Courier January Courier - Page 47

Belgium, France and the Netherlands COMPILED BY GABE WEBB Corné Ruijs, owner of Ruijs Travel, points to the company’s long history as one source of the operator’s expertise. “Our company was founded in 1919, which makes us a reliable partner with an extensive knowledge of destinations, events and venues,” says Ruijs. “We can draw on a vast European network of service-minded and bilingual co-operators, restau- rant owners, drivers and tour managers.” Ruijs Travel is based in Lith, the Netherlands, and its most- requested tour destinations are in that country as well as France and Belgium. On one popular tour of Holland and Belgium, travelers visit Amsterdam, Maastricht, Ghent and Bruges. In Amsterdam, travelers can see masterpieces of art at the Rijksmuseum by painters such as Vermeer and Rembrandt, and there are many, many more museums to be seen among the city’s 70 islands. In Maastricht, originally settled by the Romans, tour- goers will be introduced to one of the oldest cities in the Netherlands. “You start with a guided walking tour to see the Church of Our Beloved Lady, the ancient city walls and the churches at the Vrijthof,” says Ruijs. From Holland, visitors go to Belgium. In Megchelen, near Ghent, they’ll see the Gaspard de Wit Royal Tapestry Works and learn about the traditional artform and the restoration of old tapestries. A cultural haul awaits in Holland Vrijthof churches in Maastricht Bruges is another popular stop on the tour. “The town seems to come straight out of the Middle Ages,” says Ruijs, “with beautifully decorated houses, old guild halls and churches.” In addition to providing destination expertise, Ruijs Travel’s staff can provide logistical guidance and support. “For our tours, we have 22 deluxe vehicles at our disposal, owned and operated by Ruijs Travel,” says Ruijs. “The profes- sional and enthusiastic sales team will be happy to create a custom tour or to help you develop new itineraries for a spe- cific group.” The company has catered tours to special inter- ests such as gardens, agriculture, castles and battlefields. “During the tours that we run, we have a 24/7 service, and we will always be at your service out and about.” For more, contact Ruijs at c.ruijs@ruijstravel.com or go to ruijstravel.com. Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam NTAonline.com 45