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Kinderdijk wind mill

Dutch Waterscapes

Unique architectural history

9 Days / 8 Nights
Kinderdijk wind mill

The Dutch Water Landscapes, a one-of-a-kind defensive system, stretch along a 200-kilometer-long line adorned with fortresses, castles, and waterworks. The historic structures and picturesque natural scenery are most effectively explored by bicycle. Across nine days, you'll have ample opportunity to savor culinary delights and discover captivating cities like Utrecht and Gorinchem.

Shortly after beginning your journey in Utrecht, you'll arrive at the Waterliniemuseum Fort bij Vechten before continuing through Fort Honswijk to Wijk bij Duurstede. Shopping enthusiasts will find plenty to enjoy in Culemborg, and you shouldn't miss tasting the famous cheese in Leerdam. The third leg of your journey follows the River Waal, with Loevestein Castle as a highlight. After a night in the enchanting Gorinchem, you'll cycle through Oudewater to Woerden.

You will pass forts and windmills on day 6 on the way to Abcoude. The last two stages take you past the forts of Nigtevecht and Uitemeer to Oud-Loosdrecht and near Utrecht to Fort aan de Klop.

  • The enchanting Utrecht: The Dutch city is renowned for its historic canals, medieval architecture, and the impressive Dom Tower. As a cultural hub, Utrecht boasts museums, vibrant markets, and charming canal-side cafes. Our recommendation: Visit the "Pandhof Domkerk," a tranquil monastery courtyard adjacent to the cathedral tower, where you can immerse yourself in peace and serenity away from the tourist crowds, surrounded by lush greenery and historical ambiance.
  • Forts and castles as far as the eye can see: You cannot escape the cultural sites on this tour. An interesting museum awaits you at Loevestein Castle and Nyenrode Castle is now home to a university.
  • The historic witches’ scales in Oudewater: In the Middle Ages, the world-famous scales were used to expose women as witches. Today, they serve as a historical attraction and a symbol of tolerance. As a visitor, you can actually weigh yourself on them. With numerous restaurants, a charming city center, and a rich historical heritage, Oudewater is definitely worth exploring.

The history of the water landscapes captivates visitors from around the world. When threatened, the sluices could be opened to flood the area - too shallow for boats, too deep for soldiers and vehicles. This unique defense method protected the Netherlands, leading UNESCO to declare the waterlines a World Heritage Site.

Cycling holidays in the Netherlands have the potential to be true dream vacations – beautiful coastal landscapes, scenic nature inland, and cities where historic architecture meets modern culture and cosmopolitanism. Add to that the flat terrain, exquisite cuisine, and unmistakable hospitality – have you already packed already?

Itinerary at a glance

Begin in Utrecht with a boat tour and take a stroll in the monastery garden. Along the waterlines that served for defense, you'll pass forts, castles, and trenches. In Oudewater, make sure to visit the Witches' Weighhouse!

Picturesque parks and canals, historic buildings and many interesting museums await you in Utrecht. In the vibrant city centre, numerous restaurants and bars invite you to linger.

From Utrecht you cycle along Fort Rijnauwen to Fort Vechten in Bunnik, where you can immerse yourself in the New Dutch Waterline at the Waterline Museum. The tour continues via Fort Jutphaas through historic Vreeswijk with its three beautiful locks. Then you cycle via Schalkwijk island, an open-air museum for lovers of cultural history and nature: Fort Werk aan de Korte Uitweg houses a fantastic tea garden, the impressive Fort Honswijk and the trenches of Werk aan de Groeneweg. Your cycle holiday ends in Wijk bij Duurstede, a small town with a grand history.

From Wijk bij Duurstede you cycle through the river landscape of Lek to historic Culemborg, passing Werk aan het Spoel. The route continues along Fort Everdingen, the beautiful local harbour, and the Duits&Lauret brewery invite you to take a break. The route continues via the Diefdijklinie with many bunkers. Then you proceed along Fort Asperen, a cultural island on the river Linge. Between the orchards lie beautiful villages such as Acquoy with its leaning tower, Beesd featuring the windmills of liberty and the lordship of Marienwaerdt. Visit the owl and animal park De Paay and the Geofort with its interactive science centre. You can cross the river Linger at numerous points and thus shorten the route. Your tour ends today in Leerdam. The glass city of the Netherlands since 1765 and known for the national glass museum and the Leerdamer cheese. You spend the night in Asperen.

From Asperen you cycle in the Waal river landscape. The Bommelerwaard at Brakel and Poerderoijen between the Waal and Afgedamde Maas forms the South-Eastern end of the New Dutch Waterline. The brasserie in Battery Poederoijen’s converted guardhouse is perfect for a stopover. One of the highlights is Loevestein Castle, which is beautifully situated on the river – in the middle of nature. The castle has an important history as a medieval castle, fortress and prison. You cycle further along the beautiful fortified little town of Woudrichem and pass Fort Altena. Your day ends in Gorinchem, one of the most beautiful fortesses in the Netherlands with the city ramparts, imposing cannons and windmills. The city centre offers many cafés on the old market square.

Today you cycle through part of the Old Dutch Water Line, which saved Holland from the war against the Spanish and French about 350 years ago. You cycle through Nieuwpoort, one of the smaller fortified towns in the Netherlands, built around 1200. Then you proceed through Schoonhoven, known for its nickname: The Silver City. The next stop is picturesque Oudewater with the well-known witch’s scales, which attacts visitors from all over the world. The tour ends in historic Woerden, known for the cheese market on Saturday mornings (Apr-Aug). Walk amongst the old fortress walls and enjoy the canals and taste the local products.

After a delicious breakfast at your hotel, you get back on your bike for a fabulous tour. The route takes you along the old Roman border and past Fort Wierickerschans and Bodegraven. You cycle through a typical Dutch landscape with flat pastures and grazing cows, lake areas and white water. In Abcoude admire the Fort Abcoude, one of the historic churches and discover Piet Mondriaan, who painted this pieces here for years.

You start with a tour along the river Gein and today you discover the kings, lords of the castle, poets and writers, who have lived in the Muiderslot for centuries. The medieval castle with a moat, ramparts and bulwarks formed an important part of the New Dutch Water Line. Before that you come along Fort Nigtevecht, a breathtaking, peaceful place situated in the middle of nature. The route continues to the next highlight, Naarden Fortress, built in the 17th century. The city stands out with special monuments, shops, antique shops, galleries, gastronomy and museums. An absolute recommendation is the Dutch Fortress Museum. The cycle tour ends with a nice route along the river Vecht across the Loosdrechtse Plassen (lakes).

Today you continue along the Loosdrechtse Plassen to Loenen aan de Vecht, one of the most charming villages in the Netherlands with 144 imperial monuments. From here you cycle along the river Vecht to Breukelen, which is known for its historical open spaces along the river. The meandering river Vecht takes you to Maarssen and the surroundings of Utrecht. There you find Fort Aan de Klop, where you can enjoy local produce on the terrace of the bombproof guardhouse. After the fort you cycle over the dyke along the Klopvaart, a flood channel for the New Dutch Water Line to Fort de Gagel and Fort Ruigenhoek. These forts are located in a beautiful Dutch polder landscape that is part of the Vechtplassen area.

Departure or extension

Other variations of this tour

Route information


The route is very well signposted, mostly flat, with little traffic and even car-free in parts. The cities themselves are perfect for exploring by bike.

Prices & Dates

Category: 3*** and 4**** hotels

Prices per person in EUR

Services & Information

Further details about this tour


  • Accommodation as already mentioned
  • Breakfast
  • Luggage transfer
  • Detailed travel documents 1x per room (DE, EN)
  • GPS-data
  • Service hotline

Optional extras

  • Bike rental, including rental bike insurance.

Arrival / Parking / Departure

  • Utrecht train station
  • Airport Amsterdam
  • Hotel parking, approx. EUR 13 per day, no reservation possible, payable on site. Public parking garage, approx. EUR 15 per day. Park&Ride-parking spaces at the beach bath, free of charge.

Things to note

  • Tourist tax, if due, is not included in the price!
  • Further important information according to the package travel law can be found here!
  • This tour is a partner tour.
Nicole Maderegger

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