Many of my fellow recreational cyclists prefer to carry a tent with them to serve as their overnight accommodation on multi-day cycle tours.
Personally I’ve never been much of a camper.
My ‘under-canvas’ exploits have been confined to school camp, sea-scout camp and a singular camping expedition during my motorcycling days, in the distant past.
Since re-discovering my passion for cycling almost 5 years ago, I have preferred to utilise B&B’s and budget hotels for my overnight stays on multi-day tours.
I believe I deserve a warm, dry, comfortable berth after a long day of cycling in variable weather, together with a decent hot meal and if at all possible a beer or two.
In the past 5 years overnight accommodation costs have risen considerably, mainly as a result of the Covid pandemic and the effects of inflation throughout Europe.
With plans for more more multi-day cycle tours in the future, I’m always looking for ways to keep the overall costs down to a reasonable level, without sacrificing the aforementioned creature comforts.
Recently a link popped up on my social media feed for an organisation called ‘Vrienden op de Fiets’, (Friends on the Cycle.)
This is a non-profit, Dutch based foundation which has developed an extensive network of ‘Guest Addresses’ hosting cycling ‘Friends’ overnight for a fixed price including breakfast.
Currently the cost of a single night B&B is a very reasonable €25.00.
Some also offer an evening meal for a fixed cost of €10.00 but I’m also free to explore the locality and eat elsewhere.
To become a member or ‘Friend’ costs €8.00 per year, which includes a very nice map of the Netherlands together with an annually produced directory containing over 5000 ‘Guest Addresses’.
There is also an on-line version of the directory.
Primarily these accommodation providers are throughout the Netherlands but there are also some in Belgium, Germany and France.
I have already made bookings for five conveniently located ‘Guest Addresses’ for an upcoming multi-day cycle tour in the Netherlands, so I’m very much looking forwards to experiencing an alternative to my usual overnight accommodation.