Self Guided Walking Holidays & Cycling Holidays

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Dutch Windmills


  • Enjoy cycling along the easy, flat waterways and cycle paths of Holland
  • Explore the cobbled streets and canals of Amsterdam
  • Relax on the Frisian Island of Texel
  • Discover the secrets of Edam cheese making
  • Journey through Polder fields and Windmills

Cycle and sail from the cultural hub of Amsterdam to the Frisian Island of Texel. Return each evening to the comfort of your boat to relax and recharge for the next day of Dutch exploration.

Beyond the cosmopolitan café culture of Amsterdam is the 30km sea wall, Afsluitdijk, gateway to Northern Holland. Flat cycle paths lead you across a landscape of polder fields, windmills and onto the Frisian Island of Texel renowned for it’s pristine beaches and traditional fishing villages.

A visit to the cheese town of Edam and the town of Voldendam where artists such as Picasso and Renoir exchanged sketched for lodgings, rounds off this very different tour of Holland.

Day 1 Arrive Amsterdam and Embark

Amsterdam is one of the most cultured cities Europe has to offer, so if you arrive early you can drop your bags off at the boat and explore the wonders of “The Dam”. Boarding is between 1400 and 1700. Later that evening meet your fellow guests and enjoy dinner. You will also receive a briefing from the on board tour leader about the week ahead.

Overnight: Amsterdam

Day 2 Cycle to Alkmaar

Begin the day with a relaxed boat journey to the town of Zaandam. From here, hop into the saddle and cycle to the open air museum Zaanse Schans, a true authentic experience of Holland. The polder fields open up the landscape and smells of cacao fill the air. An abundance of tulip fields, agricultural land and canal paths lead you into the impressive modern city of Alkmaar where you will rendezvous with your and you are free to relax on deck with a chilled beer or wine.

Cycle: Approx 40-50km

Overnight: Alkmaar

Day 3 Alkmaar to Den Helder

Cycling through a collection of sleepy villages, where forested lanes give way to wind sculpted dunes and the North Sea. After a visit to the beach and the artists village of Bergen, return to Alkmaar where we sail to the Naval and fishing port of Den Helder.

Cycle: Approx 35-40km

Overnight:  Den Helder

Day 4 Explore the island of Texel

Relax over breakfast as we sail to the Isle of Texel. Cycle along beaches, through colourful villages and visit the Ecomare seal sanctuary. Towwards the end of your ride, why not sample the local delicacy kibbling; small delicious cod pieces cooked in a spiced batter accompanied with a locally brewed beer from Oudeschild. Over dinner, the boat will return to the mainland port of Den Oever.

Cycle:  15km – 65km 

Overnight: Den Oever

Day 5 Den Oever to Stavoren

Cruise into Holland’s largest inland lake, Ijsselmeer in the province of Friesland. Biking along the impressive Ijsselmeer coast is one of the more relaxed days of cycling as you head to the small harbour of Stavoren, one of the famous 11 cities of Friesland.

Cycle:  Approx 40-55km

Overnight: Stavoren

Day 6 Stavoren to Enkhuizen

Your boat will cross Ijsselmeer once more as you enjoy breakfast. Hop off at Medemblik and cycle along the coast to Enkhuizen. An ancient maritime city, spend the afternoon exploring the old city and Zuiderzeemuseum. If you prefer a longer ride, cycle from Medemblik via the 17th century Dutch East India Company town of Hoorn before continuing onto Enkhuizen.

Cycle:  Approx 30-50km

Overnight: Enkhuizen

Day 7 Enkhuizen to Amsterdam

Begin with a sail to Volendam before leaving the boat to cycle through a network of canals and lakes. Along the way visit a local cheese and learn the traditional methods of producing the Dutch cheese of Gouda. Later, ride into the Dutch capital Amsterdam and further explore this fascinating city either on foot or from a canal cruise.

Cycle:  Approx 35-50km

Overnight: Amsterdam

Day 8 Amsterdam and Onward Travel

Depending on your onward travel arrangements, you may like to further explore Amsterdam. Your on board crew will be happy to help with onward taxis should you require.

Accommodation & Boat Information

You will spend each night on the boat in your very comfortable cabin. The standard twin cabins are on the lower deck. There is also the opportunity to upgrade to a premium twin on the lower or the upper deck cabin. There are also a small number of upper deck suites available. Your boat is always docked at night and only sails during the day.


All meals on board are included. Breakfast usually consists of fruits, granola, yogurt, breads, cheeses and meats. There are also extra cheeses, meats, breads and snacks to make yourself a picnic lunch each day. In the evenings, return to comfort of your boat and
enjoy 3-course dinners with your fellow cyclists. Dietary requirements will be
catered for where possible, please let us know at the time of booking if you
have any dietary requirements. Some special or unusual dietary requests may
incur a surcharge.

'De Holland'

De Holland Bike and Boat

The ‘De Holland’ is a 34 cabin stylish river cruiser. The lower deck has 24 en-suite cabins with windows (non-opening for safety reasons), TV, air conditioning, a hairdryer and a twin bed configuration (either side by side or in an L-shape).

The upper deck offers 9 larger superior cabins with floor to ceiling sliding French windows. The is also 1 suite complete with mini bar and sofa.

Enjoy a warm welcome from the crew as you board. Enjoy the spacious deck to soak up the last of the sunshine. The bar and restaurant area is perfect for gazing out over the river while you enjoy a cold beer after a day of cycling.

Although the cabins are spacious they will be smaller than an average hotel room so you may wish to consider using softer luggage that can easily stored in the cupboard or under the beds.

All inside areas of the boat are non-smoking.

De Holland Bike and Boat

Lower deck premium cabin

De Holland Bike and Boat

Upper deck suite

De Holland Bike and Boat


The Northern Holland Circuit departs every Saturday between April and October. Please check the website for departure and availability.

Grade & Terrain

Almost completely flat, this cycle tour is graded easy. The daily distance ranges between approximately 15km-60 km. You will be biking mostly on dedicated cycle paths alongside canals, rivers and through the iconic cities and towns of the region. Please be mindful of other cycle path or road users at all times. Especially on routes that are shared with traffic.

This tour is well-suited to those who have never taken a cycling holiday before as you also have the option of skipping the cycling and relaxing on board.


You will be issued with tour specific route notes and maps upon arrival. Your on board tour leader will also give you a briefing each evening or in the morning about the days cycle. Each daily ride is not guided but the on board tour leader will be cycling the route each day and be available on their phone should you require assistance.

Each day usually follows the ‘Cycle Junction Network’ which takes you safely through the Netherlands. The route is way marked throughout and we supply you with a detailed route map, guidebook and information pack so you will have no problem following the route. You will also be provided with an emergency telephone number for the trip.


The bikes on board are 7-gear unisex hybrid bikes with pedal brakes and are included in the cost of your trip. There are also E-bikes available upon request (at a supplement). All rental bikes are equipped with a pannier (saddle bag). Helmets are included but we strongly recommend that you bring your own helmet with you for safety reasons.

Due to very restricted space on board there is limited availability to bring your own bike – please check with us.

Travel Insurance

It is a requirement of booking this tour with Macs Adventure that you have suitable Travel Insurance which covers you for the activity, emergency evacuation and hospital care.

General Information

The distances and ascent/descents are approximations of the recommended routes. Please be prepared by packing all necessary items, for example, proper rain gear (jacket and pants), sun hat and sun screen. Your information pack has a detailed equipment list which includes standard cycling gear such as good cycling shoes, warm and waterproof clothes for the cooler months and lightweight clothing for summer, and a day pack.

Getting to and from Amsterdam

By Air - Amsterdam Schiphol Airport just outside Amsterdam, is a major European airport and is served by direct flights from most major UK and European airports as well as international destinations.

By Train - Amsterdam is linked with London, either via Paris or Brussels (around 5 hours) by high speed train. Visit Rail Europe for prices and booking.

By Ferry/Car - Ferries from the UK to Holland run from Harwich to the Hook of Holland, Hull to Rotterdam and Newcastle to Amsterdam. Direct Ferries lists prices and schedules.


  • 7 Nights private en-suite cabin
  • All meals
  • Bike hire
  • On board tour leader
  • 24/7 Telephone support
  • Information pack & detailed route notes and map
  • 2 x Guided city walks


  • Travel insurance (required)
  • Travel to and from Amsterdam
  • Transfers to docking areas
  • Entrances or excursions
  • Drinks & Snacks
  • Gratuities


  • Electric bike hire (as a 7-speed bike is included this will just be a supplement)
  • Single / Solo cabin supplement(s)
  • Upper Deck Cabin Supplement

We are often asked the following questions and I hope that you will find the answers useful. Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any further queries.

How far in advance do I need to book?

We suggest you book as soon as your plans are finalised in order to secure you preferred cabin choice. This tour is particularly popular between the months of June-September.

How fit do I need to be?

Almost completely flat, this cycle tour is graded easy. The daily distance ranges between approximately 15km-60 km. You will be biking mostly on dedicated cycle paths alongside canals, rivers and through the iconic cities and towns of the region. This tour is well-suited to those who have never taken a cycling holiday before as it is on the level and predominantly traffic-free and you also have the option of skipping the cycling and relaxing on board.

What equipment do I need?

You will need comfortable sports shoes, comfortable clothes for cycling, waterproof jacket and trousers, a helmet and a sunhat. We supply a detailed packing list with your information pack.

What happens if I can't cycle a stage?

If you don't want to cycle it is possible to relax on the boat as it moves to the next port of call. Please always talk to the on board tour leader to discuss options.

Great trip


Pros: The daily rides (which is really why you do this trip) were fantastic. We had a nightly comprehensive review of the route, usually with long and short options, as well as highlights along the way. We appreciated the independence of not following our guide during the day, but we would run into her a few times and appreciated the warm hello and knowing that we weren't completely on our own. (Sandra is fantastic!) We had a mechanical bike issue, which can happen, and Sandra had a crew member bring a replacement part and got our problem solved really quickly. The scenery along the rides is beautiful, and spending time at the beach of the north sea was really a once in a lifetime experience. The accommodations were good. The room are small as expected, but nice and clean and the sun deck is great. The food is fine, nothing gourmet but was what we needed. It's great that you can make and pack your own sandwich daily. Cons: There was some lack of organization that was an issue. First, despite confirming multiple times that we were a group of six, two people in our group were assigned a dinner table with a group of four non-English speakers. It worked out fine, we just switched the four and four, we were lucky that worked out. Second, one of our friends is about 5 feet tall, and wasn't given a bike for her height. Despite noting her height when she signed up for the trip, the shorter bikes were given to people taller than her, who would not trade when asked by the crew. She had to leap up on her bike, it was unsafe and she ended up with bruises. Also, in Amsterdam our first night, we had to walk through the lobby of one boat to get to ours. Despite telling the night watch that we'd be back later, we couldn't get back in, and essentially had to climb onto the sun deck as we were locked out.




Fabulous cycling trip


Fantastic trip. Substituted the boat at the last minute but gave a 50 euro credit for the bar for each guest. New boat was comfortable and clean. Had a bit of a leaky AC unit in the ceiling in the bar area. But it was sunny outside so a little rain inside wasn't an issue. 😉

Traveling Canuck

Alberta, Canada


I would definitely recommend it!


This was one of the best holidays I have been on. Our guide, Ida, was lovely! She knew a lot about the routes and took care of us. The staff on board were very friendly and respectful. And the food was absolutely fantastic!!

Boorie Rana



Biking was good


The engagement with Macs Adventure was good. And the biking itself was good - helped tremendously by the gorgeous weather. My cabin on the boat was good and cleaned nicely each day. The food on the boat was good, including the sandwich makings provided at breakfast for packing a lunch each day. The boat had many languages and cultures represented across the ~60 guests. They assigned us to a particular table for meals based on our primary language - which turned out well since I was able to converse with the others at my table. I was disappointed in the lack of helpfulness from the tour guide - for example, she provided only minimal information when asked and, even then, sometimes provided wrong information. I suspect it may be due to a combination of her not listening and not fully understanding the language and perhaps some cultural differences. I appreciate it's difficult to find a tour guide who can speak multiple languages and fill the role of guide. In any case, it was frustrating. I think the problem was specific to this particular tour leader, which gives me hope for taking other tours. I am very sad to report a poor customer service interaction between a fellow guest and the manager on the boat - the manager yelled at the guest in the main dining room about something the manager incorrectly perceived, and refused to apologize (again, I think that problem was unique to that particular manager but it was disconcerting to hear all the same). I would recommend this tour to others - but only with the above caveats so they're aware of what they may encounter



Beautiful rides throughout the Netherlands


Lots of variety during the bike tours - countryside, small villages and towns plus some larger cities. Also a nice mix of stops during the day and walking tours in the evening. Guide was knowledgeable in respect to lunch and coffee stops as well as special attractions. Overall a great experience!


Regina Canada




A holiday which was very relaxing while enjoying enjoying cycling around the country. Easy to follow cycling ways.


North east England


The distances might put you off, but go for it, fantastic


Very well organised trip. Easy cycling by numbers, so simple to find your way using the map provided. If you can ride a bike, you can do this trip. Short/long routes, you decide on the day just how energetic you feel.




Overall a good format for cycling


The cabins were 'compact' as expected. What I wasn't expecting was to hear the toilet routines of the cabins on either side of mine at full volume. Not soundproofed at all!! Overall everything else was good




Holland Bike & Boat: Northern Circuit

4.4 8


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