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ToursNetherlandsHistoric Hanseatic cities
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Historic Hanseatic cities

Premium Experience the higher levels of comfort, smaller groups and extra’s.

Beautiful landscape, historical towns

Difficulty
  • Level 1: easy tours, very flat terrain
  • Level 2: quite easy tours, mostly flat terrain
  • Level 3: requires a higher level of exertion, medium hilly terrain
  • Level 4: for experienced cyclists, hilly terrain with climbs
Difficulty level 1
Difficulty level 1
Duration of the tour.
time
8 days
Guidance
  • Guided cycling: A tour leader will guide you during the cycling days
  • Independent cycling: No tour leader, the ships’ crew does daily briefing, independent cycling
guidance
Guided cycling

The Hansa Highlights Tour will take you through the central region of the Netherlands, a region shaped over millennia by the numerous rivers and streams that crisscross the area. You will cycle through the Rhine valley and its very beautiful tributary the IJssel River, cross the so-called border lakes region of the Netherlands and will visit fascinating cities and villages such as Amsterdam, Arnhem, Deventer, Kampen, Harderwijk and Elburg, to name a few. Given the flat terrain along the 125 km IJssel valley, the tour is perfect for anyone who […]

From €1489 p.p.

Bike along the Rhine & IJssel

Visit fascinating Hanseatic cities

Learn about the lovely reclaimed polderlands

Premium barges with max. 20 – 40 passengers

Monday to Friday
Amsterdam: 08:30 to 22:00
New York: 6:00AM to 7:00PM
+31 20 72 35 400 NL
+1 203 814 1249 USA
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Historic Hanseatic cities

About this tour

The Hansa Highlights Tour will take you through the central region of the Netherlands, a region shaped over millennia by the numerous rivers and streams that crisscross the area.

You will cycle through the Rhine valley and its very beautiful tributary the IJssel River, cross the so-called border lakes region of the Netherlands and will visit fascinating cities and villages such as Amsterdam, Arnhem, Deventer, Kampen, Harderwijk and Elburg, to name a few. Given the flat terrain along the 125 km IJssel valley, the tour is perfect for anyone who wants to leisurely cycle along the many winding trails in this diverse area.

The natural beauty of the region is sure to impress as will the Hanseatic towns of the region that flourished during the Middle Ages when the IJssel was one of the most important trade routes in Europe. Another attraction is the so-called border lakes, between the “old” land with many beautiful harbor towns and the “new” land of the Flevoland, which was once the bottom of the sea, before the land was reclaimed in the 1950s and 1960s. In this area you will leisurely cycle through a number of picturesque fishing harbors where life seemingly moves at a much slower pace. For many Dutch, this probably not so well-known area is one of their favorite cycling areas.

The ship – Your sailing hotel
In between cycling excursions, you cruise along with the ship, which travels to a new destination every day. You dine, sleep and eat breakfast on board. You’ll receive a packed lunch every day, and you can usually choose between a longer or shorter bike ride. It’s also possible to spend a day on board if you like. There are rental bikes on board, but you can also bring your own if you mention it when booking.

Fully Guided
Accompanied by a competent, professional and multilingual tour leader, you and the group will visit interesting sights and places on the daily cycling tours. During the bike tour, they will explain the local history and culture behind the things you encounter along the way. You can also choose to ride individually with the help of the Ride with GPS app and our BBT cycling map (available on board).

Prepare yourself for this tour with our Travel Prep-tips

Preparation is half the fun, so why not start straight away?
See all tips

Day to day program Lena Maria/La Mar

Parts that are printed in italics parts will be covered by the ship.

All distances are “approximate distances” of recommended bike tours.
The tour details are barring changes, a.o. as a result of nautical, technical or meteorological reasons.

Day 1: Amsterdam | Amsterdam – Wijk bij Duurstede

Embarkation and check-in where the crew will welcome you on board is between 1 and 2 p.m. in Amsterdam. At approximately 2 p.m. the barge will leave Amsterdam to sail over the Amsterdam-Rhine Canal to Wijk bij Duurstede on the Rhine where you will spend your first night.

Day 2: Wijk bij Duurstede – Wageningen | Wageningen – Arnhem (35 km/21 mi. or 44 km/28 mi.)

While you are enjoying breakfast, the barge will sail to Wageningen where you are finally off and cycling through the picturesque river valley of the Rhine. Along the way you will cycle through the woods and moorlands of the Veluwe. At the end of the day you pedal through the suburbs and past lovely parks such as Sonsbeek and Zijpendaal to Arnhem, where you spend the night close to the city center. During the second world war Arnhem was the battle scene of Operation Market Garden, the largest airborne operation in history. The operation ended in a failure because of the inability to capture a bridge over the Rhine River resulting in the destruction of the British 1st Airborne Division.

Day 3: Arnhem – Doesburg | Doesburg – Zutphen (27 km/16 mi. or 44 km/27 mi.) | Zutphen – Deventer

Today’s cycling tour takes you along the Hanseatic Town Route to the small village of Doesburg and along the IJssel to Bronkhorst, which has the distinction of being recognised as the smallest town in Holland. Guests will have two choices today – a shorter tour along the riverbank to Zutphen; or a longer bicycle trip via Vorden passing country houses, castles and rural estates. During dinner the barge will sail to Deventer where you have the option of a short guided walking tour in the evening.

Day 4: Deventer – Hattem (35 km/21 mi. or 45 km/27 mi.) | Hattem – Kampen 

This morning you will enjoy a short bicycle ride along the IJssel riverbank before boarding a ferry at Wijhe to cross the river to Hattem. The 800-year-old town of Hattem has a rich history that is still clearly visible today. Guests have the opportunity, if they want, to stretch their legs with a longer bicycle trip through east Veluwe. During dinner the ship will sail to Kampen where you have the opportunity to go on an optional guided walking tour in the largest Hanseatic town in the Netherlands.

Day 5: Kampen – Roggebotsluis | Roggebotsluis- Elburg – Harderwijk (48 km/29 mi.)

In the morning the barge will sail to the IJssel estuary and across the so-called border lakes. Today’s cycling tour starts at a lock, Roggebotsluis. From the lock you cycle along the border lakes to the fishing harbor of Elburg, where swimming, boating, surfing and fishing are favorite summertime activities. From Elburg the cycling tour goes to lovely Harderwijk through the woods and moorland at Elspeet. The night will be spent in Harderwijk’s old fishing harbor. In the 1500s Harderwijk boasted the largest fish market in the Zuiderzee region and it is still a fascinating old city to explore. Dinner on board is not included this evening, so you can enjoy a wonderful meal at one of Harderwijks restaurants.

Day 6: Harderwijk – Bunschoten – Spakenburg (35 km/21 mi. or 59 km/36 mi.)

Today guests have two cycling choices: a short pedal along the coast or a combination of the coast route and a longer alternative that also takes in adjacent woodlands. The night will be spent in Spakenburg, a village well-known for its traditional costumes.

Day 7: Spakenburg – Huizen | Huizen – Naarden – Muiden – Amsterdam (35 km/21 mi. or 49 km/30 mi.)

During breakfast you can enjoy the scenery from the comfort of the barge. From Huizen you will cycle to the beautiful fortress towns of Naarden and Muiden, famous for its historic castle. From Muiden you will cycle along quiet roads to your final destination, the world famous city of Amsterdam. The afternoon and evening are spent in Amsterdam. While you are there take the opportunity to visit Anne Frank’s home, the Rembrandt House Museum, the Royal Palace of Amsterdam, Dam Square, the very centre and heart of the city or maybe you could go on a canal tour.

Day 8: Amsterdam

End of your tour: Disembarkation after breakfast until 9.30 a.m.

Good to know
  • Cycling route distances in the travel program are approximate.
  • On some days you can choose between a longer and a shorter cycling route. Please note that on the shorter routes you may not be able to visit all the highlights mentioned.
  • If you prefer not to cycle on a particular day, you’re welcome to stay on board and relax while the ship cruises to the next landing place.
  • The tour itinerary and route are subject to possible changes due to nautical, technical or meteorological reasons, or other unforeseen events.
  • On the arrival day, you can leave your luggage on board the ship from 11.00 am.
  • A detailed cycling map and a GPS app are available for guests who wish to cycle individually and at their own pace. The tour guide is always available via cell phone in case of questions, breakdowns or emergencies.

Day to day program Magnifique's

Parts that are printed in italics parts will be covered by the ship.

All distances are “approximate distances” of recommended bike tours.
The tour details are barring changes, a.o. as a result of nautical, technical or meteorological reasons.

Parts that are printed in italics parts will be covered by the ship.

All distances are “approximate distances” of recommended bike tours.
The tour details are barring changes, a.o. as a result of nautical, technical or meteorological reasons.

Day 1: Amsterdam | Amsterdam – Wijk bij Duurstede

Embarkation and check-in in Amsterdam. The crew welcomes you on board between 1 and 2 p.m. At approximately 2 p.m. the ship sails from Amsterdam on the Amsterdam-Rhine Canal to Wijk bij Duurstede, a town on the Rhine River. Here, you will spend your first night aboard the ship.

Day 2: Wijk bij Duurstede – Wageningen | Wageningen – Arnhem (35 km/21 mi. or 44 km/28 mi.)

While you are enjoying breakfast, the ship sails to Wageningen. From this town, your first cycling tour of the week takes you through the lovely valley of the Lower Rhine river, and then on through the Veluwe, a large area of woods and heathlands. At the end of the day you pedal to Arnhem, via suburbs and past the lovely parks named Sonsbeek and Zijpendaal. Close to the center of this former Hanseatic city, the ship docks for the night. During World War II, Arnhem was the battle scene of Operation Market Garden, the largest airborne operation in history. It ended in a failure, as the inability to capture a bridge over the Rhine River resulted in the destruction of the British 1st Airborne Division.

Day 3: Arnhem – Doesburg | Doesburg – Zutphen (27 km/16.2 mi. or 44 km/26.4 mi.) |  Zutphen – Deventer 

We leave Arnhem on the ship, and then today’s cycling tour starts in the small town of Doesburg. There are two cycling options to get you to Zutphen. Both options first go to Bronkhorst, a seeming hamlet that’s proud to be the smallest town in Holland. From Bronkhorst, the shorter option takes you by ferry to the western bank of the IJssel river, whereas the longer option stays on the eastern bank. Both options lead you through the countryside to Zutphen, where you will board again. In the afternoon you will sail with the ship to Deventer, a city known for its delicious spicy gingerbread. In the evening, a guided walk with a local guide is on the program. Make sure to join!

Day 4: Deventer – Wijhe | Wijhe – Kampen (40 km/25 mi or 56 km/35 mi.)

During breakfast the ship will take you to Wijhe, where your bicycle ride begins. In the morning you will enjoy a nice bicycle ride to Hattem. You can choose a short option along the banks of the river or opt for a longer ride across the east Veluwe area. Hattem has a rich history, which is still clearly visible today. Leaving Hattem, it is only a short ride to the city of Zwolle, one of the most beautiful Hanseatic cities. From Zwolle you continue to Kampen. In the evening, an optional guided walking tour takes you to some of the most interesting sights in this largest Hanseatic town in the Netherlands.

Day 5: Kampen – Elburg – Harderwijk (48 km/29 mi. or 56 km/33.6 mi.)

From Kampen, our cycling tour leads along the Border Lakes to the fishing harbor of Elburg. Here, swimming, boating, surfing and fishing are favorite summertime activities. From Elburg the cycling tour continues through the woods and moorlands of the Veluwe to lovely Harderwijk, where the night will be spent in its old fishing harbor. In the 1500s Harderwijk boasted the largest fish market in the Zuiderzee region. Today, it is still a lovely old city very much worth exploring. Dinner on board is not included this evening, so you can enjoy a wonderful meal at one of Harderwijks restaurants.

Day 6: Harderwijk – Spakenburg – Huizen (45 km/28 mi. or 56 km/35 mi.)

Again, you have two routes to choose from. A shorter bike ride along the coast of the Border Lakes, or a combination of the coast route and a longer alternative that runs through adjacent woodlands. In the afternoon you will pass Spakenburg, a fishing village well-known for its traditional costumes that are worn to this day. Docking destination for today is Huizen.

Day 7: Huizen – Naarden – Muiden – Amsterdam (35 km/21 mi.)

Huizen is the starting point for a ride to the beautiful fortress towns of Naarden and Muiden. The latter is famous for its historic castle on the waterfront. From Muiden you will cycle along quiet roads to your final destination, the world famous city of Amsterdam. You have the afternoon and evening to spend in the Dutch capital any way you like. Seize the chance to do a canal tour, to visit Anne Frank’s home or any of a number of world renowned museums around the Museumplein. Or just enjoy looking at everyday life in this bustling city.

Day 8: Amsterdam

The last part of your tour is today, but we won’t let you leave with an empty stomach. So before disembarkation until 9.30 a.m., enjoy a nice breakfast first.

Good to know
  • Cycling route distances in the travel program are approximate.
  • On some days you can choose between a longer and a shorter cycling route. Please note that on the shorter routes you may not be able to visit all the highlights mentioned.
  • If you prefer not to cycle on a particular day, you’re welcome to stay on board and relax while the ship cruises to the next landing place.
  • The tour itinerary and route are subject to possible changes due to nautical, technical or meteorological reasons, or other unforeseen events.
  • On the arrival day, you can leave your luggage on board the ship from 11.00 am.
  • A detailed cycling map and a GPS app are available for guests who wish to cycle individually and at their own pace. The tour guide is always available via cell phone in case of questions, breakdowns or emergencies.

The bicycles of Boat Bike Tours

Always the best rental bikes

The rental bikes on our ships are unisex bicycles with a low bar and a comfortable upright sitting position. These are stable and dependable bikes, good for miles in the saddle. Decide which kind of bike you want to rent and simply fill in your preference with your reservation. We’ll make sure you get the right bike for you. On most of our tours, the bike rental cost is not included in the tour’s price.

Every Boat Bike Tour rental bike is well equipped. The bikes consist of a lightweight aluminum frame and have highly-responsive handbrakes, at least seven speeds, an adjustable gel seat, normal flat pedals (no clips), an easy-to-use lock attached to the frame, and special puncture-resistant tires. All told, this is a light, stable and reliable bike, very suitable for touring long distances pleasantly.

Our e-bikes also have at least seven speeds and handbrakes. The motor runs on a 400Wh battery and offers three levels of power-assistance. The e-bikes include comfortable gel seats that can be adjusted for height, have a lock attached to the frame, and sport anti-puncture tires. Note that some of the ships have their own bikes on board. They may look a bit different, but qualitatively they are equal to Boat Bike Tours’s e-bikes.

Bicycle helmets
The use of bicycle helmets is not required in the Netherlands, but for safety’s sake they are suggested. If you wish to rent one, you can do so during the booking process. If you book a premium tour and rent a bike or e-bike, then the helmet and a “limit of liability for damage or loss” for your bike or e-bike is included in the rental price.

Other rental items
Other items such as children’s bikes, tandems, family tandems (child & adult), tag-along, trailers to carry toddlers and child seats are available on request.

Taking your own bike or e-bike?
The fee for parking your own bicycle is €10 per week. For an e-bike the fee is €25 to cover parking and charging the battery. For safety reasons it is not always possible to charge your e-bike batteries in your cabin. The crew will tell you where you can charge the battery on board the ship. Neither the crew nor Boat Bike tours is responsible in any way for any damage, loss or theft of a guest’s own bike or e-bike or its accessories. Note: not all the ships are suitable or have enough room for extra bikes, so make sure you check with us well ahead of travel.

Cyclists in a green landscape

Touring bikes

Our bicycles have a lightweight aluminum frame and are furnished with highly-responsive handbrakes, at least seven speeds and a gel seat whose height can be adjusted. Attached to the frame is an easy-to-use lock and the wheels carry puncture-resistant tires.

E-bikes

Our e-bikes also have highly-responsive handbrakes and a minimum of seven speeds. The motor runs on a 400Wh battery and offers three levels of power-assistance. The e-bikes include comfortable gel seats that can be adjusted for height, have a lock attached to the frame and special anti-puncture tires.

Taking your own bicycle

It is possible to take your own bike or e-bike with you, as long as it doesn’t have mirrors or other elements that stick out. There’s only limited space available on board for guests’ bikes. You can reserve a place for your bike for a small fee. Boat Bike tours is not responsible for damage to your bike or for theft.


Prices & availability

To view the availability of this tour and/or book online please click on the button below. A new screen will open.


Prices & information

Pricing overview - 2025
Cabin type For Season A Season B Season C
Twin cabin split level bed (La Mar, max. 2) 2 pers. € 1399 Not available Not available Twin cabin lower deck 2 pers. € 1549 € 1599 € 1749 Premium Twin lower deck (MAGII) 2 pers. Not available € 1869 € 2019 Suite upper deck 2 pers. Not available € 2229 € 2379 Twin cabin lower deck for single use 1 pers. € 2323.50 € 2398.50 € 2623.50 Twin split level for single use (La Mar) 1 pers. € 2098.50 Not available Not available
Pricing overview - 2024
Cabin type For Season A Season B Season C Season D
Twin cabin lower deck 2 pers. € 1489 € 1499 € 1599 € 1529 Twin cabin with splitlevelbed (LaMar) 2 pers. € 1339 Not available Not available Not available Premium Twin lower deck (MAGII) 2 pers. Not available € 1749 € 1849 Not available Suite upper deck 2 pers. Not available € 2099 € 2199 Not available Twin cabin for single use (max. 1) 1 pers. Not available € 2248.50 € 2398.50 € 2293.50 Splitlevelcabin for single use (LaMar) 1 pers. € 2008.50 Not available Not available Not available
Included in this tour
  • 8 days/7 nights
  • 7 x breakfast
  • Packed lunches
  • 6 x 3-course dinner
  • Coffee and tea on board
  • Welcome drink
  • Use of bed linen and towels
  • Daily cleaning of the cabin
  • Climate-controlled cabin
  • Daily briefings
  • Fully guided cycling tours (Magnifique’s: as from 18 guests, 2 tour leaders, 2 groups)
  • Some short walking tours
  • Fees for ferries
  • BBT cycling map (1 per cabin)
  • GPS tracks
  • Use of a helmet
  • Biodegradable water bottle
  • Use of a waterproof pannier bag
  • Entrance airborne museum
  • Visit Dutch cheese farm
  • Guided walk Deventer
  • Wi-Fi
  • Carbon offset payment to the non-profit organization Justdiggit
Excluded in this tour
  • 1x Dinner
  • Drinks
  • Bicycle rental or E-bike rental
  • Personal insurances
  • Gratuities (at your discretion)
  • Entrance fees and excursions (not mentioned under inclusions)
  • Transfers to/from the docking place
  • Parking fees
  • SGR Insolvency protection
SGR Insolvency protection (mandatory consumer contribution SGR insolvency protection guarantee scheme: € 5 per person - will be specified separately on the booking confirmation)
Bicycles/E-Bikes

Lena Maria

  • The bicycles on board are unisex city bikes of the brand Velo de Ville C100, both with lightweight frames and normal mount (ladies model), with easy-to-handle Shimano 7 gears, hand brakes, gel-saddle (height adjustable), a lock on the frame and pannier bag. All bikes have 28 inch wheels.  Some smaller frames are available on board for smaller persons. For large gentlemen (from 1.90m and above) we have a few traditional men’s models (with a horizontal bar) available.
  • The E-Bike is a Velo de Ville CEB 200 with Nexus 7 gears, 4 support levels and hand breaks only (or a comparable brand/model). E-bikes available (on request, limited stock, pending availability).

 

Fiep / Magnifique II & III

  • The bicycles on board is a unisex city bike with a low-entry and a riding position that is upright and comfortable. The bike is handmade in the Netherlands by Azor, specially designed by Boat Bike Tours. The bike consists of a lightweight aluminum frame and is equipped with responsive roller brakes (handbrake), a Shimano 7 speed nexus drive, Selle-Royal gel saddle (adjustable), an easy to use lock (fixed on frame) and the Schwalbe Marathon anti-puncture tyre. This all results in a lightweight, stable and reliable bike, good for many miles on the saddle.
  • The E-bike is an Azor Steps with Nexus 7 gears and hand brakes. The crank Shimano motor (400 WH) offers 4 support levels, The E-bikes have a comfortable gel saddle and a lock on the frame (or a comparable brand/model).

 

All ships:

  • Bicycle rent is optional. Guests are also allowed to bring their own bicycles/e-bikes (limited number of parking places available). Guests can book a parking place for a normal bicycle or a parking and charge station for an e-bike for a small additional fee. For safety reasons it is no longer possible to charge the batteries of your own e-bikes in the cabin. The crew will inform you where on deck/ on board you can recharge your battery. However, the crew or tour operators are in no way responsible for any damage, loss or theft of guests own bicycles or e-bikes.
  • Prices of other bikes (e.g. children’s bikes, “slip streamers”/tag-a-long, tandem bicycles etc. and child’s saddles (rear) are on request.
Additional options & information - 2025

2025:

  • Rental bicycle: € 105 per week
  • Rental E-Bike: € 266 per week (only on request, limited number available)
  • Parking own bicycle: €14 per week (only a limited number of parking places available: pref. reservation by booking)
  • Parking + charge station own E-Bike: €28 per week (only a limited number of parking places available: pref. reservation by booking)
  • Please click on this link for more information about the rental and own bicycles/E-bikes
  • Canal cruise Amsterdam: Ticket for a 1-hour canal cruise through Amsterdam – special price for our guests: € 18 (at the ticket desk approx.: € 22). Please book your ticket in advance and you can collect it on board of your ship on the first day of the tour.
  • Parking in Amsterdam (valet parking): prices and pre-booking here.
Additional options & information - 2024

2024:

  • Rental bicycle: € 104 per week
  • Rental E-Bike: € 256 per week (only on request, limited number available)
  • Parking own bicycle: €10 per week (only a limited number of parking places available: pref. reservation by booking)
  • Parking + charge station own E-Bike: €25.20 per week (only a limited number of parking places available: pref. reservation by booking)
  • Canal cruise Amsterdam: Ticket for a 1-hour canal cruise through Amsterdam – special price for our guests: € 16 (at the ticket desk approx.: € 19). Please book your ticket in advance and you can collect it on board of your ship on the first day of the tour.
  • Parking in Amsterdam (valet parking): prices and pre-booking here.


Reviews

based on 13 reviews on
11 Sep 2018

Ms Helen Eadie

Enjoyable Cycling Holiday Enjoyed the trip. The barge was well appointed and the cabin’s quite spacious. The food was very good, especially the international menus, and catered for all tastes. Although I found some of the longer trips taxing, I completed them all with relatively few aches and pains.

Reply from Boat Bike Tours 13 Sep 2018

Thanks very much for your review. Team Boat Bike Tours.

10 Sep 2018

Theodore and Constance Ning

great choice. small group (15). excellent food. great crew. great guide.

Reply from Boat Bike Tours 11 Sep 2018

thanks very much for your review. Team Boat Bike Tours.

4 Sep 2018

Two very satisfied Aussies!! We'll be back!!!

Lena Maria is just fantastic. Klaas (our guide) is just the best!! Lars is an absolute Master Chef!! Cabins lovely and clean!! Thoroughly recommend!! E-bike make the bike riding so much more relaxing! !

Reply from Boat Bike Tours 6 Sep 2018

thanks very much for your loving words! Team Boat Bike Tours.

3 Sep 2018

John and Charlene Janssen

We loved the boat Lena Maria and the crew (Conny, Robin, Lars, and Klaas). The food was outstanding. It was rated as easy (level 1) but turned out to be moderate. Changes had to be made because of low canal/water levels, and that was understandable – as a result, there was only 1 choice of route each day, and some were more km than anticipated.

Reply from Boat Bike Tours 4 Sep 2018

Thanks very much for your review. Team Boat Bike Tours.


Can we help you?


Available ships for this tour

Premium Experience the higher levels of comfort, smaller groups and extra’s.
Boutique ship La Mar (former Fiep) Belgium, Netherlands

Restaurant with separate lounge

Openable windows in cabins

Individually controlled air conditioning

Free coffee and tea 24/7

max. 24 passengers
12 cabins
3 tours available with this ship
Premium Experience the higher levels of comfort, smaller groups and extra’s.
Lena Maria sailing
Boutique ship Lena Maria Belgium, Netherlands

Intimate and exlusive

Openable windows in cabins

Panoramic windows

Individually controlled air conditioning

max. 26 passengers
14 cabins
4 tours available with this ship
Premium Experience the higher levels of comfort, smaller groups and extra’s.
Premium ship Magnifique II Belgium, Netherlands

Panoramic windows

Jacuzzi

Intimate and exclusive

Individually controlled air conditioning

max. 37 passengers
17 cabins
3 tours available with this ship

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Historic Hanseatic cities

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