Southern route Holland: bike & boat with MS Normandie
World Cities & Windmills.
Discover Holland in a unique way during your voyage on the MS Normandie.
South Holland has so many faces and is more varied than almost any other province. Big city atmosphere and nature go hand in hand. The waterways offer many opportunities to discover the landscape and big city names also characterize this bike tour: Gouda, Rotterdam, Utrecht, The Hague, Scheveningen - all well-known names! Varied, interesting and often of picturesque beauty, this cycle tour is one of the most beautiful routes in the Netherlands.
On joining this vessel you are immediately aware of the cosy and informal ambience on board. On the upper deck you will find the comfy panorama salon with its bar and the small sauna (advance booking at the reception only) on the main deck the comfortable restaurant (no direct access from the cabin-zone). On deck there are both deck chairs and ordinary chairs and tables, which encourage conversation and communal activity in fresh air. MS NORMANDIE possesses altogether two 1-bed-cabins and forty-nine 2-bed-cabins. They are all outside cabins, giving some 10-11 square metres of space (2-bed) and about 7 qm (1-bed). All 2-bed-cabins on main and upper deck are equipped with two lower beds, shower and WC, hairdryer, TV, safe (deposit), central air-conditioning and a picture window. Only on the upper deck the windows may be opened. 1-bed cabins have one lower bed and are otherwise equipped with same features.
1. day Arrival Rotterdam
We recommend that you arrive early so that you can still take a stroll through the city of Rotterdam. The city is one of the most interesting cities in Europe with its architecture, its port and its nightlife and shopping opportunities. Discover exciting buildings or take a harbor tour. Embarkation on board can take place from 4:00 p.m.
2. day Rotterdam - Dordrecht 40 km
Today's bike tour first takes you along the water via Krimpen aan den IJssel to Kinderdijk. Here are the 19 well-preserved windmills from the 18th century. One of these windmills, which are part of the UNESCO World Heritage, can be visited. After the stopover you cycle through the polder area of the Albwasserwaard to Dordrecht. Dordrecht is considered the oldest city in Holland and inspires with its 1000 monuments and the historic port area.
3. day Dordrecht - Gorinchem 46-53 km
After a short ferry crossing you come to the beautiful nature reserve De Biesbosch. The various rivers that meet here form a freshwater delta covering an area of approximately 8000 hectares. Take a boat trip through this area before cycling further through the Rhine delta and taking the water taxi to Gorinchem. The pretty historic old town of Gorinchem awaits your visit.
4. day Gorinchem - Utrecht 57 km
Today's tour is very varied and interesting. From Gorinchem you first cycle to Leerdam - known for the Leerdam cheese - and then on to the fortified town of Vianen. You cross the Lek by ferry and continue to Vreeswijk with its narrow streets. Visit Fort Jutphaas in the small town of Nieuwegein before reaching Utrecht. Utrecht is considered the heart of Holland. The city was built around the cathedral and is well worth seeing with its traffic-calmed city center and idyllic canals.
5. day Utrecht - Schoonhoven 40-49 km
This morning you have the opportunity to look around Utrecht a little before you cycle through the beautiful Polderland to Oudewater with its witches' weighing house. So-called witches have been weighed here in the past, but have never been found wanting and sentenced. Afterwards you cycle to the silver town of Schoonhoven with its typical Dutch old town.
6. day Schoonhoven - Rotterdam 43 km
Today's stage first takes you to the cheese city of Gouda. When the weather is nice, it's worth taking a detour to the Reeuwijke Plassen lakes for a refreshing swim. We continue quickly to Rotterdam. Visit the port of Rotterdam, which is one of the largest in the world, and the city center, which is well worth seeing.
7. day Rotterdam/Excursion Delft/Excursion The Hague approx. 40 - 49 km
There are two bike tours to choose from: the shorter version leads to Delft, where you have the opportunity to visit the porcelain factory. The longer one takes you directly to the seat of government in The Hague and then on to the North Sea spa and bathing resort of Scheveningen and back. Alternatively, you can return to Rotterdam by train (Rail & Bike, not included, approx. €16.00 per person, not during rush hour between 4:30 p.m. and 6:00 p.m.). Whatever you decide: if you haven't had the opportunity yet. It is worth taking a harbor tour of Europe's largest deep-water port in the late afternoon.
8. day Departing from Rotterdam
Debarkation after breakfast until 9:00 a.m in Rotterdam.
Depending on the official allocation of berths, Vianen can also be called at on the 5th day as an alternative to Schoonhoven. The stages are then as follows:
Day 5: Utrecht - Vianen, bike ride approx. 45-55 km
Day 6: Vianen - Gouda - Rotterdam, bike tour approx. 59 km
prices & services
Individual tours: Here you decide when and with whom you would like to travel. We provide you with detailed tour documents and practical planning tips, and you enjoy our all-in, worry-free package with separate luggage transport throughout your tour.
Guided tours: You can simply get on your bike and enjoy a group holiday (8–20 participants). Your tour guide will take care of everything, and your luggage will be transported separately.
This overview shows you the grade of difficulty for our tours:
In the case of our original Velociped tours, we are the tour operator. We organise and accompany these tours personally.
So that you have an even bigger selection to choose from, we also cover additional routes in collaboration with long-standing partners. With these Velociped partner tours, we are the tour broker.
Minimum number of participants
Velociped can withdraw from the tour twenty-one days before the starting date of the tour, at the latest, in case the minimum number of participants stated under the tour description is not attained. You will duly be informed without any delay in case of a withdrawal. Velociped will of course refund the paid tour price immediately. Please note our General Terms and Conditions.
Prices are per person.
15.04. – 29.04.2023
09.09. – 16.09.2023
06.05. – 02.09.2023
- 7 x overnight stay
- cabins with shower and toilet
- full board
- welcome drink
- coffee and tea in the afternoon
- daily cabin cleaning
- linen and towels
- tourguide on bord
- daily tour discussion
- maps and detailed tour description
- harbour fees
- 7 days hotline service
- GPS tracks on request
Below you will find specific information about the bike and boat tour in Holland. If you have further questions about this trip, you simply call us: Phone: 06421 – 886890.
Arrival by car
Arriving by train: Rotterdam is easily accessible from Germany by train. Current timetable information and price information can be found at www.bahn.de. You will receive the exact pier for your travel date with the travel documents about two weeks before arrival.
Arriving by car: If you are arriving by car, we recommend driving to the jetty first and handing in your luggage and bicycles there. We then recommend using public parking. You will receive final information on the location of the ship and practical information with the detailed travel documents two weeks before the start of the trip.
For reasons of space, we would like to ask you to refrain from luggage with a hard shell, the storage space in the cabin is very limited!
Deck plan MS Normandie
Doppelkabine MS Normandie
Restaurant MS Normandie
Sonnendeck MS Normandie
Available rental bikes
So-called unisex bikes are available (suitable for men and women). They have a 7-speed gear shift with coaster brake and are available in different frame sizes. Please enter therefore your weight when booking the tour. On request and extra charge some electric bikes can be made available.
Bring your own bikes
You can take your own bike with you to a limited extent. There is little space available on the ship for a surcharge: € 10.00 per regular bike or € 25.00 per electric bike. Advance registration is required to bring your own bike.
The captain reserves the rights to make any necessary changes to the itinerary due to wind, weather and navigational features.
For every bicycle and boat tours there are special cancellation conditions which can be found in our terms.
Extra costs which are not included in the tour price
Arrival and departure, parking fees, transfers to the pier, drinks and coffee and tea after 4 p.m., rental bikes, entrance fees and excursion fees, ferry fees and fees for the Waterbus, personal insurance, tips and personal expenses are not included in the tour price and are on site payable.
A fuel surcharge, which is due to the sharp rise in fuel prices, is not included in the cruise price and must be paid in cash on arrival on board the ship. We will inform you of the amount of the surcharge, if any, in the travel documents approx. 3-4 weeks before arrival.
7-days hotline service
In case of chain breakdown, flooding or other bad surprises that makes a continuation of your tour impossible: no problem, we also work during weekends and you can reach us 7 days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m..
Passport and visa requirements, health regulations
For EU citizens, there are no special passport or visa requirements and no health formalities to be considered for this trip.
Corona travel information:
Before booking your trip, please inform yourself about the measures in place to contain the Corona pandemic.
An up-to-date overview of applicable measures and travel and safety advice regarding Covid-19 for all countries in the EU and Switzerland can be found here:
You can also find more information on our website at:
Corona virus and holiday planning
The tour price already includes the statutory insolvency insurance. In addition, we recommend that you take out travel cancellation insurance upon receipt of your travel confirmation in order to protect yourself against financial disadvantages in the event of travel cancellation, interruption of travel, illness or accident.
Gouda is world famous for its cheese, syrup waffles, pipes and earthenware. Wander through narrow picturesque streets, discover interesting museums or stroll on over to one of the most beautiful market squares in Europe!
Utrecht is one of the Netherlands' oldest cities, with a compact medieval centre set out around canals unique to the Netherlands: there's a lower level where warehouses were located in the 13th century, giving the canals a split-level character and meaning that diners and drinkers can nip off the street and enjoy a snack or a drink down at water level.
Rotterdam is a city of many faces: a tough port city, a trendy nightlife city, a sophisticated shopping city, and a hip artistic city. Above all, Rotterdam is the architecture city of Holland that stimulates innovation. Its skyline is always changing. There are many things to do amid Rotterdam’s skyscrapers. You can go on a shopping spree, enjoy some excellent food, and visit a range of museums and attractions in and around the city centre.
The Netherlands' third-largest city, Den Haag, is a stately, regal place filled with embassies and mansions, green boulevards and parks, a refined culinary scene, a clutch of fine museums and a sybaritic cafe culture. Conversely, its seaside suburb of Scheveningen has a loud and lively kitsch and a long stretch of beach.
For nearly a thousand years, the Dutch have been clever in dealing with the water that surrounds them. The sustainable blend of nature and technology used to keep Kinderdijk dry is so uniquely valuable that the area and its windmills were granted UNESCO World Heritage status.