The bicycle & social progress

We are using the magic of the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift to get more Rotterdam residents, especially women and children, on their bikes. Because a bicycle is so much more than a healthy and sustainable means of transport. On a bicycle, you experience freedom and adventure. The bike takes you further. It comes with new contacts and new experiences.

Bicycle use in Rotterdam is on the up year on year, but not all Rotterdammers cycle yet. There is still a large group of people who do not have the financial means to buy a bike and not everyone in Rotterdam knows how to cycle. The City of Rotterdam is therefore committed to helping this group of people, so everyone can take part. Among other things by setting up the bike bank and organizing bicycle lessons in the neighbourhood.

In the coming months, we are using the upcoming Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift to accelerate this approach. We are betting on these projects.

  • Bike parties around the city

In seven neighbourhoods across Rotterdam, we organise free bike parties together with Sportbedrijf, the Rotterdam Bicycle Alliance and the municipality of Rotterdam.

Children can take part in fun cycling activities, get their faces painted and feast on free ‘poffertjes’. Children can also have their bikes pimped by real graffiti artists! Adults can get information about cycling lessons and the Rotterdam Bike Bank. The special indoor trainers from the school programme will be available for everyone to ride a virtual Tour de France Femmes course. Visitors can also have their bikes repaired and learn how to fix flat tyres free of charge.

Naturally, the Tour de France experience is also central. Children can make a banner for the riders or have their photo taken as a real Tour hero.

“By organising these bike parties, we involve the neighbourhood in the Tour de France Femmes in an accessible way and show how much fun cycling is. The activities take place at central locations in the neighbourhood to get as many Rotterdammers involved and excited about getting on their bikes themselves. It really will be a party for the neighbourhood!” Danielle Everling, Sportbedrijf Rotterdam.

Agenda Fietsfeesten
› 1 juni FEIJENOORD Afrikaanderplein
› 8 juni OUDE WESTEN Wijkpark het Oude Westen
› 15 juni ROZENBURG Jan van Goyenstraat 1
› 22 juni IJSSELMONDE Plein Herenwaard
› 23 juni CHARLOIS Annie MG Schmidtplein
› 29 juni CROOSWIJK Schuttersveld
› 6 juli NESSELANDE Skatepark Nesselande

All bike parties are from 12pm to 4pm. For more information:

  • The Rotterdam Peloton

100 days before the Grand Départ of the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift, 154 women will start a special cycling programme in which they will learn how to cycle. They work towards the final on 11 August. During the Rotterdam Cycling Festival, these riders will ride the time trial course like a real peloton on a new LIV bike that they get to keep afterwards.

Why exactly 154 women? This is the same number of riders that start the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift. We therefore call our 154 women the Rotterdam Peloton.

From May to August, participants follow an intensive training programme, in which they master the art of cycling step by step. They not only develop technical skills, but also build self-confidence to ride safely and comfortably through the city. For this cycling programme, there is cooperation with the Sezer Foundation.

Leontien van Moorsel and Khaddouj Erahoutan, wife of Mayor Aboutaleb, are ambassadors of the Rotterdam Peloton. They would like to share their passion for cycling and the freedom it gives them, with the participants. Of course, they will also be there on 11 August when the participants make their lap of honour through the city.

“I am proud to be the ambassador for this beautiful project. I taught myself to ride a bike at the age of 12 on a grass field behind my house and since then, the bike has played an important role in my life. I think it is fantastic that these women are taking the step to learn how to ride a bike. I am sure they are going to inspire a lot of others around them to get on their bikes too in the near future.” Khaddouj Erahoutan, ambassador Rotterdams Peloton

Rotterdam residents who are inspired by the Rotterdam Peloton can also sign up for free cycling lessons organised by Rotterdam City Council. For more information:


  • Bike collection for the Rotterdam Bike Bank

22% of Rotterdam residents do not have a bike, including almost 10,000 children. We are going to do something about that!

How do we do it? We call on the Rotterdammers to donate bicycles they no longer use to the Fietsbank, the Bike Bank. At the Fietsbank, Rotterdammers with an income of up to 130% of the social benefits (Bijstand) standard can get a second-hand bicycle free of charge.

Especially children’s and women’s bicycles are badly needed. The number of fixed drop-off points has been greatly expanded. In addition, we organise pop-up points at schools, at sports clubs through the Sportspullenbank (the bank for sports equipment) and at companies from mid-May onwards.

“We are incredibly excited about the collaboration with the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift. A great event through which Rotterdam shows how well you can ride your bike here, whether on a road bike or an ordinary city bike. But cycling is not yet that common for everyone. It would therefore be great if donating a bike you no longer use becomes just as common as taking empty bottles to the recycling station. That way, in the coming years, we can help a lot of Rotterdammers who would like to cycle but don’t have the financial means to buy a bike. To work, school, sport, friends. A bike just gets you there. A bike takes you further.” Vincent Karremans, alderman for enforcement, outdoor space and mobility.

For more information and the location of the drop-off points:


  • Time Trial to work Challenge

Not only the world’s best bike riders will ride a time trial in the centre of Rotterdam on 13 August. Employees of companies in the city centre will also be challenged in a unique challenge. In the months leading up to the Grand Départ, they can record their time for their regular commute. On 13 August, they will then have the opportunity to record the time it takes to cycle to work. Together with Zuid-Holland Bereikbaar, each company and participant will receive their own personal recommendation.

For more information:

Rotterdam Cycling on Tour

Rotterdam Cycling on Tour is the school project launched in 2021 for the first and second year of the secondary schools (middelbare school). This project aims to stimulate sports and exercise and to get the city excited about the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift 2024 coming to Rotterdam. We are collaborating with House of Esports for this project. In the coming months, secondary schools located in the municipalities where the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift 2024 passes through, will take part in the school project. We will also make the programme available in Rotterdam to groups seven and eight at 15 primary schools (basisschool).

”The participants were very driven during the races. Some even came back during recess to beat their own record. By combining the cycling component with a Minecraft game on road safety and an activity with VR glasses, we perfectly match the target group’s interests. The enthusiasm for cycling among students is growing, as is the brand awareness of Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift.” Dennis van Meel, House of Esports.

Next to Rotterdam Cycling on Tour, we are developing an activity booklet for primary school children from groups four, five and six full of facts and activities about cycling, because cycling is fun, healthy, and safe! This is also demonstrated by the bicycle film ‘Rotterdam Fietst’ (Rotterdam cycles), which was made by the Fietsersbond (Cyclist’s Union) for group seven and eight pupils. After its launch on 3 June (World Cycling Day), the film will be made available to all Rotterdam primary schools.