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walking tours while on any of the RS tours

This may seem like a silly question but are the "walking tours" Rick lays out in his guide books the same walking tours we will do with our guide as a group in each city?

I'm looking at the Pocket Amsterdam book right now and the first walking tour is the Amsterdam city walk from CS to Leidseplein. Will we take that same walk with our group on our Amsterdam day?

Posted by
1068 posts

Don't know specifically about that one, but for me the answer is no. I got into a Tallinn a few days before the RS tour started and did his self-guided tour so I could linger over in a few areas where I wanted specific photos A few days later, the RS group did a walking tour which included some of what was on the self-guided tour and some of which was not. It (on that tour anyway) could be hard to figure out what you will or won't see on the RS walk. For example, both tours mentioned they would go to Toompea (an area of Tallinn.) On his self-guided tour, there were 2 or three stops in Toompea to get views of the city, however when we walked the route as a group there was only 1 "city-view." There were other differences as well. ps: IMHO not a silly question at all.

Posted by
5149 posts

Ray's right; the walking tours may resemble, but are seldom identical with, the tours in the guide books. The guides have some leeway, and will change the walking tours to fit the available time, their own expertise, or even the wishes or needs of the group. We've been on seven RS tours, and I don't think we've ever done the identical walking tour from the books.

Posted by
9914 posts

I agree with Jane and Ray! May be similar but not the same. Part of the cool thing about the RS organization and the guides is that they do give guides some leeway and the guides are so very well-versed. Even different guides will do different tours of the same area. I did tours of the Latin quarter with both my 21 day BOE guide and my Best of Paris guide. They were 2 days apart and both different!

On the Amsterdam tour you will probably be starting from the Anne Frank Huis. You will probably walk some in that area, then we went over toward the Begijinhof stopping at a church and a museum on the way. It may also depend on what is open and where there might be road construction. I don't have that part of my AMS guide book any more (doubtless lying in a trash can in Germany somewhere, lol!) or I would look specifically to compare it for you.

OTOH, I would probably not do a long walking tour on your free day just because you will walk SO darn much the day you are in Amsterdam for the tour. Walk, yes, push yourself to cover ground, no.

Posted by
725 posts

Thinking of taking tram to Dutch Resistance then walking to Van Gogh.....or should we do that opposite? I guess the walk from our hotel (closer to the Jordaan) would be a more interesting walk to Dutch Resistance. Not sure on the specifics in the transportation department.

Posted by
5 posts

Kathy -
After Six Rick Steves Tours, I would say NO - the walking tours included do not follow the books or audio options. The Local guides are a wonderful aspect of being on the overall tour. They bring their background and knowledge to the walk. IF, you are a totally independent traveller, then the books and Audio tours are great.
The Amsterdam tram system is great. We walked all over the city, but also took multiple tram rides. Sorry, can't say for sure what exactly you might do on a given walk. Again, the Local Guide you have might do their own thing.

Posted by
2788 posts

I have taken 12 RS tours, #13 Bulgaria in June, and the walking tours listed in his guide books always seem to be more involved that any of the tour walks we have taken. I really enjoy the RS folks providing us with a list of things that will not be covered on the tour so that we can see them on our own, either before the tour or afterwards.

Posted by
16883 posts

As an example of the variations of tour plan versus book plan, the 21-day Europe tour itinerary says that you start the day by taking a tram from Central Station to the Anne Frank house (first detour) and then walk after that.