The Netherlands is a real cycling country. Getting around by bike is part of the Dutch culture. There are more bikes than people in the country! For instance, there are living around 800.000 people in Amsterdam and 881.000 bikes in the city. You should not leave Amsterdam, without experiencing cycling in Amsterdam!
The best way to get around in Amsterdam is by bike. The infrastructure of the cycling paths in Amsterdam is the best of all the cities in Europe. Around 767 kilometers of cycling paths and bike lanes can be pedaled by bicycles.
Get to know the most important information about cycling in Amsterdam:
- Safety information for traveling by bike in Amsterdam.
- The best and cheapest bike rental options.
- Find out the bike tours that are offered in and around the city. Join a ride on a famous Amsterdam Highlight Bike Tour.
- Infographic about cycling in Amsterdam.
Scroll down to find all the detailed information for cycling in Amsterdam.
Video impression of cycling in Amsterdam
Watching the video below to prepare yourself for riding a bike on busy streets of Amsterdam. Many thanks to Dutch Survival Guide for creating the video below.
Note: some parts in the video are of course a bit gushy, but the streets are actually busy so be careful!
Funny tutorial how to cycle safe in Amsterdam
Cycling facts on Amsterdam
So cycling is a big thing in the city of Amsterdam. In fact, it’s the transportation of choice for many inhabitants of the city. The city is well adapted to these amounts of people riding their bikes. For a better understanding of this concept we’ve highlighted some staggering facts concerning biking in Amsterdam;
- More bicycles than inhabitants; Amsterdam is known to have more bikes than inhabitants – 881,000 bicycles vs. 834,713 inhabitants to be more precise.
- 63% of the Amsterdam citizens cycle on a daily; where in other countries cycling is more of a hobby, something to do on a day off, for the Amsterdam citizens it’s the prefered form of transport in daily life.
- An estimated 2 million kilometres is cycled by Amsterdammers on a daily; that’s correct on a daily, all Amsterdammers together cycle a distance equal to approximately 5 times the distance to the moon.
- 767 kilometres is the total length of all Amsterdam cycle paths and bicycle lanes together; in Amsterdam, almost all roads are fitted with either bicycle lanes or a piece of the 513 dedicated cycle paths.
- Over 10,000 bicycle parking spots at Amsterdam Central Station; believe it or not, you’ll still have a very hard time finding a spot as there’s still a shortage of parking spots.
Bike thefts popular in Amsterdam as well
Please bear in mind to always lock your bike and lock it well! We can’t stress this point enough, no matter what kind of bike; rental or owned or how fast you’ll be back to pick up your bike. With bikes being so popular, so are bike thefts among criminals. Bikes are fairly easy to steal and sell. Therefore, bicycles are a popular quick score amongst sneak thieves, pilferers and junkies. Exact numbers of bike thefts are difficult to calculate; many victims don’t bother filing a stolen bike as it’s such a common practice and chances of getting your bike back are slim. According to the Amsterdam newspaper Parool, based on numbers provided by the police, in 2017 there were 8113 reported bike thefts. On that same year, the Dutch Cyclists’ Union reported that nationwide, only one out of three bike thefts is actually reported to the police. Our expectation is that this percentage in Amsterdam is lower than the nationwide average, somewhere between 25% and 33%. Based on this estimation and the factual information somewhere around 24,339 and 32,452 bikes are stolen every year. Make sure not to become a victim!
Cycling safe in Amsterdam
Ridding a bike in Amsterdam is a serieus deal. It can be experienced as hectic. Take a look at the points below to ensure yourself to remain safe. These are the basic rules and the most important things to keep in mind.
Don’t worry be happy! According to research of the local government of Amsterdam 84 % of the people rate cycling in Amsterdam as very enjoyable.
|Do stay on the bike paths. All the bike lanes have a white frame, and have a bicycle image on it. Lastly, many cycling paths can be recognized by the red asphalt.|
|Stick to the traffic rules, and only cycle on the bike paths. Obediently the traffic lights, respect the traffic controllers. It’s only allowed to cycle on the cycling lanes.|
|Do give a sign by putting your hand to the left on the right when you turn from direction.|
|Use your eyes and ears to prevent dangerous situations.|
|Be curious towards the other traffic. Especially scooters and taxi’s are mostly in a hurry. In addition, trucks have a blind spot, avoid this position.|
|Make sure your bike has proper lights for the nights. Front and back light are mandatory by law.|
|Be careful with the tram rails. Try to cross them in an angle, but when it’s wet they can get slippery.|
|Avoiding rush hour is strongly advised for people that are used to bike in crowded cities. Rush hour is between 08:00 and 09:00 or 17:00 and 18:00. People are more in a hurry around these times.|
|Always lock your bike or it will be gone. Make sure you have a chain lock, so you can attach your bike. A bike rack is the best place to leave your bike.|
|Many people break the rules, by crossing the red light or cycling on footpaths etc. We cycle every day in Amsterdam and it’s a common thing to see. Our advice for tourists: ‘don’t follow up the locals, and stick to the rules to stay safe and keep others safe!’|
Bike rental Amsterdam
Renting a bike in Amsterdam is both fun and convenient way to see the city. The entire city has bike lanes that are specifically designed to get around safely in the city. Wellknown bike rental companies are Yellow Bike and Mac Bike. There are also a view smaller bike rental shops around the city.
Bike tours in Amsterdam
Amsterdam is Europe most bike friendliest city. Grap this chance, and expand your knowledge of the city, while having the fresh wind in your face.
– Book online here with discount code HBT10 and get 10% off –
The following points below, will tell you the advantages of taking a bike tour:
- Get a professional (Amsterdam loving) tour guide will bring you to the best highlights, and keeps you safe in the busy street traffic
- In big lines the following places will be visited in the 3 hour tour: the Red Light District to Anne Frank, to the Jordaan and the beautiful Skinny Bridge.
- By taking Amsterdam Highlights Bike Tour you will get to know almost the entire city in 3 hours.
- The guides are outgoing people: ‘Don’t hessitate to ask them about the best places to go for a dinner, a drink, party and the endless amount of historical things to experience in Amsterdam.’
- Tours are available in the following languages: Dutch and Engels (something as well in Spanish, French, German and Italian).
Directions from your current location.
A great alternative for Yellow bike when you’re already in Amsterdam is Mike’s Bike Rental
1017 GP Amsterdam
Phone: +31 20 6227970
infographic: cycling in Amsterdam
Cycling is way better with pretty weather. Via our Amsterdam weather page you find the most accurate and up to date weather.
Combine your cycling experience with other things to do in Amsterdam. Take a look at all the interesting museums, see Amsterdam from the canals and find a proper place to spend the night. Just click on the navigation below: