We’ve had a lovely day today and managed 13.5 miles of cycling.
Weather is cooler as forecast so we get on our bikes after breakfast and cycle to Giethoorn. As is the norm in the Netherlands, there are cycle tracks almost everywhere you go. We pass fields of potatoes, corn, wheat and barley that stretch into the distance with barely a hedge.
The houses are huge, mainly A framed and most have huge thatched roofs. A lot of them also have the name of the house right on the front in large letters, never seen anything quite like it.
We cross canals and see loads of boats of all sorts of sizes tootling along. This area is part of the Weerribben-Weiden national park, which is the largest freshwater wetland in Northern Europe. Tomorrow we hope to hire a boat ourselves and go exploring.
In Giethoorn we explore on our bikes. No cars here, just walking paths and bike trails. So unusual. Might be called the Venice of the Netherlands but canals are the only thing the two places have in common. It’s full of large thatched houses, that used to be peat farms back in the day, sitting on peat islands with lovely gardens, all sitting by canals and waterways, linked by a myriad of wooden bridges. It’s quite busy with tourists but we loved exploring it.
Stop for a bite of lunch in a canalside restaurant in Giethoorn.
Off we go again, cycling to a place called Dwarsgracht. It was recommended by the campsite owner as similar to Giethoorn but quieter and less tourists and with a good pub.The pub is very busy with a great canalside beer garden, so we enjoy a well earned pint of Amstel. Many of the customers arrive by boat and jostle for a spot to tie up as it’s so busy.
We wander into Dwarsgracht and it’s very quiet. Hard to imagine living here as you’d have to go shopping by boat! Very quaint and beautiful though.
We cycle back to the campsite to sit outside in the sunshine. I fall asleep, I think it’s all the cycling.
Quiet evening listening to music, ending our day with a game or two of spot the difference!