Netherlands 18: Around Wassenaar

As we do most years, we spent the second week of our Netherlands trip in 2018 at Duinrell. For those that don’t know, Duinrell is a holiday park, located in the town of Wassenaar, 10km north of The Hague.

Now, quite a few of my posts feature Wassenaar, including this one from 2015, Around Duinrell, so the town is quite familiar to us. We often go into Wassenaar to shop, eat or just to have a wander.

During our stay this year, I had a spare hour one day. So I decided to go for more of a wander around on the bike and see if I can see anything I haven’t see before.

Cycling in Wassenaar is generally pretty good. We’ve been to places in The Netherlands with better cycling infrastructure, and we’ve been to many places with much worse. There’s plenty of protected cycleways, safe junctions and roundabouts in the town as well as a few fietstraats (cycle streets) and traffic-free routes.

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Typical example of a paved cycleway, and a continuous footway and cycleway

Most of the cycleways are paved and are a little dated now. More modern cycleways tend to have asphalt surfaces. This isn’t a big problem though, on the whole the paving is in a good condition and is reasonably smooth.

You do see the odd vehicle blocking the footway/cycleway. Nothing like the numbers you see in the UK, but it does happen.

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It’s not just the UK where people block the footway/cycleway

There’s a few examples of door-zone painted cycle lanes in Wassenaar. Though compared to similar sized towns we’ve stayed at, such as Bovenkarspel and Vlissingen, there are relatively few. A few of these are quite faded now and have probably been there for some times.

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Very faded door-zone cycle lanes

Wassenaar has quite a few roundabouts, and nearly all of them feature protected cycleways, which is good news. Even when you approach on an unprotected cycle lane, it usually changes to a protected cycleway at the roundabout.

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One of the many roundabouts with protected cycleways in Wassenaar

This is typical of Dutch cycling infrastructure, where safety at junctions is the priority. This is quite different to the UK, where protection often disappears at junction, where it’s more difficult and expensive to install.

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Another safe junction for cycling with dedicated space and advanced green phase

In Wassenaar, you’ll see quite a few traffic-free routes for walking and cycling too. A few of these take you out onto the Dunes or elsewhere, though a few are just in the town. There’s even one with a loose stone surface, which is something of a rarity in The Netherlands.

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Cycle path with a loose stone surface, something you don’t see often in The Netherlands

With all this good quality cycling infrastructure, it comes as no surprise you’ll see many people cycling. As is typical in The Netherlands, you’ll see people of all ages cycling, whether it’s kids going to school, more senior people shopping on their e-bikes or families going for an ice cream.

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Bikes parked up on a residential street

In addition to this, you see quite a few green Duinrell hire bikes around Wassenaar. For many, these bikes give visitors their first taste of cycling in a safe, welcoming environment, where cycling is a day to day activity and not just for sports and leisure.

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Many bikes, including a few Duinrell bikes parked at IJssalon Luciano

Back to part 8 – The route to Wassenaarse Slag

Next to part 10 – The route to Zoetermeer

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