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Keukenhof and the bulb-growing area

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Flower park Keukenhof will unfortunately not be able to open in 2020 due to the coronavirus. As a result, more than a million people will miss out on the beautiful colours of the spring flowers in the park. In order to let everyone enjoy the colourful images, Keukenhof regularly gives virtual tours around the park. This way, you can still see the beautiful spring luxuriance.

The Keukenhof, located in a 32-hectare wooded park near Lisse, is one of the most spectacular flower gardens in the world. Every year almost 1.5 million visitors from all over the world enjoy the colourful fields full of flowering daffodils, hyacinths and tulips. In total there are more than 7 million bulbs in the park to show off in all kinds of colours.

History of the Keukenhof

The history of Keukenhof goes back to the 15th century. Countess Jacoba of Bavaria (1401-1436) collected fruit and vegetables from the Keukenduin for the kitchen of Teylingen Castle. In 1641, Keukenhof Castle was built and the estate grew to an area of over 200 hectares. Landscape architects Jan David Zocher and his son Louis Paul Zocher, later also the designers of the Vondelpark, redesigned the garden around the castle in 1857. This park, in English landscape style, still forms the basis of Keukenhof.

In 1949, a group of leading flower bulb growers and exporters devised the plan to create an exhibition of spring-flowering flower bulbs on the estate. The Keukenhof spring park was born as a result. The park opened for the first time in 1950 and 236,000 visitors enjoyed the beauty of the flowers. By 2018, that number had risen to 1.5 million, mainly from abroad.

Annual themes

Every year the Keukenhof has a special theme. In 2019 it will be “Flower Power”. Flowers inspire people. In Keukenhof, the flowers connect people from all over the world as they enjoy the tulips, scents and colours together. Holland is world famous for its beautiful flower bulb fields and all kinds of flowers that are grown there. With bright colours, hippies, peace & music, Flower Power stands for the atmosphere of the early 70s. A beautiful theme to celebrate the 70th Keukenhof.

Tulip mania

The tulip is the most important flower in the bulb-growing area. It originally came from Turkey. Around 1600 was the first time the tulip was cultivated on Dutch soil. The story of the tulip is an impressive one, involving bulbs worth their weight in gold, theft and a mountain dweller who felt at home in the Dutch climate. There is also the story of the black tulip and there are celebrities who received their own tulip. These stories can be found in the Tulip mania exhibition in the Juliana Pavilion. You can see how tulips are grown and get tips and advice from experts on how to use bulbs in your own garden here. You can even give a name to your own tulips.

Flower shows and flower arranging demonstrations

In the various pavilions of Keukenhof you can regularly enjoy large flower shows. Five hundred growers show their most beautiful flowers and leading arrangers turn them into unique shows. In addition, flower arrangers put on spectacular flower arranging demonstrations every day during the season. They show how flowers can be processed; from a simple floral arrangement to unexpected creations.

Keukenhof opening hours

From 21 March 2019 to 19 May 2019, Keukenhof is open daily from 8:00 am – 7:30 pm. The ticket office shuts at 6:00 pm. Keukenhof is also open on the first and second days of Easter (21 and 22 April), King’s Day (27 April) and Liberation Day (5 May).

In the weekends and on holidays it is always very busy here. It is better to go on weekdays. Monday to Wednesday are the least busy days. Before 10:30 am and after 4:00 pm it is also quiet. With the morning and evening sun, the Keukenhof is really great for photos. More information for a visit to the Keukenhof.

The bulb-growing area

Keukenhof is located in Lisse. This is the heart of the bulb-growing region. This is a 30-km-long area that lies between the cities of Haarlem in the north and Leiden in the south. From March onwards, the polders are decorated with beautiful colours. First the crocuses bloom and from the beginning of April the flowering tulip fields are the highlight of the season, then at the end of May the lily fields are in bloom. There are various walking, cycling and car routes through the bulb-growing area, which take you past the most beautiful bulb fields. More information about routes can be found on the website of the bulb-growing area.

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