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Panache - Classic Cruise from Holland to Belgium (May 21 2017)

Delft to Courtrai



ITINERARY*

Note: This itinerary features longer daily cruising on larger waterways, so it is different from a gentler-paced canal cruise, with limited opportunities for walking and cycling along towpaths en route. However, there is a wide selection of fascinating escorted excursions during the voyage.


Sunday, Day 1 Delft

Guests are met in Amsterdam and transferred by private chauffeured minibus to Panache. Once on board, enjoy a Champagne Welcome and an introduction to your crew and hotel barge. Time perhaps for a walk or cycle ride. Dinner on board.

Monday, Day 2 Delft to Dordrecht

This morning, we visit Delft, an unspoilt town more than 750 years old that began life as the home port of the Dutch East India Company, and we go to the Royal Delft pottery, a short distance from our mooring to learn how this world-famous porcelain is made. We return to the barge for lunch and then enjoy an afternoon cruise along the canals to the town of Dordrecht. Dinner on board.

Tuesday, Day 3 Dordrecht to Tholen

A morning cruise out of Dordrecht to the River Ijssel and across Holland’s Diep, part of the Dutch estuaries system, to the old fortress town of Willemstad. We take a tour of this charming town, named in honour of William I of Orange and which is preserved in its original state, with windmill dykes, an old church, fortifications and a 15th century arsenal. After lunch back on board, we cruise to our mooring at Tholen. Dinner on board.

Wednesday, Day 4 Tholen to Antwerp

This morning, we will cruise out of Holland and cross the border into Belgium, arriving in Antwerp, the city of Rubens and dating back to the Middle Ages. After lunch on board, we can take a tour of Rubens' house, then explore this beautiful Flemish city further with a walk in the Oude Stad, or Old Quarter, its labyrinth of winding streets and the Grand market Square, famous for its Renaissance-style architecture. Dinner ashore at a local restaurant.

Thursday, Day 5 Antwerp to Ghent

After breakfast, we catch the flood tide on our cruise up the winding "Sea Schelde" which takes us to the historic city of Ghent, also known as the ‘flower city of Belgium’. This afternoon we enjoy a walking tour of Ghent, with its dramatic Gothic cathedral and pedestrianised centre that acts like a museum to early Flemish architecture. Free time also to shop and explore. Dinner on board.
 

Friday, Day 6 Ghent to Courtrai

This morning, we embark on our final cruise, from Ghent to Courtrai. After lunch on board we drive to Oudenaaarde and the Liefmans Brewery, established back in the 17th century. The brewery is particularly well-known for using traditional techniques to make such beers as its Cuvée Brut ‘Kriek’, a cherry beer made using only locally grown cherries. Captain’s Farewell Dinner on board.

Saturday, Day 7 Courtrai

After breakfast, guests are transferred by private chauffeured minibus to their choice of location in Bruges. 
 
*This is a sample itinerary and is subject to change.
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