Round trip of Amsterdam – City. Nature. Culture
8 days / 7 nights | Self-guided cycling tours
On this route, you will discover all Holland has to offer in Amsterdam's surroundings: From windmills to cheese markets up to and including Europe's largest flower auction.
Experience the seemingly unending expanse of the polder and dune landscapes. Discover the cities of Haarlem and Delft with their picturesque downtowns and wealth of listed buildings. In The Hague, the Binnenhof, Peace Palace or the art collection of the Mauritshuis are worth a prolonged stop. You can even take a break from your tour with a long walk on the North Sea beach or plunge into its waters to cool off. No matter what you decide to do: You will get to know the very best of Holland.
We recommend booking an extra night in Volendam or Rijswijk/Delft so you can spend more time in Amsterdam or The Hague.
Overnight stays in 4**** hotels.
Level 1 (On a scale of 1 to 5)
The bike paths of this route are almost completely asphalic. The region is flat, with only minor hills, so that the route can be cycled by less trained cyclists too. The city traffic in Holland is often regulated by traffic lights for cyclists, so that you can move well in the cities.
Day 1: Arrival in Volendam
Day 2: Volendam – Bussum (Cycling 50 km / 31 miles)
The first stage of this round trip takes you along the Ijsselmeer to Bussum. Soon you will be going along part of the Amsterdam canal with a bit of the Amsterdam-Rijnkanal. You end up going through the fortified town of Naarden to Bussum. You will come across the first windmill of this trip not even 200 metres from the hotel. Katwouder-Mühle was constructed in the 17th Century and drains the neighbouring polders. You then continue beyond the dyke to Monnickendam where you cross the harbour with a view of the Ijsselmeer. The intersections then take you through several small villages to Amsterdam-Nord. On the way, Muiderslot (Muider Castle) tempts you to take a break with its wonderful gardens or Muiderberg's shore. You get to your hotel in Bussum via the fortified town of Naarden.
Day 3: Bussum – Aalsmeer (Cycling 53 km / 33 miles)
Starting in Bussum you soon reach the picturesque Utrechtsche Vecht, with lots of stately homes from the 17th Century. Follow the winding course of the river to the Spiegel- and Blijkpolderplas, a reclaimed lake. Continue through the beautiful natural park along the varied side of the water and carry on through small Dutch villages to Achterboos. Via the old Dutch town of Uithoorn in the middle of green polders you reach Aalsmeer.
Day 4: Aalsmeer – Rijswijk/Delft (Cycling 57 km / 36 miles)
The third stage criss-crosses from Aalsmeer through several villages to Rijswijk, a suburb of The Hague. The morning allows you to visit Royal Flora Holland, the largest flower auction in the world. From Aalsmeer you cycle along the Weststeinderplassen lake to Weteringburg. Going along small canals, you come across a number of windmills along the way, and by crossing small villages you get to Leidschendam, a suburb of The Hague. Your hotel is in the suburb of Oud Rijswijk, four kilometres form The Hague city centre, which awaits you with its historic old town, burial place of the Dutch Royal Family, and a wide selection of culinary delights.
Day 5. Rijswijk/Delft – Sassenheim (Cycling 50 km / 31 miles)
Today's stage first takes you through The Hague and along lovely tracks through the dunes to Sassenheim. After visiting The Hague city centre (worth visiting), go through Oosterbeek Park to the dunes. For the next 14 kilometres, enjoy the paved track through the dunes, occasionally shaded by trees and with a glimpse of the North Sea. The beach promenades in Katwijk und Noordwijk aan Zee laden invite you to take a break before heading back in land to the hotel at the edge of Sassenheim. The final stretch passes many tulip fields, which offer a uniquely wonderful view when in bloom in April/May.
Day 6. Sassenheim – Haarlem (Cycling 39 km / 25 miles)
The shortest stage of this trip is from Sassenheim skirting the tulip fields and through the dunes to Haarlem. This takes you past Kasteel Keukenhof, a classical 18th Century estate. Before the coast you once again reach the softly undulating dunes with heather, gnarled pines and sea buckthorn. Along the coast you reach Zandvoort, a popular resort for those living in Amsterdam. The many cafés and restaurants right on the sea allow you to once again take in the view of the beach and North Sea before carrying on (always on paved tracks) to Haarlem. Haalrem is popularly referred to as Small Amsterdam due to its architecture resembling that of Amsterdam - just that it is smaller. On the way to the hotel, go around Haarlem town centre to get an impression of this picturesque town. Here you will find the Hotel Lion d´Or, walking distance from the town centre and its sights.
Day 7. Haarlem – Volendam (Cycling 51 km / 32 miles)
The last stage takes you back to Volendam. The Spaarne takes you from Haarlem to Amsterdam for the (free) ferry. Once at the other side of the IJ take the route parallel to the canal towards Zaandam. Here you have the option of once again watching the comings and goings on the water. Once in Zaandam, follow the canal past the many small houses in the flat polders. Once again take in the endless countryside with its farm of all sizes. Make the crossing with a small passenger ferry, typical for the region. You then come across the village of Monnickendam. The last bit continues past the Katwouder-Mühle and shortly after you are back at you hotel in Volendam.
Day 8. Volendam
Departure after breakfast or extention days.
Please note: All cycling distances stated above are approximate only.