† Explanation of BAC Ride Fee – This fee is not included in the Estimated Cost and is non-refundable once submitted. The Ride Fee for US and Canada is $50 and $100 for all other countries, both are per participant.
"Thinking of Holland, I see broad rivers languidly winding through endless fen, lines of incredibly tenuous poplars like giant plumes on the polder’s rim.”
These lines of a famous poem by the Dutch poet Hendrik Marsman characterize the first week of this wonderful journey between Amsterdam and Maastricht, the southernmost city in the Netherlands. Discover magical flat and green landscapes formed by the rivers Vecht, Lower Rhine, Waal, Linge and Meuse: a tangle of old gullies, cut-off meanders, dikes and flood plains with a typical flora and fauna. Visit historical towns, remarkable villages and some castles and gardens along these rivers. In the hospitable province of Limburg, cycling tours will cross borders regularly. Although the Meuse flows through the Netherlands, Germany and Belgium are only a stone’s throw away. You can eat ‘Kuchen’ (cake) in a German ‘Konditorei’ in the morning and have a delicious afternoon beer in a street café in a Belgium village. And we will stay in Maastricht, the capital of the province of Limburg, famous for its lively center and vibrant hospitality.
During the second week of this tour you enter Belgium and visit the world-famous cities of Antwerp, Ghent and Bruges. You will cycle through and discover the Flanders region of Belgium, famous for its medieval towns and a reputation for superb food and drink.
On April 30, 2022, we embark and check-in at 2:00 PM, where the crew will welcome you on board. Around 2.30 PM, the barge sails to Weesp. This small city on the banks of the river Vecht has a historical center with many canals and buildings dating from the seventeenth and eighteenth century. It also has a few beautiful windmills. The scenic river Vecht and the small roads along the river attract yachters and cyclists. As soon as we arrive the tour leader will organize a test ride.
At 5:00 PM, we will have our first social hour, followed by dinner on the boat. After dinner we will have time to stroll through this charming city.
If time and money permit, consider coming early to spend time in Amsterdam, and staying later to visit Bruges. Consult your favorite guidebook to help you plan your pre and post itinerary.
For a more detailed day via day itinerary along with distance per day, contact the ride coordinator who will send you a pdf brochure of the tour.
RIDE RATING: This ride is rated as 1A as the route is mostly flat with some rolling hills, some days being slightly hillier than others. The average daily distance is 27 miles per day for the 13 riding days. Participants may stay aboard the ship rather than ride.
WEATHER May temperatures average 47-62 F(8-17C ) in Amsterdam and 52-64F (11-18C) in Bruges. There is likely to be some rain, so come prepared with rain gear.
LODGING:This is a fixed-base tour as we will be staying on a barge traveling through the towns to our next mooring point. Our barge, the MPS Zwaantje (“Little Swan”), is a comfort-plus class barge, very comfortable, though small, and tastefully furnished with a special saloon and a separate bar. Cabins have full, private bathrooms, air conditioning and heating, and a daily cleaning service. Two rooms have double beds with the remaining ten with twin beds. There is a large sun deck with deck chairs and an awning. You can see pictures at the website (https://boatbiketours.com/ships/zwaantje/)
BAC has reserved all 12 cabins. Other than the crew, the whole barge may be BAC exclusively. However, if not all cabins are filled with BAC members, the infill cabins will be open to the general public.
BIKES: Note that bicycle rental is not included in the BAC tour fee. Due to space limitations on this boat, Eurosail Travel requires that you rent a bike from Eurosail Travel unless you have a medical condition requiring you to use your own bike. The rental bikes are Shimano 21-speed unisex bikes with wider tires and gel seat and are suitable for the cobble stones and dirt roads on this tour. (Contact the Ride Coordinator for a more detailed description of the bikes written by Eurosail Travel.)
If you have a medical condition which requires you to bring your bike (whether single or tandem), you should bring a bike with wide (at least 28 mm) tires. Although we will be riding mostly on paved roads, we will also be riding on dirt or crushed rock packed roads and cobblestones. Road bikes are not suitable for this tour. You will be responsible for the storage and transportation of your bike boxes to the destination of the tour. Please contact the Ride Coordinator to determine whether there is space for your bike.
A regular bike rents for 170 Euros while an E-bike rents for 370 Euros. Included in the rental price are a helmet, water bottle, and a detachable pannier. It is advisable to bring your own helmet. There are only five e-bikes available for rent. If more e-bikes are requested, Eurosail Travel will attempt to reserve bikes from outside vendors, and that price has not yet been determined. Tandems may be allowed if space allows.
BAC and the Ride Coordinator do not warrant the safety and reliability of rental bikes. A sign-up sheet for rental of bikes will be available on a cloud server, which will be downloaded by Eurosail Travel near the beginning of the tour. The Ride Coordinator’s sole role in the bike rental is limited to transferring the bike rental payment as part of your fees and will not advise on the reliability and safety of the bike.
GPS DEVICES AND ROUTES:GPS tracks will be provided for all routes, but it is up to you to know how to use your GPS device before the trip begins. Ride with GPS links will also be provided for all routes.
You need not ride with a group and you may self-guide your way to the next destination. However, two guides will lead two different groups and will narrate and describe the stops on the route.
COST AND ADMINISTRATION: The price of this cruise is $3,500, plus an additional $100 BAC non-refundable registration and international insurance fee. The cost is based upon an exchange rate of $1.25 per Euro, and it may change due to currency fluctuations. The $3500 covers 15 days/14 nights of lodging, all breakfasts, 13 dinners, packed lunches, and coffee and tea on board, happy hour, and tips for the crew. During happy hours, you will be allowed one free drink from the bar, and you may choose to have another at your expense. Your cabin will be cleaned daily. You will receive daily fully guided cycling tours, and some short walking tours. For your bike tours, you will receive maps, gpx tracks, and a water bottle and helmet. The bike is not included in the price. Other exclusions and inclusions are listed in the brochure.
Besides the $2,827 in fees paid to Eurosail Travel, the per-rider cost of $3500 includes $150.00 for happy hours, $100 for tips, $134.00 in leadership costs $184.00 contingency and $105.00 (about three percent of total charges) in credit card fees.
Since we are chartering the whole boat, we are asking that the whole payment of $3500 be paid initially which represents your share of the price of chartering all 24 spots on the boat. By requesting full payment at the outset, this protects you and all others from an increase in the share of payment should there be a cancellation, and no replacement.
LOGISTICS - ARRIVAL AND DEPARTURE: You are responsible for your own travel to Amsterdam and from Bruges. You should fly into Amsterdam Schiphol International Airport (AMS), located a short 5.6 kilometers south of Amsterdam. There a multitude of transit methods, but the most economical is via train. The nearest airport to Bruges is Brussels International Airport and you can take a train from Bruges to the airport.
SINGLES & SOLOS POLICY: There are no solo rooms on this tour. We strongly recommend that singles try to find their own roommates before registering for this tour. If you are a single, the Ride Coordinator will match you with other singles who have applied. Both of you would need to make a commitment to sign the Release of Liability and pay the deposit within seven days.
CANCELLATION POLICY:The BAC ride registration fee and payment processing fee is not refundable unless the entire tour is cancelled. Refunds of tour payments will depend upon whether a replacement rider signs up, and on costs that can be recouped. The amount refunded will be based on the principle that the tour’s remaining participants will not incur any additional cost as a result of cancellations. If the cancelling participant is replaced, a refund will be made at that time. If the cancelling participant can not be replaced, any refund will be determined after the ride and a final expense report has been completed. BAC strongly recommends members to purchase trip insurance, or coverage for any and all costs resulting from the cancellation and interruption of their trip.
RIDE PARTICIPANT RESPONSIBILITY: Please remember that BAC Ride Leaders are volunteers and that successful tours depend on participants providing much of their own support. Participants are expected to come to the ride well trained, in good health and ready to accomplish the required daily riding using well maintained bicycles. All participants should accept responsibility for a safe and enjoyable tour. We encourage you to read the ride description carefully and respond to requests from the Ride Coordinator. While on the ride, support your Ride Coordinator with offers to help with various tasks such as happy hour preparation and clean-up. Please do not interfere with the ride by inviting non-participants onto any portion of the ride or tour. Please keep the Ride Coordinator informed of any special request you may have and respect the Ride Coordinator’s decisions.
SIGN-UP: To submit a request to join this ride use the "links" displayed above this Ride Description. When you are accepted, the Ride Coordinator will move you from the Waitlist to the Pending List. At this time, you will receive an email notification to login to the BAC website to sign the release of liability form and pay the non-refundable BAC ride registration fee and the tour deposit of $3500 by credit card. As soon as your deposit has been processed, your name(s) will be added to the Participant List. To contact the Ride Coordinator, "click" the name at the top of this Ride Description.
Bicycle Adventure Club
PO BOX 23998 San Diego, CA 92193
Telephone (858) 715-9510 firstname.lastname@example.org