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The Netherlands (Holland)

The Tulip Tour

Bike and Boat Holiday




5 days

Prices from

£695 P.P.
There is simply no better way to enjoy iconic Dutch tulips in the "Garden of Amsterdam" than on a 5 day bike and barge mini spring break. Spring in Holland is the most beautiful season, so why not enjoy it cycling and cruising to some unforgettably beautiful areas to see where Dutch tulips – and a wide range of other flowers - are grown, before being shipped around the world? Enjoy some memorable days on board your comfortable barge, with excellent service and a gentle itinerary. 
The bike and barge Tulip Tour of Holland starts in the fascinating city of Amsterdam, called, by some, the smallest metropolis of Europe. Highlights of the city include the UNESCO heritage-listed canal system, its quirky ‘leaning’ buildings, Anne Frank’s home, the Rembrandt House Museum, the Royal Palace of Amsterdam and Dam Square. 
During the tour you can visit the famous Bloemenmarkt, the world's only floating flower market in the centre of Amsterdam. You'll also discover the open air museum ‘Zaanse Schans’ with its beautiful windmills, traditional wooden houses, an old Dutch village, a cheese farm and a traditional wooden clog maker and enjoy guided bicycle tours and some city walks.
Other highlights include the historic city of Haarlem, the world famous Keukenhof flower park near Lisse and the largest flower auction in the world at Aalsmeer. (The flower auction is not open on the weekends and holidays; we therefore can't include entry to the Flower Auction on the 31 Mar, 20 Apr and 24 Apr departures on the MAG IV.
This holiday is run in conjunction with a local partner and you will join their guests on the tour. You will spend your evenings sharing experiences of the day with an international group of cyclists over authentic regional cuisine, cooked and served on board the barge. Please get in touch if you'd like to know the make up of the group booked on your chosen departure.

Holiday Highlights

  • Enjoying the highlights of Holland in spring time
  • Staying on board a Dutch barge, with a friendly mix of different nationalities
  • Visiting the colourful Keukenhof flower gardens which boast around 6 million tulips, hyacinths, daffodils.
  • Discovering the historic towns of Haarlem and Leiden, the birthplace of Rembrandt
  • Experiencing world-renowned flower auctions
  • Exploring Amsterdam

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Saddle Skedaddle gave us some tips too prepare us for the cycling! It was very well organised, the leaders were great and the comfort of the barge was lovely. The food was also superb.

Rosemary, Yorkshire


Day 1
Arrival Amsterdam - Sail to Zaandam
  • Meals: Dinner

Today you’ll embark and be welcomed on board by the local crew. Boarding will take place at 14.00, in the centre of Amsterdam. As soon as all guests have arrived, the barge will set sail for Zaandam, famous for its windmills and cheese making, where your barge will berth in the centre of the city.

Upon arrival into Zaandem you can take a short test ride on your bike, to explore the area. In the evening you can enjoy a short walk through the picturesque centre of Zaandam.

Day 2
Zaandam to Zaanse Schans - Cycle or Sail to Haarlem
14 or 21 Miles / 24 or 34 Kms Approx.
  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner

After breakfast you will enjoy a 5 km ride to the open air museum Zaanse Schans, which features beautiful windmills, traditional wooden houses, an old Dutch village, a cheese farm and a traditional wooden clog maker.

In the afternoon you’ll cycle the 5 km back to the boat. From here you can choose to either cycle the 14 miles / 24 km to Haarlem (or you can take a slightly longer 21 mile / 34 km route). Alternatively, if you don’t fancy the ride, you can take it easy on the barge while enjoying the scenery as it makes the 2.5 hour trip (approx.)

In Haarlem you can visit the historical inner city complete with the Grote Markt, St. Bavo church and the Teylers and Frans Hals-Museums. Your barge will be berthed in the centre of Haarlem for the night, giving you plenty of time to enjoy a short stroll through the city in the afternoon or in the evening.

Day 3
Haarlem to Oude Wetering (via the Keukenhof)
23 or 34 Miles / 38 or 55 Kms Approx.
  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner

Today you’ll ride to the Keukenhof (approx. €18. entry fee included for bookings on the Magnifiques), arguably the most famous flower park in the world, where you can admire hundreds of thousands of tulips, daffodils, hyacinths and many other flowers in full bloom.

You’ll explore the Keukenhof till noon, then jump back on your bikes for the ride to Oude Wetering, covering a distance of approximately 24 miles / 38 km. (Alternatively, you can take a longer route covering 34 miles / 55 km), before reaching your floating hotel which will be waiting for you on the shores of the Westeinder Lake.

Day 4
Oude Wetering to Amsterdam (via Aalsmeer)
18 Miles / 28 Kms Approx.
  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner

This morning you are in for a real treat – an early visit by bus (06.30) to the biggest flower auction in the world at Aalsmeer. In the morning millions of flowers are auctioned off here and are instantly sent out to all parts of the world*. By 09.00 you will return to your barge where a late breakfast will be waiting for you before you make your way to Amsterdam by bicycle. During the afternoon you will join the barge sailing through Amsterdam. Later in the afternoon there is time to discover this amazing city. Visit the inner city flower market, go to a museum, do some shopping… there is just so much to do!

*: The Aalsmeer flower auction is closed during weekends and on public holidays. This is an optional visit. Please be aware that on certain departure dates in 2020, on the Magnifique II (March 26) and the Magnifique III (March 25, April 2 and 15), a visit to the flower auction is not possible.

Day 5
Departure from Amsterdam
  • Meals: Breakfast

Today you’ll say goodbye to your floating hotel, disembarking after breakfast, around 09.30. You may be able to leave your luggage on board until approx. 12.00 to give you some time to explore the beautiful city of Amsterdam, before making your way home.

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The Cycling


Gentle riding on cycle paths and quiet roads across flat terrain. You’ll ride 40% of the time on roads shared with traffic and 60% on a mixture of cycle paths and cycle lanes (separated from motor vehicles). Due to the leisurely nature of the tour we do recommend a hybrid bike, however as the majority of the route sticks to tarmac the route is suitable for road bikes. (There may however be short sections on hard-packed gravel or dirt roads where you may have to take extra care). Suitable for beginner cyclists or those looking for a laid-back break.


Leisure Cycling Grade

Grade 1 : Easy

Distances generally between 10-20 miles / 15-35 kms per day

For those looking for an accessible cycling holiday with manageable daily distances

Based on predominately flat terrain

Our grading guidelines have been carefully created based on our many years of cycling experience, as well as customer feedback from our trips. Of course, if you're still struggling to figure out where you fit on the scale, do feel free to give us a quick call and we'll be more than happy to help!

For more information about our grading system click here.

Is this suitable for you?

If you‘re new to cycling, or perhaps haven’t ridden your bike for a while, then the relaxed rides on our Grade 1 holidays might be for you. Of course no route can be pancake flat the entire way, with some gentle slopes being inevitable, but if you‘re looking for short, daily distances on mostly flat terrain, (with plenty of time to go at your own pace and explore your destination), then these holidays would be a good place to start. We’d expect those on a Grade 1 holiday to be able to ride their bike confidently and generally be fit and healthy.

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This was our first time on this type of holiday, but I loved the concept of the boat and bike rides. It was all we could hope for. Saddle Skedaddle were very good at responding quickly to my early enquiries and responded positively in every instance.

Marian, Kent

Dates & Prices

Private Departures

Private Departures

Are you keen to only travel with your family or friends? Struggling to find the right date? Well, we can organise a private departure for this tour and tailor aspects to suit your group's specific needs. Contact our friendly team and we'll help you turn your dream into reality.

Whats Included Tick

A) Twin en suite cabin (linen and towels provided)

B) Meals as per the itinerary (B=Breakfast, L=Packed Lunch, D=Dinner)

C) Welcome drink

D) Daily coffee and tea (available until 16.00)

E) Welcome meeting with the crew

F) English speaking tour leader

G) Various short city tours

H) Entrance Keukenhof (only if booked on one of the Magnifiques)

I) Entrance North-Holland Dune reserve (only if booked on one of the Magnifiques)

What's not Included Cross

A) Bike rental (available if required)

B) Flights and charges for travelling with your bike (if applicable)

C) Personal clothing and equipment

D) Travel insurance

E) Bar bills, telephone calls, souvenirs, etc.

F) Entrance fees to museums and attractions not mentioned in itinerary

G) Any ferry fees en route

H) Single cabin (available on request)

I) Travel arrangements to / from the boarding point in Amsterdam

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The Essentials

Travel Options

We ask that you make your own way to your barge in Amsterdam. Boarding takes place on day 1 of the tour at 14.00 – and shortly after a short cruise will take you to Zaandam. You’ll disembark on day 5 after breakfast, before 09.30.

There is a direct ferry route from Newcastle in the UK to Amsterdam making driving an easy option. We can provide details on parking upon booking.

The most convenient airport to fly into and back from is Amsterdam Schipol Airport (AMS). Once you have arrived at Schipol airport you will need to transfer by train to Amsterdam Central station. This takes around 20 minutes and costs approximately 5 Euros – there are many regular connections. You can check schedules and book trains via www.ns.nl/en. Your guest information pack (sent out two or three weeks in advance) will state the name of your barge and the embarkation point in Amsterdam (with directions).

Please check your travel arrangements with Skedaddle before booking so that we can ensure they fit in with the tour schedule.


Accommodation on this trip is on a barge.

We have three barges available: the Fluvius, Magnifique II and Magnifique IV

Fluvius 18 twin cabins and 4 doubles. On the upper deck; 3 standard twins (11 m² – 118 sq.ft. ) with 2 separate single beds and 4 doubles (12 m² – 129 sq.ft. ) with a double bed (140×200 cm) and a large panoramic window. On the lower deck, 14 standard twins (11 m² – 118 sq.ft.) and 1 smaller twin (10 m² – 108 sq.ft.), all of which have 2 separate single beds. Each cabin has an en-suite bathroom with shower, toilet and basin and a fixed window, the panoramic window in the doubles can be opened. The Fluvius has a large lounge (air-conditioned) with TV, bar and a semi-separate restaurant area.

Magnifique II 8 lovely cabins on the lower deck, all with two beds, an en-suite bathroom, satellite TV, mini-safe and hairdryer. The 10 suites on the main deck also have a small sitting area and large windows. The restaurant is situated on the lower deck and the lounge and bar area on the upper deck; ideal spots to enjoy life aboard! Let’s not forget about the Jacuzzi and deckchairs on the top deck.

Magnifique IV 10 generous suites on the upper deck, with 8 twins and the dining room on the lower deck. The spacious suites, each measuring 16 m² (172 ft²), have 2 separate adjacent beds (200×160 cm – 78×62 inches), a sitting area, and a large sliding window. The twins below deck; 12 m² (129 ft²) feature 2 single beds and fixed portholes. All cabins have their own private bathroom with shower, basin and toilet.

Bike Hire

The bikes on board are traditional touring bikes (unisex models, usually with a low, step-through frame) with 7 or 8 gears and hand brakes, with pannier bags provided.

We also have e-bikes available, however only a small number on each departure and so these are always on request.

Your tour leader will have both a puncture repair kit and a pump to help out with any bike issues along the way.

We always recommend bringing along your own helmet, however we can provide these locally if preferred at no additional cost. Please request at the time of booking.

It is not possible on this tour to bring your own pedals, however if you’d like to bring your own saddle please do let us know in advance, and we can double check whether this will be possible on your chosen departure, and whether you’ll need to bring along any specific tools.

You are welcome to bring along your own bikes if preferred, however the barges have limited space for bikes so this does need to be requested well in advance to secure a spot. Please contact us to check whether this will be possible on your preferred date.

If you‘re bringing along your own electric bike, again the spaces on board are limited so this is also on request, and there will be a fee of £15.

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News, Reviews & Stories

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