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Friday, April 8, 2016

Keukenhof

The final stop on my whistle stop tour of the Netherlands was to Keukenhof garden. (Click on all photos for full view)

Known for the beautiful tulips, this too is a place that I have been longing to see for a very long time.
The lovely tulip is my favorite flower and I was always delighted in Stockholm when it became time to buy them at the outdoor flower market.
I don't even know when the Keukenhof became known to me but ever since then, I've tried to figure out when I could get to the Netherlands in April.
For a variety of reasons, most dominantly, Easter weekend and the International Pastors Conference, it was never that easy to find the block of time I needed to get there at the right time.
So when we knew we were staying in London until June, I jumped on the chance to fulfill this bucket list item.
The weather cooperated for the most part.
It was a little chilly and a little cloudy but no rain!
The sun even tried to come out at various points during the day.
Getting the timing "right" is a bit of a guess.
There are so many varieties of flowers that depending on the week, you will see different things.
So for me, the daffodils, crocus, and hyacinth were in full bloom while the tulips were in various stages of bloom.
The cheery trees were also in bloom.
The one disappointment was that the tulip fields were not in full bloom...only the red ones were showing their heads so I didn't get to see that glorious view of the rows and rows of color spreading out before me.
Gives me an excuse to return one day!
To say that the garden is beautiful is a ridiculous understatement! It is absolutely breathtaking in every way.
At one point I even used the word intoxicating.
The fragrant hyacinth enveloped us at various points.
The sheer variety of color and vibrancy was such a joy to take in.
Every pathway offered a new view and it was so delightful to soak in such a visual feast.
The indoor displays were also fantastic.
The orchid house was nothing short of stunning and reminded me of the beautiful orchid farms in Colombia, South America.
The indoor tulips were absolutely overwhelming in color, size, and variety.
The one house gave a history of the tulip.
Originating in Turkey, the name tulip comes from the Persian word tulipan which means turban and refers to the shape of the tulip bulb.
There were other beautiful displays, typical Dutch tourist attractions like wooden shoes and the old mill.
My friend Herman, had never been to this garden despite having lived in Holland for most his life! He was a good sport about everything.
I am so happy I finally got to see this garden up close! If I am near Holland again in the spring, a return visit would be very easy.
If you are n the neighborhood in April or May, you should by all means stop n by!