Yesterday, April 25, 2011, marked the day when I made the pilgrimage to see “the tulips.” This was an important trip for me, as I can now answer the following questions from family, friends, acquaintance, etc:
Q: Oh you lived in Holland? Cool.
A: Yes, Holland was amazing.
Q: Well I don’t know much about it, but I think.. oh right- don’t they have like, tulips there?
A: That’s correct, Holland is well known for its tulips.
Q: So did you ever go to see them?
Yes I did. I dragged my poor boyfriend (who was not too keen on seeing thousands of pretty flowers) to the largest tourist attraction in Holland. We thought we would be the only ones there under the age of 55, and over the age of 10, but luckily this was not the case. There were other young people there, and other Dutch people as well. (It’s common in Holland that most Dutch people have never, and will never see the tulips).
Keukenhof is actually pretty well done, considering it’s basically like a giant garden in the middle of nowhere. Although it was jam packed with tourists, you still get a sense of being in this slightly surreal world. The entire place is just so happy; tulips in every color possible lay in beautiful patterns on the ground, there are fragrant trees at the peak of their bloom, and birds sing as if on cue. There are the typical Dutch treats as well: fresh stroopwafels, Beenham sandwiches, appeltart, Poffertjes and more! I kind of felt like I was Dorthy and had just landed in a Dutch Oz!
We were lucky to get to see the hat fashion show, which they do every year on Easter Monday, as well as tour the indoor gardens named after Dutch royalty. Keukenhof has all sorts of activities on every day that they are open from March 24- May 20th. My advice would be to pick a weekday when it’s not so crowded, charge up your camera, and prepare to see more flowers than you’ve ever seen before. If you go, visit: Keukenhof.nl for more details.