Holland’s Flowers by Bike
It is flower season in the Netherlands! This weekend we packed up the car, complete with our bikes and headed to Keukenhof.
On this visit we skipped the garden itself and instead paid the €6 to park the car and ride our bikes from there. There are plenty of other places to park your car and start the ride if you have bikes with you. We had guests with us and needed to rent some additional bikes so it was more convenient to pay to park near the bicycle rental stand.
Rent-A-Bike Van Dam has a stall in the Keukenhof parking lot. They open at 9:30am. We were there as the bike rental opened and had our choice of bikes. They have a variety of options including tandems and child seats. We rented two regular adult bikes for €10 per bike for the whole day.
Your bike ride starts just from the Keukenhof parking lot. Van Dam will point you in the right direction. They provided us with a map and the bike trail was well-marked with small, colored signs. We had also scoped out a few routes ahead of time, so if you’re not planning to rent bikes check out Holland-Cycling for some routes.
Netherlands weather is always changing so pack accordingly. At various points in our ride we were hot, cold and wet. Layers and rain gear are a must.
We got lucky and as the rain started we came up on the Tussen Station, a cafe in the old Lisse railroad station. As the downpour started, we pulled under the overhang and headed inside for a cup of coffee and hot chocolate for the littles. When we were finished, the rain had passed and the sun was back out. We wiped off our bike seats and pressed on.
Our ride through the flowering fields started after we crossed the tracks behind the station. There are so many places to stop and enjoy the flower fields. (Just don’t be the people who tromp through the fields! It’s forbidden and just rude.)
You will see flowers of all colors in the fields. If you haven’t found some you like just keep biking down any path to see more!
The route we were on took us right past a lake. We packed a picnic and blanket and found a great spot on the lake to enjoy our meal.
There are also plenty of cafes on the route if you don’t want to pack your lunch. (The rental bikes include a strap on the cargo rack so a bag with layers, a blanket and some food will easily fit. We also had our saddle bags with us making it easy to carry all our stuff!)
The kids were getting a bit restless so we cut the route short to head back to the Keukenhof parking lot. When we returned the bikes, around 2pm, the line to rent was quite long and the gardens themselves were packed.
Seeing the flowers in the fields is an experience beyond Keukenhof and could easily be combined with a trip to the gardens. (Read about our trip to Keukenhof here.)
There are many other fun flower related events to check out if you are going to be in the area during or around April. A few of my friends completed the “Run Through the Flowers” 10K hosted by Flower Festival Lisse. There is a children’s tulip picking garden and of course the Flower Parade.
Whatever you do we hope you enjoy the flowers!
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