Sunday, September 7, 2014

Bike and Barge: Day 7.

8/1 To Amsterdam! 50km.

Today was our final day of touring, and we aimed our bicycles towards Amsterdam. During breakfast, we sailed from Utrecht to Breukelen. From there, we mounted our bicycles and rode through the Dutch country side. Piet asked if we wanted to visit a charming cheese farm, and the group agreed. The woman who owned the farm gave us a tour of the milking barn and the cheese room. She talked to us about the cheese making process and then led us to their retail store, where we were given samples and the opportunity to buy. Susan picked us up a couple of wheels of her favorite, the delicious and unusual stinging-nettle cheese.

After eating lunch, we cycled to Muiderslot and looked at the castle, without actually touring it. The Muiderslot is a beautifully restored 13th century moated castle, located at the mouth of the river Vecht, where it flows into what used to be the Zuiderzee. We did not get to actually tour the castle with the group, but thankfully, we had visited it the week before joining the bike tour.

Next, we followed cycle paths along the final 15 km into the city of Amsterdam, where we immediately merged into the crazy and crowded, vibrant city traffic. We stuck with Piet and enjoyed an exciting urban ride into the city center and rejoined the Sailing Home at her mooring, near Central Station.

For a final dinner, Markus prepared smoked trout, shrimp done 3 different ways, and duck breast. As a special going away treat, the sweet crew sisters, Rita and Rianne baked us a going away cake in the shape of a bleeding heart. It was their way of saying they would be sad to see us go, but in actuality, we were sorry that our trip was coming to an end.

A pretty calf at a cheese farm.


Quintessential Dutch farm.

Muiderslot Selfie!

Bike bridge into Amsterdam.


Central Station, Amsterdam.