Life is A Project: Cycling Holiday in Holland
CYCLING HOLIDAY IN HOLLAND
Some time in mid-2016, a group of us from Putrajaya Riders Club has decided to go on a cycling trip to Holland. We fixed the meeting date on a weekend ride and invited interested riders to come and discuss our proposal in detail. A cycling holiday overseas is a big project for us Malaysian bicycle riders. First is the budget that some of us can afford and the time because many of us are employees. For me as a business coach and project management consultant, I can choose my own time. We need to identify the corridor of time and the duration that suit everyone interested to join the trip. On the appointed meeting date, we decided to cycle in six cities in Holland, stay there for seven days and take a three-day holiday in London. We allocate twelve days inclusive of travelling with a budget of RM10,000.
As the chief of my cycling tribe, I have to choose the best person to lead the ride in terms of planning, travel arrangement, accommodation and bicycle rental. From the nine members who agreed to join the trip, I have chosen Marina Sofia to be our Trip Leader. Her role is the project manager of the trip. She has a lot of experience cycling solo in Europe and is very familiar with matters related to travel, train, accommodation and financial matter in European countries. A trip is a project. It has its goals and objectives. It has a beginning and ending and must be planned, monitored and executed according to budget constraints. My job as Project Director is to ensure the goals are achieved.
Not every one of us can leave at the same time and travel on the same airlines. Everyone was given the freedom to go by whatever airlines they choose but they must arrive at a hotel in Leiden by a certain date and time. Thank God, everyone managed to arrive on time and we have a day off before going cycling. It was a long fight and we need a rest. Below is our cycling plan prepared by our Ride Leader Nick Sim. He has a navigation device and led our rides successfully. We never got lost. Thank you Marina and Nick for your contribution to our successful ride.
Tulip Cycling Plan
07 May 2017-Pick up bicycles
08 May 2017-Haarlem — Zaanse Schans-Haarlem
09 May 2017 — Leiden — Keukenhof — Katwijk — Leiden
10 May 2017 — Leiden — The Hague — Gouda
11 May 2017 — Gouda — Rotterdam — Gouda
12 May 2017- Gouda — Utrecht
Schiphol — Leiden
Arrival at Schiphol. Meet & take the train from Schiphol to Leiden (5.80+1). Check in to hotel Rembrandt Hotel Leiden. Free and easy walk around town and dinner. We will stop by the supermarket to buy breakfast and lunch items.
Day 2–7th May
Leiden — train to Haarlem — Bike — Zaanse Schans — Haarlem — train to Leiden (with bike)
Breakfast on your own. Meet in front of the hotel by 8:30 am. We will take the train from Leiden to Haarlem (5.80+1). Meet Peter at Haarlem station (in front of Starbucks) at 9:30 am to pick up our bikes. Today’s route will take us to Zaanse Schans on a circular route. Back in Haarlem, we will take our bikes on the train back to Leiden (5.80 +1+6). We will store our bikes at the station and walk back to the hotel. Rest and dinner.
Day 3–8th May
Leiden — Keukenhof — Leiden
Breakfast on your own. Meet in front of the hotel by 8:00 am. Walk together to the station to take our bikes. Today we cycle to Keukenhof. Free and easy at Keukenhof. Leave by 4 pm to cycle back to Leiden via Katwijk. We will store our bikes at the station and walk back to the hotel. Rest and dinner
Day 4–9th May
Leiden — Den Hague -Gouda
Breakfast on your own. Leave luggage with the reception for transfer. Meet in front of the hotel by 9:00 am. Walk together to the station to take our bikes. We will cycle to Den Hague and then to Gouda, where we will check in to the hotel. Cycle to town for dinner. We will stop by the supermarket to buy breakfast and lunch items.
Day 5–10th May
Gouda — Rotterdam — Gouda
Breakfast on your own. Meet in front of the hotel by 9:00 am. We will cycle to Rotterdam in a circular loop. Cycle to town for dinner. We will stop by the supermarket to buy breakfast and lunch items.
Day 6–11th May
Gouda — Utrecht (train) — Amersfoort
Breakfast on your own. Leave luggage with the reception for transfer. Meet in front of the hotel by 9:00 am. We will cycle to Utrecht. In Utrecht, we will take the train (with bike) to Amersfoort (4.50 +1+6). We will cycle to the hotel and check in. Rest and dinner. Option to do laundry.
Day 7–12th May
Amersfoort — Naarden — Amersfoort
Breakfast is provided at the hotel. Meet in front of the hotel by 9:00 am. We will do a circular loop to Naarden, with the option to detour to Muiderslot Castle. Be back at the hotel by 5:30 pm as Peter will pick up our bikes at 6 pm. Dinner in town.
Day 8–13th May
Amersfoort — Amsterdam — London
Breakfast is provided at the hotel. Meet in front of the hotel by 8:30 am. Walk together to the train station. Take the train from Amersfoort to Centraal Amsterdam (8.50 +1). Train Amsterdam — Brussels — 11:52 am — 3:15 pm
Train Brussels — London St Pancras — 4:56 pm — 6:06 pm
Take the tube to Stepney Green. Walk to London accommodation.
Day 9–14th May London — free and easy
Day 10–15th May London — free and easy
Day 11–16th May London — KL
Rembrandt Hotel Leiden
Nieuwe Beestenmarkt 10, 2312 CH Leiden, Netherlands Amenities: Wifi, Hairdryer, Shower, Toilet
9–11 GoudaCampanile Hotel & Restaurant Gouda Kampenringweg 39–41, 2803 PE Gouda, Netherlands Amenities: Wifi, Shower, Toilet
Lange Jan Hotel
Krankeledenstraat 22, 3811 BN Amersfoort, Netherlands
Amenities: Wifi, Hairdryer, Refrigerator, Ironing facilities, Bathroom, Shared toilet
Colebert Avenue 5, London, England E1, United Kingdom London E1 4JB, GB
Amenities: Wifi, washer, towels
Note: toiletries not provided
- Detailed planning is important to reduce our costs and minimise our risks. Anything can go wrong on any trip. We were blessed by good spring time and no rains. However, we missed Rotterdam because we were too tired to cycle and returned home base by train.
2. Teamwork and tolerance among the members are important for a smooth and happy ride.