Recent hiking duties have left me a little soft. Legs and lungs are doing a good job, but the backside hasn’t been on the bike for a while.
So I eased myself back into the saddle for a little loop ride out of Amsterdam.
To remind myself I was back in Holland, I picked a route around the Zaan, a watercourse just north of Amsterdam, leading into the North Sea Canal.
Zaandam at its mouth is an unremarkable village, which has become notable in the last year with the opening of the Zaandam Inntel, a hotel complex with an eye-catching design.
A few kilometres of gentle riding up the Zaan brought me to Zaanse Schans, one of the most popular tourist attractions close to Amsterdam.
Old houses and windmills have been brought here from around the country to form an open air museum.
The difference with other open air museums is that the houses are occupied by real people who really live and work there.
Entry to Zaanse Schans is free, though there are small charges for some of the museums.
From there I rode back to Amsterdam through the recreation/nature area Het Twiske.
Then it was back to the little ferry which takes cyclists and pedestrians over the Ij canal to the big city.
All in all, a very pleasant little outing, 47.56km on the bike computer and the backside bruised but marginally firmer.
Here’s the map of the route – for details, click here.
Getting to Zaanse Schans without a bike: The train from Amsterdam Centraal to Koog Zaandijk takes about 20 minutes and costs EUR5.60. From there it’s about a ten minute walk to Zaanse Schans.