"One of the world’s leading bicycle cities" Top 5 Page for this destination Groningen by Nemorino

Groningen Travel Guide: 447 reviews and 1,121 photos

Groningen, the northernmost city in the Netherlands, is famous for having the highest percentage of bicycle use in the Western world.

57 % of the 190,000 residents use bicycles as their main form of daily transportation within the city.
59 % of all journeys within the city are made by bicycle.

For comparison: those figures are around 37 % in Copenhagen and Münster, 15 % in Hannover, 9 % in Hamburg but less than 1 % in most American cities.

You sometimes see variations in these figures, depending on what it counted as what, but the trend is clear: Groningen is always at or near the top of the list, along with other Dutch cities such as Zwolle, Leeuwarden and Leiden.


How did this happen?

It helps that Groningen is flat and has a large student population, but the main reason is that for the past forty years the city administration has had a consistent policy of encouraging bicycle traffic and creating the infrastructure to make it possible. Cars are largely banned from the city center and there is an extensive network of safe, convenient bicycle routes fanning out in all directions.

By the way, in 2007 a European Union study found Groningen to be the city in Europe that was best liked by its inhabitants.



In 2013 Clarence Eckerson, Jr. of Streetfilms came out with an enthusiastic and informative fifteen-minute film called “Groningen: The World’s Cycling City”. You can watch it here.

Update 2015: The European Cyclists' Federation has published an interesting article on Groningen's new cycling strategy for 2015-2025, designed to "keep the city accessible, liveable, economically vital, healthy and safe" through even more bicycle usage.

First review: Cycling in Groningen

  • Last visit to Groningen: Apr 2012
  • Intro Updated Apr 27, 2015
  • Add to Trip Planner (?)
  • Report Abuse

Reviews (28)

Comments (14)

  • Mikebb's Profile Photo
    Jan 17, 2013 at 3:13 PM

    Hi Don, enjoyed your page, particularly the antique music machine and the bicycles. On our recent river cruise we visited Siegfried's Mechanical Music Museum at Rudesheim.I guess they do not compare with the Opera.

  • balhannah's Profile Photo
    Oct 22, 2012 at 10:37 PM

    Quite a nice town by the sound of it!

  • Yaqui's Profile Photo
    Oct 3, 2012 at 8:48 PM

    The bicycles are wonderful, but how do the elderly get around? What a lovely country! So much to see and do here is fantastic!

    • Nemorino's Profile Photo
      Oct 5, 2012 at 3:48 AM

      Hi Dee, thanks for your visit to my Groningen page. In Groningen the elderly mostly ride bicycles along with everyone else, just maybe not so fast. Alternatively they can also take the bus if the need arises. Personally, I would never even think of driving a car at my age, but I am very happy to ride my bike every day as it keeps me fit and feeling good, and gets me where I want to go.

    • Yaqui's Profile Photo
      Oct 6, 2012 at 8:48 AM

      That is awesome to hear!

  • ettiewyn's Profile Photo
    Oct 3, 2012 at 2:53 AM

    Hi Don, a nice and interesting page about Groningen! I really enjoyed reading your tips. The museums sound very good, I think I would especially enjoy the Maritime Museum!

  • toonsarah's Profile Photo
    Sep 17, 2012 at 8:44 AM

    I like the look of this town, especially the mix of houses etc in your Hoge der A main photo, the canals (naturally!) and the range of museums :-) It seems strange to have a hotel named Hampshire in the middle of the Netherlands! But it looks like a nice one, with good views and even a library ;-)

  • xaver's Profile Photo
    Sep 16, 2012 at 3:36 PM

    your list of museum comparing pricing and interest is helpful, nice idea.

  • globetrott's Profile Photo
    Sep 13, 2012 at 4:46 PM

    The dutch people are lucky to have such a flat country, where cycling is so much easier than in Switzerland !

    • globetrott's Profile Photo
      Sep 14, 2012 at 2:38 PM

      this weekend we have a downhill-race here by bicycles on mountainpaths, it is unbelievable to watch these people !

    • Nemorino's Profile Photo
      Sep 14, 2012 at 3:05 PM

      They do the same in Wildbad im Schwarzwald, wearing full-body padding like American football players. Unfortunately I didn’t get any photos of them.

  • MalenaN's Profile Photo
    Sep 11, 2012 at 10:51 AM

    How nice that so many as 57% of the inhabitants use bicycles for daily transportation. Now I'm curious to find out what the percentage is here in Uppsala.

  • bugulma's Profile Photo
    Sep 9, 2012 at 1:23 AM

    a lot of bicycles in the city. I didn't see the street that is allowed to go by bicycle :-)

  • HORSCHECK's Profile Photo
    Sep 8, 2012 at 1:32 PM

    Don, another fine new page of your adventures in the Netherlands. The view from the VVV Tourist Information seems to be indeed excellent. *winkygrin*

    • Nemorino's Profile Photo
      Sep 8, 2012 at 2:57 PM

      Hi Holger, thanks for stopping by. Yes, I thought the view was really great from up there. I also took the photos of the flower market from up there, by the way, not only the ones you had in mind, LOL.


“The world is full of wonderful places. Help keep them wonderful by not driving in them.”

Online Now


Top 1,000 Travel Writer
Member Rank:
0 0 0 1 9
Forum Rank:
0 0 0 7 8

Badges & Stats in Groningen

  • 28 Reviews
  • 107 Photos
  • 0 Forum posts
  • 1,939PageViews

Have you been to Groningen?

  Share Your Travels  

Latest Activity in Groningen

Photos in Groningen

See All Photos (107)

Travel Interests

See All Travel Interests (5)