Bike and Barge Netherlands & Germany
Amsterdam – Cologne | Magnifique III
On this premium Boat and Bike tour you’ll follow the river Rhine on a fascinating exploration of the history and culture of the Netherlands and Germany. Marvel at ancient Roman settlements near Wesel, explore the remnants of the Industrial revolution in Duisburg and visit historic memorials to WW2 in Arnhem. Along the way you’ll be dazzled by the natural beauty of the Hoge Veluwe National Park, where over 500 plant species can be found in the varied, lush terrain consisting of forest, woodland heath and sparkling lakes. You’ll also have a chance to drink up the views along the famous Rhine Cycle Path, and immerse yourself in exciting architecture – from ancient castles to glass palaces to innovative modern art museums. One thing is clear: you’ll never be short of exciting things to do and see as you journey along the Rhine.
Other highlights of the tour include a visit to Castle Doorneburg and the cathedral of Cologne, a UNESCO World Heritage monument.
- Get away from mass tourism in the Veluwe.
- Visit the biggest inland harbor in Europe.
- Explore the historic city of Amsterdam.
- Sample delicious local beers and other delicacies.
Description of the cabins
The upper deck has five spacious suites (16 m² – 172 sq.ft.) with two separate single beds, a small sitting area and a “French Balcony”: ceiling-to-floor sliding glass doors. The lower deck has fourteen beautiful twin cabins (12 m² – 129 sq.ft.) with two separate single beds and two single cabins (9 m² – 97 sq.ft.). In most cabins and all suites, on prior request, the beds can be set together as a double bed. On request, an additional third bed is available in one of the suites and one of the twin cabins for children up to age 16 (Pullman bed, above one of the other beds).
All cabins have en-suite facilities with a shower, toilet and basin. The cabins on the lower deck have portholes (fixed for safety reasons), upper deck suites have sliding glass doors that can be partly opened. The air conditioning in all cabins can be individually regulated. Furthermore, in each cabin you will find a flat screen satellite TV, a mini safe and a hair dryer.
Description of the ship
The upper deck has a large, tastefully furnished salon with a restaurant area, a nice bar and a lounge area with cozy sitting corners, a wide screen TV and large panoramic windows. There are also two TV screens (a camera and a navigation system) to see the real-time movement and position of the barge. Wi-Fi is available. Large glass doors open to the beautiful partially roofed teak wood sundeck with chairs and tables on the aft deck. There is a cycle deck on the front deck. On the top deck, the barge has a whirlpool/Jacuzzi and some deckchairs to relax and enjoy the scenery while cruising.
Day 1 (Tue): Amsterdam – Wijk bij Duurstede
From 2 p.m you’ll be welcomed on board with tea and coffee and have the opportunity to meet the crew. Your tour will officially begin when the ship leaves the harbour and heads for the Amsterdam – Rhine channel. While cruising your guide will take her time to tell you all about what you can expect to see on the in the week to come. They’ll also give you a bike safety briefing. After you enjoy a freshly-prepared dinner served by our onboard chef, the ship will dock for the night in Wijk bij Duurstede.
Day 2 (Wed): Wijk bij Duurstede – Wageningen | Wageningen – Arnhem (35 km/21 mi. or 40 km/24 mi.)
Today is all about nature. After a hearty breakfast about the Magnifique III, you’ll embark on your first bike excursion, going deep into the Hoge Veluwe National Park. The park features one of the most beautiful landscapes in the Netherlands, where over 500 plant species can be found in the varied, lush terrain consisting of forest, woodland heath and sparkling lakes. You may well catch a glimpse of a deer or a fox, or some spectacular bird life. You’ll also have a chance to soak up some art with a visit the Kröller-Müller museum, renowned for its sculpture park and collection of over 80 Van Gogh paintings. When the day comes to an end you’ll cycle back down towards the river valley, and spend the night in Arnhem.
Day 3 (Thu): Arnhem (38 km/23 mi. or 45 km/27 mi.)
Today we say goodbye to the Veluwe and cycle in a northerly direction towards the unique Hanseatic town of Doesburg, situated next to the IJssel river. This town used to be the oldest fortified town in the Netherlands, and features over 150 monumental buildings, as well as the oldest tavern in the country, founded in 1478! It’s still open for business, and well worth a stop for some delicious apple pie. We’ll cycle back to the boat on the popular bike path running along the banks of the river IJssel. In the evening you’ll have the opportunity to explore Arnhem by night, and have dinner at a restaurant of your choice.
*As the ship will remain stationary today, you also have the option to skip the bike tour and explore Arnhem by foot instead, exploring the Open Air Museum, doing some souvenir shopping, or finding out more about the fascinating WW2 history in the area.
Day 4 (Fr): Arnhem – Pannerden (44 km/ 27 mi.) | Pannerden – Rees
As you enjoy an elaborate breakfast, your ship will cruise along the Pannerdens Kanaal, in the direction of Germany. Just before reaching the Rhine the ship will dock close to Fort Pannerden, constructed in 1869 and used as part of the Dutch defense effort in WW2. After a short visit you’ll cross the river and cycle over the border to visit the city of Kleve, built around the fairytale Schwanenburg Castle. Today’s final destination is the fortified town of Rees. In the evening you can rest and relax, and enjoy a delicious dinner on board. You’re also free to go for an evening stroll and sample some German liquer in Rees.
Day 5 (Sat): Rees – Wesel | Wesel – Duisburg (37 km/22 mi. or 49 km/30 mi.)
In the morning, the Magnifique III will head along the Rhine towards Wesel where your next cycling adventure begins. From here we’ll follow quiet roads through the German countryside, stopping at pretty villages along the way. For the last leg of the trip you’ll leave the medieval times and head straight into the the modern age as you visit the largest inland harbor of Europe, located in Duisberg. Duisburg had to be completely rebuilt after WW2 as 80 percent of the houses where destroyed by bombings. They rebuilt the entire city from the ground-up, creating a cosmopolitan and thoroughly modern German city which is not to be missed when visiting the Rhine.
Day 6 (Sun): Duisburg – Düsseldorf (35 km/21 mi. or 55 km/34 mi.)
This morning we’ll leave the modern industry of Duisberg behind us and continue our journey along the Rhine Cycle Path, which runs all the way from the North Sea to the Swiss Alps, providing some of the most spectacular views in Europe. The path wends through an inviting landscape of wide fields and meadows, taking you all the way to our next destination: Düsseldorf. Düsseldorf is the capital of North Rhine Westphalia, famous for its glamorous shopping streets and incredible offerings of contemporary art. In the city center you can quench your thirst with a delicious icy beer at one of the traditional brewhouses.
Day 7 (Mon): Düsseldorf – Cologne (30 km/18 mi. or 55 km/34 mi.)
Today you’ll continue cycling along the Rhine to reach your final destination, Cologne. There is just so much to see in this diverse, ancient city with more than 2000 years of history to explore. You can visit the oldest perfume factory in the world, and learn all about the creation of the famous Eau de Cologne. Or meander around the vast botanical gardens featuring an exquisite glass palace. And don’t forget a visit to the Cologne Cathedral or to one of its twelve large Romanesque churches. After your busy day of sightseeing you can return to the ship for a delicious farewell dinner on board.
Day 8 (Tue): Cologne
Today marks the end of your tour. After enjoying a hearty breakfast you’ll say your last goodbyes, and can disembark anytime up until 9.30 a.m.
Good to know
Parts that are printed in italics parts will be covered by the ship.
All distances are “approximate distances” of recommended bike tours. The tour details are barring changes, a.o. as a result of nautical, technical or meteorological reasons.
With 22 guests or more, the daily cycling tours will be accompanied by two knowledgeable and multi-lingual tour leaders. On most days, the tour leaders will offer a long and a short (or a quicker and a more relaxed) cycling option. The option for a long tour is also depending on weather conditions and wishes of the group.
When there are less than 22 guests aboard, the tours will be accompanied by one knowledgeable and multi-lingual tour leader.
During days when two bicycle options are possible, the tour leader will make a choice to guide the longer or the shorter option after consultation of the group.
Not all mentioned highlights can be visited during the short cycling option.
You can also choose to ride individually with the help of a map (available on board). GPS tracks will be sent to you 4 weeks before the start date of the tour.
In case you prefer a day of rest, you can skip the bicycle tour and relax on board while cruising to the next town.
On the arrival day is it possible to bring your luggage on board from 11 a.m.