The boat trip on the Vecht to Breukelen Oud-Zuilen is rural with ever-changing scenery. As you sail the meandering river you will pass many magnificent country houses such as Nyenrode, Bolenstein, and Goudenstein Castles and Boom & Bosch.
Gunterstein Castle is a block-shaped country estate built in the 17th century by the rich Dutch widow Magdalena Poulle who called herself Lady Gunterstein. This is the departure point of your Vecht Cruise and is easily accessible from the centre of Breukelen.
As you begin sailing south, you will pass the Nyenrode Castle, home of the Nyenrode Business University. While it is a university today, with its moat and high walls it is rightfully called a castle. The building itself is inaccessible but the extensive gardens are worth a tour (which can be booked through Rederij Belle). On the east bank of the Vecht you will see Oudaen Castle, its drawbridge and moat easily visible from the river. As your cruise continues, you will see restaurant Buitenplaats Slangevegt hidden behind the tall trees for which it is named. If you choose, you can dock here for a tour or bite to eat.
Buitenhuis Goudestein was one of the first estates built along the Vecht and is today one of the finest. The mansion is used as a town hall and is surrounded by a splendid garden. Because of its history and beauty, Goudestein is a very popular wedding venue where Rederij Belle frequently docks with future brides and grooms.
The many restaurants and bars throughout Maarssen make it a perfect – and lively – boarding location. Nestled in the centre of Maarseen, between the two bridges, we find the Nonnerie restaurant, housed in a former estate for elderly nuns. The Nonnerie is an excellent restaurant with which Rederij Belle has been working closely for nearly 15 years. You can dock in Maarssen to enjoy dinner in the restaurant or the chefs can deliver their dishes to your private boat offering a one-of-a-kind floating restaurant.
As you leave the old village, you will sail past the remarkable new district of OpBuuren. This neighborhood, built in a once industrial area, has a classic, “Vechtse style” ambiance.
The final destination of your Vecht Cruise is Oud-Zuilen at the beautiful Zuylen Castle. This medieval fortress was converted into a country house in the 18th century and was home to many notable people, the most-famous of which was writer Belle van Zuylen. Today Zuylen Castle is a museum where tours, concerts and events bring the past to life.