Lost in Keukenhof

Spring was never really my favorite season of the year.  I’d never stop for a moment and think: “Is it really Spring now?  What does it have to offer?  What do I think of it?” (Sorry Spring lovers, I WAS missing out 🙈)

Considering the fact that my Instagram feed is currently so floral, you probably won’t believe that I used to never really pay attention to flowers and would never be willing to take photos of them or be photographed with them… I don’t know why, I just thought flowers were “cheesy”, no matter how pretty they can be.  Therefore, although Spring is the flower season, throughout my life in Vietnam, where I am originally from, I had never once been to a flower festival or garden, or maybe I had but couldn’t remember.

Everything has changed since I came to the UK to study.  I don’t know how, or exactly when I started to have a thing for flowers and floral stuff in general.  Maybe I’m becoming more feminine and “cheesy”?  That was quite stereotypical haha.  Now you can see, I’m a bit of a magnolia-crazy/cherry-blossom-crazy/wisteria-crazy/lavender-crazy…

Anyways, back to the main point, when I was planning for my Amsterdam trip this Easter, I was suggested visiting the Keukenhof Gardens in Lisse, The Netherlands.  I was in Lisse last summer with my Mom (good times!), and everyday when we went by bus to Amsterdam, we would pass by an empty tulip field near Keukenhof that was then only soil.  My Mom regretted that we could not go there earlier when the tulips were blooming.  With that in mind, I determined to visit Keukenhof this time.

The experience of going to a flower festival for the first time was perfect, I was glad I’d had it in Keukenhof, the biggest flower park in Europe and ” the most beautiful spring garden in the world” – to quote the Keukenhof website.  I realized the Keukenhof post must be up as soon as possible, because the park is open only from mid-March till mid-May annually, and I wanted this blog to somehow be a little prep for anyone who has plans to visit the place soon.  If not, I hope this colorful post will brighten up your day!

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The journey from Amsterdam to Keukenhof is quick and very convenient.  From the entrance of Amsterdam Schiphol station, turn right and go all the way down the black wall until you find a Keukenhof ticket booth.  I’d suggest you should get a combination ticket of 24€, including a return ticket to Keukenhof and garden entrance ticket, otherwise you may have to queue to buy entrance tickets when you arrive at the place, and the price there might be a bit higher.

We were lucky that it was a very sunny day when we visited the park, although a bit chilly.  I swear I was continuously amazed by how perfect the gardens were, all of the fields were picture-perfect and everything was just wow.  I felt like 100 photos or more could never be enough, and that I just wanted to live there forever.

My friends and I went along many areas (supposedly all areas) and we felt as if we were still missing something…  I was constantly looking for the name of each flower species I met, and my head was definitely trapped in a maze since there were many similar (even same) flowers yet they had different names!  If you are a biology/agriculture student and can spot the differences between some of these (’cause I couldn’t, even after an hour gluing my eyes onto the laptop screen and Googling), hit me up!

 

Tulips

Known as the iconic flower of Holland, Tulips are of course one of the most grown plants in Keukenhof.

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Tulipa Kaufmanniana – “Goudstuk
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Tulipa Kaufmanniana – “Johan Strauss
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Tulipa Kaufmanniana – “Fashion” (red tulips) and “Stresa” (yellow/red tulips)
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Tulipa Kaufmanniana – “Stresa” and “Fashion
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Tulipa Kaufmanniana – “Stresa” and “Fashion“.  The purple flowers are Dubbele Late Tulipa – “Blue Diamond“.  Seriously their names are classier than mine!
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Tulipa Kaufmanniana – “Gluck” and Tulipa Fosterianna – “Zizou
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Tulipa Fosterianna – “Zizou
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From top to bottom: Tulipa Darwinhybrid Group – “Rosy Delight“, “Apricot Delight” and “Cherry Delight“.  I honestly can’t differentiate Rosy Delight and Cherry Delight!
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Tulipa Darwinhybrid Group – “Apeldoorn” and “Apricot Delight
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Tulipa Darwinhybrid Group – “Apeldoorn
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Tulipa Darwinhybrid Group.  They are slowly blooming!
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Tulipa Greigii – “Treasure

 

Hyacinths

Can we just take a moment to appreciate how gorgeous these Hyacinths are.  I have become obsessed with them ever since I saw them everywhere in Keukenhof – They are absolutely my favorite flower next to Lavenders now.

There are three Hyacinth species: litwinovii, transcaspicus and orientalis.  Orientalis are the most common and often known as the Dutch or Garden Hyacinths.  They are in so many different colors, and I went insane about them not only because they are so pretty but also because they can be super confusing in terms of their names!  I found so many Hyacinths in the exact-same-color-I-swear spread out all over the park but with a different name tag everytime.

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Hyacint – “Aiolos“/”L’Innocence
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Hyacint – “Gipsy Queen“.  Look at that gorgeous salmon pink color!
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Hyacint – “Fondant
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Hyacint – “Fondant” and “Pink Pearl“. That pretty yellow/red line cutting across over there is the Tulipa Kaufmanniana that I mentioned earlier.
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What a perfect mixture! Hyacint – “Fondant” and “Purple Sensation“; Tulipa – “Showwinner“; Muscari – “Latifolium” and Scilla siberica
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Hyacint – “Splendid Cornelia
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Hyacint – “Pink Pearl
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Hyacint – “Aiolos“, “Pink Pearl” and “Blue Star
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Hyacint – “City of Haarlem
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Hyacint – “City of Haarlem” and “Blue Pearl
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Hyacint – “Delfts Blauw
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Hyacint – “Blue Jacket

See what I mean?

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Hyacint – “Purple Star

 

Muscari – “Latifolium”

Let’s continue the purple/blue vibe!

Latifolium literally means “broad-leaved grape hyacinth”, as you’ll see how it looks like cute little grape/blueberry trees.

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That blue river looks like it runs forever.

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Narcissus

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Narcis – “Coral Crown
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Narcis – “Accent

 

Fritillaria imperialis

This is probably the most fascinating plant in the whole garden.  Its name comes from the fact that the flower faces downward from the top of the stem and is topped by a supposed “crown”, which explains why it’s called “crown imperial”.   The one I saw was “Aurora” – super royal, super beautiful.

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Fritillaria imperialis – “Aurora“; NarcisProfessor Einstein” (white/orange narcissus) and “Dutch Master” (yellow narcissus)

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BONUS!

Remember that empty tulip field that I mentioned earlier in the post?  Here’s what it looks like now:

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The field is not part of Keukenhof, and it’s a 10-minute walk from the garden.  It’s also private property, hence we were not allowed to go down between the tulips!  However, we did do a mini photoshoot with this beautiful field as the background, which is right here.

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That was it for this super-duper floral post!

I hope you loved reading it as much as I loved writing it and the experience itself.  If you wonder where to visit during Spring time, Keukenhof is THE place!

 

Till next time,

ᴊᴜʟɪᴇʏᴛʜᴇ1sᴛ

 

Text and photography by ᴊᴜʟɪᴇʏᴛʜᴇ1sᴛ

Visit https://www.instagram.com/julieythe1st/ for more of my travel photos.

If you would like to use my photos, please kindly contact me for permission.

Read my Amsterdam blog here: https://julieythe1st.com/2017/04/05/never-too-late-to-fall-for-amsterdam/.

3 thoughts on “Lost in Keukenhof

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