Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Keukenhof

Wednesday April 20, 2016

Today Jackie and Brooklyn took a daytrip up to the Keukenhof Gardens with our friends Megan and their 14 month old daughter Anna. Joe was more than happy to not be drug to touristy tulip gardens if he could help it. 
Keukenhof is one of the world's largest flower gardens. It is located in Lisse, Netherlands, an hour and half north of Eindhoven, in between Haarlem and Leiden. It is open from late-March to mid-May. Typically the best time to visit is mid-April. We had a warm winter so we thought we should go now before the tulips stop being in bloom. 
The literal translation of Keukenhof means kitchen garden. These 15th century hunting grounds with a castle had a garden that was a source of the herbs for the castle's kitchen, hence the name. 
This year more than 7 million bulbs are in bloom with a total of 800 varieties of tulips.
Here's a map overview of Keukenhof:
Tulips, hyacinths and more beautiful flowers







Tulip close-up


We walked through some of the flower show in Willem-Alexander pavilion. 
There was a petting zoo and playground for the children. You could easily spend the whole day here if you wanted. We had perfect weather. Still cool enough to need a jacket but warm enough in the sun to enjoy the rays on our cheeks. 
We saw some of the Delft Blue tiles in the Delft Blue inspiration garden. 
Brooklyn smelling the flowers 

Windmill, water and tulip fields beyond
We sat and had a picnic lunch of strawberries and waffles on the grass near the mill. 
Happy girl 
Brooklyn smelling more flowers at Keukenhof

Tulip fields

It's just not the same as the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival in Mount Vernon, Washington with the scenic Cascade Mountains as a backdrop. 
Oranje Nassau formal historical garden
Brooklyn getting up close and personal with the Keukenhof flowers with her fork



Megan and Anna with the flowers at Keukenhof


Brooklyn and Anna with the flowers at Keukenhof

We were able to see about 2/3 of the gardens before needing to call it quits for the girls to take a nap. 
Brooklyn helped push the strollers back to the car. The girls shared a few kisses before we loaded them into the car for the naptime drive home. 
All and all a successful and fun trip to Keukenhof!
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