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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 2:51 pm 
PoTM Winner
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Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 7:21 pm
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Anyone here done any riding in the Netherlands?

Any recommendations on good areas to ride or interesting things to see & do?

I'm off there for a week with my wife & we plan to take the bikes and would like to do a few day rides.

Not booked anything yet so would be good to get some recommendations.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 3:56 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:31 pm
Posts: 1112
There is a network of bike routes that extends from Belgium into the Netherlands. You plan your route by joining the dots between different points on the route. The routes are usually
on minor roads with little traffic and are scenic and pleasant to cycle.

http://www.fietsknooppunten.nl/

www.fietsnet.be

I find the Belgian site easier to use, but it only extends part of the way up into the Netherlands.

If you want a challenge, all the hard hills from Amstel Gold Race (e.g. the Keutenberg) are in the region round Maastricht.

Johnny


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 4:03 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Fri Jan 05, 2007 12:36 pm
Posts: 1087
Location: The Netherlands
Go to the Valkenburg/Schin op Geul/Gulpen/Wittem/Mechelen/Epen area.... the south that is. That's where all the hills are, the Amstel Gold Race is ridden and sometimes the Tour the France finishes in Valkenburg (aan de Geul, not the other one). Mucho things to see, mucho things to do and the best area for road cycling in Holland (unless you like flat).

Kinda makes me wonder why I ever moved to the Utrecht area :oops:


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 4:52 pm 
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Thanks chaps ... what is the score about riding on the roads?

Are you expected to stick to the cycle network?


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 5:25 pm 
Old School Grand Master

Joined: Tue Oct 09, 2007 1:55 pm
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Location: New Forest, UK
Most roads have a parallel cycle path, so riding on the road itself is rarely necessary apart from minor lanes. I'd also consider riding on the east side of the Ijsselmeer. We did a brilliant family holiday last year cycling around it.

You cannot imagine how perfect cycling can be until you ride in the Netherlands.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 5:36 pm 
Old School Hero
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Joined: Tue Aug 18, 2009 12:57 pm
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Location: Suffolk, UK
For us, it was a cycling utopia. We've based ourselves in Zandam just North of Amsterdam on several occasions (staying with a friend). One area we really enjoyed riding to was the Ijmuiden national park on the West coast. Miles and miles of block herring bone paved paths wind their way through sand dunes and then Southwards along the coast to Katwijk. Totally and utterly magical.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 7:12 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:31 pm
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The talk about the Maastricht area reminded me of a couple of other things:

1) There is a network of underground caves ('mergelgrotten') in the area. They were used in WWII to hide art treasures from the Nazis. I think you can now go cave biking round them now - you hire a mountain bike and get to bomb around in the underground caves. Sounds like fun to me.

2) There is a WWII fort called 'Eben-Emal'. It was supposed to be an almost impregnable defence against the Nazis, but the story goes that some German paratroops landed on the roof and planted some explosives. The explosives blew up the chemical toilets, releasing a smell that made the garrison think they were being gassed, so the whole fort surrendered within 20 minutes of the attack. You can do a guided tour of the fort.


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