CRUISE TERMINALS IN THE NETHERLANDS and BELGIUM

Index:
#General
#Cruiseterminal Amsterdam - Ymuiden
#Cruiseterminal Rotterdam
#Cruiseterminal Zeebrugge
Cruiseterminal Antwerp
#Cruiseterminal Oostende

GENERAL:

There are 6 important cruise terminals in The Netherlands and Belgium. All 6 are located near the North Sea. As a favour to our foreign webvisitors we provided some information concerning the terminals and interesting places to visit.

The Netherlands;
AMSTERDAM/YMUIDEN  about 200 visits a year. Access to the North Sea by North Sea Canal with a lock at Ymuiden. Distance to Amsterdam about 22 km. YMUIDEN direct access to the North Sea.
ROTTERDAM  about   25  visits. Access to the North Sea by river New Waterway in fact the end of river Rhine. Distance about 30 km.


Cruiseterminals in The Netherlands
A) AMSTERDAM - B) YMUIDEN - D) ROTTERDAM

Belgium;
ZEEBRUGGE    about   90  visits. Direct access to the North Sea
ANTWERP       about   25  visits. Access to the North Sea by river Scheldt. Distance about 65 km.
OOSTENDE      about   20  visits. Direct access to the North Sea


Cruiseterminals in Belgium
A) ZEEBRUGGE - B) OOSTENDE- D) ANTWERP

More European Cruise Ports:

In order to attract more cruise vessels to the ports in our region of the world is Cruise Europe  founded in 1991. Cruise Europe  today has a membership of more than 70 ports, ranging from Lisbon in the south to Hammerfest in the North. The area of membership is limited to Atlantic Europe including the Baltic. Europe has during these years enjoyed the most significant growth of any cruising area in the world.

Information of all membership ports can be obtained of the Cruise Europe's website:
http://www.cruiseeurope.com/

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CRUISETERMINAL - AMSTERDAM and YMUIDEN:

Amsterdam, the capital of Holland, in the summertime is an important itinerary for cruise ships.
The sailing time via the North Sea Canal from Ymuiden to Amsterdam , including the passage through the North Sea lock at Ymuiden, is less than two and a half hours for large ships. The distance between the lock and the terminal is about 20 km. For cruise passengers is crossing the locks and sailing to Amsterdam an interesting part of the voyage.

Due to this growing interest a new passenger terminal is being built. Most of the ships moor on this terminal and some larger ships fe. the Q-2 on the Ceres Terminal.
The Passenger Terminal Amsterdam (PTA) is the middle point of a sparkling new center at the head of the Oostelijke Handelskade in Amsterdam. The impressive building is made largely of glass in the shape of a whale. The large reception hall on the first floor, where cruise passengers arrive and depart, has a beautiful view of the city and the IJ- River. The PTA cruise terminal is strategically situated ,within walking distance to the city center.
Directly next to Central Railway Station with frequent connections to Schiphol Airport and more than 50 international train connections to places such as Brussels and Paris (to Paris in 4 hours and 46 minutes)
Within 18 kilometers from Schiphol Airport, with direct connections with 220 cities worldwide
Good accessibility and parking accommodations for buses and cars.

Felison Terminal at Ymuiden to avoid sailing thru North Sea Canal. Felison Terminal is located before the locks and have direct access to the Northsea. It is also used as a ferry terminal. May 2012 opening of a brand new cruiseterminal. The terminal can handle 2 cruiseships together. MSC is with 22 calls the biggest user of the facilities. In total for 2012 - 42 calls are confirmed. Felison Terminal is also member of the Amsterdam Cruise Port (ATP)

Interesting places in Amsterdam:

Amsterdam is the place for visiting renowned museums some to mentioned: The Anne Frank House - van Gogh museum - Rembrandthouse  - Stedelijk museum - Rijksmuseum  houses a collection that has justifiably attained world renown. It contains the largest art collection in the Netherlands.
The painting section represents the most important collection of Dutch paintings from 15th up to including the 19th century, which includes the works of Rembrandt  Vermeer, Frans Hals, Albert Cuyp and Jan Steen. Since 2004 there is dependence of The State Hermitage Museum of St Petersburg - Nederlands Scheepvaartmuseum has an engaging collection of maritime memorabilia.
Other interesting places are the New - and Old Church - Vondelpark - Artis Zoo - Take a canalcruise on the so called Grachtengordel and watch hundreds of old houses from the golden age - Royal Palace and Central Station - The Begijnhof is an enclosed courtyard dating from the early 14th century .Hidden behind the busy Spui shopping strip, it's a surreal oasis of peace.
Amsterdam has been famous for diamonds for over 400 years.

Surroundings:
Not only Amsterdam city centre is an interesting place to visit, however also many places around are worth to visit. Some to mentioned are:
The old fishing villages Volendam-Edam and Marken, where some people still wear the historical costums. - The Zaanse Schans is a delightful old hamlet on the banks of the river Zaan with characteristic green wooden houses. -Tsar Peter’s House. In 1697 a small Zaanse wooden labourer’s cottage turned into an imperial residence when Tsar Peter the Great came to stay.
- Keukenhof is an area near the town of Lisse just southwest of Amsterdam. These gardens display the bulb flowers for which Holland is famous. The gardens are open from mid March to mid may.

Haarlem an other interesting old town which accommodate the Frans Halsmuseum. Here you will find a collection of world-famous paintings of the so called -Haarlemse School- with fe.Frans Hals and a permanent collection of recent art from the -Cobra- group one.

More info in English can be obtained from Passenger Terminal Amsterdam's own website and the Felison Terminal.
Passenger Terminal Amsterdam:    PTA
Felison Terminal: http://www.felisonterminal.nl/
Amsterdam Cruise Port represents both terminals
http://www.amsterdamcruise.com/

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CRUISETERMINAL - ROTTERDAM :

Rotterdam, one of world's biggest harbours and still the home base of the ships of the now Carnival Corp. owned Holland-America Line.
For cruise passengers is sailing to Rotterdam through the New Waterway an interesting part of the voyage. You cross one of the most industrial territory of Europ. The cruiseterminal is located in the middle of Rotterdam city, just a ten minute walk away from the city centre. The passenger terminal is a part of the former departure- and arrival hall of the transatlantic voyage's to the United States by the, at that time, Dutch owned Holland-Amerika Lijn. The cruise terminal is situated within the hour to Schiphol Airport Amsterdam and within 20 minutes to Rotterdam Airport. Belgium, Germany and even France are also easily reached by train or bus. In the cruiseseason 2012/13 HAL's "Rotterdam" is homeported year round. The harbour can used by the biggest cruiseships in the world.

Interesting places in Rotterdam:

The Euromast (185 metres), from which you can overlook Rotterdam and the varied landscape of Holland. Museum Boijmans van Beuningen with a famous collection of the Old Masters and contemporary art. Maritime Museum and Havenmuseum with unique objects from the port and shipping industry, returned to working conditions. A truly historical sight is to be found in Delfshaven, where the Pilgrim Fathers left for the West in 1620 to become founders of the United States of America. Rotterdam Zoo(Blijdorp)  has a right to call itself a top attraction.  Make a voyage of discovery through the world's oceans in the new Oceanium. The idyllic Arboretum Trompenburg, a lovely urban garden dating back to 1820 with an unprecedented array of beautiful trees, plants and flowers.
Surroundings:
Not only is the city of Rotterdam itself worth a visit, but so are its surroundings. The historic towns of Delft (porcelain) and Gouda (cheese), The Hague (Peace Palace), Kinderdijk about 18 windmills on the UNESCO list. The Maeslantkering at Hoek van Holland, the impressive final section of the Delta Works, one of the big constructions to protect Holland from the sea, is also worth a visit. These cities can be reached by bus and/or public transportation and in case of Dordrecht, Ridderkerk and Alblasserdam even by Fast Ferry, a boat connection that takes you to Dordrecht, the oldest town in The Netherlands,
in only 45 minutes.

More info in English can be obtained from Passenger Terminal Rotterdam's website.
http://www.cruiseportrotterdam.com/index.html

 

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CRUISETERMINAL - ZEEBRUGGE:

Zeebrugge has grown into Belgium most important cruise port because of its central location and easy access from the North Sea. Beside an important cruiseport it is also an important ferryport mainly for services to the UK. Cruiseships berth at the Harbour Mole.(see image)  The Seastation on the Harbour Mole act as the cruiseterminal. The building is constructed around 1960 and  several times upgraded. Not very modern, however all necessary facilities are available, including some souvenir shops. Most of the time there is a shuttle service to the city-centre available.

Interesting places in Zeebrugge:

Seafront a Maritime Themapark  constructed in and around the buildings of the former covered fish market on the Zeebrugge wharf.
Zeebrugge is a picturesque seaport, but is best known as the closest port to the medieval city of Bruges. Zeebrugge belongs to Bruges and we advised to visit this historical city. Bruges was an important commercial center of medieval Europe. Its history dates back almost 2000 years. Visiting Bruges is like stepping back into time.
With small streets and houses with  interesting brick work and decorative architecture. Picturesque canals and Canal rides are very popular to get a good view of the city.
Surroundings: 
From the port onwards, the passengers have indeed a large choice between different daytrips. Besides Bruges, the historical centre of Ghent is  worth a visit.
The city center of Ghent is a showcase of medieval Flemish wealth and commercial success. A walking tour through the historic center must be included the Saint Bavo may be the most awesome cathedral in the country.-The Gravensteen  is the Dutch name for the 'castle of the count'. -The Belfry tower of Ghent is perhaps one of the most impressive ones in Flanders  the town hall  Right in the center of town lies the Saint Michael's bridge. This is The spot to admire the architectural wealth of Ghent. When visiting Ghent, one should always go to this beautiful area of the city: the Graslei and the Koornlei. These are the names of two streets which lie along the banks of the old harbor of Ghent.
Also the coastline is interesting due to many stately seaside resorts such as Blankenberge -Knokke and Ostende.
Brussels and Antwerp are worth to visit and easily to reach.

More info in English can be obtained from Port of Zeebrugge website.
http://www.zeebruggeport.be/

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CRUISETERMINAL - ANTWERP: 

Antwerp has become one of the largest harbours in Europe.  Although the open North Sea is about 65 km away from Antwerp, the river is so large that sea-going vessels such as cruiseships can sail to the port area of the city easily. For cruise passengers is sailing to Antwerp over the river Scheldt an interesting part of the voyage.

Cruiseships berth on no. 20-21 on the River Scheldt - 200m away from the medieval city centre. The Antwerp Terminal is a flexible construction that is capable of working in a number of ways according to the needs of the client. The building consists in fact of two main areas that cover a total surface of 1.510m˛. It is a single level building with all facilities such as a luggage handling area, security services and lounge. There is also a hospitality desk of the Tourist Office of Antwerp.

Interesting places in Antwerp:

Antwerp, the diamond center of the World.  Visit the diamond district around the Railway Station. This area is also the Jewish part of the city. The presence of many Chassidic Jewish people gives the city a flair that cannot be found in other Belgian cities. Antwerp is a splendid city with numerous architectural highlights, most of which date from the 16th (the golden era of Antwerp) and the 17th century. Interesting museums are Fashion Museum - Koninklijk Museum (Royal Museum of Fine Arts) has housed an outstanding collection of paintings, sculptures and drawings from the fourteenth to the twentieth centuries. - Rubens House -Museum Nowadays visitors to the house should be aware that they don't visit a house as it was left behind by its most famous inhabitant, but rather a reconstruction of what it must have looked like in the first half of the 17th century. The collection of paintings by Rubens himself and by some of his contemporaries alone already make it worth to visit. There are also many churches and building worth to visit such as: Sint Jacobskerk. It is the tomb of the Prince of Painting, Peter Paul Rubens, that attracts most visitors to this church. The Carolus Borromeus Church this typical baroque church was built by the Jesuits between 1615 and 1621 to a design drawn up by their rector Francois Aguillon and Brother Peter Huyssens. Rubens played an important part in the decoration of the facade and the pinnacle of the tower but especially of the interior. The town square 'Grote Markt' is the most beautiful square of the city of Antwerp as well as the historical heart of it.- Little Castel The Steen can be seen at the entrance of the city center, on the border of the river Scheldt. Don't miss one of the grandest buildings in Antwerp  the 'Central Railway Station'.

Surroundings: 
Interesting other cities worth to visit and easily to reach are the capital Brussels - Mechelen and Gendt for more info concerning Gendt please see under Zeebrugge.

More info in English can be obtained from Port of Antwerp website.
http://www.portofantwerp.be/

or: http://cruiseschepeninantwerpen.moonfruit.com/#/cruiseseizoenen/4554326049

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CRUISETERMINAL - OOSTENDE:

The port of Oostende played its role in the 19th and 20th century as a fishery port, merchant port and passenger port.  Moreover, aquatic sports flourished, sailing and rowing regattas were organised by various watersports associations and the marinas for pleasure crafts were build out.
The port of Oostende, for a while, played an important role as a navy base after the second World War with the foundation of the Belgian Navy.  This role was gradually taken over by Zeebrugge.
Today, the port is focused on the handling of goods and passengers and considers itself as the engine behind the industrial development of the region Oostende.
Cruise ships only have to bridge about 500 m from the open sea to the cruise quay (berths n°103 & 104). In addition, there is the unique location next to the town centre of Oostende, as cruise ships practically berth in the middle of town. The cruise quay is situated next to the railway station, from which the High-speed ‘Thalys’ rail link with Paris departs. Brussels, Ghent and Bruges are served three times per hour. A large square in front of the railway station offers ample space for coaches taking passengers on a variety of excursions. Oostende is an import ferry harbour.

Interesting places in Oostende:

Museum of Fine arts- Collection of the famous artist James Ensor, who was born in Oostende.  Many of the paintings of James Ensor can also be found in Miami and New York. James Ensor House -The house of the famous painter James Ensor has been restored as a museum. Provincial Museum of Modern Art -  Exhibitions of famous painters and artists all year round. Medieval Fishery Town of Raversijde with Outdoor Atlantic Wall Museum - Prince Charles Memorial. The Barquentine- Mercator -This three-masted barquentine is moored in the marina in the center of town.  St. Peter and Paul Cathedral this neo-gothic cathedral was built at the end of the 19th century to replace the main church of Oostende which was burned down.  There is only one remaining tower of the old chruch called the Peperbusse. Last Iceland fishing boat Amandine. The last Iceland fishing boat 'Amandine' has been restored.  The ship was placed in a special basin in the center of town in which a museum was built.

Surroundings: 
For Interesting
 Historic Cities of Flanders see information given under Antwerp and Zeebrugge.

More info in English can be obtained from Port of Oostende website.

http://www.portofoostende.be/agho/default.htm

 

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last update: may 2012

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