My Visit to the World’s largest Tulip Garden – Memories of spring at Keukenhof
The first thing that comes to my mind when I think of the Tulip Garden at Keukenhof is the famous song from the famous Bollywood film SilaSila. A mega success from at the box office in the 70’s, this Yash Raj film saw the popular screen couple Amitabh Bacchan with Rekha at the gardens, Bacchan serenading his lady love, surrounded by a sea of stunning tulips and the melodious title track playing …..sighhh…
Even today, that song remains one the most popular song from that era. And as you can now imagine, I have been dreaming of visiting these beautiful gardens forever. Finally this year, we made the trip to Holland, especially for the Tulips.
It was still early spring but most of the blossoms were in full bloom. But no matter how many pictures you see online, nothing compares to the feeling of walking into Keukenhof Gardens for the very first time.
We managed to leave as early as possible from our hotel, made our way to Schiphol airport/railway station and took the shuttle to the gardens. A quick 30-minute journey and you will be at Lisse, where the garden is located. When you are about to approach the gardens, you will be greeted by huge fields of tulips in all possible colours, we saw stunning shades of lavender and cream and rows and rows of bright red and yellow tulips.
I was a bit apprehensive when I saw a large number of tourist buses parked outside, but it was peak season for the tulips and a bank holiday weekend so crowds were to be expected.
Once inside we were greeted by friendly staff and handed a handy free map of the gardens.
History of the world’s largest Tulip garden
The world’s largest spring flower garden which is home to a mind-boggling variety of tulips was originally a kitchen garden! Dating back to the 15th century, this was once home to a Bavarian countess whose kitchen was supplied by produce from these gardens. Hence, the name – Keukenhof which in literal translation means kitchen garden. After being passed on from the Dutch noble family, in the 16th century, an admiral took over the estate and built the Keukenhof Castle in 1641.
In the 19th century, landscape architects Jan David Zocher and his son, famous for their work at Amsterdam Vondel park re-designed the castle grounds to what we see today. Later in 1949, the then-mayor of Lisse, threw open the gardens to floricultural commerce and even today more than 500 exhibitors showcase their plants, bulbs, and blossoms in over 20 shows. So do make sure you don’t miss out on the custom made floral displays and do go and see the indoor exhibits. Be prepared to feast your eyes on not just tulips but stunning roses and a huge variety of flowers and potted plants.
Millions of spring blooms that grace these gardens give picture postcard-perfect opportunities for budding photographers.
Though the best time to visit the gardens is mid- April, when we did, over the Easter break, the garden is open to the public from March end to mid-May.
Because the gardens are massive it is essential you chalk out a route for yourself and it is possible to walk through the whole garden in a few hours while packing in a quick lunch. That is, of course, possible if you do not linger around too much at any one spot – or you could if you like walk around and pick a favourite spot (like the one below) and spend some quality time there admiring the blooms and the grounds.
This was the best time we had during our trip to the Netherlands. And although I did resist the impulse to run through the tulip fields pretending to be Rekha to my Bacchan, I did manage to tick the number one place off from my list of ‘Top 5 – Must see places to see in the world’ (and yes we did manage to get this picture clicked, that’s about as much of a Bollywood-style pose that I can force out of the hubby)
Evert year the flower parade dates move so the best thing is to keep an eye on the official website before booking your holiday. To plan your trip and make the most of your vacation, here are some important details.
Where: Keukenhof gardens are located in Lisse, Netherlands (Holland)
Opening Times: 8 am – 7:30 pm usually, please check for the day you choose to visit
Keukenhof is located at Lisse in the Netherlands, a 30-minute bus journey from Amsterdam. There is a bus leaving every 15 minutes from Schiphol airport to the garden. There are good transport links from all the major cities of the Hague, Haarlem and Leiden. Hoofddorp is a popular tourist location to stay during peak season too with loads of hotels in the town with regular shuttle services to Schiphol.
For tickets and information visit the official website: Keukenhof, Holland and for more detailed information to help you plan your stay in Holland visit the official website Visit Holland
Coming up soon on Travelsfortaste Blog:
- Top 5 tips to make the most of your visit to Keukenhof Garden, Holland
- Photo-blog of the Graden of Europe and Tulip fields
- Top 5 travel and stay tips to plan your visit to Amsterdam
- Cheese and wine tasting at Reypenaer Amsterdam
- Top 5 things to do in Amsterdam
- Steigenberger Hotel, Schipol – a review of my stay
*With thanks to Visit Holland for our tickets to view this stunning Tulip Garden.
** All opinions expressed are as always my own. No compensation of any kind was provided for a positive review or for writing this post.
Those tulips are absolutely gorgeous! If I’m ever in the area, I have to stop by and check these out. great pics!
Thanks Danielle, I can’t stop looking at the photos over and over myself! Yes you absolutely must go and see the Tulips for yourself when you are in the Nethrlands!
Heidi Roberts says
I love tulips and have enjoyed seeing them in Holland, especially love the floating flower markets in Amsterdam
I didn’t get to see any floating flower markets, hope on my next trip to Amsterdam I will !
Janice Bennett says
Oh wow what a lovely trip you had! Brilliant photos too.
Thanks Janice, it was a very memorable trip and great to finally live out a dream I had for so many years! Major tick off my wish list!
Nayna Kanabar says
These tulip gardens are so very pretty. I am almost expecting you to be dancing through with Mr C Bollywood style.
Thanks Nayna, hahha yes would love to dance with OH – Mr.K in those Tulip fields!
Fiona Maclean says
My mum went to this with dad when we were tiny and living in Germany. I remember they came home with their car decorated with tulips. I’ve always wanted to go for myself. Great pictures
Thanks Fiona, the vast Tulip lined rows are truly breathtaking. That’s such a beautiful memory, I hope you visit soon too xx
Oh my goodness, they are absolutely stunning. I love all flowers and tulips are so beautiful, I really must visit.
Yes they truly are stunning, Tulips are so beautiful and the sheer variety of colours is bound to amaze anyone!
Emma @ Adventures of a London Kiwi says
These gardens are so beautiful – and sadly we missed them on our visit. The best excuse to go back huh?
Absolutely Emma! They really are beautiful and I felt so de-stressed after this visit 🙂
Sisley White says
Wow what an incredible colours. It looks like a dream!
It was, for me, a dream come true 🙂
Jacqueline Meldrum says
I’d love to visit, it’s just beautiful and tulips are my favourite flower. This is going on my list. Shared!
Can’t wait for Tulips to pop up all over now that spring is around the corner. I hope you get to visit
Kate | Veggie Desserts says
It looks absolutely magical! Such vivid colours. I’d love to go back to the Netherlands soon.
I would love to go back to the Netherlands too Kate!
What stunning photographs! I’d love to visit.
Thanks Shazia, I love revisiting my photo album from this visit.
Marlynn | UrbanBlissLife says
That garden is so beautiful! I can’t believe how vibrant all of the colors are. I bet it smelled amazing!
Yes Marlynn it was so fragrant and more so in the enclosed spaces , The colours are otherwordly, true
Maria | passion fruit, paws and peonies says
Oh I loved this post. I went there as a little girl and I would really love to go back one day. Thanks for sharing your experience x
Thank You Maria, I love reading about how my travel posts bring back happy memories for my readers and also how they inpsire the rest to travel
Helene D'Souza says
My mother would go crazy for this place and would drag my father along just to experience all the tulips. I will suggest her this and watch my fathers face ^.^
hahah Helene that made me crack up, more so because that was exactly my parents reaction!
Liz @ The Lemon Bowl says
Wow those tulips are absolutely beautiful!
Yes indeed , they are gorgeous
Looks absolutely beautiful! Would love to visit that place some day
I certainly hope you get to visit soon Frida