BOAT TRIP INCLUDED IN THE TRIP PRICE
If you are joining this trip, you can find all practical trip details here ≫
You have already been to Amsterdam, and maybe to Rotterdam or the Keukenhof gardens. But do you really know Holland? What about all those smaller cities and villages that make this country so unique? In particular the towns North of the nation’s capital are not only major tourists hotspots, like Volendam and Marken, but they are also some of the most important historic places, such as Hoorn and Enkhuizen. Did you for instance know that Cape Horn South from Argentina is named after the Dutch city of Hoorn? Indeed these places were once the Center of world power in the 17th century, the Dutch Golden Age. Discover them all today with this version of Expat Club’s Highlights of Holland trip.
Trip by 4* luxury coach
Bottled water outbound journey
Full afternoon guided tour
Visits Enkhuizen, Hoorn, Volendam, Marken
Boat trip Volendam to Marken
Great group of international people
A lifetime memory
Coach pick-up points
Place Schuman (bus stop next to KBC Bank on roundabout)
Who can join?
Expat Club is known for welcoming a wide variety of international people on its trips. This creates a special, open-minded, safe and friendly environment in which everyone should feel comfortable.
Expat Club loves welcoming young expats, too! If you want to bring your child(ren) up until 18 years, please first add the regular adult ticket(s) to the cart and then go to the cart page. On the cart page, there is a child ticket available for €40.
This special trip leads us around the Markermeer and over the famous Houtribdijk that separates the Markermeer from the IJsselmeer. Along the way we pass the cities Almere and Lelystad in the Flevopolder, the land that was claimed from the sea in the 20th century and now lies several meters under sea level!
Once we are on the other side we visit the famous and formerly powerful trading cities of Enkhuizen and Hoorn as well as the lovely fishing villages Volendam and Marken. This is one epic Dutch road trip that you cannot miss!
Like any other Expat Club trip, also this one is carefully planned. We should have enough time to visit all the places, but note that things may still change due to various circumstances, such as traffic conditions, road closures and other delays (we don’t aim for them of course).
08h00 – Departure from Place Schuman
10h15 – Flevopolder, Almere & Lelystad
11h30 – Houtribdijk
12h00 – Lunch in Enkhuizen
13h00 – Guided tour in Enkhuizen
14h30 – Guided tour in Hoorn
15h45 – Guided tour & free time Volendam
17h30 – Guided tour & free time in Marken
18h00 – Scenic bus tour towards Amsterdam
19h30 – Return trip to Brussels
22h30 – Arrival in Brussels
After about 2 hours driving we arrive at the bridge that will take us from Provinces of Utrecht / North Holland into the Province of Flevoland. This is Holland’s 12th and youngest Province and was almost entirely claimed from the former Zuiderzee (Southern Sea), which was in fact an inner sea until it was closed off by the Afsluitdijk in 1932 (literal meaning: the Close Off Dike).
The Flevopolder is the largest part of Flevoland. It was created in the 1950’s and the 1960’s. Since it is completely surrounded by water, it can be considered the largest artificial island in the world. Flevoland is of course “as flat as a pancake”, with major areas dedicated to farmland because the ground is rather fertile. Still, especially around the large cities of Almere (196.000) and Lelystad (78.000) various industries have settled.
Both cities are directly connected by highways and intercity train connections with Amsterdam, Utrecht and the Northern part of the Netherlands. Also the planned expansion of the runway of Lelystad airport will give a boost to the local economy. It is definitely interesting to see this new part of Holland if you’ve never been in a polder, but we will only drive through with maybe a quick photo stop here and there.
Crossing the Houtribdijk
Over about a decade the sea turned into a huge fresh water lake that was and still is primarily fed with fresh from the large IJssel river. Four decades later, in 1975, a second dike was built between the cities of Lelystad in Flevoland and Enkhuizen in the Western Province of North Holland. This 30 kilometer long dike separated the newly created lake into take lakes, with the IJsselmeer in the North and the Markermeer in the South. We’ll cross this dike during our trip in less than half an hour, with a nice stop in the middle to take a few pictures.
Highlights of North Holland
The Province of North Holland has historically been one the country’s most important region, with major cities such as Amsterdam, Haarlem and Alkmaar. Today we are visiting a few smaller cities, but which played nonetheless a key role in Dutch history a few decades ago. We also visit several famous tourist destinations. Make sure your camera’s memory card is empty, because you’re going to shoot so many MBs of beautiful visual memories.
At the West side of the Houtribdijk lies the beautiful town of Enkhuizen. With Amsterdam and Hoorn it was a leading harbour town during the days of the Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie (VOC), or Dutch East India Company, in the 17th century.
We will have lunch in Enkhuizen, right after arrival and before the guided tour starts. On the menu is chicken saté, spare ribs or a classic burger (all served with fries), or a vegetarian cannelloni (ricotta, mushrooms and tomato sauce). You must reserve in advance.
Our next destination is just 20 kilometers away. The history of the city of Hoorn goes back to the 8th century. Despite that it has only 70.000 inhabitants, its historical importance reaches until the other side of the planet and can be seen on every single globe. The most Southern tip of the Americas is named after the city by Willem Schouten who sailed around this cape in 1616: Cape Horn. Just like Amsterdam and Enkhuizen (and a few other cities) also Hoorn was a major home base for the VOC during Holland’s Golden Age (17th century).
This well-known tourist destination has earned its place in the Netherlands as the most famous village. The number of famous inhabitants is rather stunning. It produced 3 international soccer players and quite a few famous artists and television personalities. Its the birthplace of the beloved and disliked Paling Sound (the Eel Sound, from the fish Eel), whereas several artists call this their home nowadays and in the past, including Picasso and Renoir.
This small village with less than 2.000 inhabitants used to be an island in the Zuiderzee, the sea that now forms the Markermeer and IJsselmeer. Today it is a peninsula, connected to the mainland with a dike that was built in 1941, but finished only in 1957 due to the Second World War.
We depart as usual from Place Schuman with a 4* luxury coach. This bus has nice comfort seats with extra leg space, air-conditioning and an on-board toilet.