Amsterdam to Paris - Eurovelo/Suggested routes/stops/must see's/experiences
In late august I set off on my european bike tour, first stretch is starting in Amsterdam and making my way to Paris. From what I read and from what people have told me a route avoiding Antwerpen & Brussels is best in favor of a route passing through Brugge and that area? I'm told theres a good route that way with a lot of scenic/nice riding (feel free to add anything here, as I'm not totally sure of the exact route)
But theres also Eurovelo 12 that passes through Amsterdam, I could ride the EV12 until it meets up with EV4 then ride that as much as I can until I just find my own route down to paris, I'm guessing it would be somewhere around Amiens that it ends and i'd be on my own finding my way to Paris.
From there the plan is to ride the EV3 down to Bordeaux... I'm still unsure if the Eurovelo routes are the ebst option or whether I should just buy a lot of maps and take advice from people & just plan my own route with landmarks/must see spots directing me
Anyone who has travelled this route/anything similar to this, looking for any advice or information anyone can give me,
Don't miss Bruges, it's worth a day or two of anyone's life. If you can, get the Nationaal Geografisch Instituut map entitled "Langeafstandsfietsroutes in Vlaanderen" which is a useful 1:250000 scale and shows clealry and comprehensively the huge network of cycle routes through Belgium. LF2 would take you from Amsterdam to Antwerp, then LF51 to Bruges (or LFs38/5 if you want to go via Gent). From Bruges LF52 will take you down to Northern France, passing Roubaix (you could ride the route of Paris-Roubaix in reverse, if you want to take a look at the cobbles).
Once you're heading south from Paris the options are fairly vast, especially since the availability of municipal campsites and international hostels mean you can stop conveniently pretty much anywhere. My personal preference is always to make it up as I go along, but tastes differ.
I just rode some days in Belgium inbetween doing the Tour of Flanderen and Paris Roubaix Challenges. Spent two great days in Brugge with a museum pass (highly recommended!) and then rode out to the coast and spent a nice night in Casselle on my way back to Kortrijk where I stayed for most of the trip. I loved cyccling in Belgium, safe and so many options ! Go for the ride along the canals if you can !
I've ridden extensively in NL and BE, less in northern France.
Avoiding Antwerp and Brussels means missing at least two cool cities, but also lots of built-up areas. The LF2 Fietsroute goes from Amsterdam to Brussels if you are considering this inland route. You get to see classic Dutch and Flemish landscapes going this way.
Otherwise, following the North Sea Cycle Route would offer you a great coastal route to France where you could turn south. Beautiful (but so would be the inland one) and less busy. Access to Bruges is a perk, but don't expect a working city here, it's pretty touristy. The LF1 is the Dutch section of this enormous signed loop through the UK and Scandinavia.
If you're wanting to avoid big cities, coastal is the way to go. Just watch out for headwinds!