The United Nations General Assembly had declared June 3 as "World Bicycle Day" back in 2018 to promote the use of environmentally friendly and healthy means of transport, a day when international and local events would encourage to support the development of cycling culture in communities. Today, three years later as the "World Bicycle Day" approaches cycling is steadily gaining popularity around the world, and the Netherlands stands as the country where the average number of bicycles per person is the highest.
According to the data released by the Dutch Cyclists' Association, the country has 2.3% of the 1 billion bicycles in the world, with an average of 1.3 bicycles per person.
The Netherlands is followed by Denmark with 0.8, Japan with 0.6, Belgium with 0.5, China with 0.4 and the United States with 0.3 bicycles per person.
Bicycle, which is a part of daily life in the Netherlands, is used by everyone from age 7 to 70.
With a population of 17 million, the Netherlands, which constitutes 0.2% of the world's population, has 23 million bicycles.
The bicycle, which is mostly used for commuting and transporting children to school in the country, is also preferred for entertainment regardless of the weather conditions. In this context, bicycles are used for work in 22%, going to school in 18% and shopping in 14% of cases. In addition, 31% use bicycles for entertainment and 16% for other purposes.
In the Netherlands, where cycling is a way of life, approximately 1 million new bicycles are sold every year. Half of them are electric-assisted bicycles that provide extra power when pedaling, thanks to the battery on them.
The majority of the people who were introduced to bicycles at a young age use second-hand bicycles.
In the country where a shared bicycle program is active, there are approximately 22,000 bicycles at more than 300 different points. After these bikes are rented for a certain fee and used, they are returned to the point where they are taken.
In the country, where there are 37,000 kilometers (22,991 miles) of bicycle paths almost the width of the world's circumference, an average of 888 kilometers is traveled per person every year and approximately 15 billion kilometers per year across the country are traveled by bicycle.
While the surroundings of the train stations are reserved for bicycles, the city of Utrecht, which is considered the center of stations, has the world's largest bicycle park with a capacity of 12,500 bicycles.
Turkey's cycling community is also booming in recent times with numerous initiatives and organizations popping up alongside several events.
President of Turkish Cycling Federation Emin Müftüoğlu stated that Turkey is among the top 10 in the world when cycling organizations are considered in terms of quality, content and organizational skills.
"We are among the top 10 cycling organizations in the world in terms of quality, content, organizational skills, promotion, cultural activities, accommodation, presentation of historical and natural beauties to the world, discipline and performance," Müftüoğlu said.
The Ministry of Environment, Urbanization and Climate Change plans to build a further 3,000 kilometers of bicycle paths, 3,000 kilometers of green walking paths, 60 kilometers of environmentally friendly streets and 60,000 square meters (645,834 square feet) of noise barriers.
Spaniards stand in the middle level in terms of cycling within the European Union countries.
According to a survey published by the Global Consumer Survey in 2021, 24% of the population aged 18 to 64 in Spain prefers cycling at least twice a week for urban transportation.
While 7% of Spaniards use the bicycle daily, 48% of the population defines themselves as a bicycle user.
The government aims to increase the daily use of bicycles in transportation across the country to 10% by 2030.
In Switzerland, where sales of bicycles and electric scooters increased after the COVID-19 pandemic, 69 of every 100 households have at least one bicycle.
The sum of national and urban cycle paths in the country, where an average of 320,000 bicycles are sold every year, reaches 8,500 kilometers.
While there are nine national and 54 regional bike lanes in the country, local governments are increasing the number of bike lanes to reduce traffic congestion and promote environmentally friendly transportation.
There are 81 million bicycles in Germany, where bicycle and electric scooter sales have increased, just like Switzerland. Around 2.3 million bicycles were produced in the country last year. Münster, in the west of the country, is known as the city of bicycles in Germany. In particular, the state of Berlin is increasing the number of bike lane roads to promote environmentally friendly transport.