My husband and I are staying at an Air bnb in Almere. We'll be spending most of our time in Amsterdam, but we'll have use of bicycles in Almere and hope to explore the area by bike. Does anyone have restaurant recommendations or suggestions for bike riding in the area, such as parks or interesting neighborhoods?
For cycling in an interesting area, you must cross the water. Almere itself didn't exist before 1976, and the land reclamation it is built upon dates from the 1960's.
Naarden is a beautiful fortified town. A few kilometers further on, there are woods just south-east of Hilversum, and the country estate of Groenewoud.
You could do worse than putting your bicycles on the train (day ticket for EUR 6) and cycle the area south of Amsterdam. From Weesp to Abcoude is beautiful, and you can continue to Ouderkerk aan de Amstel, following small rivers. Following the Amstel river (from which Amsterdam got its name), it is a few kilometers to the railway station Amsterdam RAI, where you can pick up a train back to Almere.
I find OpenStreetMap a good tool for planning walks or bicycle rides. It is amazingly detailed.
Thank you for your suggestions, I'll explore them. I'll certainly spend more time exploring OpenStreetMap, not just for Amsterdam, since we'll also be visiting France and Switzerland.
One project I hope to explore while in Almere is an ecovillage: [ReGen Village]
I'm not sure how far along this project is, I'm interested in the experimental design going on in this area. Honestly, we're staying in Almere because we were able to find a very affordable place to stay AND I thought it was actually closer to Amsterdam.