Day 055: Rotterdam, The Netherlands
Position: N 52º 21′ 38″ E 004º 53′ 12″
Weather: ºC wind kts, waves m
Last Port: Dover, United Kingdom
Next Port: Copenhagen, Denmark
Status: In Port
From the Navigator
We will make our final approach to the pilot boarding ground at 0300 and plan to board our pilot at 0315. Once the pilot is onboard we will navigate our way through the narrow buoyed channel before starting our long transit up the narrow river to our berth. We will swing the ship just before our berth and back into alongside. We anticipate being alongside by 0700. Once everyone has returned onboard we will let go our lines and thrust off the berth and retrace our courses back out of the river. Once clear we will disembark our local pilot at approximately 2100 before setting various north north easterly course following the traffic lanes north out into the North Sea.
Your tour begins as you board your motorcoach for a scenic drive to Amsterdam. En route, you’ll pass lowland countryside dotted with farms, canals, flower fields and windmills, the perfect symbol of Holland’s past. Keep your camera ready, as photo opportunities present themselves at every turn.
Upon arriving in Amsterdam, you’ll embark on a narrated tour of this city of towers and spires. You’ll drive past the landmark Dam Square and the Baroque Royal Palace, and make your way to Nieuwe Kerk (“New Church”), a 15th-century, late-Gothic cathedral built on an artificial island. Today, the “New Church” is the site of royal coronations and the Central Railway Station, a bustling building with imposing twin towers.
Also on your itinerary is Munttoren (“Mint Tower”). Built on the site of the 15th-century Regulierspoort, a city gate burned down in 1618, the tower received its name when the national mint was transferred here during the French Occupation.
You’ll also witness the Bloemenmarkt floating flower market and the graceful Weeper’s Tower, the site where wives came to say goodbye to their husbands as they embarked on long voyages. A bronze plaque commemorates the English navigator, Henry Hudson, who sailed from here in 1609.
Next, take to the waterways on a narrated boat tour. With more than 60 miles of waterways, Amsterdam boasts more canals than Venice. You’ll board your glass-domed motor launch and take in the fine old houses of the city’s enterprising merchants, picturesque houseboats, and the secret annex where Anne Frank and her family hid from the Nazis.
After your leisurely cruise, you’ll have approximately two hours for lunch/dinner on your own and shopping before your return drive back to the pier in Rotterdam.