The LEKKER Journal – a blog series sharing our favourite bike trips and routes in different cities across the world. Highlighting the benefits of cycling and introducing our readers to our favourite places for riding our LEKKER bikes, these blogs aim to be an inspiration to keep on riding and enjoy our beautiful cities and nature in a responsible way. This week, introducing: Bikes routes in Amsterdam!
Amsterdam… aka the bicycle metropolis of the world and home town of our brand’s dutch heritage. Usually crowded, bustling and full of tourists – the city never really sleeps! But what if you have ticked off all touristy spots, successfully ate a Dutch herring, and are now bored in the house (and in the house, bored)? If you want to get the full Amsterdam experience you simply have to hop on a bike and explore the city the “dutch way”. Time to go out for a bit of activity, join the bicycle crew!
And no worries, we came prepared! Find below our top 5 bicycle tracks in and around the Dutch capital.
A ride around ‘Het Twiske’
We will start short and simple, see it as a warming up. This 25km track will take you around nature reserve ‘Het Twiske’, starting at Amsterdam Central Station. Pedal for +/- 30 minutes and you will arrive at the green landscape, with the Stooterplas in the middle surrounded by reed beds. The perfect habitat for the Highland cattle, plenty of grass to enjoy and a great lake for some thirst-quenching sips. And, lucky you! Chances are high you spot one or two.
Amsterdam to Amstelveen
Canals everywhere, over 1500 bridges and not to mention the rivers that flow criss-cross through the city. No wonder Amsterdam is also known as ‘The Venice of the North’! This 43km track takes you on a tour past all these splashing highlights. Starting from a ride alongside the Amstel river, all the way up to Het Amsterdamse Bos, a park three times the size of New York’s Central Park. On your way back to the city, you ride through the Vondelpark – a bit smaller than the first one, but equally pretty! And last, but certainly not least, you will finish your ride with a panoramic view over t’IJ, one of Amsterdam’s incredible city rivers.
Exploring Amsterdam’s Parks
Parks… Been there, done that, you might think. However, there is always more to see! Believe it or not, Amsterdam is surrounded by even more beautiful parkland. Start this 70km loop in the good old Amsterdamse Bos, past Schiphol Airport to the Zwarte Pad where you will continue your ride surrounded by green and some low-flying airplanes here and there. Whilst you take in the landscape and pedal your way further down the path, you will find parks and allotments to your left and right. Short in time and indecisive of which park to visit? We would advise not to skip De Lange Bretten. Why? Easy! In between apartment blocks and factories, you will find this city jungle. Conquer this piece of wild nature like true Tarzans and Janes and find Highland cattle, dutch goats and the most extraordinary breeds of birds. Who would have thought you can find this all-in-one experience in the middle of Amsterdam.
How about something a little less green? It’s time to focus on some of Amsterdam’s most outstanding architecture. We start our ride at the Scheepsvaartmuseum (maritime museum), a giant building that, back in the 17th-century, served as a maritime warehouse. Followed by another hotspot: NEMO. Nope, not a lost clownfish, but an interactive Museum of Science and Technology, built in the shape of a massive rising (or sinking, we leave that up to you) ship. Another modern masterpiece is the Eye Film Museum, if you want to know absolutely everything about moving images and film – this is certainly your go-to! Not only impressive from the outside but also amazing content to admire on the inside. Past the monumental Centraal Station, you will ride in the direction of Zaandam.
After a 50 minute ride through some of authentic Dutch landscapes, you will arrive at the Inntel Hotel – a hotel built out of nearly 70 (!) stacked typical Zaanse huisjes. Other famous architectures on this bike trail are ‘Het Schip’ (The Ship) named after its shape, now a museum, formerly a primary school; Het Rijksmuseum, an art gallery home to e.g. Rembrandt’s famous Nachtwacht; And the Royal Palace on Dam square, legacy of the golden age.
The Tulip experience – Keukenhof
Let’s finish with an easy one! To give you the real tulip experience, you need to cheat a bit and jump in your car first. Luckily, the colourful fields are only a 40-minute drive away. You can decide to bring your bike with you, but the Keukenhof also offers a rental service. On your tour through the tulip fields, you will be able to enjoy the picturesque landscapes. Up for a bit of history about this flowery region? Definitely stop by Museum de Zwarte Tulp (The Black Tulip Museum)! And for the perfect souvenir, pick some flowers or purchase some bulbs at De Bollenburcht. Tip: take a picture with some windmills in the background for the full-experience-snap.
Only two things needed to conquer these trails: yourself and a bike. In case you need some help with the last essential, let us know! We are happy to help you online, or at one of our brand stores in Amsterdam, Melbourne and Sydney.