Around the IJsselmeer
Netherlands Bike Tours
Bike the Golden Circle in Holland
This bike tour in Holland begins and ends in Kampen and is a circular route that leads around the IJssel-Lake, called the Golden Circle by the Dutch. Of course, the adjective Golden refers to the prosperous Dutch Golden Age during the 17th century, but easily applies to the beauty of the tour. You will cycle alongside the IJssel-Lake or IJsselmeer, through many quaint villages that you can still see were once on the seashore. Featured are the traditional Dutch polder landscape; dikes, mills, cheese, and tulips. You can experience it all on this Golden Circle Tour.
- The historic towns of Kampen, Harderwijk, Weesp, Hoorn and Enkhuizen.
- The traditional villages of Elburg and Spakenburg where it seems time as stood still.
- The tourist attractions of Naarden, Muiderslot castle, the former island of Marken, the fisherman village of Volendam, Edam and his cheese market, Hindeloopen in Friesland and the Giethoorn area.
- The Weerribben and Wieden National Park, the lowlands, forest areas as heath lands.
- Cycling in Holland, a cycling paradise
All of our bike tours in Netherlands can be found here.
Double/twin: £ 1024 $ 2,064 € 1195 NOK 11353 kr 10479 $ 1,362
Single supplement: on request.
Including dinners: on request
E bike rental and bike protection (price per day): £ 15 $ 30 € 18 NOK 166 kr 153 $ 20
If opting for an electric bicycle, please note only women's e-bikes are available.
Rates are per person based on double occupancy.
† Currency exchange rate set 90 days before travel.
Fly to Amsterdam Schiphol International Airport
Train from the airport to Kampen, taxi or bus to hotel. Train station is located on lower level of airport.
Please check local conditions before your arrival. The Netherlands is a country that boasts a typical maritime climate with mild summers. Spring and fall can be unpredictable in regards to high/low temperatures and of course, since this is HOLLAND, always bring rain gear. Because the Netherlands is flat, wind can be a factor. A good website to use to research high/low temperatures, average rainfall, and more is weatherbase.com.
Electric bicycle available for this tour upon request.
Where You’ll Stay
Excellent 3 star to 4 star hotels.
- 8 nights hotel accommodations
- Breakfast buffets
- Luggage transfer
- 7-speed hybrid bicycle with breakdown assistance
- Personal instruction at tour start
- Route descriptions & maps
- Additional tourist information
What’s Not Included
Day 1: Arrival in Kampen
Day 2: Kampen – Harderwijk, 26 mi. (42 km)
Day 3: Harderwijk – Weesp, 36 mi. (58 km)
Day 4: Weesp – Marken. By ferry Marken – Volendam. Volendam - Edam, 25 mi. (40 km)
Day 5: Edam - Enkhuizen, 27 mi. (44 km)
Day 6: Enkhuizen - Stavoren by ferry. Stavoren – Lemmer, 27 mi. or 34 mi. ( 43 or 56 km)
Day 7: Lemmer - Giethoorn, 29 mi. (47 km)
Day 8: Giethoorn – Kampen, 23 mi. (37 km)
Day 9: Departure from Kampen
All distances are approximate.
Day 1: Arrival in Kampen
Kampen is one of the towns that formed the former Hanseatic League, a trade community from around the 12th to 16th century. From Amsterdam there is a good train connection to reach this lovely historic town in the eastern part of the Netherlands.
Day 2: Kampen – Harderwijk (42 km)
On this day, our local representative will meet with you in the lobby of your hotel, hand out of equipment, and instruct you thoroughly regarding your upcoming ride. Today’s highlight is Elburg, a fortified city with lots of 16th and 17th century houses. After having visited Elburg, you will ride on to Harderwijk, where you’ll spend the night in the historic city center.
Day 3: Harderwijk – Weesp (58 km)
Today is the longest ride of the tour but a lovely one which can easily be combined with other activities. Close to Harderwijk, you can relax on the beach. In the fishing village Spakenburg, where people still wear traditional Dutch costumes, you can eat some fine fresh fish. You will bike through lovely forest areas and heath lands before you will visit the historic fortified village of Naarden. At the end of the ride, the route leads through one of the oldest nature reserves in Holland, Naardermeer, up to the historic town of Weesp, just east of Amsterdam.
Day 4: Weesp – Marken. By ferry Marken – Volendam. Volendam - Edam (40 km)
First you will pass the medieval Muiderslot Castle, built in 1280 AD. Here, it’s hard to imagine that you are only 15 kilometers away from the dazzling city of Amsterdam. Via former fishing villages such as Durgerdam and Uitdam, you will reach the former island of Marken, where some inhabitants still dress in traditional garb. In Marken, you will take the ferry to Volendam, a well-known tourist attraction. Your hotel in picturesque Edam is only a few kilometers away.
Day 5: Edam - Enkhuizen (44 km)
The most obvious association with the name ‘Edam’ is its cheese. For centuries, the well-known round Edam cheeses have been sent from this town to all corners of the world. The cheese market, once again restored to its place of honor, is enacted weekly during the summer months. And nearby cheese warehouses keep alive the memory of a colourful past. From Edam, the tour goes north over a beautiful dike with great views on the green polder as well as the blue lake. Half way you will pass the historic town of Hoorn, a jewel to enjoy. Finally over the dike again up to Enkhuizen where you will stay. Enkhuizen, has for sure the most beautiful harbor in the Netherlands.
Day 6: Enkhuizen - Stavoren by ferry. Stavoren – Lemmer ( 43 or 56 km)
In the morning, you will cross the Ijsselmeer by ferry, and on the other side, you will get to know another area of Holland, namely Friesland. Friesland is famous for its many lakes and its beautiful old cities. Hindeloopen is highly recommended and has great architecture. Quiet and small bike paths alongside the great blue lakes will bring you in the forest near Balk and finally by the lovely village of Sloten towards the UNESCO steamingmill of Lemmer. Your hotel is just nearby.
Day 7: Lemmer - Giethoorn (47 km)
What a great day ahead as one of the most impressives rides you can imagine awaits. A beautiful National Park is situated halfway between Lemmer and Giethoorn. It is called the Weerribben and Wieden National Park. This park is a marshland with many small islands, creeks and lakes. Of course, the route takes you straight through the park. Giethoorn our Dutch Venice will be the highlight of the day and it’s a must to rent a boat at the hotel to explore all the creeks yourself.
Day 8: Giethoorn – Kampen (37 km)
The first part of today’s tour takes you straight through the ‘Beulaker-en Belterwijde’, an area that is named after two great lakes. Many protected birds live in this region, as well as rare water loving mammals such as beavers and otters. By leaving the lake district you will arrive in Kampen once again and you have finished the Golden Circle.
Day 9: Departure from Kampen
Departure following breakfast