Diamonds, Chocolates & Canals

Departed 16th Sep 2018 9 nights Sails from Newcastle Balmoral L1830
Autumnal view of Amsterdam canal and bikes Autumnal view of Amsterdam canal and bikes
Experience scenic cruising of picturesque waterways as Balmoral sails beyond coastal ports and straight into engrossing destinations in the heart of Belgium and the Netherlands. Featuring four of Europe’s finest cities, this nine-night adventure is packed with culture, cuisine and fascinating history. [ReadMoreMob]

Three days in Belgium begins this rewarding cruise in style, calling first into Ghent following an early morning glide along the Ghent-Terneuzen Canal. A collection of Belgium’s very best museums and most iconic landmarks – including the gothic style St Bavo’s Cathedral and the Castle of Counts – await your discovery here, offering a glimpse into the city’s remarkable medieval past. The UNESCO-listed, 91 metre-high Belfry is a ‘must-see’ on a walking tour of the city; while no time spent in Ghent [ReadMoreDesk] is complete without tasting authentic Belgian chocolate and enjoying a relaxing canal boat tour. You’ll have the chance to encounter Antwerp’s abundance of attractions, with an overnight stay affording you time to see the sights at your own pace. Take your time to uncover gems such as the magnificent Cathedral of Our Lady and the Royal Museum of Fine Arts, tucked away within the pretty cobbled streets; and visit the renowned diamond district. Or perhaps you would prefer to take a tour to the historic Battlefields of Waterloo, marvelling at the unspoilt countryside en route. Whatever you choose to do, you’re sure to enjoy the relaxing journey along the Western Scheldt River after departing Antwerp.

Next Balmoral will head north to the Netherlands and into Rotterdam via the Nieuwe Mass. If you’re up early enough you’ll have the opportunity to view the iconic Erasmusbrug Bridge and the city’s soaring skyline from your ship as you sail into port. Once docked you have a full day to explore the Netherlands’ stylish second city, which is home to a plethora of fantastic museums and unique architectural wonders. From the innovative 1970’s Cube Houses to the modern Markthal, there’s something to please all tastes. Finally it’s on to Amsterdam to experience the unique diversity of the vibrant Dutch capital after an early morning scenic cruise of the Nordzeekanaal. There’s much to discover during your overnight stay, including the Rijksmuseum and the Van Gogh Museum; the world-famous Anne Frank House; the grand architecture of the UNESCO-listed Canal Ring; and of course, the legendary Red Light District. You could also use your time to enjoy a typically Dutch experience on a venture to the quaint windmill village of Zaanse Schans, followed by a tour to Edam to learn about how the local cheese is made.