A unique city
In its relationship to cycling, Amsterdam is a unique phenomenon in the world.
Every day, more than a million cyclists circulate on the city's immense cycle network, for which a map is available (some can be downloaded online, at iamsterdam.com).
To make traffic more fluid, in 2017 the town hall set up a vast improvement plan over five years and installed 16,000 new bicycle parking spaces.
To get out of the trails most used by locals, there is also the Green Net network which encourages walks in a quieter and more green environment.
From the city center, you can reach the countryside and even go to the seaside or visit the pretty historic center of Haarlem.
Easily spotted by their burgundy color, the cycle paths allow you to cross the city, whether you cross it via the main arteries or whether you choose to stroll along the canals.
Read also: Cycling in Amsterdam, a not so trivial experience
Where to rent a bike?
Rental companies are legion and many are located near the central station or around Leidseplein and Dam Square.
Even if the indications are mostly in English, know that the word “
” means bicycle in Dutch.
No need to choose a gear bike, you won't need one in the flat country.
You will be offered a fixed-gear bicycle, with hand or coaster brakes.
A padlock is obviously provided, but remember that it must be hung every time and preferably in bicycle parking lots or on bridges.
Avoid private gates and watch for prohibition signs, the pound regularly takes badly parked bikes on board.
The right equipment
If everyone provides the appropriate outfit for pedaling, you have the right to forget the helmet, it is not mandatory and no one wears one except the very young.
If you are with your family, you can rent the famous Bakfiets or cargo bikes, which allow you to place one or two children in the front.
Amstellodamois are used to riding in all weathers, so plan to wear your clothes against the rain, it is always more careful.
Finally, check that your two-wheeler is equipped with lights, essential for the end of the day in winter.
Read also: A short guide to preparing for your first cycling adventure
Our selection of itineraries
South of KNSM are the islands of Sporenburg and Borneo, connected by the Python Bridge.
To understand the city by bike, the easiest way is also to let yourself be guided. Lilian Tilmans has been organizing tours (on foot or by bicycle) in French, English or Dutch for twenty years. Completely tailor-made courses, according to the desires of each individual and of the members of the family. If you are new to Amsterdam, take a loop through the
, starting from the trendy
in the east, then descend to the museum quarter via
and walk up the west side after passing the
museum of the 'Hermitage
and the House of Rembrandt.
For an original ride with few cars, head to the
Port of Amsterdam
, east of Central Station. The first two islands to discover are
Java and KNSM
, two man-made islands that are part of the Oost district of Amsterdam. Take a break in
, very popular with young people who come to relax on the equipped beach. South of KNSM are the islands of
Sporenburg and Borneo
, connected by an astonishing undulating red steel bridge.
The Borneo district offers houses of all colors and sizes, designed by residents on a proposal from the town hall.
On Sporenburg, La Baleine, a building designed by Frits Van Dongen and now the symbol of this part of the city.
For a break, head to the
, an Art Deco building built in 1921 for the Royal Dutch Lloyd, the first shipping company to link the country to South America.
Read also: 48 hours in Amsterdam: from the classic Jordaan to the very fashionable De Pijp district
Lilian Tilmans: amsterdampersonalized.com
And also: amsterdam-velo.com
In the city center: Mac Bike (from € 5 per hour, € 10 for the cargo bike and € 25 for the electric bike)
North of the central station: NDSM Bikes (€ 7.50 for two hours)