Airfare during Tulip Season

Old Nov 23rd, 2003, 02:40 PM
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Airfare during Tulip Season

I am interested in going to Amsterdam next Spring 2004 during the Tulip season. What is the best month/week to go to Amsterdam and its surroundings to see the tulips in bloom? If possible, attend any tulip festivities too.

How much is the airfare from DC and NYC to Amsterdam at around this time?

- Thanks!
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Old Nov 24th, 2003, 06:51 AM
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The best time would be the last 10 days of April or the first week of May. During some of that time the blooms on the tulips will coincide with many of the flowering trees. No one can predict the exact peak because it depends on the weather for the entire Spring season. Bulb flowers hold their bloom about two weeks, but usually groups are selected so that something will be in bloom from early April to mid-May.

We were there the third week of April 2002 and it was absolutely beautiful, with weather in the 70's. However, I recall that it was an unusually warm week for them. May you have equally good luck with the weather gods!

Regarding the airfare - you are going to run into Easter holiday complications this year in the end of April. Look at the sale dates already posted by BA and AA, and try to work with them. I've seen a number of fares to Europe under $500 RT through April 10 or so. Another set of sale fares should pop up in January.
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Old Nov 24th, 2003, 06:56 AM
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Sorry, that last date above should be April 1. Easter is the 11th, I believe. The weeks before and after are popular holiday times.
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Old Nov 24th, 2003, 07:01 AM
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I agree with patg regarding the best time for flowers--end of April and beginning of May. I was there the last week in April 2002 and the weather was freezing! No cooperation from thw "weather gods" for us. Should have come a week earlier I guess when patg was there! But we froze! Temps were frigidly low and the winds made it even worse. We could hardly keep from shivering while visiting Keukenhof (we were there April 30, 2002). So be prepared for any kind of weather that time of year. But even in the coldest weather, the flowers are still stunning!
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Old Nov 24th, 2003, 09:00 AM
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Keukenhof Gardens are open in 2004 from Mar 25 to May 20. Visit the website at:
http://www.keukenhof.nl/

The official Netherlands website is:
http://www.visitholland.com/
There is a calendar of events.

The Queen's Birthday Holiday is normally on April 30 and is either to be enjoyed or avoided depending on your personal likes. We enjoyed it. You can find more info by going to Google and searching but this address has some good info and pictures.
http://www.trekshare.com/index.cfm?p1=121&tripid=6078

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Old Nov 24th, 2003, 11:00 AM
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Just to throw in my 2 cents, I absolutely hated being in the Netherlands during the Queen's Birthday. First it seems as if all of The Netherlands has to put some gaudy temporary carnival in most town squares for a few days during this celebration. We ran into several of these obnoxious set-ups in different cities/towns we visited. Sadly our nice little hotel on the charming, quaint grote markt of Haarlem was anything but charming and quaint because of this. And IMHO forget Amsterdam on the Q's b-day. I found it to be an incredibly disgusting display of vulgarity--nothing but drunken slobs, pee everywhere, trash everywhere, etc. It was awful and didn?t leave any room for enjoying the city-wide flea market. But take it or leave it, that's my opinion on this Dutch holiday.
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Old Nov 25th, 2003, 08:16 AM
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when did they start celebrating the holiday? is it just the one day? or several days before? or after?
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Old Nov 27th, 2003, 01:43 AM
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We're going on Apr 2nd and I was watching the airfares (from NYC) for quite some time. It varied from a high of $ 775 to a low (that I saw while I was looking) to $ 361, direct non-stop.
The fares change quickly and when you see a good low fare you abolsutely must book.
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Old Nov 27th, 2003, 07:36 AM
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In Amsterdam the Queen's Birthday is a one day celebration but the carnival in Dam Square was there a few days. Our hotel was just off the Square and we were not bothered at all.

Samtraveler obviously hated the celebrations but we loved the free music (lots of jazz) and the exciting atmosphere. We watched a band on one of the houseboats while standing amongst a Hell's Angels contingent and their cycles. If you search my name you will find some other impressions posted.
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Old Dec 10th, 2003, 03:20 AM
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As an American who lives in the Netherlands, here's a "local's" perspective.

1) April 30th is Queen's Day and it's definitely a drunken fest - but an authentic one! Bars the night before or impossible to get into, but these are the only times affected.

2) Like everyone else, come the last 2 weeks in April and first week of May to catch the Keukenhof and flower fields. They are stunning and we visit them at least once a year - in the past 6 years we've had 50 and rainy, 40 and sunny and 70 and sunny. Don't count on the weather!

Enjoy your trip

An American in Weesp
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