Amsterdam (from IJmuiden), Netherlands
The beautiful city of Amsterdam, accessible via free transfer from IJmuiden, with its fine gabled houses, leafy canal walks, unusual boutiques and offbeat pavement cafés, is the last word in laid-back relaxation.
Capture its true spirit by exploring the narrow winding streets, bustling bars and eclectic shops of Joordan, its fascinating old district. Other must-sees include the house of determined World War II diarist Anne Frank and the multi-level Vincent van Gogh Museum - where you progress, floor by floor, from the artist's initial sketches to view the full glory of his completed works. Art lovers will also love the Stedelijk Museum - home to major works by Picasso, Czanne, Matisse and Monet. And, if gardening is your interest, stroll around the daily Bloemenmarkt. This is the city's only remaining floating market and its riotously colourful plant and flower-laden boats are a fragrant delight.