Keukenhof

There is quite a story to tell about this park. I can mention, for example, that in the only 8 weeks it's open (roughly from halfway March to halfway May), it will receive over 1 million people.  Or I can mention that the park plants over 7 million bulbs and 800 different kinds of tulips on its 79 acres.

Besides tulips you will find all sorts of bulbs: daffodils, hyacinths, crocuses and grape hyacinths to name a few. In addition, you'll also find a nice number of rhododendron bushes, a small Japanese garden with maples, and a recently finished part with shade-loving plants and a small waterfall. Besides the flowers outside, there are pavilions with flower shows that display orchids, lilies and amaryllises, to name a few. 

This coming season, the Keukenhof theme will be 'romance and flowers' so expect plenty of red at the park!

The translation of the word Keukenhof is 'Kitchen Garden'. Many people don't realize that this land was once a part of a large estate. There is a castle just to the south of the park called Castle Keukenhof. Part of the grounds were used for growing vegetables and herbs, hence the name Kitchen Garden. 

The castle was built in 1641 and contained almost 500 acres of land.

In 1857, the grounds were restyled to form an English landscape garden which is the base for the current design of the Keukenhof.

In 1949, a group of 20 bulb growers decided to use Keukenhof to exhibit their spring-flowering bulbs and the first exhibition was held in 1950. The rest is literally history. 

Although early May is of course the best time to see Rhododendrons, it's not the prime time for spring bulbs. Don't get me wrong, every day of those 8 weeks is worth going for a visit at Keukenhof but the emphasis shifts a bit as you get there later in the year. In March it will mainly be early tulips and crocuses. April is, in my opinion, the culmination of the park. Everything will flower. I love going through the fields of hyacinths and smell the heavy perfume. In addition, the fields around the Keukenhof will bloom...and I'm not the only one fascinated by that sight! May is late tulips and daffodils..and the rhododendrons will bloom. If you ever decide to return to Holland though, and don't mind some rain, I would definitely advise you to return to the Keukenhof in April.

You can find more information hereThe information is in English. Do watch the video, it'll give you a nice idea of what the park looks like. And check out this video on YouTube as well..it's of a drone flying over the park. There's also a genuine windmill at the back of the park..nice for pictures!

It may be busy upon arrival but it should taper off at the end. The park is popular with Asians who love taking selfies but that's about the only disadvantage. Enjoy the park!  

 Nederlandse Rhododendron vereniging

Dutch chapter of the ARS