Oudewater. Photo via Flickr:zoetnet
"Klompen" for sale! Photo via Flickr:Alex Scarcella

Windmills at the Zaanse Schans of course! Photo via Flickr:Alex Scarcella:httpwwwccworldit

Holland in a Nutshell - a Tulip Tour

Netherlands Bike Tours

A Netherlands bike tour that pulls out all the stops.

This tour will show you everything Holland is famous for - in just one week. You will see wonderful windmills in the west and will smell the surprising scent of tulips in the north. Take a cruise along the canals of Amsterdam and taste a variety of cheese at the marvellous markets of both Gouda and Edam. This tour is simply a perfect combination for visiting Dutch highlights while doing some gentle cycling. During this tour you will cycle on small cycle-lanes through flat green meadows, as well as on well-paved cycle-paths along typical Dutch dykes. On your way, you will pass beautiful former fishing villages and pretty towns such as Marken, where local people still wear traditional Dutch costume. After one week of great cycling you will definitely have the feeling that you have seen everything Holland is known for.

A comprehensive list of all of our bike tours in Holland is here.

Where You’ll Stay

Nice hotels and/or B&Bs.

What’s Included

  • 7 nights accommodations
  • Breakfasts
  • Hybrid bicycle
  • Maps & route information
  • Luggage transportation
  • Additional tourist information

What’s Not Included

  • Individual arrival to your first hotel in Schagen
  • Remaining meals (6 x dinners can be included for a supplement)
  • Bicycle protection
TypeSelf Guided
Length8 days
From765 Rates
Print Tour

Tour Dates

Daily from April 1 to September 30, 2015

Skill Level

Easy self-guided hotel tour. Daily distances range from 32 to 42 miles over flat, excellent bike paths and side streets.

Day-To-Day Itinerary

Holland in a Nutshell - a Tulip Tour Map

Day 1: Arrival in Schagen
Day 2: Schagen day tour, 29 mi. (47 km) or 34 mi. (54 km)
Day 3: Schagen - Edam, 37 mi. (59 km)
Day 4: Edam day tour, 35 mi. (56 km)
Day 5: Edam - Hilversum, 37 mi. (60 km)
Day 6: Hilversum – Oudewater, 38 mi. (61 km)
Day 7: Oudewater day tour, 32 mi. (51 km)
Day 8: Departure Oudewater

*All distances are approximate.

Day 1: Arrival in Schagen.

Day 2: Schagen day tour, 29 mi. (47 km) or 34 mi. (54 km)
Today you can choose between two bicycle routes through completely divergent areas. The first takes you through Europe’s largest bulb area, which in Springtime is ablaze with all colors of the rainbow. The second tour takes you through the widest and highest dune area in the Netherlands, straight through the De Schoorlse Duinen National Park.

Day 3: Schagen – Edam, 37 mi. (59 km)
Today's tour features Old Dutch windmills, historic small villages, traditional polder-landscape and an age-old cheese-market. In the morning, head south through the open countryside. You will then pass several windmills that were used in the seventeenth century to extract water from a huge lake. Graft and De Rijp are perfect places for a break: these small villages are characterized by gabled-houses, 17th century draw-bridges and a beautiful weigh-house from 1630 that is now used as the town-hall. From here to Edam, you will cycle straight through a UNESCO world heritage area: the Beemster. The Beemster was the first polder in the Netherlands. 400 years ago this area was a huge lake. The Beemster Polder was drained from1609 until 1612. Preserved intact are its well-ordered landscape of fields, roads, canals, dykes and settlements - laid out in accordance with classical and Renaissance planning principles. The tour ends close to the cheese-market of Edam. Your hotel is situated in the historic centre. From the terrace, you have a view of cobbled streets, flanked by age-old gabled-houses.

Day 4: Edam day tour, 35 mi. (56 km)
Today you will make a day tour to the Zaanse Schans, one of Europe’s oldest industrial areas that is now an extraordinary open-air museum. The mills, warehouses and traditional wooden houses you will find here will give you a perfect impression of this 17th century commercial center of Amsterdam. If you don’t want to cycle, you can catch a taxi or bus to Amsterdam (only 25 km) and take a cruise along the canals of Amsterdam.

Day 5: Edam – Hilversum, 37 mi. (60 km)
First you will circumnavigate Amsterdam. After, you will pass the medieval Muiderslot castle, built in 1280AD (!) by count Floris V. Here, it is hard to imagine that you are only 15 kilometres away from the dazzling modern city of Amsterdam. Be amazed by the utter calm, when you cycle over the dikes, leaving the city behind you. Narrow cycle tracks will take you across vast heather fields, before you reach Hilversum. During the 1920’s and 1930’s, Hilversum’s architecture went through its very own golden age. No other town in the Netherlands was shaped to such an extent by the hand of a single architect: Willem M. Dudok. The route takes you along several of his works. In fact, you will find your hotel close to the Town Hall, designed by this world famous architect.

Day 6: Hilversum – Oudewater, 38 mi. (61 km)
From Hilversum, the route takes you south and in the first part the river Vecht will be your guide. You will be cycling along narrow dykes, many 17th century cottages and tea domes can still be found here. Near Breukelen, you will pass the Kortrijk Mill that was built in 1696 AD. Further south the route takes you through the classical Dutch polder: green meadows, black-and-white cows, blue ditches and white clouds. It can hardly get more Dutch than this!

Day 7: Oudewater day tour, 32 mi. (51 km)
Today, you will visit Gouda, world-famous for its cheeses and waffles! Every Thursday morning, farmers in traditional costume come to the market to have their cheeses weighed and sold. The tour continues along the Reeuwijkse Plassen, a collection of 10 lakes. Nowhere else in the world is there so little land between lakes: the route takes optimal advantage of the available amount of mainland.

Day 8: Departure Oudewater

Looking for more?  View all our featured bicycle tours, specials, and news or look at our full list of bike tours in Europe.

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Customer Feedback

  • Dixie Criddle 11 months ago

    This was our first self-guided bike tour and we absolutely loved it. We found the accommodation very satisfactory. We chose to pay extra for our evening meals, which was very convenient after a hard day of cycling. We did find some routes difficult to follow and often became lost, but this was just part of the fun! We would like to suggest a few ideas to make the map reading a little easier. Perhaps a key could be included in the map notes plus more landmarks and an overall map of Holland would be beneficial. We found the Dutch people went out of their way to assist us and the scenery was lovely. We also think Hilversum was too big. Thank you for a great tour!

  • Michiele C. 1 year ago

    We had an absolutely great time!!! The first couple of days it was very windy and rainy but the weather just kept getting better. The hotels were comfortable. Maybe the only change would have been a smaller town than coming into Hilversum. The Dutch people, countryside and food were fantastic. Everything went very smoothly.

    Thank you for a great tour!! It was a very special time for my daughter and me!!

  • Julie Rowland 4 years ago

    This was the first time we had done a place to place cycling holiday and we were so pleased with it all that we are looking to book another this year. Tripsite could not have been more helpful and were very pateint with all the questions we asked before we booked. The tour was fantastic with everything going to plan. The accomodation was lovely.We started this tour in Hilversum as Oudewater was fully booked due to the late booking of this holiday. However the tour was adapted and cycle routes provided for this modified tour. Excellent value for money and what a wonderful, helpful team. A big thank you to you all.

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