Cycling rules in Holland

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Cycling rules in Holland

Cycling has been intentionally encouraged in Holland since the 1970s. Most motorists are also cyclists (which means they actually treat cyclists like people) and there are strict laws making the automobile responsible in any accident between car and bike. Because cycling is so popular in Holland and the landscape so accommodating for riding, it is a perfect place to explore on a bike. When the government began encouraging bicycling in the 1970s, paving bike lanes everywhere and setting up parking stations, specific cycling rules and roadways were built into the infrastructure.

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Cycling has been intentionally encouraged in Holland since the 1970s. Most motorists are also cyclists (which means they actually treat cyclists like people) and there are strict laws making the automobile responsible in any accident between car and bike. Because cycling is so popular in Holland and the landscape so accommodating for riding, it is a perfect place to explore on a bike. When the government began encouraging cycling in the 1970s, paving bike lanes everywhere and setting up parking stations, specific cycling rules and roadways were built into the infrastructure.

Rules of the road—bicycle edition

Many roads have specific "cycleways" separate from the road itself, with their own traffic lights and controls. Tunnels and bridges segregate cyclists away from the rush of traffic in highly congested areas to ensure maximum safety and speedy travel (and minimal exhaust inhalation). Signposts and road signs are available in cycle ways and roundabouts, and sometimes list alternative routes. While cycle lanes and cycle routes have the same type of traffic signals as the motor vehicle lanes, Dutch cyclists are pretty aggressive and notorious for ignoring traffic signals. This may be encouraged by those "automobile is always responsible" types of laws—being surrounded by two tons of metal makes it hard to point a finger of blame in a collision with a defenseless man on a bike.

Get around easily

The rules of the road are easy to learn in Holland. If you are willing to be a strong bicyclist without dilly-dallying around, cycling through the cities and countryside is one of the best ways to get to know both this land and its people. Because of the landscape, even those unused to cycling everywhere can get around just fine. Bicycle tours are popular ways to access the countryside without getting lost or see beautiful major cities like Amsterdam, Utrecht, the Hague, and Rotterdam in an exciting way. Bicycle rentals are available in just about every urban center.

 

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