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  Vrindavan is a fascinating travel destination, 50 kilometers from the historic Taj Mahal, and a city revered by millions for being the place where Lord Krishna spent his early childhood and romanced his beloved Radha. Vrindavan is a city of chaos, as tourists from all over the world come here to explore and rejoice in the land of love and romance and the best way to explore this city is on  [...]

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Cycling in Holland: Tulips, Windmills and Lots of Bikes

Posted on February 26, 2013 | Travel DestinationsNo Comment



Holland was never high on my travelling wish-list but when the opportunity to tag along with three serious cyclists came along I thought it would be remiss of me to turn down the opportunity, and my wife wholeheartedly agreed. I am sure my dearly-beloved was thinking of my slightly expanded waistline when she encouraged me to go and I think it was that same waistline that persuaded me to agree.

Holland instantly conjures up a plethora ofarchetypal images for a lot of people and, leaving the seedier ones aside, many of the stereotypical associations are well-deserved. Over the course of our four-day cycling adventure we saw countless windmills, endless fields of glorious blooms, lots and lots of fellow cyclists and, thankfully for my legs, not a single hill!

Tulips Tour in Holland

Ironically, despite there being more bikes than people in the Netherlands, the country is not necessarily one that is an automatic choice for cycling enthusiasts. Perhaps the very reason I loved it is the same reason my fitter co-cyclists didn’t get quite so much out of it, and why it is not somewhere thought of as a key destination for two-wheel enthusiasts. The country is undeniably flat and whilst that helps those unaccustomed to the lactic acid burn that accompanies cycling up hills, some miss both the challenge of the climbs and the scenic rewards those challenges deliver… if you survive them.

Netherlands Has More Bikes

However, if you put this aside and accept that you aren’t going to experience mountain scenery, a cycling trip in Holland can be as rewarding as anywhere else in the world. Whilst it is true that it offers enough to satisfy cyclists of any standard, taste or experience, it is equally true that it is a perfect place for first-timers.

The Netherlands has one of the best road-safety records in the world and an abundance of bike hire shops, both of which are a result of the fact that it has a genuine cycling culture. Combine that with the aforementioned lack of hills and the nation’s well-known linguistic abilities and you have an ideal destination for the novice British cyclist.

Hotels in Holland

For those reasons, it is also an ideal choice for families. You won’t have children struggling with impossible inclines and the smooth, safe cycle paths make for as hassle-free a trip as possible. Another thing this part of the world has in its favour is a rail network that makes our leaves-on-the-track delays seem as laughable as they actually are (when not delayed for two hours as a result).

The advantage of the rail system to a cycling vacation may not be immediately obvious but many of the major routes for those travelling on two-wheels run alongside the railway lines and offer the opportunity to let the train take the strain. Perhaps not something of interest to your average enthusiast but a potential godsend on a wet day when the kids have decided they don’t quite fancy it and you have a nice hotel with dinner and hot bath waiting just 20 km away. Obviously nobody is suggesting you take the train the whole way but many of the key stretches can be shortened by judicious use of the railway and if it makes the holiday more enjoyable then why not?

Cycling Vacation in Holland

Having said that, with the bright, abundant fields of tulips, lilies and other flora, the fascinating cobbled towns with their colourful markets, the magnificent cathedrals and churches, soaring sand dunes and wide beaches, even the most reluctant cyclist is sure to be inclined to favour the bike over the train.

Holland is a beautiful place to explore, discovering its bustling canals and ruined fortresses as you go. Its pristine coastline, scattered with lighthouses, and the sedate yet fascinating towns such as Alkmaar and Edam make for a wonderfully varied holiday. All in all, whilst my companions may have bemoaned the lack of physical challenge they were ultimately won over by the simplicity and picturesque beauty offered by a cycling holiday in Holland. What makes it even more wonderful is that it’s a trip that is suitable for old and young, beginner and veteran, it might just be time to get on your bike in Holland.

Article written by David Hanson on behalf of Headwater.com

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