Amsterdam to Bruges

An enjoyable tour taking you from Netherlands into Belgium, passing historical towns, villages, and canals along the way (all whilst on great quality bike paths). You’ll be thankful to visit these gems. Heading southwest from the Dutch capital you will pass numerous picture-perfect places such as: Gouda, Dordrecht, Willemstad, Zierikzee, Middelburg, Vlissigen (Flushing), Sluis, Damme and the famous Belgian city of Bruges. The route also provides many nature reserves.

Calender 8 days

Difficulty: Moderate

From £789.00 P/P

Highlights large icon

Itinerary

After making your own way to Amsterdam, get to know the Netherland’s famous capital. Visit the 400-year-old canal district, exquisite museums such as the Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum and Anne Frank’s house. See performers and artists on Dam Square, Leidseplein and Rembrandtplein, and of course visit the world-famous red-light district. Should you arrive early, you can visit the tree-lined canal systems, thin townhouses, and the 17th-century canal ring, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The city truly does have endless things to do and deserves the popularity it has.

Time to get on your bike and say goodbye to the cosmopolitan life of Amsterdam. Head into a more idyllic landscape in “Groene Hart” or green heart, here you will find typical polders, peat meadows and feeding livestock. The scenery here is strikingly flat and open and is filled with church spires and windmills reflecting into the lakes and canals. Gouda has been a popular market destination for hundreds of years, with people coming from miles away to buy horses, cows, meat, turf, seeds, cheese and so on. In the evening why not take a small walk in the Old Town and embrace the historical atmosphere. You will find a beautiful market square, 15th century town hall and Weighing House or “Waag”.

This 79-km route can be divided into two shorter versions of 49km and 38km, which would be done by booking an additional night in Woerden. You could even ride some of the way and catch the train for the rest, making the journey 56km.

From Gouda, head to Kinderdijk or the “Green Heart of Holland” which is home to 19 windmills which date back to 1740. The mills were originally used to drain excess water from the low-lying polder and pump it into the River Lek, on this day you can visit one of them. Your stay for the night is Papendrecht, to where you need to catch a ferry from Dordrecht. Dordrecht is one of Holland’s oldest towns and is bordered by rivers. You can reach the town centre by one of the numerous bridges and see impressive buildings at the edge of the harbour. Just a 3km stretch separates you and your hotel in Papendrecht, just on the north shore of the river just from Dordrecht town centre.

Your first port of call for the day is Biesbosch, which due to a high flood in 1421 is now one of a handful of wetlands in Europe where the ecosystem has adapted to salt and freshwater from both the sea and rivers. The constantly changing system of creeks and rivulets contains small islands of willows and reeds, making a fantastic home for birds. Cycle on the edge of the National Park and finish your day off in Willemstad, a walled town which is shaped like a star with seven points. Please note you can only cycle Biesbosch Park on the days that the ferry runs. For the days when the ferry doesn’t run there is an alternate route.

Today it’s time to head into the province of Zeeland, which is characterised by brightness, wind, water, and big spaces. Navigate this region of islands by bridges and ferries in the direction of Belgium. You’ll pass fairy-tale towns with old houses and cobbled streets, as well as a landscape stitched with polders, tranquil landscapes, curved dunes, and amber sand flats.

The first stop on your route is the delightful town of Zierikzee, take a stroll down the thin streets and see the little old houses. You will be reminded of the history of exports of salt, wool, fish, grain, and red dye would leave for destinations as far as the Baltic and Mediterranean. Continue to Veere, a pleasant place where Scottish wool was distributed in 1541. This industry brought wealth into the town for 300 years and it is now alive with an expat community. Head on south into your stay for the night of Middelburg, this is the capital of Zeeland and boats an interesting history being one of the Netherlands’ most important centres of trade in the 16th and 17th centuries.

Enjoy a delicious breakfast and then set off on your last day of cycling. Head to Vlissingen and then get on a ferry to Zeelandic Flanders where you will find meandering country roads, pollard willows, damp meadows and dotted villages. Hop over the border into Belgium where you will be greeted by the charming town of Damme, which lies on the edge of Damse Vaart. From here you don’t have to travel far to reach Bruges aka “the pearl of Flanders”. This charming and magical location has been enchanting visitors for over 150 years. The majority of the old architecture remains in good stand, as well as the town centre which gives a nostalgic taste of its past as a hub for European wool and fabric trade.

Have one last breakfast and then say goodbye to your trip!

Route large icon

Route overview

Start point: Utrecht

End point: Utrecht

Total distance: approx. 341 km

Route of moderate difficulty, this is a linear route that goes along canals and past lovely villages.

 

What’s included

  • 7 Nights
  • 3/4 Star Hotels
  • Breakfast included half board optional
  • Detailed roadbook with maps and tourist information
  • Rental bikes available
  • 7-days a week service-hotline

Not included

  • Amsterdam Sloterdijk / Amsterdam CS
  • Bruges – Amsterdam via Antwerpen
  • Parking available at the hotel
  • GPS-tracks available
Whats included

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We have put together a fantastic selection of self-guided cycling holidays throughout Europe. All prices shown are per person and exclude flights.

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