The Keukenhof Tulip Gardens in the Netherlands are one of the largest gardens in the world. They cover an area of over 79 acres and are planted annually with over 7 million tulip bulbs!
The gardens are only open for several weeks from April to May, and last time we were in Holland we unfortunately missed them by a mere few weeks. When we realized we had a 5-hour layover in Amsterdam on our way to Morocco, we were quick to schedule a visit. After all, I don’t know that there is a much better way to spend a layover…
The airport at Amsterdam makes the visit incredibly convenient; a bus picks you up directly from the airport and drops you off in front of the gardens within 30 minutes. Buses arrive every 6 minutes to take you back to the airport to ensure you catch your flight on time.
The gardens themselves are delightful. There are never ending rows of tulips – mixed with few other flower varieties – and the smell of flowers surrounds you as soon as you enter the park gates.
Amazingly, the over 7 million tulip bulbs that are used are planted differently every year, focused around a different theme. This means you can visit the park annually and it will never be quite the same!
The adjacent tulip farms are not part of the official gardens, but instead are privately owned by the local farmers. However, these also make a pretty site with rows upon rows of colorful tulips.
PRACTICAL INFORMATION: KEUKENHOF GARDENS TICKETS
To book tickets to the Keukenhof Gardens there is an online system which allows you to book combination tickets: providing return transportation and entrance to the park. There is a bus leaving directly from the airport. The line can get long and we had to wait approximately 30 minutes to get on the bus, though the buses come frequently.
The combination ticket allows you to skip waiting in line at the park and walk directly into the gardens. It would be ideal to have a half day (at least 4 hours) inside the gardens to explore its entirety. To return, there are similar buses leaving from the park to the airport quite frequently. It took us less than 10 minutes to climb aboard one of these.
Tickets and more information are here.