robert

St Albert, AB

Tour: 05/17/17

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

I enjoy rick steves tours and the company of fellow travelers. I wonder about the pacing of some of the days--the travel day to Delft involving dikes, dams and flooding seemed a little busy - the last stop with the big arm that comes out to block the sea (it had a name??) was way too technical and dare I say boring? Bruges is a cool place but perhaps less time there would work too.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Tour of Flanders Field's battle sites Indonesian meat and rice meal"

Dot

Wilmington, NC

Tour: 05/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our trip was outstanding as usual. It had the perfect combination of tours and free time. The guides were great as well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We saw the gates that close off the Rotterdam port in case of a storm surge. It was extremely fascinating!"

Jeff

Pismo Beach, CA

Tour: 05/17/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was our first RS tour although have used his books for several self guided Europe vacations previously. Our tour was in the middle of a monthlong trip, so it was a nice way to break it up and "be led" for a while. Our guides enriched our travel experience in ways that are difficult to do on your own. The upside of a tour, in addition to the excellent guides, is the social interaction with a like minded group of travelers. But the downside is the limitations that accompany group travel.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many wonderful moments and the tour did give us several opportunities to explore on our own. One of my fondest memories is biking from Bruges into The Netherlands, enjoying the countryside along the canals and the stops for Trappist beer and Belgium waffles along the way."

Rosanne

Granbury, TX

Tour: 05/17/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was a great tour. It did not disappoint. I missed the tulips, but, maybe another time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Loved the canals of Bruges with the magnificent swans."

Tom

Potomac, MD

Tour: 05/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was just another great Rick Steves tour where we got to understand an area's history and culture. We've had such wonderful experiences previously and this tour was no exception; beautiful cities, excellent museums, some good food and a much enhanced knowledge of the history and culture of Belgium and the Netherlands. This also helped to bring some of my historical knowledge full circie regarding the Hapsburgs, the influence of Spain and England, etc.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It was probably a double rainbow that we spotted on our walk back to our hotel on the last night of the trip; it was magical. As to something that our tour guide had influence over, I'd say the tour of the working grain mill in Han's hometown. The passion of Jans, his great explanations of the mill and its history were really interesting."

Gary

Marthasville, MO

Tour: 05/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our third and best Rick Steves tour, thanks mainly to Hans who was simply an outstanding tour guide. He was kind, courteous, thoughtful, incredibly knowledgeable and fun to be with. The pace of the tour was just right--not too rushed, not too laid back. The local guides were also excellent, especially in Bruges, Delft, Amsterdam and Flanders Fields. Kudos also to our bus driver who did an excellent job in some very tight spaces.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Special mention goes to the Flanders Field tour (outstanding and very moving), Keukenhof Gardens (wow), and Delft (a very pleasant surprise)."

Nancy

Richmond, VA

Tour: 05/03/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I enjoyed the tour, but I found it exhausting, even though I am very fit and was one of the younger people on the tour. I did not have the same experience when I took the Heart of Italy tour in 2013. My friend said the same thing. Maybe it was the combination of very long days of touring on this trip with weather that was cold and cloudy, or maybe it was late dinners and early departures the next day for tours, or maybe it was fewer free hours and more bus, but this tour was far more tiring.

Hillary

Potomac, MD

Tour: 05/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Jam packed and fun filled - sometimes a bit too filled...Guides were wonderful. Food and most hotels were good. Transport was very good. Overall excellent trip

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The beauty of bruges...! The kuekenhof gardens!!! Night watch at the Rijksmuseum! But generally, I need time to process what I've experienced so I don't often experience any "wow" immediately. I have many reflections that have given the trip meaning to me, like learning about dutch culture, and politics. Visiting the anne frank museum and the resistance museum. Going to hans' hometown for lunch and a walk through town"

Barbara

Marthasville, MO

Tour: 05/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We really enjoyed this tour--our third with Rick Steves. The tour included a range of sites and activities--art, history (cities and WW I), engineering (sea barrier) and the beauty of Keukenhof Gardens. All were wonderful. The trip was well paced and despite the number of sites the activity level was not as intense as our previous trips (Paris and the Heart of France, Heart of Italy). And, our tour guide was fantastic!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof was spectacular but the WW I tour and the visit to Flanders Field were intense emotional experiences that I will never forget. And then there was the double rainbow that bid us farewell from Amsterdam after our last evening dinner."

Charlene

Campbell, CA

Tour: 05/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was fascinating to become acquainted with the cultures of two countries that we had never visited before. I learned so much about the history of Belgium and Netherlands and how that history affects the countries today. We had wonderful guides, great fellow tour members, delicious food, breathtaking art, beautiful countryside, friendly people, and fascinating stories.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many moments that were amazing and memorable, but two experiences stand out. The first is our visit to the Anne Frank house. What a powerful experience to witness Anne's hope and love in the face of tragedy and evil. Such an important lesson for today. The second moment was entering the beauty of Keukenhof Garden. A wonderland of color and creativity extending as far as the eye can see."

Don

Gabriola, BC

Tour: 05/03/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour turned out better than I expected. Weather left a little to be desired but that was no one's fault and things went well despite the mostly cool moist days. I was a little disappointed it the changes to the Anne Frank house tour. It is a cultural/historical must but has changed so much to accommodate the overwhelming crowds since I last did it in 2008 that it has taken on something of a theme park atmosphere.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Can't say there was a wow moment when there were so many interesting experiences. However, I was very impressed with the tour of the working windmill which the guide apparently arranged on his own initiative. I was also impressed with the amount of time given to Canadian involvement in WWI given that tour participants were primarily American."

Gerry

Campbell, CA

Tour: 05/03/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was our 7th Rick Steves tour and it met our already lofty expectations for a thoroughly enjoying cultural experience. Our guide took great effort to set-up a special visit to his home village, lunch and a tour of a working windmill. These individual touches (and the charming local guides) make the difference between a guided tour and a Rick Steves tour. The small tour size (only 17 members) made for a tight-knit travel group that we really enjoyed. (there was no need for a partial refund)

Favorite "WOW" moment

"One of my favorite wow moments fo the tour was the back road tour of Holland from Keukenhof to our guide's home village. As we were winding our way through picturesque streets with charming thatched roof homes, we passed a quaint village restaurant with pollarded trees surrounding a beautiful roadside patio. I quickly grabbed a photo of this village street scene - not knowing that this was Hans's village and our stop for lunch! After, we toured his village and met the town folk."

Kay

Edwardsburg, MI

Tour: 04/29/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first Rick Steve's tour and I'm already going on my 2nd one in July! Our tour guide Hilbren was exceptional, patient, personable and so knowledgeable and he allowed some of us to go "winkeling" which he taught us meant SHOPPING LOL!!! I was really impressed how great all the group meals were and what a fun group of people on my tour. I'm so glad it was a active tour with a good mix of sightseeing stops. Wonderful memories.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof Gardens tulip festival breathtaking, I have a new love for planting flowers now!! Ghent/Brugge equally beautiful wisteria draped canals. Van Gogh museum wow's for art lovers too."

Alma

Hickory, NC

Tour: 04/29/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Hilbren was an excellent guide and gentleman. The tour hit all highlights of each country.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Bruges!"

John

West Kelowna, BC

Tour: 04/29/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

As usual a Rick Steves tour is fabulous. We had a terrific guide (Hilbren) who through out the tour guided us through the history, and cultures of both Belgium and Holland. He pointed out many of the unique challenges and innovations that come from the low countries. Personally I would have liked to seen a bit more of The Hague and a little less time at the Delta Works. The additional tour guides were terrific as well. We'll be back for another tour with Rick Steves.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Favourite wow moments are many. Keukenhof gardens really stand out, but so does the Flanders Fields and Ypres. I've never been much interested in WW1 battlefields and cemeteries but these were sobering. I'll never buy a poppy without "truly" remembering why. The Memling ,Groenige, Mauritshuis, Van Gogh, and Rijk museums also stand out. Almost every day brought a "Wow" moment."

Claire

West Kelowna, BC

Tour: 04/29/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall it was a very good trip. Although the flood and the dam visits where great, I wish there was a way of making them a bit shorter. I am not a person who has any interest in war and would have opted out of the cemeteries day. Thank goodness I did not opt out. It was one of the highlights of the trip and Raoul (?) was unbelievably insightful. He made me realize so many things about the war and more importantly the people who died; he really brought things into focus.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Every time I turned around in the Keukenhof Gardens was another "wow" moment. The war cemeteries, the art museums."

Kathleen

Morgan Hill, CA

Tour: 04/29/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall very good. Nice group of people who mostly were physically fit and able to step it out. What would I change?? 1.When in Ghent (day 2) we spent WAY to much time studying the "The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb" We were bored to tears - the local tour guide went into a entire day of detail on the painting. We did not see much of Ghent because of it! 2.Same with the Maeslant storm barrier. I am NOT a structural engineer & did not need entire day studying the dam. Only one day in Delft:(

Favorite "WOW" moment

"1.Hands down Keukenhof Gardens! Breathtaking seeing 700,000 tulips in full bloom. I could have spent the entire day there. Luckily we voted to spent 4 hours there. 2.Bruges was lovely too! Our hotel had bikes for use so we took off and saw the countryside. 3. The Rijksmuseum and the Van Gogh museums in Amsterdam were not to be missed!"

Charles

Hickory, NC

Tour: 04/29/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a great tour and lots of history

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I enjoyed Bruges and Ghent"

Murray

Grapevine, TX

Tour: 04/29/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a great time. Hilbren was outstanding; very knowledgeable, personable, patient, helpful and entertaining. A couple of the days were kind of crowded with activities, but I feel that we had sufficient free time on the other days so I didn't feel rushed overall. I think the itinerary was a nice mix of history, art, and cultural enlightenment. I enjoyed learning how critical water management has been to the Netherlands economy, history, and culture.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"From the art to the food, overall it was a wonderful experience. Pictures can't do justice to the beauty of Keukenhof Gardens and words can't describe the emotions of visiting Anne Frank's house or Flanders fields. But my two favorite moments were taking advantage of the Bruges hotel's free bikes to ride to Damme and visiting the Hague on Liberation Day. It was stirring to see the band in the square and the subsequent parade. We were fortunate to be there on the holiday."

Mj

Wakefield, RI

Tour: 04/26/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great trip !! So much to see and do. Nina was excellent and tried very hard to please all of us (26 of us!!).Great group too. Lots of laughs for sure.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Flanders fields for the solemnity and the obvious toll war has taken on Belgium and the Netherlands. The Keukenhof gardens for the beauty of the tulips and the gardens so beautifully displayed."

Patricia

Hemet, CA

Tour: 04/26/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The overall experience was great. Nina's style is a nice combination of good organzation and relaxed bonhommie with the group. The old hotels on canals were a part of the overall atmosphere. Some things I appreciate about Rick Steves tours is the free time most days to explore on our own; learning to use local transportation on our own; great meals in local restaurants where local people eat (all were excellent).

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I cannot distill such a trip to just one "wow" moment. Loved the museums and getting to know some heretofore unknown Flemish painters, such as Memling. The "gate" built on the Rhine wasamazing, and the day visiting Flanders cemetery and the town area where the huge flood occurred and the meal at the farm where ordinance is still plowed up to this day - all were very interesting. The Van Gogh museum was one of the high points as well."

Laura

North Berwick, ME

Tour: 04/26/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was fabulous, fun and informative. Nina as a guide was very involved and engaging, offering a wealth of local knowledge that we would not have been able to get on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Flanders Fields. This part of the tour was not a wow moment so much as it was outstanding. I was very moved by the way the Belgians honor the dead soldiers of that terrible war. It was all very impressive. My favorite "wow" moment was not actually a part of the tour but during our afternoon off in Amsterdam some of us went to the Van Gogh museum. To see the paintings live and in person was "WOW"."

Sue

Houston, TX

Tour: 04/26/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Belgium/Netherlands tour was overall excellent, with knowledgeable, enthusiastic, guides bringing history to life, as well as explaining modern life and a bit of politics of each country. Crucial information about local transportation, restaurants, ATMs and such was also well explained, enabling us as tourists to get out and about on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The splendor of Kuekenhof Gardens lived up to my lifelong expectations, showing off it's seven million flowers in perfect bloom. With each step or turn of my head there was another spectacular view prompting exclamations of "WOW" or "Look at those!" It was quite chilly on the entire trip, but it was perfect weather for the tulips, daffodils and grape hyacinths to remain in a state of perfection."

Susan

Wakefield, RI

Tour: 04/26/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

It was my first Rick Steves tour and therefore I have nothing to compare it to,but overall I found it to be a very good experience.It was fun to meet interesting people. I will definitely book another tour. I also believe 26 people on one tour is too many for small European hotels and restaurants. I was very pleased to have museum tickets and tram passes available for us as a time saver and the free time was greatly appreciated as well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Keukenhof Gardens!"

Sally

Fremont, CA

Tour: 04/26/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We thoroughly enjoyed this tour and I would say it exceeded my expectations, thanks to our great guide, Nina, and all the great people on our tour. I had always wanted to visit Bruges and Keukenhof Gardens, but I was pleasantly surprised how much I loved Ghent, so beautiful,easy to get around, and filled with interesting things to see and do.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It has to be Keukenhof Gardens. The weather was cold and overcast almost the whole trip, but we escaped the predicted rain and were just overwhelmed by the exquisite beauty and extent of the gardens. What an amazing place! I will never forget it!"

John

Fremont, CA

Tour: 04/26/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour exceeded our expectations. The highlights were Ghent and the Keukenhof Gardens. Accommodations were very good and the staffs were helpful, especially good was the Harmony House in Ghent.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our two WOW moments were the Keukenhof Gardens, the tulip season was near its peak. It was amazing to be able to spend 4 hours there and be astonished with the beauty at every turn. A second WOW moment was opening our door to our room in the Plataan Hotel in Delft and finding we had enter another "dimension" -- a suite with red silk(?)draperies and wild Moorish(or maybe Turkish?)decor. Totally a fun surprise."

Christina

Safety Harbor, FL

Tour: 04/26/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

was very impressed with our tour guide Nina. She was a fountain of information and made it fun! Thank you so much Nina!

Michael

Beaumont, TX

Tour: 04/26/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

nina was great. very personal & gave us great insights about her country, Belgium & also Holland. the hotels were great. phillipe the driver was wonderful. the meals provided were very good & I normally got filled up, which is not an easy task. the people on the tour were very, nice, but I found that to be the case on the rick steves tour. we did everything on the schedule. the tour guides were very good.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I went to see the van gogh museum, but that was not the wow moment. being art major I also went to see the art including the Rembrandts. they were great, but that was not the wow moment. it was a number of things. I went during the tulip season & kuekonhoff gardens were just amazing-wow. it was like being in the wizard of oz-the colors, the canals the dreams. also thought bruges was beautiful especially its tree lined canals-wow. but the bike ride to damme from bruges was beautiful-wow."

William

Tustin, CA

Tour: 04/26/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Perfect 1st question... We started traveling overseas in 2007 when I retired. We've been to Europe, Asia, No & So America with REI (3Xs), river cruises (2Xs), Ocean Cruise (2Xs), and on our own (10Xs). We've learned about other countries, other cultures, other foods, other histories, other people, but most of all, we've learned about ourselves. So, having said that this evaluation is as much (or more) about ourselves than this tour. In that context, our overall experience was very satisfying.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Not a moment, but the growing appreciation for the history, character and culture of the Dutch people: their tenacious struggle agains the elements, and respect for our environment. It was a growing appreciation for the 800K citizens of Amsterdam who daily go to work, school and eat on their feet and bikes. It was a growing awareness of thousands of quick moving bikes taking their riders about their daily business. It was a growing comfort in adapting to and appreciating another culture."

John

Lewiston, ME

Tour: 04/26/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was great. Nina was a great organizer and leader.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We loved everything. We were quite pleasantly surprised by the Romanoff exhibition at the Hermitage in Amsterdam. However, Keukenhof and Vermeer's Girl with the Pearl Earring were the best for us."

Robert

Alexandria, VA

Tour: 04/26/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall a great experience. Couple of minor changes to suggest -- nothing dramatic. 1. Better directions to the opening hotel (it turns out we got off the trolley a stop to early). Maybe a greeting email from the Guide with instructions to the hotel. 2. I admit, I am getting older, but I had trouble getting into and out of some of the bath/showers in the hotels (Ghent & Bruges). Continued below.

Tracy

Neshkoro, WI

Tour: 04/26/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my 1st Rick Steve's Tour and it won't be my last. Reading the guide books and getting familiar with the itinerary before the trip helped a great deal, but the trip was so much more than I expected. First, I have to say that our guide Nina was the best! She was so organized and kept our large group in line and on time. But above all of that,her knowledge & insight of Belgium & The Netherlands was so interesting. I feel like I earned so much about these countries. I could go on & on....

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I have a so many "Wow" moments! The bike ride to Damme on a free day was one of my favorites. The Flander's battlefield, Delft ceramics demo, Ann Frank Huis. The daily walks with our guide Nina & local guides were so interesting. Frankly...the whole trip was "Wow"!"

Belinda

Bow, WA

Tour: 04/26/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I am a new traveler but have been a fan of Rick Steves' radio and TV show for many years. I had very high expectations and I was not disappointed. I was a bit concerned about group travel aspect but was impressed with how well the schedule was organized to provide good exposure to the location and group with enough time to explore on your own. To say the least, I am sold of your organization and style of travel. I plan to be another happy returning customer.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Since returning home a number of people have asked me this question, I have no good answer. For me the whole experience was "wow". Good food, nice people, knowledgeable local guides, fun and funky hotels, wonderful sites to see, not to mention the feeling and local beauty of the country itself. I came away feeling that I understand more about the history and culture of Belgium and the Netherlands."

Kathy

Claremont, CA

Tour: 04/22/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I really enjoyed the tour. There was a great mix of art, history and current events (the activities around water management in the Netherlands was very interesting.). I was especially touched with the tour of the battlefield near Ypres.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We visited the Keukenhof garden which was spectacular. Rolinka wisely got us there so we entered the minute the garden opened so we could enjoy them before it got to crowded. It was so very beautiful, a once in a lifetime experience."

Jill

Greenland, NH

Tour: 04/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our sixth tour with Rick Steves - and it was as fabulous as all the rest. We LOVE your tours!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"More than one - visiting the Keukenhof Gardens and the Van Gogh museum were two items on my "bucket list" - and they were spectacular! Two unexpected "wow" moments were the Rijksmuseum and the Maeslant storm surge barrier tour. Equally fabulous!!"

Judith

San Jose, CA

Tour: 04/22/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We enjoyed the tour. Rolinka was a knowledgeable and caring guide. Having grown up in Holland, she was able to share a great deal of history and insight. The specialist guides that spoke or spent the day with us were als0 informative and willing to share their knowledge. The group was, of course friendly and inclusive to one another.

Paul

Greenland, NH

Tour: 04/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our 6th Rick Steves tour. As with all of our tours, we found the entire experiences on the Heart of Beglium and Holland to be well thought out and perfectly organized. Rolincka was such a wonderful guide with the right mix of keeping things on track and stopping to experience a moment. Thanks for creating such a memorable trip for us.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It was easily the experience of walking up to Rembrandt's "Night Watch" at the Rijk's Museum."

Elizabeth

Miami, FL

Tour: 04/22/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Rolinka was a great tour guide. Very informative, knowledgeable and fun. Having the the orange boxes with ear plugs was and is a great idea. The only two things I would change is going to the pot cafe and the walk through the red light district. IMHO it is a waste of time. I would have preferred a cheese making demonstration, and going to the resistance museum after seeing the Anne Frank house.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wow moment was walking into the gardens in the Netherlands. I could not believe that I was finally there. I was overwhelmed. It was gorgeous. I feel that this is what heaven will be like. The hours we were there was perfect. The day was beautiful as well. I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to see these gardens."

Ann

Los Altos, CA

Tour: 04/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My husband and I loved this tour! It was our 5th tour with Rick Steves and it did not disappoint. The sights that were chosen were wonderful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think we had several moments during the trip that we especially loved. The Flanders Fields area and our guide were so informative and it was heart-breaking as we thought about the courage and sacrifice of the men who fought in WW I. Anne Frank's house left us both almost speechless after the tour. It is a must-see when in Amsterdam. And, lastly, the Rijksmuseum was marvelous! And of course, the Kuekenhof Gardens were spectacular and did not dissappoint! It's hard to pick just one!"

Marie

Modesto, CA

Tour: 04/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

More than we expected, especially as regards our guide and the varied experiences we enjoyed. World class art with introductory tutorials, history (especially the World War I sights), science/water management and, of course, the tulips.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Keukenhof tulip gardens and Flanders Fields - very somber and emotional - were unique experiences and highlights of the trip. The Anne Frank House and Dutch Resistance Museum were both well documented and moving."

Robert

Williamsburg, VA

Tour: 04/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great way to learn about the history and culture of the Low Countries. The tour included not only the past (beautiful medieval towns) but also more current historical information (the WWI tour of Flanders fields and the water management issues arising from the 1953 flood).

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Two stand out for me. One was the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam with its collection of Rembrandt and Vermeer paintings. The other was the stop at the museum that showed the untouched trenches from WWI. The former illustrated the grandeur of the Netherlands during its Golden Age and the latter showed the destruction and inhumanity of WWI."

Gregg

Goodyear, AZ

Tour: 04/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Since this was the first tour we did with your company we were not sure what to expect. I found it to be a wonderful experience with the right mix of guided and free time. The initial orientation in each city was extremely helpful. I felt very confident about navigating the city on our own. Rolinka was a wonderful tour director, always helpful and extremely knowledgeable. I got full value for my money and will travel with you again.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the "Girl with a Pearl Erring" in person. then learning about the flood in 1953 and the memorial to it."

George

Modesto, CA

Tour: 04/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall, a great experience, as advertised. No disappointments. This was a "what the heck" trip for us. We had run out of visiting the first wave of grandchildren studying abroad, and we had never been to Belgium or the Netherlands, so why not?

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Favorite wow - tulips. Favorite somber moments - the American cemetery and, later, World War I trenches. Favorite frivolous moments- the brewery tour, the chocolate tour, the windmills."

Maryanne

Bedford, MA

Tour: 04/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I found the tour to be well paced, varied and informative. Our group was congenial and our guide, Rolinka, wonderful! She even brought us orange shirts for King's Day! The people of the Low Countries were especially nice. Friendly people, beautiful cities, amazing tulips, interesting sites and knowledgeable guides all made for a wonderful trip!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many WOW moments, but each very different from the other! I loved the architecture of the cities with the picturesque views of canals and gabled houses. The day at Flander's Field was very moving and lunch with a local farmer quite interesting. Learning about the water management was insightful and getting a close view of the dam was impressive. Participating in King's Day with a bit of orange was fun and finally, the amazing tulips at the Keukenoff gardens! All WOW moments!"

Jennifer

Williamsburg, VA

Tour: 04/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent introduction to Northern Europe.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Rijksmuseum and the museum in The Hague. Incredible. Standing two feet from Vermeer's Girl with the Pearl Earring was an unforgettable moment. And the local guide we had at the Rijksmuseum not only gave us insights about the specific paintings, he taught us a whole new language for understanding paintings from that era."

Leonard

Calgary, AB

Tour: 04/22/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour provided the experience that I had expected. A bonus was the inclusion of some sites of interest to Canadians. Being in the town of Zierikzee for the celebration of the King's Birthday was a interesting experience. The use of the radio transmitter and receivers was excellent as it allowed me to wonder away from the group to look at things that interested me while allowing me to listen to the commentary of the guide. No tour should be without them.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof! I have never before seen so many beautiful flowers and flower arrangements in one place. I took way too many photos ... but could not stop myself."

Elizabeth

Northport, NY

Tour: 04/15/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Having been to Netherlands before, I knew I'd love it there again, but Belgium proved to be an unexpectedly wonderful destination. I learned to love beer! And fries with mayo. Ghent and Bruges were so interesting, Flanders Fields tour was so moving. Delft was fun and there's easy access to The Hague. Amsterdam visit fell short, maybe because of no local guide/walking tour for overview. Maybe an extra day there would help?

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Lots of them! Keukenhof, even on my second visit. Belgium as a destination--so underrated! Bourgogne des Flandres brewery tour--never knew there was so much to learn about beer! Bruges lacemakers passing on their art to young students. Water management in Netherlands--amazing what a nation can accomplish by putting the common good first. Van Gogh Museum. The sobering realities of the Flanders Fields and Anne Frank House tours. Will we ever learn?"

Mark

Washington Crossing, PA

Tour: 04/15/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great countries to visit and the itinerary was compatible with a comfortable experience with strong content. Hotels provided for the most part were very good, typical Rick Steves selections.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the "Dutch Masters" works."

Greg

Lakewood, CO

Tour: 04/15/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed each of the countries, as it was my first visit to each. The guide (Nina) and apprentice (Soraya)were both very enthusiastic and worked hard to ensure everything went smoothly. We had a very experienced tour group, that was very compliant and on time for all our activities and that certainly helped make the tour more enjoyable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's got to be Keukenhof Gardens. We hit it at the absolute peak time for the tulip and hyacinth blooms. Millions of bulbs abloom , what an incredible sight. The crowd was crazy large, but it was worth it. I also enjoyed learning about the water works in the Netherlands. I had no idea that they worked so hard to control flooding and manage water in the Holland regions."

Christine

Portland, OR

Tour: 04/15/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting and learning about the Maeslant Storm Surge barrier. This engineering marvel is not in guidebooks, so it made it extra special we got to go and see it. I also liked Zierikzee, and wished we could have spent more time there. I am still talking about the water management systems to my friends."

Gary

Chicago, IL

Tour: 04/15/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Liked the hotels and food and the fellow tour members were all very affable. Really enjoyed the free time. It was also nice to have some experiences that we may not have chosen to do if we had done all the planning. This was our first Rick Steves tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof Gardens were fabulous. Bruges was probably my favorite city. The Anne Frank House and WW1 cemeteries were very moving and made the history come alive."

Linda

Chicago, IL

Tour: 04/15/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was our first tour and we enjoyed it a lot. All the staff were very helpful. We had a congenial group of fellow travelers. It did pretty much what we wanted in taking the work out if traveling

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Keukenhof! It literally took our breath away."

Janet

Torrance, CA

Tour: 04/12/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our timing was perfect for the flowers in the Netherlands! Great fellow travelers as with all RS tours. Rolinka is wonderful and her love of what she does helps make the tour special. I was impressed with the side trips along the way on the tour. Flanders Fields, the Delta Works project, lunch on a farm, visit to the North Sea, and of course Kuekenhof for the tulips. Bicycles in Amsterdam were a bit overwhelming but wonderful to see how they are used for all kinds of transport.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Kuekenhof was unbelievable. The tulips and daffodils were in bloom and perfect. The flowers on this tour were amazing and a Wow. Also, visiting the Delta Works project - the Watersnoodmuseum and the Keringhuis Information Center - was fascinating. We learned so much about how the Netherlands manages water. The technology of it was amazing."

David

Johns Island, SC

Tour: 04/12/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is a great tour with lots packed into 11 days. Also, there was enough free time so that we could do additional things like take the tram to The Hague. Our tour guide was exceptional -- but you know that already.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to say. Not one moment but lots."

Nancy Jo

Johns Island, SC

Tour: 04/12/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is an excellent tour with a wonderful itinerary. History, art, culture, flowers and current affairs all included. Meals were included on the nights we arrived in a new city which was great. There was just enough free time to relax and do things we chose to do.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Keukenhof Gardens were even more beautiful than we excepted!! 8 million bulbs in bloom are unbelievably beautiful. Also, we were there when the tulip fields were still in bloom and our guide and bus driver drove along some side roads so we could see more."

Alexis

Seattle, WA

Tour: 04/12/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Our guide Rolinka was wonderful, charming and really knew her job. She provided ideas for activities, eating, etc. and made all of us feel glad to be there. Ghent, Bruge and Delft were very lovely and we had some lovely guides there. We love museums and this tour gave us the opportunity to see a number of great exhibits, some with the tour and some on our own. The visit to the Keukenhof gardens was exceptional. We had four hours there, and for me that was good.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to the Keukenof gardens stands out. The flowers were unbelievable and the scope of the park was incredible. Totally worth seeing and enjoyed it a great deal."

Kathi

Renton, WA

Tour: 04/12/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I loved the great mix of tour activities - city walks, museums, hands-on activities, canal boat rides, WWI memorials, food/beverage tastings, etc.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof Garden was gorgeous and since it is only open in the Spring (and there are so many places I haven't been to yet), I was looking at it with my "once in a lifetime" eyes."

Karol

Irving, TX

Tour: 04/12/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first Rick Steves tour. There was a tremendous amount of activity packed into 11 days. It was a delight to learn so much from this tour. The day visiting Flanders Fields/WW1 cemeteries was very moving and an excellent part of the tour. Bruges and Ghent were my favorite cities. I learned to love fries with mayo. Who would have known the two were so good together!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Keukenhof Gardens were beautiful during their peak blooming season. I can't wait till our tulips get delivered so we can plant them in our garden. The Anne Frank House was a highlight. I made a point to read her diary a month before we left for the tour so it was fresh in my mind. I could see and hear her words as I walked through the house. It's mind blowing that they spent two years hiding there when many of us cannot spend a whole week inside our house without needing to go somewhere."

Richard

Denver, CO

Tour: 04/12/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Chose this tour specifically for a chance to see the tulips in bloom and we were not disappointed. The 7 million tulips at Keukenhof Gardens were beyond spectacular. We spent 4 glorious hours there and were overwhelmed with the beauty. We also enjoyed and learned a lot in Ghent, Bruges, Delftand Amsterdam. Couple of outstanding local guides - Bruges and Amsterdam in particular. Our group was very compatible and always on time - something I credit our guide for and particularly appreciate.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Can't say enough about the 7 million tulips in bloom at Keukenhof Gardens. Can't imagine a more beautiful site anywhere in the world."

Judy

Canton, NY

Tour: 04/12/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our experience was based in the excellence of our guide and in our fellow travelers. Not only were there no grumps,but we enjoyed every other person in the group. We were well informed of what to expect and took advantage of the Steves website.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We had about one a day,but the tulips would be hard to beat. Second would be the Rijks museum. It was a wow morning. The daily small kindness shown to one another were always of note."

Carole

Denver, CO

Tour: 04/12/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

A very enjoyable tour - nice people and a knowledgable guide.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The tulips in Keukenhof"

Phyllis

Council Bluffs, IA

Tour: 04/12/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

My overall experience was wonderful. This was really one of the nicest groups of people I've ever toured with. Rolinka did a great job helping us to get to know each other without boring recitations about buddies, buddy gifts or silly games. Our local tours guides were really good this trip. I enjoyed the perspectives of the college girls that guided us in Delft. As always, I loved the group dinners. They were outstanding this trip. All our days were interesting and fun. Thank you!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wow moments were two things: Keukenhof garden and the Anne Frank house. The Rijks museum tour comes in a close second."

Douglas

Seattle, WA

Tour: 04/12/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour guide Rolinda was one of the best of our six RS tours. All of the included dinners were great. The hotels varied but all were centrally located and each had a good reason to be selected. Hotel Harmony in Ghent was outstanding, I'm glad we stayed three extra days before our tour. We flew to Brussels but stayed in Ghent and took a day trip to Brussels which worked out well for us. Loved that there were only three bus days, traveling between towns to new hotels. Laundry at Bruges hotel

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The beauty of the canals and building styles in all of the towns, especially the smaller towns of Ghent, Bruges and Delft. Rijksmuseum, Hotel Harmony right on the canal in Ghent, Ghent canal ride, Anne Frank House, local guides in Delft, Museum of Fine Arts in Ghent, Keukenhof gardens. On our own we also loved the Museum of Fine Arts in Brussels and the Mauritshuis museum in The Hague that our guide showed everyone how to easily get to on the tram from Delft."

Weather

Belgium / Brussels

Belgium Weather


Holland / Amsterdam

Holland Weather

Hotels & Flights

Tour Hotels

In case you wish to book pre- or post-tour hotel accommodations, the contact information for the tour's first and last hotels is included in your tour confirmation email, as well as in your online customer account. About one month prior to the tour departure, in your customer account you’ll find the directions to your first tour hotel and a complete list of hotels where we'll be staying while on tour.

Flights

Our tours don’t include airfare, so your flight arrangements are completely up to you.

Most tour members arrange to fly into Brussels and out of Amsterdam ("multicity" on flight-booking websites). The Brussels airport is a 1 to 1½ -hour train ride from Ghent where the tour begins. Booking round-trip to one city will require a connecting flight, train trip, or additional overnight stay in Europe.

We suggest arriving a day or two before your tour begins to allow ample time to get over jet lag and be well-rested for the first few days of your tour. For more information about transportation options for getting to and from your tour, see your Rick Steves guidebook.