New land AlmereNew land LelystadCastles & gardensAmstel riverFlowers of AmsterdamAmsterdam beachAuthentic HaarlemIndustrial heritageWaterland

Cycleseeing? What’s cycleseeing?

Cycleseeing is cycling and sightseeing, all at the same time! Seeing the sights that are just outside of Amsterdam and off the beaten track. Real life windmills, tulip fields, castles, industrial heritage and villages older than Amsterdam. The idea is to take your time and enjoy the scenery. Just see what you feel like seeing. On all the routes we suggest places to eat, drink and rest. There are shortcuts and detours for extra special attractions.

The Netherlands has an extensive network of green numbered junctions that connect all the best cycle paths. They have been integrated in our routes where present. There are red signs for cyclists too, connecting all the major cities. Getting lost is almost impossible.

To make it even harder to lose your way, get a free printed map from one of the major bike rentals or use these maps which are based on Google maps.

If you’re overwhelmed by all the Dutch scenery (can’t be bothered to cycle anymore) there are train stations on some of the routes. Which means you can return to the city centre with your bicycle by train. Please do check the terms and conditions here.

The routes


Icon 1 voor de titelWaterland

Prepare to fall in love with traditional Dutch villages and countryside. The Waterland route begins and ends at Amsterdam Centraal station. It follows the cycle paths towards Het Schouw, on to the Venetian-style village of Ilpendam, and through the suburban hamlet of Purmerend. From there, you can cycle through Purmerland, with an optional side trip to Het Twiske. Then back through the hipster haunts of NDSM-werf.

amstel river

Icon 2 voor de titelAmstel River

Amsterdam wouldn’t be Amsterdam without the Amstel River. Named after small fishing village Amstelredamme (dam on the river Amstel), built during the 13th century. The Amstel River route follows the flow of the river out of the city. Meandering through Ouderkerk aan de Amstel, Nes aan de Amstel, Uithoorn and Waver.

flowers of amsterdam

Icon 3 voor de titelFlowers of Amsterdam

Think of Holland and you think of one flower. The tulip. In 1637 at the height of tulip mania, tulips were being sold for more than the price of a luxurious Amsterdam house. The Flower Route begins at the Bloemenmarkt (Flower Market) in Amsterdam and ends in Aalsmeer, near the largest flower auction in the world. If you like flowers, this is the route for you.


Icon 4 voor de titelAuthentic Haarlem

Amsterdam has long been known for its enchanting city centre, crooked canal houses and winding waterways. Yet a few km’s west, the scene changes from urban to pastoral as you head toward Haarlem – every bit Amsterdam’s match in terms of ornate 17th century architecture, bustling restaurants and a thriving arts scene. Hop on a bike and experience the best of times in the Netherlands’ twin cities.


Icon 5 voor de titelAmsterdam Beach

Some of the Netherlands’ most hidden treasures lie just a few kilometres outside of Amsterdam. Jump on your bike and get-set to explore windswept beaches, quaint historic villages, unique dune ecology and even some 13th century ruins – on a route which is primarily flat, with a few hilly bits here and there. You won’t regret it!


Icon 6 voor de titelIndustrial Heritage

Amsterdam and Zaandam go together like coffee and biscuits – and on this tour you’ll get a taste of both cities’ deep connections to their industrial pasts. In this part of Holland, for well over a century people have lived in the shadows of huge factories. Some of these are still in use today, others have been transformed into apartments or cultural venues. Yet the real jewel of this journey is the Zaanse Schans – a living village of windmills, wooden houses and artisanal workshops that is frozen in time.

castles gardens

Icon 7 voor de titelCastles & Gardens

Fairy-tale castles and gardens, forts, all cycling distance from Amsterdam. Some were part of the Defence Line of Amsterdam (UNESCO World Heritage Site), others were owned by wealthy merchants from the Golden Age. Most are well-preserved with beautifully maintained gardens. More than worth cycleseeing!

Icon 8 voor de titelNew Land Almere

No other landscape in the Netherlands breathes 20th centuryas much as New Land does, with its modern polder cities such as Almere, acting as architectural museums. In beautiful and complementary contrast on this are the natural areas such as Lepelaarplassen and Oostvaardersplassen.

Icon 8 voor de titelNew Land Lelystad

Have you ever been to a city on the seabed? Lelystad is not quite Atlantis but is the youngest coastal city in the Netherlands. Named after Cornelis Lely, a politician and civil engineer. He designed the Zuiderzee Works, turning the Zuider Zee (Southern Sea) into a lake and converting the seabed into dry land.

The Bike Instructor’s guide to cycling in Amsterdam

Amsterdam is one of the most bicycle-friendly cities in the world and the majority of its citizens have spent their lives on two wheels since they were infants.

Thanks to the many bike paths in the city, pedal power is all you need to uncover the city’s gems on your own, or as part of a guided bike tour.

Cycling in the city can be hectic, especially if you’re not used to Amsterdam-style traffic! Here are a few things to keep in mind after you hire a bicycle:

Watch the movie!

What do you need for Cycleseeing

Rental bikes are easier to find than sushi.

You’ll need:

A bike: Rent one from one of the bike renting shops in the picture below

A jacket: the Netherlands’ weather is delightfully unpredictable, so you might get caught in the odd shower or two

A camera: prepare to snap some snazzy vistas and authentically Dutch delights

A nose for adventure: your route can be as easy or as complicated as you like – take our advice for half-a-day away, or add side-trips as you go to extend your stay

Pro tips:

Follow the red signs: it’s impossible to get lost when you follow the distinctive red signs, which link virtually every town and city in the country

Pack for snack attacks: keep a bit of extra pep in your pedal and bring energy-filled foods like bananas, cashews and dried apricots to nibble on while you ride

Wear sensible shoes: leave the high-heels for the urbanites and wear flat-soled shoes, handy when venturing into green areas

Small Change: Don’t forget to bring some coins in case you need to pay in cash for a ferry or a snack.

  • Ajaxbike,
    Gerard Doustraat 153,
    06 15684831
  • Mike’s Bike Tours,
    Kerkstraat 134,
    020 622 7970
  • MacBike Leidseplein,
    Weteringschans 2,
    020 528 7688
  • A-Bike Rental,
    Tesselschadestraat 1E,
    020 218 1292
  • MacBike Vondelpark,
    Overtoom 45,
    020 683 3369
  • Bike4U,
    Kinkerstraat 1A,
    020 223 8548
  • Bike City,
    Bloemgracht 68-70,
    020 626 3721
  • Discount Bike Rental,
    Nieuwe Nieuwstraat 19,
    020 428 4040
  • Yellow Bike Rental Central Station,
    Nieuwezijds Kolk 29,
    020 620 6940
  • Holland Rent-a-bike Beursstalling,
    Damrak 247,
    020 622 3207
  • Damstraat Rent a Bike,
    Damstraat 20-22,
    020 625 5029
  • MacBike Central Station North,
    De Ruijterkade 34B,
    020 624 8391
  • MacBike Central Station,
    Oosterdokskade 151-1,
    020 811 5110
  • AmsterBike,
    Piet Heinkade 11A,
    020 419 9063
  • Mike’s Bike Tours Centraal Station,
    Prins Hendrikkade 176 hs,
    020 233 0216
  • MacBike Waterlooplein,
    Waterlooplein 199,
    020 428 7005

Bikes usually cost around € 7,50 per hour to rent. Or ± € 15,- for a whole day. When renting a bike, make sure the rental company has the I Amsterdam approved vignette.

cycleseeing logo

Metropoolregio Amsterdam Bureau Strawinskylaan 1779 (WTC, I-tower) 1077 XX Amsterdam



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