Keukenhof Gardens

Old Dec 11th, 2010, 02:41 PM
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Keukenhof Gardens

My husband & I are planning a trip to the Netherlands, Belgium, and France for 2011. Seeing Keukenhof Gardens when the tulips are in bloom is a priority. Is there any way to guess the best time to be in that area? We can be flexible about our travel dates. I am thinking that we could start in France & work our way north, or do it the other way around. I suppose it is like guessing when to be in Washington, D.C. to see the cherry blossoms!
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Old Dec 11th, 2010, 03:00 PM
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When we visited Keukenhof the tulips were spectacular around April 22 but it varies due to weather conditions and temperature..
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Old Dec 11th, 2010, 03:43 PM
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"Keukenhof is open annually from the last week in March to mid-May. The best time to view the tulips is around mid-April, depending on the weather."

From the Keukenhof article on Wiki.
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Old Dec 11th, 2010, 08:42 PM
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I have been to Keukenhof several times over the years. IMO the best time to visit is the end of April and beginning of May. Whether the tulips have bloomed all depends on the weather in early spring. Here is my photo log from 2008, http://tinyurl.com/y8hltjl. I suggest hanging out around Amsterdam or Haarlem for the last week of April and going to Keukenhof on a sunny day. Go in mid afternoon because the tulips close up at night and they take a few hours to open up. Also, April 30 is the famous Queen's Day in Holland. It is a fantastic party. See http://tinyurl.com/yln3hrp.
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Old Dec 11th, 2010, 08:42 PM
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I was at Keukenhof on April 24 this year and it was spectacular. It also happened to be the flower parade day so the crowd was unbelievable inside as well as along the parade route outside the garden.
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Old Dec 12th, 2010, 01:55 AM
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I would say mid April to beginning of May is normally the best time. If we have a spectacularly warm and early spring (to follow on from our very cold and early winter) it would be earlier.
Last year we visited the bulb fields in Noordoost Polder on April 18th and they were wonderful. This year they were a week or so later because of the cold winter and late spring.

If you are only visiting Keukenhof then you can be sure of a spectacular display almost any time from when they open until they close again at the end of the bulb season, unless as I say we get a very warm spring, in which case they may close early.

If you want to combine it with Queens Day make sure you book early. If you don't like crowds though, and I mean huge crowds, it's probably better to give Queens Day in Amsterdam a miss. You won't be able to get out on public transport very easily that day so will be stuck in the city. At least you can retreat to your hotel if it is all too much.
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Old Dec 13th, 2010, 01:09 PM
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Thank you so much for the good information! I really look forward to seeing the beautiful flowers and taking lots of photos.
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Old Dec 13th, 2010, 01:21 PM
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They plant the tulips so that there is some "staggered" blooming which gives you more of a window for optimal blooming. In other words, there will be early, mid and late bloomers so that gives a longer time frame to enjoy the show. Besides the gardens, it is very pleasant to rent bikes and pedal thru the tulip fields (at least before they are all mowed down around the beginning of May). We went to Amsterdam one year, left right before Queen's day and went to Bruges, Belgium where the lilacs were in bloom - oh I would love to do this trip again!
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