I will be travelling with my travel buddy to the Netherlands for a week in early October.
We would like to cycle around the countryside for a couple of days but would not like to join a cycle tour where you are forced to go the route the guide takes you. Instead we would like to go at our pace and stop and see the places we would like to stop and see.
Does anyone know of any bicycle tours that will rent you the bike and gear and help out with or store your luggage on the way?
Welcome to TP. I can't go into much detail at the moment, because I don't have the information on me, but I found out recently about a group that you can join ('friends of cyclists' or something similar), where you can stay at people's homes very cheaply (practically free) all around holland. Still won't help with the bike hire, but could be a great way to meet some Dutch families, etc and get to stay in some more interesting places. If you send me a message, I'll try dig up the information when I next get a chance.
holland is the perfect country to go cycling, the landscape is (contrary to what people may say) pretty varied and it's flat! when you arrive in holland, i suggest going to the ANWB (the dutch auto and cyclists club, they have shops in all major cities) who sell a large selection of various bicycle routes throuhgout the whole country. the VVV (tourist bureau) is also a good option, but tends to focus more on the city that it is located in. if you go to either the ANWB or to the VVV ask for a 'fietsroute'.
regarding luggage storage i really wouldn't know what to do about that. do you know where you're starting? i would suggest booking the first and the last night at a hotel or hostel and leave your luggage in storage when you are on the road and only take the neccesary stuff with you.
hope this help.
check out www.anwb.nl and buy a Fietsroutegids. It shows different routes to take on a bike. In Holland you can ask where anwb is located at the vvv (thats the tourist information centre.)They have stores in every big city in Holland. Good luck