Keukenhof

Spring is almost here and flowers all throughout the world are ready to bloom! What better place to celebrate the magic of spring than by visiting the Keukenhof Gardens in the Netherlands. This is one of the largest, if not the largest display of tulips in the world.

The name Keukenhof is Dutch for “kitchen garden”, as it was formerly a site where vegetables and kitchen herbs were grown for the nearby Keukenhof Castle, which you can also visit if you are in the mood for an excursion.

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The Dutch are world-famous for their exports of cut flowers and bulbs. So wouldn’t it make perfect sense to have a garden park dedicated to their expertise?

Keukenhof is located in the town of Lisse, which is less than a half hour drive if you are coming from one of the nearby cities of Amsterdam, Leiden, or Haarlem. You can also arrive by bus which you would catch at any of the major train stations nearby. The park is open 7 days a week and the hours are from 8am to 7:30pm (19:30). It can get pretty busy on the weekends, so if you’re looking for a some quite time in the gardens, it might be best to visit on a weekday morning or evening.

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At Keukenhof, there are endless combinations of ponds, canals, trees, and meticulously crafted and ever-so-colorful flower beds to feast your eyes upon. Each fall, over 7 million bulbs are hand-planted to create the magical colorful symphony of flowers that we all get to enjoy in the spring. There are over 800 varieties of tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, lilies, and crocuses to be seen on over 80 acres of land. Among them are the highly sought after and extremely rare black tulips.

The place is huge, so be prepared to do a lot of walking if you want to see it all. In addition to the outdoor gardens are seven indoor gardens which feature a wide variety of flowers from around the world, each garden displayed in their own unique style.

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Every year, over a million people flock from all over the world to see the Keukenhof tulips in their fullest bloom. The garden is open only for the duration of tulip season which usually falls between mid-March and mid-May. You can check the Keukenhof website for details, special events, and the opening dates for the specific year you are visiting.

Across the canal from the gardens are the tulip fields where you can see the rows and rows of color from the different bulb species being grown for market. To avoid the chances of crop contamination, the fields are not open to the public. However, Keukenhof does provide whisper boat canal cruises from which visitors can get beautiful views of the fields and take lots of pictures.

 

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If you’re in the Netherlands this upcoming spring, I hope you’ll get a chance to stop by the Keukenhof! It’ll be a most colorful experience for you and a most memorable one at that too!

ATTRIBUTIONS
1. Featured Image by MabelAmber on Pixabay
2. Image adapted from “Kasteel Keukenhof” by WikiFB3 at Dutch Wikipedia via public domain.
3. Image by PublicDomainPictures on Pixabay
4. Image by MabelAmber on Pixabay
5. Image by derwiki on Pixabay

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