Spring is returning to the northern hemisphere. The greyness of winter is gradually replaced by the colours of spring. Across Europe, multicoloured flowers wake up after a long winter sleep and reveal its beauty. And one perfect place to admire Mother Nature’s artwork is the Keukenhof Garden.
Located in the Netherlands’ southern province Lisse, Keukenhof is the largest flower garden in the world. The area was once used as the hunting ground and a great source of herbs for the kitchen of Jacqueline, the Countess of Hainaut’s Castle in the 15th century. Thus, it earned the name Keukenhof, which means “Kitchen Garden”.
With over seven millions of bulb flowers, it is not exaggerated to call Keukenhof the “Garden of Europe”. Operating from middle March to middle May, Keukenhof attracts around 800,000 visitors annually and it is one of the Netherlands’ top attractions. The garden spills across 28 hectares of wooded parkland and is designed to demonstrate the art and skill of Dutch bulb growers.
In this garden, tulips, daffodils, hyacinths and narcissi in various size and colours are proudly presented align the walking path that winds around ponds, a windmill and greenhouse pavilions holding the indoor display. But it isn’t just the bed of blooms that make the eyes popped, the dense flower fields stretching to the horizon just outside the garden will surely take your breath away.
- Keukenhof is stone’s throw away from Leiden Centraal Station. There are special buses connecting the garden with the train station and Amsterdam Schipol’s Airport. The bus stop is just outside the station. For the airport, take a look here.
- A combi ticket is highly recommended because it covers the train, the bus ride and the entrance to Keukenhof. Purchasing the ticket online to avoid the huge queue at the box office.
- In order to really enjoy the garden, you should start early. The garden opens at 8:00. In the course of the day, it is getting very crowded and the flowers look not so fresh anymore.
- Consider taking the time to visit the flower fields in Lisse. Tulips can be directly bought from the farmers as well.