Stop and smell the (spring) flowers at the Keukenhof, the world's largest flower garden and easily one of the most colorful with over 7 million daffodils, hyacinths and tulips in bloom. Come and spend some time in this floral heaven on earth on a tour departing Amsterdam.
The garden is located in Lisse just an hour away from the museums, canals and medieval buildings of Amsterdam. Organized tours can take care of the transportation, allowing visitors to choose a half-day or full-day flower fare. Visitors can expect a different theme each year such as Rembrandt in 2006 and China in 2008.
"The tour bus was spacious with good viewing out clean windows. The tour guide was knowledgeable and quite personable. She spoke 4 languages and used them all on this tour as this tours participants came from Spain, Italy, USA, and Germany." Frank G. of US said, "The tulips at Keukenhof were at near peak and breathtaking."
And although the tulips couldn't stay, latecomers won't be disappointed. "Even though it was the last day of the show and many tulips were no longer visible, the remaining flowers were gorgeous!" Pamela B. of the U.S. wrote.
Indeed, some of the well-loved displays in Keukenhof aren't tulips. Over 1,600 varieties are planted each year. Among the favorites are the Beatrix Pavillion with orchids, anthuriums and bromeliads and the Prince Willem Alexander Pavilion with 300 different varieties of lilies.
Not just a feast for the senses, the Keukenhof gardens carry a long history that can be dated back from the 15th century. Before Keukenhof became the so-called Garden of Europe, it grew kitchen herbs and vegetables and hosted hunting parties for Countess Jacqueline of Wittelsbach. In 1857, landscape architects stepped in to design the park in the style of an English landscape garden. The garden would introduce more landscapes later such as a Japanese country garden and a Garden Forest. Keukenhof was opened in 1949 as a flower exhibit, initiated by the mayor of Lisse. An opportunity for flower growers to display their world-famous bulbs (Trivia: Netherlands is one of the world's leading exporter of cut flowers).
This rare spring spectacle has attracted more than 50 million visitors all over the world, among these members of the Royal family. Queen Juliana sponsored the first flower show and was a frequent visitor. Queen Beatrix is present in many opening ceremonies along with Princess Margriet and Prince William Alexander. Foreign dignitaries often visit.
More five-star reviews:
Beautiful park. It's just stunning. Tour is good. Stop at charming Haarlem is worth it too.
- Daniela A., Venezuela
Outstanding Facility. Great Tour.
- Rich B., USA
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