Cycle & Stay: Windmill Ways
6 days I Hotel to Hotel I Self-guided cycle tour
Ah, windmills. Now, what’s more Dutch than that? Saddle up and see on this town and country cycle tour that has different Dutch discoveries at almost every turn. Traditional cheeses are firmly on the menu first, as a spot of scenic pedalling past woods and castles lands you in Gouda. Perhaps a visit to the historic weighing house should come after trying the town’s hot syrup waffle specialities or sampling the Thursday morning cheese market, but there’s another spectacle waiting at Kinderdijk on the low-lying polders near the River Lek.
Designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the 19 time-honoured drainage mills here mark an amazing feat of 18th century engineering. Find out more in the fascinating museum before you head to the historic harbourlands of Dordrecht, a testimony to the rich trading past of the Dutch ‘Golden Age’. If you’re a nature-lover, you’ll adore the nearby Biesbosch National Park - a drop of pure Dutch magic, where black and white Frisian cows graze lush green meadows bordered by pollarded willows, and waterfowl land on dazzling lakes with reedy fringes. The last two places that you touch down are the walled former fishing industry town of Gorinchem and big city, Utrecht. Don’t miss Utrecht’s ‘Oude Gracht’ wharves, canals and museums covering everything from the work of iconic designer, Gerrit Rietveld, to that lovable cartoon rabbit, ‘Miffy’ and a whole host of colourful street organs – now, just how irresistibly Dutch can you get?
Nice & Easy - Gentle touring by bike along flat cycle tracks and minor roads. Some small and short ascents only in areas where there are drainage dykes and bridges. Cycle map includes route options, so you have the flexibility to shorten or extend your bike tour as you wish.
* Utrecht – cathedral city of towering delights and historic wharves * Gouda – historic market place and town hall, but simply a must for cheese-lovers * Kinderdijk – windmill wonderland * Dordrecht – highly historic trading city with many monuments by the harbour * Biesbosch National Park – freshwater tidal area, almost unique in Europe * Gorinchem - historic walled town centre, monuments and former fishing industry hub.