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Planning a trip to the Netherlands this spring and searching for a typical Dutch day trip? Then visit the delightful Keukenhof – the world famous outdoor attraction in the northwest of Lisse that’s been drawing visitors from home and abroad for decades. The Keukenhof is only open from late March to late May, so hurry and order your tickets online without delay!
The colourful history of the Keukenhof
The Keukenhof, which is located within the grounds of Kasteel Keukenhof (Keukenhof Castle), was established in 1642, long before the celebrated attraction park. The name, meaning ‘kitchen garden’, comes from a small homestead that was built on the Keukenduin – a nearby sand dune where wildlife, livestock and all manner of herbs and berries were once destined for the kitchen of the adjacent Teylingen castle. Later, residents transformed the homestead into the current Keukenhof Castle, and in 1840 the castle gardens were redesigned by landscapers, Zocher and Sons (who also created the lovely Vondelpark in Amsterdam). The first flower exhibition on the estate didn’t take place until 1950, yet it was such a success that the organisers decided to continue and the Keukenhof attraction park was finally born. Over the years the Keukenhof estate has expanded to more than 230 hectares of land, on which there are some 18 national Dutch monuments. In 2014 the Keukenhof received a staggering 1 million visitors from all over the world.
Keukenhof exhibitions and activities
The Keukenhof is an extremely large park that’s entirely dedicated to flowers. Every spring there are more than 7 million crocuses, daffodils, tulips, hyacinths, lilies and other bulb plants to admire, in addition to a number of organised exhibitions. As the park is so vast, it’s best to devote a full day to your visit. Those who still have energy after a long day at the Keukenhof can round of their day trip perfectly, with a car ride through the surrounding ‘Duin en Bollenstreek’ (Dune and Bulb region) – a veritable patchwork quilt of colourful tulip fields.
Prefer to read this article in Dutch? Then visit our sister blog, Heimwee.info, specifically intended for Dutch emigrants.