Floral Frenzy at Keukenhof – the Tulip Garden

posted in: Europe, Nature, Netherlands | 33
A floral extravaganza at a park that only opens for two months in a year – the Keukenhof Garden in Lisse, Netherlands. Years back, my hubby happened to visit this park during his official trips to Netherlands. The pictures he got back were unbelievable and since then, it had been on my wish-list – finally to be fulfilled last year, when we just managed to get there 2 days before it shut for the rest of the year.  
Tulips Extravaganza at Keukenhof
Tulips Extravaganza at Keukenhof
Every year, the gardens have a different theme.  2015 was the anniversary of Van Gogh and hence, the garden reflected the same.  2014, the year I went, was about Canal houses or Holland. Truly speaking, this is why every picture of the park looks so different and which is why every year is a unique year for a visitor to the famous Keukenhof gardens.   
Yellow tulips in Keukenhof, Netherlands
Yellow tulips in Keukenhof, Netherlands
For me, Keukenhof was a unique, vibrant and refreshing experience  -two reasons. First of, Tulips are not common to the place I belong and this was the first time, that I was seeing a whole field of them. Second, unlike the various botanical parks that I had been to, this was far different with its Tulips, orchids and floral arrangements – all giving you the art and culture that Netherlands is so well known for. 

History of Keukenhof

Let me start by giving you a little trivia about Keukenhof. This place was never meant to be a park but was a hunting ground first and later, a herb garden for the Countess of Hainaut. After her death, this was converted to an open-air exhibition of flowers and bulbs, which now forms the famed garden. 

 

Us at Keukenhof
Us at Keukenhof

The Tulips Extravaganza at Keukenhof

The garden is quite huge and absolutely gorgeous. Since I was there just two days short of its closure, I was told that most of the tulips were already harvested. Makes me wonder what it would have been had it been 15 days earlier. Even with a lot of tulips harvested, the place is a complete floral rainbow. The riot of colors and the amazing scenic spots are apt for some lovely selfies and photos of an everlasting memory.
The fountains at Keukenhof
The fountains at Keukenhof

Inhabitants of Keukenhof

There is a lovely fountain area that is filled with some ducks. The ducks are quite friendly as well and swim so close to you that you could almost touch them. Of course, remember feeding them is not permitted and as friendly as they may seem, they do not take kindly to petting either. 🙂
Mallards floating around at Keukenhof
Mallards floating around at Keukenhof
A little ahead are some farm animals and a peacock. The peacock was a surprise as I did not really expect one in Netherlands. Nonetheless, was lucky to see it around. Along the path is an area where there is an old windmill – a symbol of Netherlands. 
Windmills at Keukenhof
Windmills at Keukenhof

 

A little ahead are some farm animals and a peacock. The peacock was a surprise as I did not really expect one in Netherlands. Nonetheless, was lucky to see it around. Along the path is an area where there is an old windmill – a symbol of Netherlands. 
Too big for my clogs - Keukenhof
Too big for my clogs – Keukenhof

Keukenhof Exhibition Centre

A special mention to the flower pavilion in the park. I found some amazing flower arrangements and arches of lily whilst here. This corner has some artist floral arrangements. Almost felt like a princess here – surrounded by floral scents and sights. 

Lily Arches at Keukenhof
Lily Arches at Keukenhof

And while Keukenhof is known as a tulip garden, it is not just one. There are rows and rows of other flowers including Wordsworth’s daffodils, hydrangeas, gerberas and freesia. Those exotic fragrances that we use but have possibly only seen pictures of the flowers on the net – right there in front of you in different colors. Why would you not feel like Royalty?

Hyacinths in Blues and Pinks at Keukenhof
Hyacinths in Blues and Pinks at Keukenhof

My daughter and I had an amazing time playing “Color Color- which color do you want?” for practically, every possible shade and color were around in the garden by way of the flowers. And yes, even black – as you can see below. I mean – How creative can nature really get?

Colors of Keukenhof - Blackish Red Tulips
Colors of Keukenhof – Blackish Red Tulips
Time seemed less when we were here and while there were are few sights that I have missed, am sure will come back just to cover the same. And just so that you don’t miss your dates – pin this up on your board to remind you to mark the date for C visiting Keukenhof -Tulip Gardens in Netherlands.

Getting to Keukenhof:

  • The best way to travel to this garden is to take the express buses from Amsterdam. There are buses available from the Amsterdam city center (Line 197) or the Schinphol airport  are regular intervals to take you directly to Keukenhof.  
  • You can purchase a combination ticket of the bus fare and the entrance tickets to Keukenhof, whilst traveling these express buses.
  • You can opt for an Amsterdam Holland Pass for some better deals. This pass includes some deals for other attractions like museums in Amsterdam as well.

Travel Tips:

Map of Keukenhof park

  •  Here is the official site of the Keukenhof Gardens. You can buy tickets online as well. The price of the tickets for adults is 16 Euros while that of kids below 11 years is 8 Euros. Kids below 3 years are admitted free of charge.
  • Remember to grab the map as in the pic above, at the entrance for an easy guide to the gardens.
  • As I mentioned earlier in my post, Keukenhof is open only 2 months of a year- from the end of March to the mid of May. Make sure your trip is planned well in advance. Try to go as early as possible so that you can enjoy a complete bloom of tulips.
  • There are a few cafes and restaurants at the entrance of the park. 
  • The park is open from 8:00am to 7:30pm. Remember the sun in Netherlands in this season generally shines bright even at 7 pm. So you can really enjoy the park during this time.
  • Check out the website for some interesting events that are planned at the park. 
  • Short cycling routes are charted out around the park. These routes are not inside the park. Cycles are available on rent at the entrance of the park.
  • There are small boat rides available for an additional price at the Windmill in the Keukenhof park. This is a beautiful 1 hour ride that takes you along the fields of tulips.
  • Keukenhof park is very well developed with good pathways and facilities for easy navigation of prams for kids. There is free wi-fi also, available at the park. 
  • The curios store is great for buying some memories of Netherlands. The prices are fixed and if you request them, they pack the curios really well for a journey across the world.

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33 Responses

  1. Ami Bhat

    Thanks Archana….the experience here is something else altogether. I felt like a princess here . 🙂

  2. nishitak

    First time visiting your blog, and I am loving reading your travel chronicles :). Bookmarking your blog for further reading

  3. Ami Bhat

    Thanks a ton Nishitak. You can even subscribe or follow the blog by adding yourself to the list on the left panel of my blog. Thanks for reading 🙂

  4. Alok Singhal

    I just read about this place few days back (and saw beautiful pics of tulips too) and fell in love with it. Again, a pleasure reading about and seeing nature’s best here.

    • Ami

      It is unbelievable, the multitude of colors here. I loved it. Thanks for dropping by

  5. Sandy N Vyjay

    The tulips are stunning. I was especially amazed when I saw those blackish red tulips. They were gorgeous. The exhibition centre is simply amazing.Words are ineffective in describing the beauty of these lovely flowers.

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