Bicycles are to Amsterdam what the Eiffel Tower is to Paris, and when you arrive you’ll discover that they’re not just a mode of transport, but a way of life!
Hiring a bike and cycling around Amsterdam is the perfect way to see as much of the city as possible in the shortest amount of time, plus you’ll blend in with the locals, avoid contributing to the city’s emissions and help yourself to stay fit too.
You have an endless choice of routes to take on bikes around Amsterdam after arriving on cheap flights from Jet2, but here are just some of the most unique.
Explore the Vondelpark
Amsterdam’s Vondelpark is far from a well-kept secret where cycle routes are concerned, but there’s so much to see in here that it simply can’t be missed!
The Vondelpark is the largest public park in Amsterdam and as you travel along the winding paths, you’ll pass by many sparkling ponds and banks on which to stretch out and relax, but keep your eyes peeled for the hidden gems.
The Vondelpark is home to a wildlife reserve that herons, several species of duck and Amsterdam’s famous green parrots call their home, and as it’s in the middle of a pond you’ll need to look carefully – perhaps pack some binoculars?
Once you’ve spotted the birds, carry on until you find the Blue Teahouse with its outside terrace and delicious homemade cakes.
Get Out Into the Countryside
Although Amsterdam itself is a beautiful city, don’t miss the opportunity to see the stunning countryside and charming towns that lay just a few miles outside the centre – and can be reached by bicycle.
In just half an hour, and by cycling along the picturesque Amsterdam-Rhine canal you can find yourself in Weesp, a historic town that still has many of the moats, forts and bastions with which it was once fortified.
In the centre of the town there are three windmills as well as a magnificent gothic church, and what’s more once you arrive in Weesp you’ll be within easy cycling distance to two more fascinating fortified towns, Muiden and Naarden.
Bohemian Biking in the Jordaan
Known as Amsterdam’s most trendy neighbourhood, the Jordaan was originally the area of the city reserved for the working class and immigrants, but is now inhabited by the young and trendy.
You’ll find the Jordaan in the west of the city, and as its narrow streets are too narrow for public transport, it’s perfect for bikes!
As you cycle around the Jordaan make sure you stop to read the plaques on the houses denoting the profession of its former residents, peer inside the windows of the craft boutiques, marvel at the beautiful Westerkerk where Rembrandt is buried, and visit the Anne Frank House.
It can get busy here though, so if you don’t fancy the queues, head to the unique Houseboat Museum instead.
(photo credits: 1 – 2 )