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Tulip season, Netherlands

Venice Simplon-Orient-Express & AmaWaterways: Venice & Tulips

12-day luxury rail & cruise holiday from £9,600 pp incl. flights


Short description

Explore Europe’s canal-side cities in style during tulip time


  • Take an iconic journey in the storied carriages of the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express
  • Marvel at the colours of the Dutch countryside during tulip time with AmaWaterways
  • Explore Venice from the comfort of a historic, centrally located 5-star hotel
  • Enjoy time at leisure to explore Amsterdam’s charms
  • The perfect combination of luxury on the rails and the water

In Brief

  • 2 Nights Venice
  • 1 Night Venice Simplon-Orient-Express
  • 3 Nights Amsterdam
  • 1 Night Hoorn
  • 1 Night Middelburg
  • 1 Night Ghent
  • 1 Night Antwerp
  • 1 Night Rotterdam
  • 1 Night Amsterdam


Recommended for:
Rail journey | River cruise

Combine the most iconic railway journey with a spectacular luxury river cruise during tulip time on this exploration of Venice, the Netherlands, and Belgium. Spend two days exploring the history and charms of Venice before boarding Belmond’s storied carriages on the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express for a night of train travel that simply glitters with old-world glitz. Explore Amsterdam for a couple of days, and then join on a seven-night all-inclusive tulip time river cruise through the Dutch and Belgian countryside. Visit small villages, family-run tulip farms, windmills, and trendy cities as you embrace the food and culture of this region. With five-star accommodations for the duration of your trip, this is a way to visit some of Europe’s most celebrated canal-side towns and cities in true luxury style.

Day by day itinerary

Day 1
UK to Venice, Italy

Your journey begins today as you fly from home in the UK to Venice. On arrival, you will be privately transferred to your hotel, the beautiful Luna Baglioni. Settle in and enjoy the rest of the day at leisure to explore on your own. 

Stay: Baglioni Hotel Luna, Venice (Deluxe)

Day 2
Venice, Italy

Today, explore some of Venice’s most iconic sights on a walking tour. During your time wandering Venice’s warren of charming streets and canals, you can expect to see famous spots such as St. Mark’s Square and Basilica and Doge’s Palace, along with some of Venice’s best-known bridges, such as the Rialto Bridge and the Bridge of Sighs. Your guide will help you to get your bearings in this historic city, showing you some hidden gems along the way. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure.

Stay: Baglioni Hotel Luna, Venice (Deluxe)

Meals: B

Day 3
Board the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express

It’s from one canal city to another today. After breakfast at your hotel, you’ll be transferred to the iconic Venice Simplon-Orient-Express to board for a once-in-a-lifetime journey to Amsterdam full of old-world glamour.

Once you have checked into your cabin and settled in, you’ll be treated to a sumptuous three-course lunch onboard, watching northern Italy unfold before your eyes out the train windows. There will be plenty of time this afternoon to take in the sights as you begin to make your way across the continent. A four-course seasonal dinner tonight is followed by dancing and entertainment coupled with tasty cocktails in the Bar Car, including a Midnight Brunch.

Stay: Venice Simplon-Orient-Express (Deluxe)

Meals: B L D

Day 4
Amsterdam, Netherlands

Coffee and pastries in your train cabin are paired with stunning mountainous views in the morning. Enjoy one last lavish lunch onboard the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express before disembarking in Amsterdam this afternoon.

On arrival, you’ll be privately transferred to your five-star hotel accommodations and can spend the rest of the day at leisure exploring on your own.

Stay: Amsterdam accommodation (Deluxe)

Meals: B

Day 5
Amsterdam, Netherlands

Today is yours to explore the charming canal city of Amsterdam at your leisure. Depending on your interests, you may want to take to the waters on a canal cruise or rent a bicycle and pedal past the iconic houses and canal boats. Art aficionados will want to make time for the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum, and Museum Rembrandthuis. You may also want to leave time in your day to visit the Anne Frank House to see where the teenaged diarist and her family secreted themselves away during World War II.

Stay: Amsterdam accommodation (Deluxe)

Meals: B

Day 6
Board the AmaSerena

Enjoy breakfast at your hotel and the morning at leisure. Later today, you will be privately transferred to the AmaSerena to check-in for your seven-night river cruise. Dinner will be served onboard this evening.

Stay: AmaSerena

Meals: B D

Day 7
Amsterdam & Hoorn, Netherlands

This morning’s scenic cruising will take you through the IJsselmeer to Hoorn, where you’ll choose from four shore excursion options. In the spirit of tulip time, visit a family-run tulip farm with over one million of these colourful flowers. Alternatively, take a walking tour of Hoorn and visit the Zuiderzee Museum, where you’ll feel as though you’ve stepped back in time as you learn the maritime culture and history of the region. If you’re looking to get active, hop on a bicycle and ride through the Dutch countryside.

Stay: AmaSerena

Meals: B L D

Day 8
Middelburg, Netherlands

Enjoy views of the Delta this morning as you cruise to medieval Middelburg. This city was once the second-largest trading city of the Dutch East India Company, and it is yours to explore. Choose a walking tour or a guided bike ride, or perhaps you’d like to visit the Flood Museum to learn about the Delta Works. This unique storm surge barrier was created after a 1953 flood disaster that occurred because more than half the Netherlands actually lies below sea level.

Stay: AmaSerena

Meals: B L D

Day 9
Ghent, Belgium

As you step into Belgium today, the choice of shore excursions is varied to suit different interests. Take a full-day excursion to Bruges to see Michelangelo’s beautiful Carrara marble Madonna and Child sculpture at the Church of Our Lady.

If you’d rather discover not one but two medieval cities today, do a highlights tour of Bruges and Ghent. Bruges is one of the best-preserved medieval cities in Europe, and Ghent contains canal-side architecture and sites such as the Castle of the Counts and Ghent Cathedral.

To indulge your sweet tooth, learn the art of Belgian chocolate-making from a master chocolatier. Finally, if you’d like something slower paced, take an easy walking tour of Ghent and enjoy time there at leisure.

Stay: AmaSerena

Meals: B L D

Day 10
Antwerp, Belgium

Antwerp is a trendy Belgian city that is perfect to be explored on a walking tour. Along the way, you’ll see Steen Castle, Grote Market, and Brabo Fountain, along with the UNESCO-designated Cathedral of Our Lady. If you prefer something a bit more challenging, join a guided bicycle tour of the city.

Later this afternoon, choose between two excursions. Foodies will jump at the chance for a culinary tour, featuring opportunities to sample some Belgian specialities: chocolate, waffles, and beer. If you’re more interested in flora than food, roam through Floralia, a flower show that happens each spring featuring approximately a million bulbs that are hand-planted each year by the castle staff.

Stay: AmaSerena

Meals: B L D

Day 11
Rotterdam & Kinderdijk, Netherlands

Spend the morning in Rotterdam. A walking tour allows you to taste local specialities. Perhaps you’d rather visit Delfshaven, where the Pilgrims departed on the Speedwell in 1620. They stopped in Southampton, with many boarding the Mayflower for Plymouth Rock. Alternatively, venture to the Delft, home of the painter Vermeer, Delft Blue earthenware, and the Royal House. While here, visit the Royal Delft Porcelain Factory and Museum. Active travellers will enjoy a cycling jaunt past Rotterdam’s famous landmarks.

The afternoon brings you to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Kinderdijk. This lovely village is renowned for its high concentration of 18th-century windmills. Fittingly, today’s visit brings you to a private windmill via electric boat, or you can pedal past on a bicycle.

Stay: AmaSerena

Meals: B L D

Day 12
Amsterdam, Netherlands

It’s back to Amsterdam today for your last full day, and you’ll be delving fully back into tulip time with a visit to one of the world’s most impressive public gardens, Keukenhof. These gardens boast a spectacular display of millions of flowering tulips over their 70 acres. This legendary garden is open only nine weeks out of the year and is referred to by many as the “Garden of Europe.”

Spend the rest of the day enjoying Amsterdam’s beautiful canal-side homes and the fabled Skinny Bridge. 

Stay: AmaSerena

Meals: B L D

Days 13
Return to UK

Enjoy breakfast onboard before disembarkation. Afterwards, you will be transferred to the airport for your flight home to the UK.

Meals: B



Any element of this cruise can be adjusted to suit your needs. Just contact us to find out more.

Accommodation rating: Deluxe

12-day luxury rail & cruise holiday
from £9,600 pp incl. flights

12 April 2025 departure


  • Scheduled flight from UK to Venice
  • 2-nights accommodation at 5-star Baglioni Luna hotel in Venice with daily breakfast
  • Private walking tour of Venice
  • Venice Simplon-Orient-Express overnight train from Venice to Amsterdam in a Historic Cabin (please ask for upgrade options to Suites and Grande Suites)
  • 2-nights at a 5-star hotel in Amsterdam with daily breakfast 
  • 7-night AmaWaterways cruise aboard AmaSerena in a lead-in stateroom (please call for upgrade options)
  • Flight from Amsterdam to the UK

AmaWaterways cruise includes:

  • Entertainment on demand system featuring, movies, TV shows, news and music
  • Wellness Program with a dedicated Wellness Host
  • Personalized service from a highly trained Cruise Manager during both cruise and land programs
  • Internet and Wi-Fi access
  • Daily entertainment including cultural performances
  • Award-winning dining in a variety of venues
  • The Chef’s Table specialty restaurant
  • La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs exclusive dining experience
  • Unlimited fine wine, beer and soft drinks with lunch and dinner
  • Unlimited sparkling wine and fresh juice with breakfast
  • Sip & Sail Daily Cocktail Hour with complimentary wine, beer, spirits and soft drinks
  • Tapas, sandwiches, snacks and refreshments served daily in the Main Lounge
  • Immersive tours in every destination with gentle, regular, active and late-riser tour options
  • Bike tours and hikes

Terms & Conditions

Prices are per person based on two people sharing a twin/double room; prices are subject to availability and possible change; normal booking conditions apply.

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