Take in sweeping views in the Hogeland, riding among waving wheat, potato fields, rows of clay and tree-lined farmhouses. The seawall marks a razor-straight line on the distant horizon, stately country mansions and tiny workers' homes give a glimpse into the recent past and colourful fishermen's houses line the Reitdiep as it winds into the city. Rest, relax and ride, breathing in the peaceful atmosphere and open space on pleasant cycling routes. Distances are not too long, allowing time to linger in this lesser-known part of the Netherlands. And the chief town of Groninga will have to wait for another time.
Arrive in Pieterburen and settle in at your accommodation. Then jump right in with a visit to the seal centre or bike to Noordpolderzijl, the Netherlands’ smallest seaport and a favourite with the locals. Get your first taste of Groningen at dinner in the village and stroll to the seawall to admire the ever-changing mudflats.
Start off cycling south to the country estate at Verhildersum Borg in Leens or try the Tea Factory in Houwerzijl. Bike the loop to Zoutkamp with its colourful fishermen's houses or relax along the Reitdiep and watch the boats. Circling back to Houwerzijl you head next to Niehove, voted the Netherlands’ most beautiful village by Elsevier Weekblad magazine. Then pause at the Piloersemaborg for a fabulous meal and zoom onward to Zuidhorn to spend the night.
Float alongside huge barges on the perfectly straight Starkenborg Canal then dive into wavy landscapes in the Reitdiepdal. Spot enormous sails looming in the distance at Garnwerd aan Zee, enjoy a coffee or lunch at the famous café Hammingh and take time to explore Garnwerd proper. Choose a jaunt by ferry or detour via Ezinge then wind along the Winsumerdiep to Winsum, 2020’s ‘most beautiful village’. Rest and relax this evening or rent an electric boat and float in style!
Another splendid day of Hogeland cycling as the Damsterdiep leads to picturesque Onderdendam and the marvellous mound villages of Middelstum, Kantens and Usquert. Move on to the Menkemaborg in Uithuizen for a tasty lunch then ‘sail’ across open landscapes to the tiny port of Noordpolderzijl. End your afternoon on the terrace at ‘t Zielhoes or climb up for views of Borkum and the endlessly morphing Wad. Zen . . .
Time to say farewell? Book an extra night to enjoy another day of cycling on Schiermonnikoog or the German island of Borkum, just around the corner.
|Double room, breakfast||380.00|
|Extra night (breakfast only)||70.00|
|Surcharge per person||€|
|Stay in Pieterburen on Friday||10.00|
|Stay in Pieterburen on Saturday||10.00|
|Bike Breakdown pass||€ 4.38 x 4||17.50|
|Child seat||€ 5.00 x 4||20.00|
|Bike theft insurance||€ 3.00 x 4||12.00|
|E-bike theft insurance||€ 6.00 x 4||24.00|
|Tag-along bike||€ 6.00 x 4||24.00|
|Child trailer||€ 17.50 x 4||70.00|
|Bike helmet||per piece||10.00|
4 overnights included
3/4 Star Hotels
Tourist tax included
Breakfast included, half board optional
Detailed roadbook with maps and tourist information
Rental bikes are available
7-day service hotline
Luggage transport to your next hotel
Parking available at the hotel
GPS tracks available