Every time I’m back in my home country and I visit my favorite city Amsterdam I fall in love again with the people and their bikes. I’m proud to say that The Netherlands is the number 1 country in the world for bicycles per head. With 16.6mln people and 16.5mln bikes it is calculated that 99.1% of the Dutch population is a (potential) cyclist. Denmark, the number 2, with 80% is not close to this number at all, and Germany with 75% also has a long way to go.
And it is the bikes in the country that makes the cycling culture even more unique. We are talking sturdy bikes, which enable you to sit up right and have a clear and relaxed view on what is happening around you. No racing bike, helmets, cycling gear, but a solid frame, a basket at the front for bags or groceries, and elements to safely carry your children on the bikes also.
The design of the bikes supports a moderate pace and a clear view on everything around you. In the Netherlands 27% of all trips and 25% of trips to work are made by bike. Cyclist and drivers appreciate each other (because every driver is most likely also a cyclist) and they keep an eye out to give way when needed. I would love to see a bit more of this in my new home city of London!