Amsterdam: Ultimate Food & Spirits Experience

April 30—May 6, 2017 | From $4,450


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Introduction

There are few places in the world that are as alive and progressive as Amsterdam: Attitudes about topics such as the use of narcotics and the sex industry are more liberal here than they are in most places on earth. What better way to explore this fascinating city and culture than through its food and drink? To do so, we’ve partnered with local culinary experts to guide this innovative tour through Amsterdam and some of its surrounding cities. From private dinner cruises to a gin tasting at the oldest church in Haarlem, you'll explore the Netherlands in a way that most travelers never get to experience.

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Itinerary @ a Glance

  • April 30: Arrive in Amsterdam + Evening Dinner Cruise
  • May 1: A Taste of Amsterdam Walking Tour
  • May 2: Discovering Haarlem & Hoofddorp
  • May 3: Exploring The Hague & Rotterdam
  • May 4: Experience the Tulip Festival in Keukenhoff
  • May 5: Free Day to Explore Amsterdam
  • May 6: Say Goodbye to Amsterdam!

Highlights of the Trip

  • Amsterdam walking tour with a local culinary expert
  • Sampling beers @ a microbrewery in Haarlem
  • Gin tasting @ an old church in Hoofddorp
  • Dining in the world-famous Markthal in Rotterdam
  • Seeing 7 million tulips in full bloom in Keukenhoff
  • A private cheese tasting at Reypenaer
  • Exploring Amsterdam art & culture on your own

Detailed Itinerary

April 30 | Welcome to Amsterdam!

Upon arrival at Schiphol Airport, you’ll clear customs and immigration before being met in the arrival hall and escorted to the bus for your transfer to the Hilton DoubleTree in Amsterdam. That evening, take a short walk to your boat that evening for a three-hour private dinner canal cruise on a 1920’s Saloon boat. Thanks to its narrow design, this beautifully refurbished vessel can go just about anywhere, from the narrow canals of the Amsterdam 'Jordaan' area to the heart of the famed red-light district. For the classic, 3-course dinner, we collaborate with several top chefs in Amsterdam, tying up at a different restaurant for each course. The menu will be sent to you in advance, as will the wine list. This is the season of the Amsterdam Light Festival if traveling in December: Artists, architects, and (light) designers from all over the world bring their light artworks and installations alive around the city. Enjoy this stunning display of lights, colors, and art from the boat.

May 1 | A Taste of Amsterdam Walking Tour

Meet your guide for a full-day walking tour of Amsterdam. This will give you a local’s view of the city including some tasting of typical Dutch cuisine. You’ll have the opportunity to see landmarks like Waterlooplein, Munt tower, Flower Market, Dam Square, Royal Palace, National Monument, and New Church. Walk past the Oude Kerk, through Amsterdam Museum passage to the Begijnhof, and on to The Jordaan and Nine Streets. Along Nine Streets, we'll enjoy a tasting at the microbrewery of De Prael. This brewery is one of Amsterdam’s oldest and offers a view of the brewing process of their traditional beer while you sample the flavors that have made them so popular.

May 2 | Haarlem & Hoofddorp

After a restful evening, meet your private guide in the hotel lobby and head to the Medieval city of Haarlem, famous for its ancient buildings, cobbled streets, and winding waterways. Stroll around the city center, stop to see the Gothic Cathedral of Saint Bavo, and take in the market square. You’ll also be introduced to the Jopenkerk, a former church in the center of Haarlem, which has been transformed into a brewery and café. Jopen uses centuries-old recipes to brew classic beers, and you can view the brewing process and enjoy tastings of the various Jopen flavors. Continue to Jopenkerk Hoofddorp, the oldest church in Haarlemmermeer, which is adorned with a beautiful artisan distillery. Here, Gospel gin — unique and full of rich flavor with a wonderfully well-balanced blend created with pure ingredients — is distilled. For lunch, we’ve planned a delightful organic menu at restaurant Vork & Mes. The seating pavilion seems to float on the lake and is surrounded by a garden where they grow the food they serve. Upon your return to Amsterdam, stop at Museum de Cruquius on the European Route of Industrial Heritage (ERIH), which occupies an old steam pumping station that became an internationally known engineering landmark back in the 1800’s for pumping dry the area of Haarlemmermeer.

May 3 | The Hague & Rotterdam

After breakfast, meet your guide in the hotel lobby and enjoy a scenic drive to The Hague. Located in the western coast of the Netherlands, the city serves as the seat of the Dutch government (but is technically not the capital). Once in The Hague, start with the Louwman Museum, which contains world’s oldest private collection of automobiles. Highlights include historic Spykers, a James Bond DB5 Aston Martin, the D-type Jaguar (winner of the 1957 Le Mans), Prince Bernard’s old Ferrari, and the orange Porsche that belonged to Carel Godin de Beaufort. The museum also has the second oldest car in the world: A De Dion Bouton & Trepardoux (1887). Your tour continues in the city center, where you will have your choice of visiting either:

  • The Mauritshuis, home to a stunning collection of Dutch paintings that includes Vermeer’s Girl with a Pearl Earring and Rembrandts Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Tulp.
  • Escher in the Palace, the former winter palace of Queen Mother Emma, that has a permanent exhibition of the famous and phantasmagorical visions of artist M.C. Escher.

After, enjoy a short stroll through The Hague’s historic city center, including the Binnenhof, where the Dutch Parliament is based. Next, continue on to the city of Rotterdam, where you have a short tour of the main sights and pay a visit to the Markthal, the largest weekly open-air fresh food and hardware market in the Netherlands and winner of several international design awards. This is where artist, Arno Coenen, created the Horn of Plenty, the largest work of art in the world; covering an area of 11,000-square meters. Here you will be free to walk around, enjoying foods from the 176 different nationalities that have made Rotterdam their home. Markthal, the largest weekly open-air fresh food and hardware market in the Netherlands and winner of several international design awards. Enjoy Tapas & Mezzes at Obba's Food Bar with friends. Ending the evening with a cup of coffee and Honey Syrup Stroopwaffel.

May 4 | Keukenhoff & Woerden

Today, we’ll head over to the famous Aalsmeer flower auction, the world’s largest flower auction with over 20 million flowers sold daily. We’ll also drive through the countryside as we see the world’s largest flower garden: Keukenhof Gardens. Known for planting approximately seven million flower, this garden offers a beautiful landscape that’s hard to find anywhere other than the Netherlands. In the afternoon, after stopping for lunch in Woerden, we’ll stroll along the Old Rhine River to find the Reypenaer cheese ripening warehouse and savor the sweet aromas of cheese with an expert cheese taster. A private cheese tasting at Reypenaer, which is widely recognized Holland’s best cheese. Personally test and evaluate the flavor, the aroma and the qualities of the Reypenaer cheeses with wine and port all under the guidance of an expert cheese taster.

May 5 | Free Day to Explore Amsterdam

Today, the day is yours to explore Amsterdam on your own or with your new friends. While no guides will be with you on this day, there are plenty of sites to explore in Amsterdam. Rent a bicycle and ride around the city center area, stop by one of the city's famous coffee shops, pay a visit to the Anne Frank Museum, experience the art of at the Rijksmuseum or the Van Gogh Museum, grab a pint at the Heineken Brewery, or find a little retail therapy in the boutique shops dotted around the city. Of course, there are plenty of restaurants to explore as well ... Our expert guides will also be able to make recommendations for you!

May 6 | Depart for Home

Today, the trip ends after breakfast. You will be transferred to the airport for your flight home or on to your next destination.


Accommodations

The Pulitzer Hotel | Amsterdam

The Pulitzer Hotel is set within twenty-five restored 17th and 18th century houses that once set the scene for prosperous business deals between trade merchants and played home to the decadent and flamboyant lives of Dutch aristocrats. Discover quintessential Dutch elegance in this intricate maze of canal houses. This hidden neighborhood features: intimate guest rooms, tranquil inner gardens, a garden café, a hotel bar, and a restaurant that serves simple yet beautifully crafted dishes. The Pulitzer is a unique blend of up-market, traditional, and modern Dutch craftsmanship hidden amongst the city’s iconic canals.


Pricing & Inclusions

Trip Price: $4,450/pp

The cost of this Amsterdam: The Ultimate Food & Spirits Experience is $4,450 per person. This price is based on a minimum group size of 6 people and is based on double occupancy. Single supplement may be available. Contact us for more info.

Please Note: We will adhere to this itinerary as much as possible. However, certain conditions (weather, etc.) may require us to make slight changes in the itinerary. We reserve the right to alter the itinerary at any time if deemed to be in the best interest and/or the safety of the group. We will attempt to notify participants of changes as far in advance as possible. Costs incurred by such changes will be the responsibility of the participant.

What's Included?

  • Private transfers to/from Amsterdam Schiphol International Airport
  • Double occupancy in Classic Room @ The Pulitzer Hotel including breakfast and city tax for 6 nights
  • Private Dinner canal cruise on day 1 with Captain and Hostess; dinner and soft drinks included
  • Full-day walking tour with private guide on day 2, including tastings, public transport. And entrance to the Rijksmuseum
  • Full-day tour with driver / guide to Haarlem & Hoofddorp; includes beer, Jenever tastings, entrance to Cruiquis Museum
  • 5-course tasting menu lunch at Vork & Mes including soft drinks
  • Full-day tour of The Hague & Rotterdam; includes entrance to Louwman Museum and Escher or Mauritshuis.
  • Full-day tour of flower auction, Keukenhof Gardens, and Woerden; includes entrance, lunch, and private cheese tastings

What's Not Included?

  • International airfare and/or other transportation between your home and Amsterdam
  • Meals and beverages not listed in the above itinerary
  • Items of a personal nature + souvenirs
  • Tips & gratuities for guides / staff
  • Travel Insurance – Strongly recommended!
  • Any additional expenses not listed above

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