The almost 16 kilometre ride from the fortified town of Heusden to ʼs-Hertogenbosch takes you through a typical Dutch river landscape. You can cycle mostly away from traffic on endless dedicated recreational cycleways that you only have to share with sheep sometimes. I filmed the entire route from the Fish market (Vismarkt) in Heusden to the market (Markt) in ʼs-Hertogenbosch.
Heusden is the starting point in this second part of my new series showing rides from Market to Market. The municipality of Heusden is formed by a number of towns and smaller villages. Combined they are home to over 43,000 people. The fortified town, after which the municipality is named, only houses about 1,500. Yet this tiny town has had city rights since the 13th century. In 1968 a large restoration project started which took about 40 years to complete. The fortifications – originally built from 1579 to 1597 – were brought back to their former state. The bastions, ravelins and the walls with windmills on them, draw a lot of tourists nowadays. Part of the route I cycled is also part of the long distance cycle route (430km) alongside the river Maas (Meuse).
Two years ago, the chair of the Cycling Embassy of Great Britain, Mark Treasure, cycled from Gouda to ʼs-Hertogenbosch. With André Engels (a local follower of my blog) I picked him up in Heusden. After we had a drink on the Vismarkt, we cycled to ʼs-Hertogenbosch with Mark. We then decided to ride through Vlijmen, because we wanted to show the good cycle route from Vlijmen to ʼs-Hertogenbosch, but to get there we had to go to and through Vlijmen, a town that has almost no cycling infrastructure. Mark was not impressed. He even mentioned Heusden and Vlijmen in his post about “bad bits” in The Netherlands.
“The town of Vlijmen, in the municipality of Heusden, was very poor, with no infrastructure at all to speak of, on quite busy roads and streets. It felt uncomfortable, even on a Sunday afternoon.”
In this post I’ll show you that you can avoid those bad bits in this alternative route. The route I take now is actually the better route, which the route planner from the Cyclists’ Union advises.
The full 16 km ride compressed into just 10 minutes.