The IJssel tour is eastern Holland with castles, ancient towns, national parks, lakes and canals; older Netherlands at its best. The cycling starts along the scenic river Vecht with its prosperous mansions. Utrecht, once a bishop seat shows its long history with all its churches, canals and city castles. We visit Oosterbeek, which hosts the famous Dutch Reformed Church, one of the oldest in the Netherlands. Along the river landscape of the delta country, we cycle towards Arnhem where the Allied effort to end World War II took place. On our way we make a stop at the Arnhem Oosterbeek War Cemetery established in 1945 where Allied Forces from World War II are buried. The barge is docked in the Rhine, near the John Frost Bridge, known as "A Bridge Too Far."
We cycle through heather fields and forests that create De Hoge Veluwe National Park. The park hosts the Kroller-Mueller Museum, which is renowned for its collection of Van Gogh and other impressionistic paintings. The sculpture garden is one of the largest in Europe and its unique collection offers more than 100 sculptures. The river IJssel leads us along old Hanseatic cities like Zutphen, Deventer - a lively town with a historic ambience and beautiful surroundings - and Hattem, where trade took place in the 14th century. We'll visit the Palace Het Loo, completed in 1686 and the home to Queen Wilhelmina until her death in 1962. A National Museum since 1984, we tour the beautiful palace complete with furnishings and paintings along with its impressive French gardens.
Enjoy the "Venice of the North" in Giethoorn where waterways are more abundant than roads. Strategical places like the fortified town of Naarden and Muiderslot castle from 1285 are on our path to Amsterdam. The tour begins and ends in Amsterdam. Your last full day is spent in Amsterdam.
Tours begin on Saturday in Europe; you must leave the USA on Friday to arrive on Saturday. Guests need to arrive at the barge by noon the day the tour starts. On the last day of the tour guests debark by 9:00 am.