Light and Color Study in Amsterdam and Belgium
with Carol Shelkin and Pam Goode
May 15 – 26, 2015
Houseboat lodgings, canal cruises, visits with international mosaic artists, and a flower festival — how can you go wrong? Timed to coincide with the floriferous color inspiration of southern Holland’s most famous blooms, this retreat will be a delight for the senses as well as a networking mecca.
We’ll dive into the artistic, architectural, cultural and culinary heart of Amsterdam, wandering among the 165 waterways (more than Venice!), discovering art, neighborhoods, hidden courtyards, local mosaics, and charming cafes. Amsterdam’s museums and private art collections feature stunning work by Rembrandt, a host of Van Goghs, and the light-drenched masterpieces of Vermeer.
We’ll couple an art walk with a canal cruise, a trip to the museums with a mosaic session, visit the Anne Frank House, and tiptoe through the seven million flowers of the world-class Keukenhof Gardens.
We’ll enjoy Amsterdam the way the locals do, with houseboat and apartment accommodations in the charming Jordann neighborhood. Fall asleep to the gentle rocking of calm waters and wake to the sound of ducks and swans paddling towards breakfast.
Shopping at Dam Square, floating flower markets and a skip through the legendary Albert Cuyp market (with multi-cultural street food) will fill our afternoons, and an evening will be spent visiting the lovely canals, Gothic-Renaissance architecture, and action of the Red Light District.
Belgium, famous around the world for the highest quality chocolate, beckons us to Brussels for a chocolate walking/tasting/making tour. We’ll tour Grand-Place, considered one of the most beautiful medieval squares in Europe, and revel in sumptuous Art Nouveau of the tree-lined and fountain-y Squares District, considered a laboratory of late nineteenth-century architecture, and the Magritte Museum.
Day trips to Bruges and Ghent will deliver two of Flanders’ most picturesque countryside havens. We’ll see Bruges’ Lake of Love, Beguinage, Our Lady Church, Market Square and lunch at a cafe close to Town Hall Square (Burg) — food lover’s dream and a beer lover’s heaven. We’ll also wander through architecture from the Middle Ages and head for a stroll along the North Sea. A highlight will be an afternoon spent with Belgian mosaic artists, talking shop over tea and chocolate.
To make the most of our time, we’ll fly into Amsterdam, travel by high speed train to Belgium, and return home via the Brussels airport. Local transport will be via train and tram.
Double Occupancy Accommodations in Amsterdam and Belgium
Transfer from Schiphol Amsterdam Airport (AMS) to City Center
Amsterdam Tram Tickets
Sunset Canal Cruise & Dinner
Mosaic Workshop with Greet Weitenberg at Amphora Art
Ann Frank House Entrance & Self Guided Tour
Red Light Walking Tour
Two Museums: Rijksmuseum & Van Gogh
Train to Belgium
Chocolate Making Tour & Workshop
Day Trips to Ghent & Bruges
Transport to Brussels Airport (BRU) for Return Flights
- Personal Expenses
- Travel Insurance
About Carol and Pam
Carol and Pam have many years’ experience traveling the world both separately and together, having teamed to lead several international art retreats. Limiting the tour to 10 adult travelers will allow us to form friendships and bonds that last a lifetime. Learn more about Carol here. Learn more about Pam here and here.
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