17 August 2012

Bike ride to Zandvoort

Before heading out on our long weekend away, I took a day off to go biking with a friend. I've always wanted to bike to Zandvoort, a village on the North Sea about 35 km away from Amsterdam, so that's what we did.

We started in the Westerpark and headed out towards Haarlem, following the paths that seemed to be as close as possible to nature. Halfway to Haarlem, we came to Halfweg, which actually means "half-way." The following is a picture of a church (since no trip for me is complete without checking out the local churches :))

The next stop was Spaarndam. Looking back on the trip, I tink it was Spaarndam that was the most interesting. The town itself has a picturesque feel to it, as you can sense by this picture.
But also delightful was the bike ride from Spaarndam towards to Haarlem, as there's an old fort along the way.

Haarlem is also a wonderful city to visit, but this time we just biked through and did our best not to get lost. By the time we knew we had the cut-off to Zandvoort and we were heading in the right direction, we had practically bumped into Overveen. In the train, Overveen is the "almost there" stop - the one right before Zandvoort. I've walked from Overveen train station to the sea before, so I knew it couldn't be much longer still.

Except I forgot that dunes are hilly. Not surprising, since the Netherlands is notoriously flat. Flat, except for the dunes (which we biked up and down) and also Berg en Dal, where we had to walk up a significantly steep incline for 15 minutes in order to get to our hotel during our vacation.

The following gives an idea of the dunes. These were taken in different directions from the lookout point.

It was thus actually a rather disappointing lookout place, although it was a good place to stop and drink some more water. We couldn't have asked for more perfect weather, although a bit cloudier would have been good, too.

We celebrated our arrival in Zandvoort with one last steep incline on the bike and then having apple pie with cappucino and taking a walk by the sea.

Follow this link (the same as the one on Facebook) to see the map of our trip: http://soc.li/2vAZctb 

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