Monday, April 27, 2015

Keukenhof Tulip Gardens

Last Saturday the family and I finally make it to the Keukenhof Tulip Gardens! I discovered this place about two weeks too late last year after we moved see This place is only open about eight weeks out of the year. Timing is everything if you go too early you may not see much blooming, but if you go too late then many things will have already bloomed and be cleaned up.

We went April 25th, this last week of April/first week of May seems to be a good time to go as every single type of flower on display was blooming. From talking to other people, this last week of April/first week of May time frame seems to be fairly consistent from year to year.

Each year the garden coordinators usually focus on a country to feature, but this year they chose Vincent Van Gogh as their feature display. This is the 125th anniversary of his death so they decided to pay tribute to him.

The Keukenhof was one of those things where I was afraid to actually go. I had heard so many wonderful things and saw so many wonderful photos that I wholeheartedly expected to be let down. But, you know what? The gardens certainly delivered. We all left feeling more enriched and happy we went. The greenhouses were full of amazing diplays from Van Gogh's art works brought to life to beautiful wedding displays. Despite the number of people at the park for the Corso (a yearly parade) it was still a wonderful time.

A bit about our trip...

We went after breakfast. We did get stuck in 90 minutes worth of traffic as we left the house about 10:30, arrived at the airport where we picked up the shuttle around 11. We wound up arriving at the Keukenhof at a little after 1pm. If I were to do this again I would leave the house by 8am. Once we were off the shuttle we found a side entrance where we walked right in...make sure you find the alternative entrance, the main entrance is a madhouse. We knew we wanted to make the most of our time there but wanted to leave no later than 3:30 as there was a sign that had tour busses scheduled to leave at 5pm, since we were in traffic on the way there we knew we did not want to hit traffic on the way back. So, we began our stroll conscious of the really was plenty of time. is what we saw...

These were probably my favorite flower/display: Synaeda King and Giuseppe Verdi

I loved these hot pink ones!

The first green house we entered was the Oranje Nassau it was a tribute to Vincent Van Gogh. There were several reprints of his artwork displayed along with flowers that were similar in fashion to ones he painted. 

There were even a few exhibits that were sort of interactive but they were so busy I didn't bother with them, nor did I need to...admiring his artwork in this capacity was enough for me.

The big display was one of his famous self-portraits redone in tulips. I feel as though we were so lucky to see this. The entire thing was blooming and even as early as the week before we went there were some that were still just green. I love everything to do with Vincent Van Gogh, so to see this in full bloom was a real treat for me. Hubby even stood in the long line to get on the grand stand and see it with me even though I told him he didn't have to...that is love folks. 

Some of the flower fields. A sea of red.

Loving the XXX in flowers.

I love how they recycled some of these cribs into a piece of artwork. Also, see where all those people are, that is near the windmill where you can climb up and an area where you can book a cruise through some of the flower fields..we didn't do that...nothing was worth fighting those lines.

This was a really fun bridge to play on. 


 This was the only other green house we fought to get into...the weeding displays! They were really pretty. But it was super packed, we did a quick tour around then had to get out.

We loved the displays with these little pineapple looking flowers, they just looked so happy and almost tropical.

Hyacinth...this smelled amazing. Just wow.

This was a magical experience and I would highly recommend actually planning a trip around this even to visit The Netherlands. 

It is a spectacular experience. Here are my tips for making the most of your experience:
  • Purchase your tickets in advance
  • Leave early to get there when the Gardens open
  • Enter through one of the alternative entrances, just ask anyone in a yellow vest
  • Eat before you go, restaurants get really packed and seemed over priced in my opinion
  • Bring a water bottle...lines for drinks and food were extremely long
  • Don't forget your camera
  • Expect to deal with large amounts of crowds, so be patient
This is something that is fun for the whole family since everything is paved so you can bring a pram/stroller, there is playground equipment for the littles, and the teeanger thanked us several times for giving her the opportunity to go. Not once did she complain and she was very in to seeing the displays and all the flowers in bloom. 

As a final note, if you are a fearer of bees because you swell horribly (almost to allergic reaction proportions like me) or are allergic I am happy to report we didn't see a single bee. I am not sure how that was possible and worries me slightly, but I really was glad because it meant I didn't need to worry.

So, I highly recommend you plan a trip to see this at some point, well worth it!

P.S. Make sure you check out the Reasons to Travel link up over at Reasons to Dress!


  1. Oh these photos and this post are amazing - must have taken you ages!! Of course Tulips in Amsterdam is legendary and now I can see why :) I was stopping by on the last day of the A to Z Challenge - it's been great again and lovely to see so many wonderful blogs - yours included! Special Teaching at Pempi’s Palace

  2. SO ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL! I loved this post and I'm so glad you shared it! I've mentioned you today on my blog because I would love to have you link this up here, (as well as any other travel posts you've published) to my new monthly linkup #REASONStoTRAVEL a place for lifestyle and travel bloggers to share their adventures.

    Great tip about finding an alternative entrance. I think we're planning on visiting next Spring (again thanks to your suggestions)!

    1. Thanks for stopping by Angela! I will definitely link up, thanks for mentioning me. I've thought about starting a link up for a long time as well, I may try and find a few other expats and start maybe an expat link up of some kind? When you get closer to visiting next year if you have any questions feel free to message me! :D

  3. I just found your post through the #REASONStoTRAVEL link up and I'm very glad, because those photos are so incredible. I understand why you'd be worried about being disappointed if you'd seen gorgeous photos like these before visiting, but it's good to know that that wasn't the case!

  4. Wow! I have been wanting to head to Amsterdam for quite a while, and after reading this I would absolutely want to go during this exact time. So lovely! Thank you for linking up with the #REASONStoTRAVEL linkup!

  5. What can I say! The flower displays are fabulous. I am in love with the display of purple flowers intermixed with the yellow / red flowers.

  6. Sounds absolutely brilliant. Tulips and Netherlands go hand in hand... you're right, what a great time to visit! Thanks for linking up with #reasonstotravel!

  7. So small town has a Tulip Festival each spring...but no comparison! :)

  8. Oh my goodness I would NEVER want to leave! I can't wait to go back to the Netherlands, I didn't get a chance to visit tulip fields last time I was there. Thanks for sharing!