It is very nice to cycle when you are on holiday. In Amsterdam it is also a quick way to get from one place to another through the busy centre. Dutch children learn how to cycle at the age of five or six. Maybe you don’t have much experience yet. Try it first in a quiet place before going into heavy traffic. Don’t dawdle in traffic, most other cyclists are in a hurry.
Wear a helmet
Most Dutch go cycling without any protection. If you have no experience with cycling, a helmet is advised! You can rent or buy children’s helmets at most bicycle rental companies.
Always lock your bike
Even if you only stop for a moment or two to eat or drink something, always lock your bike! Ask your bike rental company for two locks: one to wrap through your wheels, and another to secure your bike to a fence or post. Put your key away well so you don’t lose it.
Obey the traffic rules
No matter how quiet the street is, always pay attention to the signs and the traffic lights. If a police officer gives you directions in traffic, follow them. Stay to the right and always cycle on a bike path if there is one; cycle paths can be recognized by the round blue signs with a bicycle on them.
Practice makes perfect
Do not immediately go on the canals or the larger roads, but first practice in a quiet place. In Vondelpark, Oosterpark and the Amsterdamse Forrest you can make several cycling trips. Most walking tours as mentioned in this book can be done by bike too.