Amsterdam to Bruges Cycling Holiday

A leisurely cycling holiday on quiet lanes and cycle paths from Holland’s cycle friendly capital to the medieval city of Bruges in Belgium. Along the way you’ll pedal alongside serene canals and through idyllic polder landscapes to charming villages and historic towns. Highlights include Gouda, with its lovely Market Square, Dordrecht – one of Holland’s oldest cities, the maritime towns on the islands of Zeeland, the windmills of Kinderdijk and of course, Amsterdam and Bruges themselves.

Spend an evening exploring the canals and attractions of Amsterdam before embarking on a leisurely cycling adventure southwards to Bruges. Detailed route notes and maps will lead you along a wonderful network of cycle paths and quiet lanes and don’t worry, this is the lowlands and so you can rest assured you won’t encounter any hills along the way.

Amsterdam to Bruges Cycling HolidayBeautiful Bruges

The verdant polder landscape is interrupted by the odd windmill or church spire on the horizon, the latter providing advanced notice that you are about to cycle through another gorgeous little village or town.

Explore the cheese town of Gouda with its wonderful central square. The 19 working windmills of Kinderdijk are sure to be a highlight as is the lovely old marina in Dordrecht, one of Hollands oldest towns. In North Brabant you spend a night in the fortified town of Willemstad, surrounded on three sides by water, before leaving the mainland behind and cycling out onto the islands of Zeeland, Hollands westernmost province. Wide-open spaces, big skies and sandy beaches, characterise this charming region which is perfect for exploring by bike. Finally you pedal triumphantly into Bruges, one of Europe’s most beautiful cities and the perfect place to celebrate your achievement.

This is an easy to leisurely route that can be enjoyed by anyone with a basic level of fitness.

Amsterdam to Bruges Cycling Holiday

A leisurely cycling holiday on quiet lanes and cycle paths from Holland’s cycle friendly capital to the medieval city of Bruges in Belgium. Along the way you’ll pedal alongside serene canals and through idyllic polder landscapes to charming villages and historic towns. Highlights include Gouda, with its lovely Market Square, Dordrecht – one of Holland’s oldest cities, the maritime towns on the islands of Zeeland, the windmills of Kinderdijk and of course, Amsterdam and Bruges themselves.

Spend an evening exploring the canals and attractions of Amsterdam before embarking on a leisurely cycling adventure southwards to Bruges. Detailed route notes and maps will lead you along a wonderful network of cycle paths and quiet lanes and don’t worry, this is the lowlands and so you can rest assured you won’t encounter any hills along the way.

Amsterdam to Bruges Cycling HolidayBeautiful Bruges

The verdant polder landscape is interrupted by the odd windmill or church spire on the horizon, the latter providing advanced notice that you are about to cycle through another gorgeous little village or town.

Explore the cheese town of Gouda with its wonderful central square. The 19 working windmills of Kinderdijk are sure to be a highlight as is the lovely old marina in Dordrecht, one of Hollands oldest towns. In North Brabant you spend a night in the fortified town of Willemstad, surrounded on three sides by water, before leaving the mainland behind and cycling out onto the islands of Zeeland, Hollands westernmost province. Wide-open spaces, big skies and sandy beaches, characterise this charming region which is perfect for exploring by bike. Finally you pedal triumphantly into Bruges, one of Europe’s most beautiful cities and the perfect place to celebrate your achievement.

This is an easy to leisurely route that can be enjoyed by anyone with a basic level of fitness.

Itinerary

This is an easy to leisurely route that can be enjoyed by anyone with a basic level of fitness. The terrain is level and the daily distances are very manageable.

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Day 1 : Arrive Amsterdam

Check into your hotel and then get out to explore Europe’s most cycle friendly capital. The city is of course famous for its gorgeous 400-year-old canal district but we also recommend taking in the street artists and performers on Dam, Leidseplein and Rembrandtplein. The Canal Museum is a great new attraction and the renovated Rijks and Maritime Museums are also worth visiting.

Day 2 : Amsterdam – Gouda/Bodegraven
37 - 43 miles/58-68 kms

Follow the cycle path south out of Amsterdam. After a while the urban sprawl gives way to a region known as the green heart of Holland. Low-lying polders, peat meadows, grazing cattle and canals line the cycle path while windmills and church spires punctuate the horizon. Your destination today is Gouda, a town famous for its cheese. Don’t miss the gorgeous market square with its 15th century town hall. Your overnight will be in Gouda, Bodegravem or Oudewater.

Day 3 : Gouda/Bodegraven – Dordrecht/Papendrecht
23 miles/37 kms

Leave Gouda and cycle south on cycle paths that follow dykes through the unique polder landscape. Stop in Kinderdijk to admire the 19 traditional windmills that were originally built to pump the Alblasserwaard polder dry. Today a modern pump does most of the hard work but the windmills are still fully functioning and all bar one have resident families living inside. The unoccupied windmill is a museum which you are welcome to explore during your visit. Cycle on through Dordrecht, one of the oldest towns in Holland, completely surrounded by water and then to Papendrecht on the north bank, just 3km outside of town, for your overnight stay.

Day 4 : Papendrecht/Dordrecht – Willemstad
41 miles /65 kms

Leave today and pedal into the nearby Biesbosch National Park, a rare wetland habitat where the ecosystem has adapted to both saltwater coming in from the sea and freshwater coming down the rivers. Here the waters continuously ebb and flow through a maze of streams and tributaries, creating a paradise for all kinds of wildlife. Then cycle alongside Hollands Diep, the estuary of the Rhine and Meuse Rivers, to Willemstad, a fortified town shaped like a seven-pointed star. Take an evening stroll around this historic town, admiring the fortifications and pretty harbour, complete with windmill.

Please note: Biesbosch Park can only be cycled on days the ferry runs. The price of the ferry is NOT included, so you will need to pay for this locally. Cards only are accpeted. no cash payment possible. There is an alternate route for days with no ferry departure.

Day 5 : Willemstad – Noordgouve/Zierikzee
31 miles/50 kms

Today’s route leads you off the mainland onto a series of islands that make up Holland’s westernmost province – Zeeland. You’ll pedal through a patchwork of fertile polders, past sand dunes and deserted beaches. You’ll spend the night in the small village of Noordgouve, just 7kms north of Zierikzee, a lovely old maritime town. In its heyday, the Zierikzee’s harbour would have been full of tall ships, being loaded with salt, wool and grain to trade in Mediterranean and Baltic Ports. We recommend an evening stroll through the town’s cobbled streets.

Day 6 : Noordgouve/Zieriksee – Middelburg/Vlissingen
27 miles/43 kms

Leave Noordgouve and cycle through Zierikzee and out to the coast. Here you embark on a 5km ride on a cycle path bridge across the Oosterschelde, a tidal basin that is also Holland’s largest national park. Cycle across the green meadows of Nord Beveland to Veere a charming village with a strong Scottish connection thanks to a long history of wool trade with Edinburgh. A little further south you cycle through Middelburg with its lovely town square and then to the maritime town of Vlissingen – you’ll spend the night in either of these pleasant towns.

Day 7 : Middelburg/Vlissingen – Bruges
42 miles/66 kms

The day starts with a ferry ride across the Schelde Estuary to the town of Breskens from where you start your last day’s ride. Quiet lanes and cycle paths lead you through a rural idyll of quiet countryside punctuated by picture-book villages to the picturesque, medieval town of Damme. After admiring the town, cycle along the canal-side cycle path, past the lovely old windmill to the gorgeous old city of Bruges. A network of cobbled streets and canals, lined with wonderful old town houses criss-cross the city and quaint squares accommodate wonderful old churches and museums. Of course the Belgians are master chocolatiers and brewers and Bruges offers numerous opportunities to sample these world famous local products!

Day 8 : Bruges - end of trip

After breakfast it is time to check-out and head for home or your next adventure.

Bikes

Regular bikes provided are modern alloy framed models with 21 speeds. The bikes come equipped with pannier, lock and a repair kit with pump.

Electric bikes are also available.

Smaller framed children’s bikes, trailers, tag-a-longs and child seats are also available.

All rental bikes on this tour come with theft insurance included.

We suggest you bring your own helmet for safety and hygiene reasons, alternatively helmets are available for rent at the time of booking.

Accommodation

Below you will find examples of the accommodations typically used on this tour. Please note that the hotels we book for you may differ slightly from those described but they will certainly be of a similar standard.

Superior: Good quality hotels and guesthouses.

Amsterdam: WestCord Art Hotel

Gouda: Best Western Gouda

Papendrecht: Leonardo Hotel Papendrecht

Willemstad: Hotel Mauritz

Schuddebeurs: Hostellerie Schuddebeurs

Middelburg: Hotel Loskade 45 or Vlissingen: Hotel Piccard

Bruges: Velotel Bruges

Local taxes

Some hotels in some countries have started to charge a local/tourist tax. These taxes are not included in the sale price of the tour and must be paid directly by you at check-in or checkout at the hotels. This fee varies and is ever changing but as a guide, you may be asked to pay between €1-€4 per person per night.

Getting there

Fly to Amsterdam or take the Eurostar. At the end of the trip we suggest you fly or take the Eurostar home from Brussels. Brussels is a 1hr 45 min train journey from Bruges

Research flights from the UK here

Research Eurostar from UK here

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