Around the IJssel Lake, Bike and Barge Tour in The Netherlands

Bike and Barge Tour from Amsterdam to IJssel Lake (8 days)

This itinerary roughly follows the coastline of the former Zuiderzee, now called IJsselmeer. Lively harbour towns with lots of traditional sailing boats and a variety of landscapes are the ingredients of this remarkable tour.

From the old Dutch harbour town of Hoorn you cycle across the polder landscape, so typical for this region, to Enkhuizen. Here you embark for to sail to Friesland. You pass lakes, waterways and canals before you arrive in Ossenzijl, situated in the heart of national reserve the Weerribben.

Cycling through this unique marshland you reach Blokzijl or Vollenhove, two small towns formerly located at the Zuiderzee. A roundtrip by “punter” on the small canals of Giethoorn, the “Venice of the North”, is certainly worth a try!

From Zwartsluis, a ferry takes you to the other side of the Zwarte Water (Black Water). Cycling on top of the Kamper Zeedijk you reach the hanseatic town of Kampen. Passing the beautiful conserved fortified town of Elburg you cycle through the forestries before arriving in Harderwijk.

Spakenburg is a traditional village, where you can still find people wearing their traditional costumes. The cycle trip takes you through the exurb of Blaricum to the walled town of Naarden.

Route: Amsterdam > Hoorn > Lemmer > Blokzijll/Vollenhove > Blokzijll/Vollenhove > Kampen > Harderwijk > Amsterdam

2019 Pricing:

Standard Barge: $975.00 USD per person based on double occupancy.

Single Supplement: $240.00 USD Only one single per departure, rest of singles have to share.

Due to possible currency fluctuation this price could change.  Therefore payment in full at the time of booking will protect your price.
Payment in full at time of booking will protect against any future currency fluctuation.

Ask Nancy about discounts that may apply when payment in full is made at time of booking. Discounts may vary depending upon the tour date as well the current exchange rate.

2019 Dates on Standard Barge:   July 13, 20, 27;

Day by Day Itinerary

Trip around IJssel Lake

Around the IJssel Lake

Saturday Cycling ± 15 km.

After your embarkation in Amsterdam, your barge sails the IJssel river and through the locks to the IJssel Lake. The sailing trip to Hoorn takes about 4 hours. In the evening we will make a test ride in and around Hoorn.

Sunday: Cycling ± 30 km.

Today’s cycle trip leads through the Noord Holland scenery and shows villages with names like Nibbixwoud and Hoogkarspel. In Enkhuizen we embark and make the crossing to Lemmer in the province of Friesland. In the evening your guide invites you for a walk through this characteristic port.

Monday Cycling ± 35 km.

The province of Friesland is well-known for its numerous lakes and other waterways. Therefore, today you’ll be passing numerous canals and a lake called “Tjeukemeer”.

Your cycle trip ends in the tiny village of Ossenzijl, on the edge of of National Park the Weerribben. We certainly recommend that you pay a visit to the visitor’s center of this natural reserve which is unique for Europe. Following the Kalenberger canal, today’s cycle trip ends in Blokzijl/Vollenhove.

Tuesday Cycling ± 40 km

The barge stays in Blokzijl/Vollenhove and the cyclists paddle via Steenwijk to Giethoorn, also known as .the Venice of the North.. One of the possibilities here is renting a “punter”, the local boat, to make a trip. After leaving Giethoorn, we’ll pass the lake Beulaker Wijde and through Dwarsgracht we return in Blokzijl/Vollenhove.

As an alternative you could spend the day on your own and make a trip by canoe or by bike in the natural reserve the Weerribben.

Wednesday Cycling ± 60 km.

Today we’ll pass the lakes Belter Wijde and Schutsloter Wijde on our way to Zwartsluis. In this lively town, situated on a crossing of waterways, you’ll find it nice to sit down on one of the many terraces. We’ll reach Genemuiden by ferry and cycle on top of the Kamper Zeedijk, an old dike, to the hanseatic town of Kampen. The ship will be moored at the river IJssel.

Thursday Cycling ± 45 km.

Our first stop, a “must”, is in the splendidly preserved fortified town Elburg. After having passed Nunspeet, we enter the moorlands of Elspeet and subsequently the forests around country estate Huis te Leuvenum. Finally we reach Harderwijk, a cosy port that is known for its dolphinarium.

Friday Cycling ± 60 km.

The barge takes you to Spakenburg. This former fisherman’s village has a traditional harbor and is known for its traditional clothing still worn by lots of locals.

Next we’ll pass villadom Blaricum and cross the wood- and moorlands of the Tafelberg. After a short visit to 14th century Naarden-Vesting, a fortified town. Alongside the IJ-Lake and via Muiden you arrive back in Amsterdam. In the evening you may wish to join the guide for a walk though the centre or you may (on your own account) go for a round trip of the Amsterdam canals.

After breakfast your guide and the crew will say good-bye and your stay aboard has come to an end.

(subject to changes)

IJssel Lake Tour Inclusions:

  • Stay aboard (8 days/7 nights)
  • Full board (breakfast + packed lunch + 3-courses dinner)
  • Bicycle with gears and pannier
  • Map with marked route
  • Information package
  • Tour leader
  • Visit Mill/Cheese farm
  • Several city walks
  • Compensation Bicycle damage

IJssel Lake Exclusions:

  • Airfare
  • Transfers between airport and barge
  • Drinks aboard
  • Gratuities to crew
  • Excursions out of program
  • Travel Insurance