Cycle route along the Defence Line of Amsterdam
Heemskerk, Beverwijk, Zaandijk
Between 1880 and 1920 the Defence Line of Amsterdam was built, a defence line of 135 kilometres with 45 forts. If the enemy threatened to attack, the area around the capital, which would serve as the last bastion of the Netherlands, could be flooded to keep the enemy armies at bay. The field army could then retreat here and, together with civilians, hold out until help arrived from abroad. Supplies were built up to last six months and there were two gunpowder factories within the area. The forts were placed where the waterline was crossed by railways, dykes or roads.
During this cycle route, you will cycle past some of these beautiful and impressive forts. Take a break to take a look at the buildings and learn more about the history. Cycle along the numerous polder meadows with ditches and canals and enjoy the whistling meadow and water birds. Get a breath of fresh air in the dunes on one side, and on the other experience the Dutch bustling life of the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries at the Zaanse Schans. Cycling along the Defence Line of Amsterdam is truly a day out. Are you ready to get on your bike?
Please note: to cycle through the Noordhollands Duinreservaat, you need to be in possession of a dune card (access card). You can buy one from the PWN water company: www.pwn.nl/duinkaartkopen. Check out the other access rules for this dune reserve to prepare for your visit.
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