a duch kitchen garden – keukenhof


The history of Keukenhof, the name of meaning “kitchen garden”, goes back to the 15th century. Countess Jacqueline of Bavaria, Jacoba van Beieren (1401-1436) gathered fruit and vegetables from the woods and dunes for the kitchen of Teylingen Castle. Keukenhof Castle was built in 1641, and the estate grew to an area of over 200 hectares.

In 1949 a group of 20 flower bulb exporters came up with a plan to use the estate for a permanent exhibition of spring-flowering bulbs, signalling the birth of Keukenhof as a spring park. The park opened its gates to the public in 1950 and was an instant success, with 236,000 visitors in the first year alone. This year is the 68th edition of Keukenhof is taking place, with Dutch Design as its theme. During the last 67 years, Keukenhof has grown into a world-famous attraction.


There are more than 7 million bulbs in bloom this spring, with a total of 800 varieties of tulips and 97% of them was blooming during our visit. 1% had their days and I notice that all the “heads” on the bloomed was removed. Strange because I have been told that the “heads” should stay on until the leafs are gone too. Learn something new every day.

Besides the spacious 32 hectares of flowers, you can enjoy the spectacular flower shows, surprising inspirational gardens, unique artwork and events for both adults and kids. 

I must admit we didn’t do the full park, we didn’t manage to visit Juliana/Tulipomania and the Irene pavilion (which is new for this year), but we manage 75% of the park in 5 hours, my feet couldn’t take much more and my friends eyes started to get tired … and we had to be able to get on the Keukenhof bus to Schipol airport and than the bus 197.

I will come back to the Oranje Nassau, is the rose house … and the Beatrix, which is a pavilion with the most beautiful orchids, in 100’s. This will be about the bulbs, the colours,  impression, the experience, the beauty and the greatness.

A place that is impossible to explain and give justice in words and images. It’s a place that has to be seen.

We arrived about 11.00 and it had rained during the nights so there were raindrops on most flowers in the beginning of our Keukenhof-day. It takes about 2 hours to get to the garden with the combination of transfer we took and the greatest price too.

We paid 56Euros for 2 .. with the Airport Express 197 to Schipol Airport and there Keukenhof has their own bus – and the entrance fee was included too. So no queuing on arrival. With most arranged tours, that is very expensive you will only be given 3 hours at the garden.

You can also make your own way – take the intercity train from Amsterdam Centaal to the airport and buy the bus and ticket at their bus stop. Return train ticket cost about 11 Euros.

Each year, 40 full-time gardeners plant bulbs at reserved locations throughout the park. At the end of the season, these bulbs are harvested, and a new cycle of planting, blooming and harvesting begins again in the autumn. Can you image picking up 7 million bulbs and plant them again a couple of months later????

I couldn’t tell how many images I have taken .. and please don’t the ask for the names … because I’m not able to tell even if there were name tags for every bulb. I will present the bulbs as I met them in the park. Have numbered every image … so it will be 52 in total.

Nearly 50 million people have visited Keukenhof since it first opened and, nowadays, 75% come from more than 100 countries abroad. It was very busy when we were there on Easter Monday, but it never felt crowded. We were so lucky with the weather too – there came a couple of rain drops .. it was over so quick as it started. 

This year Keukenhof is open from 23 March until 21 May 2017, a unique and unforgettable experience!

I’m finishing off with the Swedish colours – also my last image from inside the garden, but there will be a lot more … coming!!!!! And as cloud for this post, there is only one song: “Tulips from Amsterdam”

33 thoughts on “a duch kitchen garden – keukenhof

    • I don’t really know what I expect … but it really blew the sock of me!!! What a magic place .. and then the orchids and roses … and all the other little friends. *smile

  1. 🙂 It’s been ages since I’ve been to the Keukenhof.
    I loved it! It’s so amazing.
    My favorite tulips where the Heinekens, that looked like a beer – yellow in the bottom and cream on the top.
    Sleep well, dear Wivi! xo 🙂

    • I must have missed that one .. I have to look up how it look like. If I seen it I would have taken a photo .. I’m sure. My favourite is Black Parrot. Weekend hug.

    • Your favorite is beautiful … this is what the internet tells me. of Heineken beer — yellow with a white head, and a red star like the Heineken logo. The tulip had been named the Ellipsus, after the Heineken glass. Next time I will look out for it.

  2. I never knew the name meant that! 🙂 What a fabulous, sensual display of colour, Vivi. Thanks for including all the details. I’ll come back to this if ever we decide to go. Heavens- it was opened the year after I was born. That’s a lot of planting and digging up! 🙂 🙂

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