Field Trip Friday: Keukenhof Garden

With spring in full swing (although, some days it still feels like winter!), Jessica, OHNY’s program manager headed over to Amsterdam earlier this month to explore the city and see tons of tulips in full bloom! One highlight of her trip was visiting Keukenhof Garden, located in Lisse, a town about an hour by train and bus from Amsterdam.


What can only be described as jaw dropping beautiful, this 80-acre picture perfect landscape is a garden lover’s paradise. Originally used as hunting grounds during the 15th century, the land and its castle were owned by Countess Jacoba van Beieren. The word Keukenhof meaning “kitchen garden” refers to the herbs that were planted beside the castle.

windmill from 1892

After the death of the Countess, Keukenhof became the property of several wealthy merchant families including the Baron and Baroness Van Pallandt. In 1830, they commissioned landscape architects J.D. and L.P. Zocher (who also designed Amsterdam’s Vondelpark) to create an English style garden around the castle.

Willem Alexander Pavilion

By 1949, the mayor of Lisse at the time and several leading bulb growers and exporters prompted the creation of an open-air flower exhibition, which opened the garden to the public.

Beatrix Pavilion

Now in its 62nd year, Keukenhof is typically open from late March until mid-May and is the largest flower bulb garden in the world with 7 million bulbs hand planted annually in over 1,600 varieties.

car full of flowers!

The garden also features numerous bridges, fountains and a windmill dating back to 1892.Within the garden, there are several indoor exhibits in buildings named after Dutch royalty and included the Willem Alexander Pavilion which had over 80,00 tulips on display and the Beatrix Pavilion, which contained hundreds of orchids and bromeliads.

tulip fields

One can literally spend the entire day at Keukenhof wandering through a maze, petting miniature ponies, sheep, guinea pigs, and bunnies and taking a canal ride through the amazing, colorful tulip fields.

Dutch apple tart

By the time Jessica got through exploring half of Keukenhof, a Dutch apple tart and chocolate cream puff (she didn’t eat them both herself!) were necessary to refuel and cover the rest of this spectacular and beautiful garden!


1 Response to “Field Trip Friday: Keukenhof Garden”

  1. 1 vinman 28 August 2011 at 1:04 am

    The photos are amazing and I am longing to see this beautiful garden. Every mega city should have more gardens to add serenity to the environment.
    Garden fountains

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