Springtime at Keukenhof Gardens

A gentle touch at the Keukenhof Gardens, the Netherlands (Scarborough photo)For those of us above the Equator, spring has sprung and the flowers are a’blooming.

One of the most lovely places in the world to admire the colors of spring is the expansive Keukenhof Gardens, where 4.5 million tulips (100 varieties) are only a part of the natural wonders on display.

It is located in Lisse, just outside Amsterdam in the Netherlands between Amsterdam and Den Haag (The Hague.)

In 2008 they are open from 20 March to 18 May, 8 am to 7:30 pm daily.

There are acres and acres of beautifully-landscaped and designed flower gardens to wander through, plus a sculpture park called Art Keukenhof.

My family and I were awestruck by the gorgeous colors and creative arrangements; certain sections were planted to look like rivers of colors flowing into each other.

My daughter hams it up at Keukenhof Gardens, the Netherlands (Scarborough photo)

The main theme for 2008 is China, so there are special gardens and outdoor rooms inspired by this theme.

There is an orchid display in the Beatrix Pavilion — I’m not a big gardener by any means, but the kids and I were fascinated by the elaborate arrangements and stunning pinks and purples.

I’ve never seen that many orchids in one place.

For children:

“We have a large playground with jungle gyms, an animal paddock, a maze and a giant chess board. There is also a Bollebozen route….”

Ask at the entrance for the booklet with the Bollebozen special exploration route for children.

The Keukenhof is a terrific way to welcome in the season.

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