Bustling liberal cities, Windmills, flowers, fish, cafés, cheese - and tall people
Whether you are thinking of ocean going liners, or a leisurely trip along the many Dutch canals and rivers, the Netherlands will provide wonderful opportunities for a cruise holiday.
Amsterdam is one of Europe's most popular sea-going cruise destinations. Since the very earliest days, seafaring has been at the heart of the city's economy, and water is in evidence everywhere. No fewer than 165 canals criss-cross this fascinating and historic city, many of them lined with distinctive and attractive architecture. Cruise ships dock at the elegant Passenger Terminal in Amsterdam, close to the Centraal Station and right in the heart of the city.
Amsterdam is a city of infinite contrast for the visitor, with a wide variety of things to see, ranging from superb museums and galleries. If river and canal cruising is your thing, then the Netherlands offers peaceful cruising from tulip time through to autumn. Boating on the Dutch waterways is one of the best ways to discover the real Netherlands. You will see serene sailing boats, traditional Dutch windmills, waterside cycle routes, neatly kept marinas and nature parks.
Moorings are free, and usually close to the many canal-side bars and cafes offering good food and traditional Dutch hospitality in a country where boating is a way of life. To the north, the south-west of the Frisian region glistens with hundreds of lakes. Cruising is very relaxed, with the locks left open throughout the summer months, and the occasional lift bridge a good place to meet fellow travellers. The Netherlands are an excellent place for a cruising holiday.