The key question is – given how many bicycles there are here, would you have any reason to hire a car in Groningen?
- Bicycle heaven – this city is the world’s greatest cycling utopia. It is easy to hire bicycles at numerous different locations, including the main railway station.
- Bus and train – the Dutch cycling infrastructure network makes it very easy to do a journey of 10 to 15 miles within an hour and barely even having to think about it.
- Even if you don’t feel like cycling further, there is a good network of bus routes which feeds into Groningen station, and a reasonable network of local rail services.
- Direct rail connections – the range of flights to Groningen airport is restricted to a very small handful of European destinations. The chances are that you will arrive from either Amsterdam or Schiphol airport by rail. Allow about 2 1/2 hours for this.
- Museum – the Groningen Museum is quite a notable cultural centre in its own right. It is situated directly across the railway station anyway.
Should you rent a car in Groningen? – The verdict:
Groningen is the world’s cycling capital, and that might make it worthy of a visit for that reason alone, although the difference between Dutch attitudes to cycling and those in just about anywhere else is already clear to see the moment you set foot in the Netherlands.
Yet, just as with any other Dutch city, including Amsterdam or Rotterdam, just because cycling is so easy doesn’t mean that driving is difficult, it just really isn’t worth the expense.
Verdict – no