It’s fitting that there is a gentle drizzle outside my window this morning. I have been meaning to write about Keukenhof for the past week or so, but life is always a little to do here, a little to do there, and then when it’s like this outside, one just wants to spend time nestling – and writing. About Keukenhof.
About eleven or twelve I think I was when my mother first took me there. The impact must have been such that I remember every turn of the paths, the paint-box colours, and my first, black tulip, carefully cultivated and protected in the hothouse.
A few years ago, in my unresearched enthusiasm, I dragged my family there only to be met with stems as short at my thumb. A harsh winter and we were way to early. Some pots inside had us pretending we were swimming in a park of tulips, but all left feeling cheated at the experience. This is why it has been hankering at me for so long – like unfinished business, to confirm the teenage dream was real.
Local growers team up with Keukenhof to produce the very best tulips on show. Flower beds are designed to bloom at different times and naked stems are clipped so the masterpiece retains no flaws. The organisation, planning and execution of this performance has me wondering at the months, years of design that allows for my few hours of enjoyment. It was just as I remembered.
Better than I remembered. Arriving at Keukenhof gives one no idea of what awaits. Awesomeness. I was lucky, it wasn’t busy judging by the few tour buses. I don’t want to experience something this special with thousands of photo trigger tourists. There is no soul in that.
Do you ever try to dodge all the tourists in your photos when travelling? I encourage travel but have I become a grumpy traveller myself? Best times, as the garden opens or mid-afternoon.
Getting to Keukenhof is easy. There are buses from Amsterdam, Schipol Airport and Haarlem, where this Silver Solo traveller stayed for my visit.
Make sure you time your visit perfectly! I indulged, enjoyed and was taken to another place of beauty which I hope to return to over, and over again.