AMSTERDAM TO NAARDEN – a fine spring cycle

By the Amstel River. 'Amster-dam' = 'Dam on the Amstel', remember?

By the Amstel River. ‘Amster-dam’ = ‘Dam on the Amstel’, remember?

We’ve just arrived back in Holland, the breeze is gentle and the rain won’t be with us for two more days. So what better way to fight the jetlag than a ride through the Dutch countryside?

One of the most hit-on posts on this blog is my brief list of Holland’s Prettiest Villages. I decided I’d see how many of them I could manage to ride around in a day. My route took me through Ouderkerk aan de Amstel, Abcoude, Weesp, Naarden, Muiden and back to Amsterdam. A respectable 72kms, plus a few where I forgot to switch the computer back on.

If that seems a bit energetic for Day 1 in the saddle, let me confess up front that Mevrouw T kindly offered me use of her electric bike. I know, that’s cheating, but we thought the beast should be tested again, before we take it farther afield.

It was indeed a lovely ride, and the bike’s electric booster left me energy over for photography.

A bit of mist in the car-free avenue that is Kalfjeslaan, a great path out of Amsterdam.

A bit of mist in the car-free avenue that is Kalfjeslaan, a great path out of Amsterdam.

First stop by the Amstel River is Ouderkerk (Old Church). The village is mainly interesting for the Jewish-Portuguese cemetery where Baruch Spinoza's parents are buried.

First stop by the Amstel River is Ouderkerk (Old Church). The village is mainly interesting for the Jewish-Portuguese cemetery where Baruch Spinoza’s parents are buried.

I liked this little lane by the Waver River.

I liked this little lane by the Waver River.

20 km and an hour or so on the clock, and I reached Abcoude...

20 km and an hour or so on the clock, and I reached Abcoude…

...in time for market day.

…in time for market day.

The path by the Gein River is one of my favourites - flat, beautiful, with two windmills and very few cars.

The path by the Gein River is one of my favourites – flat, beautiful, with two windmills and very few cars.

I've taken so many shots of this bridge in Weesp, mostly because there's a good cafe looking out at it.

I’ve taken so many shots of this bridge in Weesp, mostly because there’s a good cafe looking out at it.

I'm sure there's a very good reason why camels shelter under a bridge near Naarden. I just can't think of it right now.

I’m sure there’s a very good reason why camels shelter under a bridge near Naarden. I just can’t think of it right now.

Naarden is a vesting (a fortified village) with a moat and a museum where school kids can look at cannons. It's reasonably interesting for them, though they must be a little disappointed if they're not allowed to shoot them.

Naarden is a vesting (a fortified village) with a moat and a museum where school kids can look at cannons. They must be a little disappointed if they’re not allowed to shoot them.

Muiden. A place for a final drink by the lock before pointing the bike back at Amsterdam.

Muiden. A place for a final drink by the lock before pointing the bike back at Amsterdam.

There’ll be more Dutch rides to come and I’ll be perfectly satisfied if they’re all as nice as this one. Stay tuned.

And oh, the results of the Dutch ID electric bike test, for those interested. I set the support on ‘ECO, level 1′ for the whole 72km trip. That was enough to give me a noticeable little ‘hand on the back’ when riding into the wind, and I arrived home with the gauge offering me another 33km of boosting at that level – over 100km all up, in other words. Pretty good!

For the detailed map of my route, including false turns, CLICK HERE.

17 Comments

Filed under Cycle touring, Cycling, Holland

17 responses to “AMSTERDAM TO NAARDEN – a fine spring cycle

  1. What a beautiful place… it would be great to walk around these picturesque country side…

    The reviser and wind mills by it’s side are so beautiful to shoot at… :)

  2. Ina

    Never homesick till I read about your bike trip. It just looks so inviting. Keep up the blogs. I really enjoy reading them.

  3. My bike wants to go out now!

  4. Welcome back, Richard and Mrs. T! Beautiful pictures!

  5. This is totally inspiring. I have been to Amsterdam a few times over the past few years and have done a few forest rides around the Veluwe as well as city rides. Your rides out of Amsterdam have got me ready to go again. Thanks Peet

  6. Thanks for taking me along Richard and for finding the time to stop now and then for some wonderful pictures!

  7. Hey Richard…..it’s little more than a year since we met up in Sydney, and you kindly treated me to a ‘bush tucker’ meal. So you’re in Holland again……my wife, Jenny, and I will be passing through on Monday April 21st, arriving on the early morning ferry from Harwich, to spend half a day tandeming through some of the bulb fields. Wouldn’t it be cool to share a short ride together?
    If not, can you recommend a 20km circuit not far from Rotterdam, so that we can enjoy some of the bulb-filled countryside? Can’t stay too long. We will then have a 650km drive to the Alsace that day.

  8. Peaceful cycle tracks, pretty canals, interesting markets, old windmills… ahhh, you sure do make us long to learn how to ride a bike in these surroundings.

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