Friday, August 29, 2014

Bike and Barge: Day 6.

7/31. Gorinchem to Vianen and Sail to Utrecht. 48km.

We had a beautiful day of riding today. Our itinerary states that we followed the meandering river, the Linge, through the Alblasserwaard to Leerdam. I don't remember all of that, but we did indeed go to Leerdam, famous for its glass. Susan is a glass artist, so we were eager to see their work. We visited a glass factory, where they produced blown art glass. It was very nice, but even better, was the attached cafe, where I got a delicious apple tart and cup of coffee.  Ah, bicycle touring in Europe is so much more relaxed and civilized than my numerous experiences of touring stateside.

We continued out of Leerdam to the village of Culemborg and then followed the Lek River to Vianen, where we met up with the Sailing Home. We boarded ourselves and our bicycles onto the boat and then proceeded to sail to Utrecht.

Markus fed us two types of quiche for supper, one with salmon and one with broccoli and blue cheese and creme brule for dessert.

After dining, our excellent tour guide, Piet, was anxious to show us around his hometown, Utrecht. We jumped on a bus to the city center and  then walked around the vibrant and busy university town on a Friday night, while taking in all the sights. 

Chef Markus on his way to town for supplies.

The Allen family with Piet.

Dinner aboard the Sailing Home.

It's just bike parking in Utrecht.

The Tour de France will start in Utrecht in 2015. Yes, in The Netherlands!

Piet telling the group about his hometown, Utrecht.

Cathedral in Utrecht.

Bicycles in Utrecht.