Riding down Draaibank

Netherlands 22: Riding around Hembrug

Located on the North Sea Canal, facing Amsterdam and below Zaandam is the area of Hembrug or Hembrugterrein. The name Hembrug originates from a train bridge that used to connect Amsterdam to Zaandam across the North Sea Canal, which was eventually replaced with the Hemtunnel and removed in 1985. The bridge was located next to the ferry, which we took when we visited Amsterdam.

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View across the Zaan from the windmill Verfmolen De Kat

Netherlands 22: The route to Zaanse Schans

By far the most famous tourist attraction in and around Zaandam is Zaanse Schans. This neighbourhood of Zaandam is an open air museum featuring a collection of old Dutch building, windmills and museums. While it looks like it’s been here for centuries, the buildings were actually relocated here between 1961 and 1974, from all over the region.

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On the Amstel, looking towards Magere Brug

Netherlands 22: The route to Amsterdam

Definitely one of the reasons for choosing Zaandam for the second week of our trip was its proximity to Amsterdam. Getting to Amsterdam from our holiday home is a relatively short 12 km cycle ride, with a free ferry journey in the middle. While that may be a little too much cycling for some, Zaandam is also well connected to Amsterdam by bus and rail.

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Lovely wide and smooth cycle path

Netherlands 22: The route to Leiden

Since we’ve been going to Duinrell, we usually try to fit in a ride to the city of Leiden when we stay there, and 2022 was no exception. I’ve previously written about our trips there back in 2015 and 2017, so this might be quite familiar. Though with this being The Netherlands, there’s always one or two new things to see along the way.

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Plenty of bikes parked up at the seafront in Noordwijk

Netherlands 22: The route to Katwijk and Noordwijk

After another day of hanging round the rides and pool at Duinrell, I was keen to get out for another ride. This time, I decided to head north, initially to Katwijk and then on to Noordwijk. In terms of distance, Katwijk is about a 9 km cycle ride from Duinrell, and Noordwijk another 6 km.

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