Bicycling in Amsterdam

Bike in AmsterdamNearly half of all traffic movements in Amsterdam are by bike. The Dutch are proud of their biking culture and can be seen pedaling rain or shine (although never with a helmet) through the city streets. Bike paths connect the entire country and cyclists are well respected on the roads, making cycling an efficient as well as healthy and environmentally friendly way to get around.

Tips for Biking in the City:

  • Lock your bike. This is the golden rule in Amsterdam, as there are more bikes stolen per year as there are bikes in the city! Use multiple locks and be sure to lock your bike to something solid.
  • Walk your bike on crowded streets and in pedestrian zones.
  • Obey all traffic signals and customs. The police will not hesitate to pull you over for running a red light just because you are on a bike.
  • Always use a light when biking at night.
  • Watch out for tram tracks.
  • For a suggested bike route inside the city check out our recommended bike itinerary.

Touring Outside the City

Biking is also the best way to see the surrounding countryside. Castles, tulip fields, windmills and dykes are all within reach by bike from the city center. Another option is to take your bike on the train or take the train and rent a bike in an area you wish to explore. Even the smallest villages have bike rentals available for day visitors and rental shops are usually located near the local station.

Recommended Trips Outside the City:

  1. North Amsterdam: Take the free ferry behind Amsterdam central station to North Amsterdam. Follow the signs for the farming village of Broek-in-Waterland (10km). From there head to Uidam (8km) along the eastern dyke. Depending on how you feel, return to the ferry along the eastern dyke (18km); or continue north to the fishing village of Marken (10km roundtrip from Uitdam) and return via Uitdam along the dyke back to Amsterdam (18km).

    Highlights: Windmills, dykes, quaint villages, farms, polders, nature, ocean views.
  2. Muiden: Take the train or follow the signs from Amsterdam central station to Weesp (16km). From Weesp, head to Muiden to visit Muiderslot Castle (5km), and then on to the fortified city of Naarden (10km). Return to Weesp (10km) via Naardermeer and back home to Amsterdam.

    Highlights: Castles, windmills, architecture, cafes, shopping, historical monuments, nature.
  3. Alkmaar: Take the train to Alkmaar (40km) and west by bike to Bergen aan Zeehead on the coast (8km). Head north along the coast until you reach Camperduin (10km). Return the way you came or take the inland route via Groet and Bergen back to Alkmaar (20km).

    Highlights: Beaches, dunes, mansions, wildlife, nature.

A number of companies offer bike rentals for around € 8 per day with discounts for longer rentals.