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

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

Heart of Belgium & Holland in 11 Days Tour

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 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 brilliantly restored Rijksmuseum. Join us for the Heart of Belgium & Holland in 11 Days!

Dates & Prices

Sorry, we're unable to access departure availability at this time. This information will be available at the end of the summer. Please try again later or contact us at 425-608-4217 (Monday–Thursday between 9 am and 5 pm).

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 • Historic Amsterdam tour • Anne Frank House • Rijksmuseum…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
  • Tour alum discount of $50 for each tour you've taken prior to 2021
  • 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

Group sightseeing events subject to change.

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 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'll 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 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 view paintings by Rembrandt, Vermeer, and Rubens 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'll 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 Amsterdam's gabled houses, bridges, and canals while learning why the Golden Age glimmered so brightly here. We'll take a historic tour through the heart of the city, stopping to visit the Anne Frank House for a thought-provoking look at the hideaway of Anne and her family during the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands. The rest of the day is yours to tackle any number of Amsterdam's wonderful museums. No bus. Walking: moderate.

Day 10: Amsterdam's Art

We'll start the day with a thrill: getting up-close and personal with the Dutch masters 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

Gregory

Milwaukee, WI

Tour: 09/18/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I loved it all and learned so much! Rich culture, history, food and beer! The four cities that we stayed in were all charming and full of character.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Touring the storm surge barrier in Zeeland."

Becky

Molalla, OR

Tour: 09/18/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour was wonderful, we so enjoyed our travels and sites we saw. We felt cared for, our hotels comfortable and close to the areas we visited and the "on your own" visits. We treasured our guides, so helpful and concerned for our safety. I especially want to thank Johnny from Ypres, he led us thru the difficult Flanders Field cemeteries and trench area with such compassion and tenderness.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My WOW moments, The Rijksmuseum, The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb @ St. Bavo's in Ghent. The Maeslant Storm Surge Barrier and the sobering visit to Flanders Field. To walk a few steps in the WW1 trenches was something to ponder, to give honor to those who lost their lives, or limbs on behalf of their country was sobering. Of course the same can be said about the Anne Frank house, I was her age when I first read her diary, she was about my Mom's age during WW2, so I could really identify."

Robyn

Sacramento, CA

Tour: 09/18/19

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

Negative comments: Did not like Delft hotel: terrible beds, elevator too small, got 8 insects bites in the 2 night stay. Large bites, not mosquito bites. Yes I showed hotel staff two of the large bites on my knee. The rooms at the Amsterdam hotel are just bleak inside. The audio for tour did not work for the first few days. Positive comments: Nikko our 1st guide that replaced Ellen was fabulous. He is very good!!! He noticed people in need.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Tours with local guides"

William

Grand Haven, MI

Tour: 09/18/19

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

Overall, my wife & I had a fun time, met a lot of nice people, ate some delicious food & chocolate, drank some fabulous beer (Belgian) & saw some incredible sights/architecture. The canal rides, museums, churches were all great. We did have weak audio devices for the first few days. Only the front 6-8 people (of 25) could hear unless the speaker held their audio box above his/her shoulder or walked backwards. That was fixed on Fri/Sat with new devices.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"No real "wow" moment. Many great experiences though!"

Cynthia

Lewisville, TX

Tour: 09/18/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my second RS tour and by far the best. The guides were wonderful (more on that later). The sites chosen to see were great. The people in the tour group were a joy to be with. Rick Steves tours seem to attract very gregarious type of people who generally manage to get along which is important to me as a single woman traveling. I liked not spending so much time on the bus and the combination of guided tours and free time. Also the locals themselves helped to make this an enjoyable trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I love art work so seeing so many museums and churches. Van Gogh, Van Eyek, Rembrandt, Vermeer and even a Micheal Angelo Sculpture was a wonderful experience and one of the main reasons I choose this tour. But actually the big Wow moment surprised me and came with viewing the Maeslant storm surge barrier. An incredible feat of ingenuity. That's what I like about RS tours, the diverse opportunities to learn about the people and culture of a country."

Elizabeth

Milwaukee, WI

Tour: 09/18/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As always, a perfect balance of history, art, architecture, culture, and beauty. I love the variety of sites visited and the local guides are phenomenal. I also liked when Nico would talk on the bus and give us a personal perspective of his country and politics and modern culture. Good food but not quite as good as food on the Italy or France tours (hard to compete with those!)

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the storm surge barrier. It was completely unique and different from anything I've ever seen in Europe or in the US. It's absolutely a modern marvel and we were able to get so close to it! I'm still in awe of the engineering."

Jean

Baltimore, MD

Tour: 09/04/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was making. All the spots that we visited were great. Dodging bicycles added to the fun. Brugge was amazing. I am definitely going back there again.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Anne Frank's Museum."

Soozi

Corvallis, OR

Tour: 09/04/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I tour in chocolate country could not have been more fun. Each city had unique skylines and warm welcoming people. In the solemnness of Flanders field and cemeteries it was interesting to see special art dedicated to keeping memories. I had traveled to this area 49 years ago and it was interesting to observe the changes and new memories with the fantastic flower market, cannel rides and special food.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The tour of the water control area to protect the lowlands from the floods helped me have hope in this time of changing climate. Visiting with the young college students who were local guides brought cleaver perspective to our tour. The unique newer stained glass was encouraging to see the are continuing reverence for the houses of worship in these changing times along with all the local guide information made the tour memorable."

Lynn

Fresno, CA

Tour: 09/04/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful trip!! I think the variety of places we visited was special, and characteristic of a RS tour. From big cities to beautiful country sides, world class art museums to the amazing storm surge barrier as well as the trip to Flanders Field, all gave a special experience of Belgium and Holland.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Can't do just one! Flanders Field, Maeslant storm surge barrier, Mauritshuis Museum."

Ronald

Corvallis, OR

Tour: 09/04/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was another excellent experience in travel with a great guide, hotels, sights, bus driver and food. We have always enjoyed our RS tours and look forward to meeting the interesting tour members to interact with as we learn about the history, culture, transportation systems and architecture of the countries. We also were able to add pre-tour experiences. in Brussels and Antwerp

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were a number of Wow moments including the Bell Towers in Ghent and Bruges, the Ann Frank House, Rijksmuseum, and Aalsmeer flower market. It was very impressive to learn about the water control systems and technology the Netherlands has invested in to deal with keeping their land protected and managed."

Terry

Pine Knoll Shores, NC

Tour: 09/04/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Rick Steves and company know how to design a tour. The smaller towns that anchored this tour made all the difference to me. From the start in Ghent to Brugge and then to Delft cemented the uniqueness of this tour. Amsterdam is a tour unto itself. This was our 6th guided tour and we have built 3 others using Rick Steves guidebooks.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really hate this question because there never is just one. The sober experience of the Anne Frank house to be followed by the Dutch Resistance museum. We cannot allow this to happen again."

Charles

Albuquerque, NM

Tour: 09/04/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I truly enjoyed this tour. My wife and I arrived in Brussels two days before the tour began and enjoyed time there as well as with the tour in Ghent, Bruges, Delft and Amsterdam. All cities were different, with unique and interesting history, architecture, museums, and food. Almost every day we viewed fabulous great paintings from many periods in history. I was especially impressed with how the Dutch have developed progressive solutions to address economic and social needs.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many "wow" moments but one in particular was the Mauritshuis museum in The Hague during a free afternoon in Delft. The museum had many beautiful and famous paintings. Some of my favorites were Vermeer's "The Girl with the Pearl Earring" & "View of Delft", Rembrandt's "The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp" & "Self Portrait", Rubens' "Old Woman and Boy with Candles", Fabritius' "The Goldfinch and Van Ruysdael's sweeping Dutch landscapes. The museum was compact but not crowded."

Betsy

Albuquerque, NM

Tour: 09/04/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was great! I thought it was well organized, with a nice balance between group activity and time on our own. I was well aware that we were seeing things I would not have pursued on my own, like the cemeteries in Belgium and the water safety presentation in Holland, both so interesting and enriching. The cities included on the tour were all interesting and left me wanting more. We were also lucky to have a really good group and were happy to get to know folks from all over the U.S.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I cannot pick one moment. I experienced many wow moments at the various museums, seeing paintings I knew of but had never seen in person. It was an unexpected pleasure to spot "The Goldfinch" the Mauritshuis Museum The Hague, having read and loved the book. Also, the Anne Frank museum tour was incredibly impactful."

Charles

Louisville, KY

Tour: 09/04/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Really enjoyed it as always. Very well organized and good mix of free time. Good guides also and good hotels.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Probably the Flanders Field day trips to cemeteries and museum."

Carlotta

Greenwood, IN

Tour: 09/04/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Very good

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The church of the Holy Blood and Flanders Battlefield"

Jack

Fair Oaks, CA

Tour: 09/04/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent tour. We covered a lot of territory and saw things we would never see on our own. History runs deep in this area. I was especially interested in the architecture with many of the buildings dating to the late 1500's and 1600's. Some of the history was dark such as WW I and I but important history nevertheless. The places we visited included charming small towns as well as the hustle and bustle of Amsterdam (the home of 600,00 bicycles- look before crossing bike lanes).

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Anne Frank museum in Amsterdam we very moving. It brought the atrocities of the holocaust down to a personal level. The "wow" for me was the overview of Hitler's moves leading up to the war and deportation because they were much like what is happening now in America."

Robin

Pine Knoll Shores, NC

Tour: 09/04/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a wonderful trip with interesting sites, beautiful cities and towns, and a great chance to learn more about the history and culture of Belgium and The Netherlands. The people we met in each town were friendly and helpful, and most spoke English and were happy to share information about their towns. I enjoyed meeting the people on the tour, and our guide was helpful, smart, and knowledgeable. The cooler weather was delightful, the food was good, and the hotels were comfortable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many, but I think the Anne Frank House was definitely a "wow" moment. Our visit to the Rijks Museum was also amazing, especially because we had a wonderful guide who made the works really come alive. Seeing all the WWI cemeteries and the battlefields was sobering and left an indelible impression on me."

Laura

Quincy, MA

Tour: 09/04/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Tim was a wonderful guide, filled with knowledge, humor and kindness. When our energy was low, Tim always gave us a sugary treat; always delicious! Ghent, Bruges and Delft were quaint and beautiful. The cemeteries visited were so interesting.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"When I took a bike ride from Bruges to Damme by myself. Rode along the canal, passing horses, cows, pretty homes and a windmill. Stopped to see Damme and spoke to locals. So beautiful and interesting."

Joan

Olympia, WA

Tour: 09/04/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was well organized, Tim was great! We saw all the main sights as a group with good orientation to the cities so we were able to explore comfortably in our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Alsmeer flower market was unbelievable! So busy, like a give of bees, yet everyone knew where they were going."

Carolyn

Halesite, NY

Tour: 08/28/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall experience was very good. The choices of cities that were selected were excellent.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Wow moment was the beautiful towns of Ghent and Bruge. The Anne Frank House was special, too."

Gary

Rumney, NH

Tour: 08/28/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our 2nd RS tour and its was awesome. Our tour guide, Ellen, was excellent and was well prepared for all of our adventures. I liked the fact that we had time in each city to explore at our own pace. Also the little side stops for lunch, like the town of Zierikzee, as we headed to our new cities were very cool. It was hard to chose between Ghent, Bruges, Delft, and Amsterdam, which was our favorite. They all had their own interesting characteristics.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I would have to say the Maeslant storm surge barrier and our guide, Jeroen. This is a remarkable feat of engineering that protects the city of Rotterdam and the low areas of the Netherlands from flooding due to storm surges in the North Sea. Besides and excellent video on the barrier and an indoor presentation from Jeroen, we were able to go out and get an up close look at the enormous barrier. Also, the Ghent Altarpiece is fantastic, as well as the restoration efforts at the fine arts museum."

David

West Henrietta, NY

Tour: 08/28/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was different from our other two tours (Paris in 7 and VFR) in that it included more than just history and art. It provided insights into these two very special countries through their industries, challenges of their geography and their innovative technology. Quite unique.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's very difficult to pick one on this tour. Depending on the category that you would rate them, there is a lot to choose from: Emotional: Anne Frank House Technology: Maeslant Barrier History: Castle of the Counts Art: So Much! However, in our free time we pre-purchased tickets to the Van Gogh Museum. It was so unique to have a museum dedicated to one artist and his struggle to achieve his own powerful artistic insight into his world."

Anne

Bellingham, WA

Tour: 08/28/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great trip !! Variety of sights and activities.. enough free time to explore on our own Tour guides were friendly and knowledgeable. Hotels were in good locations.. easy to walk to sights.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the town of Ghent with its different architecture and canals for the first time"

Kathy

Green Valley, AZ

Tour: 08/28/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

A Wonderfully well-planned trip. Ellen, our guide, couldn't have been better. All of the planned activities were well done. We really liked that on many days we had the entire afternoon and evening to explore on our own. And Ellen made sure first that we knew how to get around the city. The tour was well-paced; not too much, but plenty of quality things planned. We enjoyed learning about Belgium and the Netherlands, neither of which we had been to before.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The two best moments were 1)the giant flower exporting market--the Aalsmeer Flower Auction. It was incredible to learn that so much of the world's exporting of flowers happens there, in the gargantuan warehouse. and 2) learning about and seeing the Maeslant storm surge Barrier."

Jack

Evanston, IL

Tour: 08/28/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The places we visited, the experiences we had, and the leadership (tour leader and individual daily guides) were outstanding.The variety of modes for mobility were easily accessible and worked quite will. (Look out for bikes in Amsterdam!)The amount of free time was perfect.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to say because there were so many. Probably the whole explanation of how the Netherlands keeps back the North Sea-the Deltaworks and the Maeslant storm barrier."

Catherine

Hernando, MS

Tour: 08/28/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

A great trip with a marvelous guide and fun traveling companions. I'm picky with "Outstanding" because not every tour is but that is not a reflection of our guide, Ellen. Some tours have magic[INVALID]when the planets align and everything is special. And some tours are very good and I'm so happy I went. The Belgium/Holland tour falls into the latter category.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Ghent was my "wow" place. The town itself was just the right size and not too crowded. The canals were stunning during the day and especially at night. I wasn't prepared for how beautiful the canals are with the lights and moonlight in the evening. I will go back to Ghent. I was also surprised how moving the Flanders Fields day was. A beautiful but tragic place that is so respectfully preserved."

Karen

Piney Flats, TN

Tour: 08/21/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Really enjoyed the towns and the scenery. but our guide left much to be desired. He talked like he was from the 19th century. We had to ignite and extinguish our devices. I just turn mine on and off. and we had to ingress and egress? really?? He was very condescending and felt like he was trying to prove something. He went on and on with history but most importantly he NEVER kept us abreast of how long we would be on the bus, to our next break? If we needed a jacket etc. everything was a suprise

Favorite "WOW" moment

"loved Ghent and the Industrial Museum for textiles!!!"

Catherine

Sevierville, TN

Tour: 08/21/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The guides were excellent. Loved having the whisper available throughout the days. Dinners were excellent. Rooms very satisfactory - appreciated the AC on the hot nights. ONLY NEGATIVE The advertised bus trip to the airport the kiosk for ticket at the bus stop not working. Hotel worker told me against the law for the bus to take cash. I ended up taking a taxi to the airport by myself. The sheet for ride sharing was put up too late in the evening and without room numbers to connect with people.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Several The flower auction, Anne Frank house, Ghent altarpiece, Bruges Madonna, Flanders Field, the trench remains, Delft harbor barrier"

Jane

Fort Mcmurray, AB

Tour: 07/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We thoroughly enjoyed this tour, which provided an excellent balance between group activities and time for individual exploration. Nina was an amazing guide: funny, knowledgeable, clear, and well-organized. The group of travelers turned out to be highly compatible, and every day brought new insights and fresh experiences.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"For me as a Canadian, one of the most memorable days was the tour of World War One battlefields and cemeteries near Ypres. Canadian troops were heavily involved in the war, and it was moving and meaningful to see Tyne Cot cemetery, the field station where John Macrae wrote "In Flanders Fields," and the monument of The Brooding Soldier at St. Julien. We appreciated the fact that Nina adjusted the tour to include this last one, even though we were the only two Canadians on the trip."

James

Fort Mcmurray, AB

Tour: 07/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was well planned and well balanced between guided excursions and free time. The excursions provided an excellent mix of history, art, architecture and local culture. There was a nice mix of people, expertly guided by the ever-energetic Nina.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The WW I battlefields near Ypres and the visit to the very spot where McCrae wrote "In Flanders Fields"."

Elka

Portland, OR

Tour: 07/10/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Another great experience on a RS tour. Learned a lot, saw a lot, ate a lot. Nina was a well-organized, cheerful, humorous, and informative tour guide. We especially like cities, so it was a good fit with our interests. And we had a good group of travel companions.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The day at WWI sites with our guide Kristin, the deltaworks (not just a "guy" day!), Ghent Museum of Industry with guide Mieke, and the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam. Some other "wow" moments were on our own. The Tropical Museum in Amsterdam provided an excellently-curated history of Holland's colonial period in a beautiful building, and Escher in the Palace in Hague was a knockout."

Mary

Bloomington, MN

Tour: 07/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I am smarter. I learned about the Low Countries. Knew not much prior. Nina provided insight of Belgium divide between Flemish and French with Brussels in the middle b

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Netherlands engineering water level and reclaiming land and the Tropics Museum in Amsterdam."

Jennifer

Seattle, WA

Tour: 07/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

From our first meeting in Ghent until our parting in Amsterdam our experience was wonderful. We learned so much about the history and cultures of Belgium and Holland, which made each experience come alive. Everyone we encountered having to do with the tour was professional and friendly. Since we have arrived home each person that asks about our trip gets an earful not only about the countries, but also about the RS way of touring.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"For me I think it was not a wow moment, but a wow day. The WWI day was it for me. I enjoyed hearing the history behind each of the cemeteries, monuments, and battlefields. Our local guide was definitely able to bring the war and time period to life. As a side note, last year we took a side trip to Luxembourg before our GAS tour to see the American Cemetery. This way I was able to compare the two on this tour. I also very much enjoyed learning all about keeping Holland safe from storms/floods."

James

Bellevue, WA

Tour: 07/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was my first RSE tour and it was OUTSTANDING!!!! It felt very personal and that I mattered as an individual even though we were a group of 27. SO MUCH FUN and it removed the stress from my first trip in Europe.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"SO MANY to choose from...if I have to pick one: simple being in three Medieval towns! Ghent's first commercial peak was in the 1100s!! I would have never planned a trip to Europe that included Ghent, Bruges, or Delft and I am SO THANKFUL that they were my first exposure. So inspiring and thought provoking."

Cindy

Granville, IA

Tour: 07/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We brought our four grandchildren on their first trip to Europe and it was wonderful. Tour was well organized and enough free time. Thank you for leaving Sunday open so we could go to Mass.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Anne Frank Home was a highlight for all grandkids."

Jeffery

Seattle, WA

Tour: 07/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Belgium and Holland tour is highly recommended. It is a perfect trip for travelers that want to experience several smaller cities in a country and then get a taste of a larger urban area like Amsterdam. Nina was a fantastic tour guide, our travel group evolved into a collection of new friends that truly enjoyed each others company. The local food, history, and world class art make for a fantastic experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were a lot of "wow" moments! Walking around the corner in the Mauritshuis museum and there is Vermeer's The Girl With The Pearl Earring. Standing in front of Rembrant's The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Tulp (during the tour I was reading The Anatomy Lesson by Nina Siegal). The Flanders Fields too!"

Marshall

Springfield, NJ

Tour: 07/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was a well managed, well planned tour which was fun and exceed our expectations. Nina our tour leader was enthusiastic, well prepared, handled any and all situations professionally and was supportive of all the travelers. The tour put us exactly where we wanted to be, allowed us plenty of opportunities to learn about the places and cultures we encountered and gave us ample free time to pursue our own interest.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to the World War I battlefields and memorial sites was very moving. Bruges and Delft were both beautiful places to visit and exploring them was fantastic. We were fortunate to see The Anne Frank Haus. It was a powerful and emotional encounter with a very troubling past, well done, and thoughtfully presented."

Susan

Litchfield, CT

Tour: 06/26/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Ellen ordered up perfect weather...except for those forty-eight hot hours in Bruges. With perfect weather, intelligent, well-informed guides, and new friends, what's not to like? The tour showcased an uncharacteristically diverse group of sites from the modern to the ancient, from art to science. This balance contributed to an exciting array of experiences, some of which I would never have considered without the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The trenches in Flanders Field. The trenches needed more time, another forty minutes would do it. I loved Raoul, and learned a lot from him, but everything he talked about at the trenches is general knowledge from middle school. Let the trenches speak for themselves. Another wow moment was Rembrandt's "Night Guard". Who knew that it shone so? The renditions are dark and bleak, but the thing itself is pure brightness."

Cheryl

Henrico, VA

Tour: 06/26/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was great. Ellen was helpful and informative. The local guides were great too.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The flower auction house and the gates that are used during a storm surge. Lots of wow moments though, loved seeing the sites in Belgium and Holland."

Jacqueline

Frederick, MD

Tour: 06/26/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Ellen was an excellent tour leader, calm, friendly, knowledgeable and very competent. We had a great group of travelers, and running into people you know as you walk around by yourself really added to the experience. We loved getting to know Ghent, Bruges, Delft and Amsterdam and the visits along the way to Flanders Field, the seawall and flower market added to our understanding of this region.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the total experience, but my biggest pleasant surprise was Amsterdam. I expected to be overwhelmed by a gritty big city, and I fell in love with a charming, accessible one."

Kristin

Pleasant Grove, UT

Tour: 06/26/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was a delight! I've wanted to explore the low countries for a while and have a particular interest in art history, so it was lovely to experience beautiful Belgium and the Netherlands while also deepening my appreciation for Van Gogh and Van Eyck.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Van Gogh museum or strolling around in Bruges."

Zachary

Melbourne, FL

Tour: 06/26/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Riding bikes from the hotel in Bruges to Damme and having lunch."

David

Appleton, WI

Tour: 06/26/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Nice group of fellow travelers and well thought out itinerary.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We arrived at Ghent 5 nights before the tour started and just loved the city. We went through two 3 day Ghent Cards! we were wowed by all Ghent had to offer."

Hollis

Frederick, MD

Tour: 06/26/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Trip to Belgium and the Netherlands was wonderful, Our tour guide, Ellen, was friendly, informed, efficient, engaging. The trip was well planned and provided us with meaningful side trips, very good restaurant experiences, and the people in our tour group enhanced the travel experience. Excellent balance between planned tour time and individual free time. Hotel we stayed in were very good. We have always had great Rick Steves tour experiences.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think that the WOW was an accumulated experience of the charming Belgium and Netherlands towns and cities. Certainly the art museums were spectacular: Van Gogh, Rijksmuseum, etc....Ghent, Bruges, Delft and Amsterdam all had their particular beauty."

Richard

Saint Paul, MN

Tour: 06/26/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful tour with great locations and excellent guides.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was surprised at how pretty Delft was with its canals, market square and the unique hotel we stayed in."

June

York, PA

Tour: 05/22/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was great -- saw a lot, but not overwhelmingly fast-paced. I have done many tours with various size groups, and I really appreciated touring with just over two dozen people instead of a whole bus full. Being limited to a carry on/roll aboard suitcase and a day pack was eye opening. That was plenty for a nearly two week trip and shows how much I usually over pack. Also appreciated that all the gratuities were included, so nice to not have to dig around for those.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to choose from, but the Aalsmere Flower Market was much more interesting than I expected."

Carma

Olympia, WA

Tour: 05/22/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We thoroughly enjoyed our Heart of Belgium & Holland tour! Each stop and city visit provided new and exciting adventures. The tour was well paced and we'll planned. As promised we returned home ready for a rest after our very busy trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Delft was a favorite of mine. It's a lovely city that seemed to offer a wonderful snapshot of the beauty and culture of the region."

Joan

Morgan Hill, CA

Tour: 05/22/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Saw a variety of interesting sites and activities. There was a good mix of historical sites, tasting cuisine of the area by experts, such as chocolate tasting and beer, canal tours, the storm barrier tour, the pottery tour, the textile museum and more. Also enjoyed the visits to some small towns along the way. A very good mix. Enjoyed learning about the 2 countries.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The storm barrier. It was enormous, I didn't expect such a massive structure and was interesting about the history of flooding in the Netherlands and how proactive the people of this country are."

Daniel

Morgan Hill, CA

Tour: 05/22/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall, it was another outstanding RS tour (my 9th tour). It was just the right mix of history, culture, and free time. What made this tour even more significant was the technology dimension and planning for the future, especially the Deltaworks system and Maeslant storm surge barrier in the Netherlands.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "wow" was the tour of the Maeslant storm surge barrier and the Deltaworks in the Netherlands. These are excellent examples of a country embracing science, using technology, and having the political will to wisely prepare for the future. Royal FloraHolland was also very impressive; highly organized chaos!"

Richard

Westlake, OH

Tour: 05/22/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Low-key, un-rushed experiences in places that were almost always picturesque.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to pick a "wow" moment from the low-key tour. I would choose between a) the memorial at Tyne Cot Cemetery with 35,00 names (now more than 40,000) of men who were in the battles in Flanders but whose bodies couldn't be located, or b) the tremendous range (in format and time) of works by Rembrandt that were gathered in the special exhibit at the Rijksmuseum."

Francis

Palo Alto, CA

Tour: 05/22/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fascinating cities and people. The site visit to the flood gates in Holland was amazing.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Arriving in Amsterdam was akin to being dropped onto another planet. The energy level was amazing. The ferry, the bikes (and the parking lots for them), the cars, the trams and all the people added up to a surreal experience. Seeing it all from our canal cruise a few days later with all of our new tour friends was icing on the cake."

William

Corvallis, OR

Tour: 05/15/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was quite good, in fact outstanding. We had a guide NICO who was by far one of the best I have ever had in the 50+ countries I have visited. He made the trip educational, interspersing lots of cultural, historical, and other interesting details. Nico's language skills added much to the success of the trip, as also did his wonderful interpersonal skills. He is top notch as a tour guide. A real credit to Rick Steves' tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many. I recall the guide in the Rijksmuseum going into incredibly detailed insights into Rembrandt's Night Watch. She was so knowledgeable and helped me look at other Rembrandts and masterpieces of the same era with a different perspective."

Ann

Corvallis, OR

Tour: 05/15/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Had a great guide, Nico, & wonderful local guides. Nice balance between free time & group time. I really enjoyed all of our days except maybe the one looking at all the ways they deal with water. However that is good to know. It was freezing cold so that was probably part of why I didn't like that day; it felt like a really long travel day. Our hotels were all great, except maybe in Delph;it was nice to spend at least two nights in each.They were all well located for exploring the cities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Rijksmuseum and seeing the Vermeer paintings and the Night Watch with our museum guide.Bruges was pretty wonderful, too."

Stephen

San Francisco, CA

Tour: 05/15/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Good memories of Nico a fine tour guide and Rachel as assistant. The tour group was so friendly and full of fun humor. I really enjoyed the hotels not too fancy, but clean with very helpful staffs. The tour locations and activities were always something to look forward to.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Right now the wow moment was the traditional rijsttafel dinner with the group. The food to me was unbelievable just wonderful."

Lawrence

Beaverton, OR

Tour: 05/01/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was the first organized tour for us. We've traveled Europe many times, but always on our own. When we first used a Steves tour book we realized that we travel the way he does. So when we decided to do a tour we went with this Rick Steves tour. We loved it. Very well organized with excellent guides and docents. Bus trips were broken down into visits at local sites along the way. Never boring.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The sites, of course; but the included meals were beyond expectations."

Madonna

Olathe, KS

Tour: 05/01/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a great experience, with a great guide and so many interesting sights.. Every trip is a learning experience that gives such great insight into how other cultures live. Loved it.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My Wow moment was dipping our toes in the North Sea, what fun! Also, Each of the towns we visited had there own unique experience. ."

Karen

Edmond, OK

Tour: 05/01/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was great! This was our first RS tour but it won't be our last. The mix between group and free time perfect. Travel between cities was seamless and filled with interesting excursions. The bus was great and our driver the best! The group tours were wonderful and group meals were exceptional. Loved the hotels.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the WWI cemeteries was my WOW moment. We visited 4 cemeteries but passed countless more along the way. The loss of life is heart breaking, but the honor and respect the Belgians display for all the fallen soldiers is heart warming."

Dawn

Farmington, UT

Tour: 05/01/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour lived up to the high expectations we have for the Rick Steves tour experience. Our guide was excellent, our group was fun, and the itinerary included more than we would have ever done on our own, including the storm surge barriers and a chance to dip our toes in the North Sea.

Favorite "WOW" moment

""The Girl with the Pearl Earring" was definitely a highlight. Also, the evening we went to a recommended restaurant and not only had a terrific meal, but enjoyed some wonderful music. Walking back to the hotel afterwards and seeing the lights reflected in the canals was magic. The day at "Flanders Field" was extraordinary."

Bryan

Farmington, UM

Tour: 05/01/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Enjoyed the free time along with a good selection of interesting sights.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the canals and beautiful architecture."

Michael

Shaker Heights, OH

Tour: 05/01/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Hilbren is a superior tour leader. The tour was perfectly paced. There was a nice blend of history, culture, art, architecture, food, understanding of the water control infrastructure of Holland, beautiful cities, walking and free time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Anne Frank House. The beauty of Bruges. The canals, bridges and boats of Amsterdam. The painting of The Girl With The Pearl Earing in The Hauge,"

Brian

Red Wing, MN

Tour: 05/01/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I greatly enjoyed the tour experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Many great moments. Our tour of Ghent was especially memorable."

Katherine

Fairfield, CT

Tour: 05/01/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fantastic! It was everything I've come to expect from a RS Tour and more. Although the weather was unseasonably cold and wet, our group was in high spirits and my experience wasn't compromised a bit. A truly convivial group, fascinating & detail oriented leader, varied array of cultural and historical experiences and excellent food and treats.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's hard to choose just one, but I'll pick the one that was most unexpected...visiting the Watersnood Museum and learning how the Netherlands reacted to a flooding tragedy, embraced their water management challenges (windmills! dikes! storm surge barriers!) and now engineer their way through them. Highly practical and un-political ways of living...."

Debbi

Beaverton, OR

Tour: 05/01/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was the first tour I have ever taken. It exceeded my expectations in every way.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The tourguide at the Rijksmuseum was awesome - he made the art museum meaningful and entertaining at the same time."

Lonni

Tampa, FL

Tour: 04/27/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Everything ran very smoothly! All of the travelers were on time and got along well with each other. The amount of time in each location was good, I would have enjoyed one more day in Ghent, when it would be a regular weekday so there would be more vendors open.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Maeslant Storm Surge Barrier: Really opened my eyes to the realities of dangerous climactic events, and that the government in the Netherlands is really working proactively to take care of their citizens. The engineering feat and the constant surveillance and maintenance was very impressive."

Michael

Washington, DC

Tour: 04/27/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We always find Rick Steves tours a good value for the money. We enjoy interacting and traveling with a group in equal measure to the great sites we see along the way.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I believe the city of Ghent was a highlight for us. The medieval character and charm of the city was enchanting."

Anne

Schenectady, NY

Tour: 04/27/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Nina was wonderful- knowledgeable, funny, accessible. The tour had great preplanned tours and events and just enough free time. It was great to not have to wait in lines. The local guides really added to the experience. The hotels we stayed at were clean and comfortable. I would not hesitate to take another tour and will recommend to friends.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"How could you possibly pick one? The day of the cemetery visits to Flanders Field and Ypres was very special, as was the visit to the Anne Frank house."

Margaret

Pearland, TX

Tour: 04/27/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was hesitant about taking a guided tour, however, the way the tour was structured I am trying to decide which tour you offer I will sign up for next. There was enough guidance given so we could make informed decisions on what we wanted to do in our free time and not be lost. The guides gave us a great overview of the towns and their history to know why it is important to visit them and why they were picked to be included in the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our visit to Keukenhof was spectacular. Seeing how very beautiful and different the tulips were was amazing. The theme of Flower Power brought back memories of the 60 & 70's in such a unique way. It was a sensory overload experience I will never forget. My husband is not that interested in art museums, however. he thoroughly enjoyed the Rijksmuseum having the paintings explained by an expert."

Michael

Parkland, FL

Tour: 04/27/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our lead guide Nina was excellent, as were all the local guides; they made each day and each experience unique which in my mind is the value-add to any Rick Steves tour. Walking the former World War l battlefields with a Sergeant Major in the Belgium army who took us through the back story and events while leading us personally over hallowed grounds was very, very special. Watching the local business owners demonstrate their craft in the Chocolate tour and Delft Pottery tour was also great.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof Gardens is amazing, 80 acres of nature's beauty up close and personal. It exceeded even my high expectations going in. A close runner-up was the tour and local guide for the Delta Works and storm surge barrier; an engineering marvel that is typical of Dutch ingenuity and detail."

Carol

Tampa, FL

Tour: 04/27/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I am a traveler who rarely goes on an organized tour and this was my first experience with Rick Steve's. I enjoyed it very much. I thought it was well organized and our tour director and site guides were excellent. I was pleased that the group meals were varied and very good.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I especially enjoyed the experience at the Netherlands operation for flood control. It was fascinating and since I live in Florida sea level rise is an issue for us."

Betty

Tucson, AZ

Tour: 04/27/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was just our second RS tour. After last year's outstanding experience in Ireland, we wanted to confirm that it wasn't an anomaly. Nina was an excellent guide, and in spite of a bit of cold, rainy weather, she made every day enjoyable. Our group got on famously and we all seemed to have a lot of fun. We lived in Germany years ago, but had never visited Belgium and Holland. Now we would like to go back and stay longer!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Everything about Bruges was wonderful, including the chocolate. The Amsterdam museums were a treat (Rijksmuseum and Van Gogh), but I also loved the Watersnood Museum that we visited on our drive from Belgium to Delft. It taught me something entirely new, and provided excellent background to how the Dutch drew together to solve a huge national problem. The artifacts and later artistic tributes to the victims of the flood were very moving."

Timur

Philadelphia, PA

Tour: 04/24/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is the second Rick Steve's Tour that we've done with our family and it was just as amazing as the first. We picked this particular tour because it's the only one that fit our schedule. We didn't know what to expect in Belgium and Holland but we were blown away. We loved all the art and history as well as the incredible food and beer. The people we met on this tour were delightful and of course Rolinka made the tour unforgettable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to choose just one moment, but visiting Keukenhof was pretty amazing."

Judy

Shoreline, WA

Tour: 04/24/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had covered much of the same itinerary 2 years ago on a river cruise. This tour was like a totally different tour: we stayed right in the cities, we ate local cuisine, had great guides at the art museums. Even though we saw several cities ( and stops in between), we stayed at least 2 nights at each place, so we weren't constantly packing and unpacking. Our tour director was with us, and was great fun and a great resource. Comfortable, roomy bus, small group, great included meals!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Two very different things: attending a free harp concert, and seeing/hearing an "uber" harp instrument created by musician; and seeing, and walking in actual trenches from WW I."

Tom

Chester, VA

Tour: 04/24/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Rolinka is a fabulous guide. Making sure all members of the tour got the biggest bang for their buck. Saw a lot, did a lot. And had fun along the way.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the Keukenhof Gardens, the tulips went on and on and on. I did appreciate the fact that we arrived before the multitudes of visitors descended on the place."

Patricia

Mclean, VA

Tour: 04/24/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great tour itinerary, fantastic tour guide, good hotels, a wonderful experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the tulips and other beautiful flowers at Keukenhof."

Geeta

Topeka, KS

Tour: 04/24/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is our 6th Rick Steves Tour. We always have high expectations from his tours and from the guides. We were not disappointed. The tour itinerary is very good. I am glad we did not visit the coffee shop instead we went on a canal tour in Amsterdam which was enjoyable. Visit to the flood museum was a good addition to the itinerary.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Every day was a " Wow" day. Canal laced towns of Ghent, Delft and Bruges is like walking back in history. Amsterdam though touristy has retained its Dutch charm."

Joseph

Topeka, KS

Tour: 04/24/19

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

Guide was very good. Local guides were good as well. Hotels were mediocre. Particularly the stay in Amsterdam was very bad. Breakfast was terrible. Staff were not so friendly

Favorite "WOW" moment

"All the churches and buildings were cxceeptional. The group was very happy people"

Joan

Farmingdale, NY

Tour: 04/24/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our experience was very enriching. We enjoyed everything that was scheduled and we also appreciated the freedom to do our own explorations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The tulips in Keukenhof gardens were a bucket list experience that didn't disappoint! Also, our visit to the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam was very moving. But each day was truly special to us."

Jeffrey

Seattle, WA

Tour: 04/24/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fun, informational, relaxing

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Amsterdam - I love that city. Easy to get around, the bikes, the restaurants, Vondelpark"

Steven

Olathe, KS

Tour: 04/20/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

As usual with RS tours, well-planned, excellent guides, good balance of group time and free time. This tour does not have the "big ticket" draws like London, Paris, or Rome, but has its own charms. Enjoyed the medieval cities in Belgium very much. Our tour include Keukenhof Gardens, spectacular (though very crowded).

Favorite "WOW" moment

"This is not a "wow" moment tour. Many highlights, though. Keukenhof Gardens would be a wow if about 20,000 other people had stayed home. Ghent and Bruges are quietly attractive, the highlight of the trip."

Ron

Escondido, CA

Tour: 04/20/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very enjoyable are tour guide was very knowledgeable so I'm hoping to do it again.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The tulip gardens"

John

Ottawa, ON

Tour: 04/20/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I appreciated each of the 4 towns/cities selected on this tour for their unique circumstances. Tim did an excellent job in setting expectations and giving background information on Belgium & the Netherlands which was amplified by the tour guides. There was a good mix of organized time and "free" time. I felt the pace of the tour was very comfortable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were a couple of "wow" moments for me. The Anne Frank Museum was particularly impactful. I found the museum presentation to be very factual and non judgemental. I also appreciated our guide in Delft describing the Dutch social climate and attitudes. It was an insight into at least one person's perspective on Dutch life. I also appreciated the WWI battlefield tours as having relatives who fought at Vancouver Corner and were gassed. We had stayed at Varley Farm a few years ago and so it was A lot of good memories were created with this tour."

Judy

Escondido, CA

Tour: 04/20/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was our first time to to travel internationally. Everything was very organized and easy to follow each day. I have nothing else to compare, but I would certainly do a Rick Steves tour again. All I had to do was to show up. I didn't have to stand in lines for tickets etc. It was comforting to know that I was taken care of and I didn't have to worry about where I would go or what to do the next day. Even in our free time, there were plenty of options given, including places to eat. I felt safe.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment was Keukenhof tulip gardens!! Just as I anticipated and had read about and seen. It also helped that we arrived early before many people were there. I was able to take pictures without strangers in them."

Sherry

Anchorage, AK

Tour: 04/20/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our experience was fantastic! We loved both countries, the people we traveled with and met, the places we stayed, the weather, the sights, the food, the new insights into culture and our great guide and coach driver. The mix of scheduled activities and free time to go and do what we want is perfect for us.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Its hard to pick just one, because there were many, so I'm going to name two: I fell in love with the architecture of the canal houses in Gent, Brugge and Amsterdam. Especially Gent, maybe that's because it was my first exposure to them and the weather was sunny and perfect. My second "wow" is more solemn. That was the day we visited WWI battlefields, cemeteries, Flanders Fields and trenches. Sobering and important to learn about and remember."

Stephanie

Escondido, CA

Tour: 04/20/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful and beautiful! We picked this tour so we could see Keukenhof in all its glory! It did not disappoint! All the cute towns we stayed in were really fun to explore! Loved the canals everywhere! Our guide Tim was absolutely fantastic! He really was a fun guide! Our free day in Bruges we biked our to Damme along the canal. So peaceful! Loved getting to know a little history of that area of the world. It was a really nice trip!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My 'wow' moment would have to be first walking in to Keukenhof. Just seeing all the tulips and flowers with my own eyes! It lived up to my built up imagination! Second 'wow' moment was getting into Amsterdam on Kings Day! Tim took those of us who wanted to go on a little foray into the craziness! How energizing and fun!! He had bought the group all kinds of orange paraphernalia we could wear so we could join in on the celebrations like the locals!"

Susan

Ottawa, ON

Tour: 04/20/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Good mix of local guides and free time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Anne Frank house....seeing the heights of the sisters recorded on the wall....an ordinary event under extraordinary circumstances."

Curt

Cat Spring, TX

Tour: 04/20/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tim was a incredible guide and continually looked after the group and adding special items along the way such as regional treats. Always helpful and attentive.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof Gardens was quite a sight."

Susan

Simsbury, CT

Tour: 04/20/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is our second Rick Steves tour. The combination of Holland and Belgium gave us an intimate look at two very similar cultures. We also favor itineraries with longer stays at each hotel so 4 destinations was just right. The itinerary is an excellent mix of art museums, nature (tulips and canals), and WWI &II history.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to pick only one wow moment. Flanders Field was the most emotional. We owe the Monuments Men for making it possible for us to see the Ghent Altarpiece and Bruges Madonna and Child. The Rijks museum And of course- Keukenhof!!!!!!"

Kenneth

Morrisville, NC

Tour: 04/17/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Windmill tour."

Patricia

Glen Allen, VA

Tour: 04/17/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a very pleasant tour. The group of fellow travelers were a friendly, polite, educated group of people as is typical on a Rick Steves tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Catching the first glimpse of the beautiful Flemish architecture in Ghent for the first time, then continuing to see the lovely historical architecture in Bruges and Delft. I have to add the exciting feeling of being so close to one of my favorite artists, Vermeer, and the life of Anne Frank. And, of course, seeing so many windmills up close as well as the Keukenhof Gardens and surrounding flower fields in full bloom."

Julie

Sarasota, FL

Tour: 04/17/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof Gardens.....Absolutely stunning to see how taking a new landscape design each year and sourcing the best bulbs for the look is breath taking. The boat tour through the fields around the gardens is worth it as well."

Dwight

Raleigh, NC

Tour: 04/17/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was my first Rick Steves Tour. It was hard for me to not check Outstanding. In typical Rick Steves fashion it was a well organized tour that was educational and entertaining. It was just too punishing with all the walking and standing. I've reached the point (75 years old) that I am not going to exert myself while traveling.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof Gardens was favorite wow moment. Loved Ghent-just an easy place to walk to all the historic sites. Bruges was marred by the throng of people on Easter but a quaint place. Delft was interesting and enjoyable. Amsterdam was a freaking nightmare. Between dodging bicyclists (who don't obey stoplights), cars and trams I was a nervous wreck for the first couple days crossing the street to Leidesplein from the Hotel Espresso. I never want to go back to Amsterdam."

Sandy

Wyoming, MI

Tour: 04/17/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a great experience on this tour! Bruges was a bit overwhelming with all the people since it was Easter weekend, but we were able to get away on bikes to see the windmills for part of the day.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I would say there were several "wow" moments. However, Keukenhof Gardens was gorgeous! It has to be one of the most beautiful places on earth!"

Carole

Oroville, CA

Tour: 04/17/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip was amazing in every way. It was the perfect blend of art,culture,history and nature Hans was an exceptional guide He was accommodating in everyway

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the tulip gardens The art was wonderful especially the Van Gogh and Rembrandts I enjoyed the wWWI history and the history of the dike system. A highlight was touring the working windmill It is an experience I will never forget. The orientation walks were lots of fun I liked our little cocktail parties"

Karen

Grand Junction, CO

Tour: 04/13/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Tour went everywhere in Belgium & Netherlands I wanted to go. Loved the amount of free time we were given & how it balanced with the group activities. The art was sublime and the tulips were beautiful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing Vermeer's Girl with the Pearl Earring."

Linnea

Arlington, MA

Tour: 04/13/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour itinerary was great, and I wouldn't change anything. Although I expected the high point to be Keukenhof and the museums in Amsterdam, I was surprised at how much I enjoyed Ghent, Bruges, and Delft. These are beautiful old European cities, and each one has a special charm. My partner and I have been on a Rick Steves "My Way" tour, and weren't sure that we would like the increased structure of a fully guided tour. Now we see the value of each style of group travel!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Definitely Keukenhof Gardens and seeing the massive tulip fields along the road..truly spectacular!"

Gary

Littleton, CO

Tour: 04/13/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

When visiting new countries, I find tours to be the best way to go. You have the safety net of a tour and generally, as was the case with this tour, you get to see the key highlights of the areas being visited. I was motivated to take this tour after watching the movie "The Monuments Men," which highlighted the Ghent Alter Piece and the Bruge Madonna. I would suggest timing the visit to the Church housing the Ghent Alter Piece so that you're there when it opens to avoid massive crowds.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof Gardens. It would have been nice to get to the gardens earlier than we did to avoid the crowd of 50K+. I'd guess part of the crowd issue is we visited on the Saturday before Easter, so not only did we have the weekend crowds, we also had crowding due to those who had the week of Easter off. Weekend visits and these types of European holidays need to be taken into consideration and tour schedules possibly altered as a result to help facilitate the best experience for tour members."

Walter

Silver Spring, MD

Tour: 04/13/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip was wonderful. I'm sorry it wasn't longer and Im very glad that I chose a Rick Steves tour over a river cruise. The only thing I would do different is; I would bring my better camera. With all the urging to travel light I brought my smaller somewhat lighter camera. It is a good camera and I still got plenty of good pictures. But I wish I had brought my better camera. Something to know for next time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Its hard to pick just one wow moment. The Anne Frank house was very powerful. Far more moving than the cemeteries in Flanders Field. Seeing the Vermeer paintings in the museums in the Hague and Amsterdam make a trip to the Netherlands all worthwhile. But the high point would have to be the Kuekenhof gardens. I have never seen anything like it. Even their orchid displays are like nothing I have ever seen."

Elinor

Silver Spring, MD

Tour: 04/13/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I thought the tour was wonderful. I loved the places we visited, the art, architecture and culture we were exposed to, and the information that was provided by our tour guide and additional guides. The schedule of time worked well - balancing group activities and meals with some independent time as well. The bus was a wonderful enhancement to the trip,making it easy and extremely comfortable to get from place to place.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the tulips has been on my "bucket list" for years, so our day at Keukenhof was my WOW moment."

Mike

Alexandria, LA

Tour: 04/13/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

tour was interesting,learned many new things. Experiences were varied, in all cases museums were outstanding. choices of cities great, each one unique with its own appeal.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"day touring battlefields. don't know if it is "wow", but certainly thought provoking and reverential.same day touring trenches. i was in awe at what those men went through. talk on water management by the Dutch was very informative. didn't realize how complex it was"

Joan

San Leandro, CA

Tour: 04/13/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour far exceeded my expectations, as did all of our guides, especially Rolinka. Each part of the trip was a treasure. There were times I felt like I had a semester of history in a day: Flanders Fields were incredibly moving; the day of waterworks just blew me away. Brugges was unbelievably beautiful. The food was amazing and such good herring. There was so much to do during free time, I couldn't get it all done. I climbed into a windmill in Brugge and survived. This was my fourth

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many! Learning about how the Dutch have been living with water for six centuries during our waterworks day was one. The incredible storm surge system to protect Rotterdam was built over a period of nine years. Each side of this massive structure is taller than the Eiffel tower and twice as heavy. Imagine the Eiffel tower lying on its side. It takes a total of two hours for each side to be brought in and sunk to the river bed."

Richard

Braintree, MA

Tour: 04/13/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I believe the tour was well-organized, comprehensive, educational as well as entertaining and fun. There was a strong balance between activities that were informative and educational and those that were more light-hearted and fun. The destination cities in both Belgium and the Netherlands all had a lot to offer in terms of places of historical interst as well as a look at the cultures of the residents. The hotels were fine, and the service also fine. The restaurants also did their best to please

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The gardens of Keukhofen in the Netherlands was it. The work and care that went into creationg such a spectacle were extraordinary. I believed we arrived at one of the peak moments to experience it, and we had had a full chance to enjoy it."

Gary

Austin, TX

Tour: 04/13/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a wonderful tour of Belgium and The Netherlands! The tour itinerary was great - we saw a lot of both countries with just the right amount of "tour time" and "free time". Rolinka was an excellent tour guide. She was always friendly, well organized and she went out of her way to make sure we had a good trip. The independent guides were also outstanding, particularly Robert at the museum in Amsterdam. We'll definitely do another Rick Steve's tour sometime in the future.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had several - the WWI battlefields were sobering and we were reminded of what a horrific war it was. Bruge was probably our favorite city to visit. The tulips were amazing - we're glad we went during the Spring to see them. I also enjoyed the time we spent at the flood control facility - amazing engineering!!"

Elaine

Pensacola, FL

Tour: 04/13/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I chose this trip as a good way to see Keunkenhof Gardens. 11 days was an adequate amount of time for this trip. Rolinka and the lively group made for a pleasant time. There was a good mix of sites, experiences and bus time. I always enjoy the free time. The visit to the Delft pottery did not include a demonstration of the painting, which is what it is all about. That was a big disappointment. I expected a little more demonstration at the chocolate shop.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The first tulip field we passed! The Keukenhof garden did not disappoint. I would have liked a little more time. Knowing the recent history and seeing the alterpiece and Madonna."

Joan

Alexandria, LA

Tour: 04/13/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I love traveling with Rick Steves Tour Company. Details are taken care of and great pain is taken to offer travelers an outstanding experience. My daily life is full of responsibilities and seldom do I trust someone else to make plans for me in important matters. I never regret letting this tour company plan and administer my European travel.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think this was the visit to the WWI American cemetery. I think people in the States don't appreciate the sacrifices these soldiers made for the safety of the World. There came a hush over our whole group as we learned that this cemetery existed. I personally enjoyed my visit to the Groeninge Museum in Bruges. I learned about Flemish Art in a new and informative way that I had not connected with in any Art Appreciation class I'd taken in the past. Great tour of storm barrier."

Vincent

Pensacola, FL

Tour: 04/13/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great group to travel with. Belgium and Holland were more modern and upscale that the other European countries visited on my previous 9 trips.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Bicycles I had only thought of bicycles for use in recreation and exercise. In Belgium and Holland they were definitely for personal transportation. To see thousands of bicycles on racks at the train stations and airports was amazing."

Hollace

Cincinnati, OH

Tour: 04/13/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We have been traveling with Rick for 20 years. 5 tours and 4 trips on our own. Always educational, varied and with great tour companions.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhoff gardens - above and beyond. And all the incredible art."

Jana

Evanston, IL

Tour: 04/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We thought this tour was a nice balance for a spring trip. Distances were not great between towns and stops managed well. The visits to Flanders fields cemeteries and Delta Works storm surge barriers were surprising and interesting. I liked that while we visited some sites as a group, there was time to add extra museums, etc if you wanted. This is a great tour to just decide to visit a cafe, people watch and of course, grab a great Belgian beer or chocolates.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Tulips, in their full spring glory at the Keukenhof. The intact medieval towns of Ghent, and Bruges are so charming."

Ken

Bloomington, IN

Tour: 04/10/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

It was a very good group and Nina provided excellent local knowledge and leadership. We had been to each of the cities before but the tour provided a much richer experience getting us into places and events that were very difficult to achieve on our own. The overall pace of the tour was perhaps a bit slower than others we have experienced.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Keukenhof, obviously. Incredibly beautiful. I had seen it 32 years before and signed up for this trip just so Nancy could experience it. WOW! But, the timing was great for the "All the Rembrandts" at the Rijksmuseum and the Mauristhuis Museum (on our own). And the Flanders Field American Cemetery was very impressive and incredibly well maintained, as was the UK cemetery at Tyne Cot. Sobering and impressive. The water control project and exhibit at the WaterSnood Museum was quite interesting"

Ernest

Las Cruces, NM

Tour: 04/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Nina and Tim were very efficient in all our scheduling. Since this is our fifth or sixth tour with Rick Steves, it amazes us at the excellent operation and facilities with every tour. We sincerely enjoy the free time to explore on our own. Ernest is 81 years old and surprisingly able to keep up with the group. We were surprised to encounter all the professional people on the tour. All were very punctual and prepared for the day's activities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The "wow" was my trip to the Hague to see the portrait of "Girl with the Pearl Earring" and able to view very closely. When I first saw the "Mona Lisa" I was close for years, but now you're much farther away. At the Keukenhof Gardens it was beautiful, and I was able to purchase six pairs of clog slippers which resembled the wooden shoes, for my children. The change and growth in Amsterdam is amazing from when I first visited about 30 years ago, using the Rick Steves Through the Back Door."

Nancy

Las Cruces, NM

Tour: 04/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Another excellent Rick Steves tour!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I especially enjoyed the Keukenhof Gardens and also the privilege of visiting the Anne Frank House. Thirdly, the DeltaWorks, demonstrating all the flood and water conservation engineering methods."

Danny

Enumclaw, WA

Tour: 04/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour exceeded expectations in every way. I cannot express enough praise for our guide, Nina, and assistant, Tim. The local guides were excellent as well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Kerkenhof (sp?) experience was unforgettable. So too wwere the battlefields and cemeteries of the Ypres area in Flanders."

Albin

Roseville, CA

Tour: 04/10/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a very enjoyable, well-paced tour with multi-faceted experiences in culture, history, art, language, foods, and fellowship. The quality of the expert & personable guides along with the location and charm of the hotels and restaurants allowed for a more relaxed and informative travel.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"A kaleidoscope of wows! To pick just a few, experiencing in person the wonders of the Keukenhof flower gardens with acres of magnificent displays, art masterworks, such as the van Eyck Ghent Altarpiece and Rembrandt's Night Watchman, the human engineering of the waterways & windmills of The Netherlands, and historic sites and museums, the solemn dignity of the Anne Frank house and Flanders fields, and enjoying famous treats such as Belgian chocolate and much more are memories that will endure."

Mary Jane

Mississauga, ON

Tour: 04/06/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved this tour. Great experience. Enough down time. Group was larger than I am used to. The guides were amazing. Delivered the amazing experience I have had in past tours with Rick Steve's.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Keukenhof Gardens was a must see. It lived up to its reputation. Also, Flanders fields were so instructive and moving."

Joseph

Oakland, CA

Tour: 04/06/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Normally, we do not do tours except Linblad/ Zagrahm ships. With pins in the map of 148 countries, our friends convinced us to try a trip, and it was very well done. Ellen was a superb guide. The material she had to work with was superb, also. IF each of your trips is this good........ Thanks, ARNETTE and Joe

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Each day"

Jonathan

San Diego, CA

Tour: 04/06/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent tour. Guides were outstanding and very compatible group of travelers. Group meals were wonderful. Good mix between group activities and free time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the tulip gardens outside Amsterdam. Definitely met expectations."

James

North Hollywood, CA

Tour: 04/06/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Went in April specifically because I wanted to see the tulips in Keukenhof gardens. In retrospect, the experience wasn't worth the trade-off of having to deal with the cold climate. Fortunately, at least it was sunny most days. Enjoyed the cheese tasting in Holland, the brewery, and chocolate tours in Belgium. The tour of the tide barrier was something unique that most tour groups, from other providers, probably don't get to experience. I'm glad it was included.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The World War I cemeteries and trenches were very thought provoking."

Pam

Troy, ID

Tour: 04/06/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Terrific time for my 11th RS tour! Ellen and Nico were a wonderful team.I particularly wanted this tour this time of year for the visit to Keukenhof and also to visit the WWI area in Flanders. Both, while vastly different, were even better than expected. Ellen was very knowledgeable, organized, efficient, personable and just enjoyable to travel with. Nico will be an asset to the RS team with his depth of knowledge and engaging attitude.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Keukenhof! Wow...unbelievable. I was so happy we got there early as by 10:30 it was packed. The RS guide (and driver) did a stellar job of planning to get us around the road closures for the flower parade in this part of Holland on the day of our visit. Appreciate the extra lunch to get us out of traffic. Keukenhof was why I took the tour this time of year and it was totally worth it. 2nd Wow experience was the day we did the WWI sights. Amazing in a different way but so worthwhile."

Brian

Alexandria, VA

Tour: 04/03/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was pleased that we not only visited Gint, Brugge, Delft, and Amsterdam but various sites related to World War I and the Dutch efforts to control water levels in the Netherlands and finally the tulip gardens at Keukenhof. These are sites I would not have considered visiting on my own. I would like to compliment our bus driver on his excellent driving, and he was very friendly and interesting to talk to.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think the flower displays and tulip fields at Keukenhof were truly breath-taking and a real joy to look at."

Linda

Petaluma, CA

Tour: 04/03/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was an outstanding tour all made possible by our dear tour guide, Rolinka. She was not only well organized and sensitive to your needs but added charming embellishments everything from interesting and humorous anecdotes to Kleenix. Rolinka's enthusiasm for all things Belgium and the Netherlands was catching. I consider this tour an overview of these two countries, and I aim to return to the cities (and more) that I found particularly inkspiring.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow' moment was the day at Keukenhof gardens. It was like I had died and gone to heaven. I also heeded Rolinka's warning that "just get lost"...don't worry where you are. I usually hold on to the security of maps and phones but not in this paradise. Fantastic experience!"

Victor

Park Ridge, IL

Tour: 04/03/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tour was extremely well planned. For example we arrived at Anne Frank house at opening and avoided crowds. Likewise w Keukenhof Park. And after tour of Rijksmuseum we took a break for coffee. The line to get a table was long but our guide Rolinka had staked out a table for our group The custom tours such as the Amsterdam waterworks and chocolate store were illuminating

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Canal cruise of Amsterdam"

Marcus

Germantown Hills, IL

Tour: 04/03/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great trip. Well planned and well executed. Great mix of planned time and free time. Great value.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Just walking into Gent. It is an original city, nothing comparable to the states. Loved Gent."

Neil

Port Townsend, WA

Tour: 04/03/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

started out rocky but rolinka was willing to stick it out so i was to First time traveler so glad we did

Favorite "WOW" moment

"every day had something to wow about"

Gail

Lexington, MA

Tour: 04/03/19

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This tour, in almost all aspects, was great and met my expectations. The only thing that kept it from an "outstanding" rating was that I found the group size bigger than anticipated. I guess I don"t consider 26 small group. Otherwise the itinerary allowed both the organized and independent time I was looking for when going on a trip to Western Europe. I liked the diversity of what we got to do and see. We had little rain but I should have brought warmer clothes.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I came mostly for the art and lovely small towns. I think my trip to the Mauritshuis in the Hague was a highlight as well as the Van Gogh Museum. Many things I have never seen in person before. The Keukenhof Gardens were also breathtaking. Seeing Anne Frank's actual diary."

Barb

Park Ridge, IL

Tour: 04/03/19

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I thoroughly enjoyed the itinerary and felt we stayed the right amount if time in each location.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the tulip gardens at Keukenhof Tulip gardens was definitely a highlight. Never saw so many beautiful flowers in one day. So glad we were able to go there."

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."

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"

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"

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."

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."

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."

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."

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."

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."

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."

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."

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."

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."

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"

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."

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."

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."

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."

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."

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."

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!"

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!"

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)."

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."

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."

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."

Keith

Weaverville, CA

Tour: 09/05/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Excellent. A wide variety of activities with good pacing. Canals, medieval and gothic towns, flowers, art, chocolate, beer, history, pottery. Amsterdam is a great city. Watch out for the bikes.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's hard to pick. The WWI memorials and Anne Franks House are at the top of my list. These sombre activities were only part of a uplifting fun tour."

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."

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."

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"

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."

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."

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."

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."

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!

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."

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."

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!"

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."

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."

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."

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."

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."

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."

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."

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."

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."

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."

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."

When To Go & Weather

Any time between April and September is a good time to take a Heart of Belgium & Holland tour. However, the months of April, May, and September are best for offering generally good weather, lighter crowds, and the full range of tourist fun. April and early May are also the best time to catch flowers in bloom.

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 the Itinerary section of your tour account. One month prior to the tour departure, you'll find the directions to your first tour hotel and a complete list of hotels where we'll be staying in the Documents section of your tour account.

Flights

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

Most tour members arrange to fly into Brussels (BRU) and out of Amsterdam (AMS) — choose "multicity" on flight-booking websites. It's a 1 to 1½ -hour train ride from the Brussels airport to 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.