Sunday, 15 April 2007

Bloemen!

The best time to visit Holland is definitely during March-May. why? coz its spring! there's so so much to do and visit when the weather's good!

The main attraction during spring is definitely KEUKENHOF!

Last easter, on the 8th of april to be precise, we witness the ever so popular Keukenhof. we missed last year's as we were too busy with the house hunting, and besides, last year's spring was very short and surprisingly cold. but this year..... was such a contrast.



Keukenhof is situated in Lisse, south of Haarlem in Zuid Holland. very close to the Amsterdam Schipol Airport. it opens 8 weeks a year and attracts almost 7 million people, all around the world (we now know why!).

I was overly excited during our 2 hour drive to the gardens, and as we reached our afrit (exit) to Lisse, we noticed there was a long traffic. "no! it cant be!!" to which my husband replied "yep!! all these people are going where we're going". the traffic stretched at least 8miles from our destination!

After consulting our 'miss navigatie' (navigation system) in the car, H decided to take a detour and use an alternative route. a route with NO signboards to keukenhof. a route where there are NO cars, a route where i do not think it'd lead us there, therefore to me it is a NOT a good idea! "no! dont! follow those cars, at least we know we're heading the right way, who knows they might block the other routes due to lack of parking!?" the not-so-adventurous me was so wrong! thank god we took the other route cause, this was what we witnessed on our way to the real keukenhof gardens, fields and fields of hyacinths and fields and fields of tulips! trust me, the smell was just as good as the view!





Thank H for not following the traffic! (silly me!)

We bought the tickets online and could enter the gardens without having to queue. this would be a good idea if you're visiting during public holidays and weekends. the Keukenhof gardens are much larger than i expected. they seem to go on forever and everywhere you turn there's always a good sight to snap a photo! you could easily spend more than a day, especially if you are mad about flowers, like moi. in addition to the outdoor gardens, there are numerous greenhouses. in there, you might find orchids, hortensia (hydrangeas) and azaleas. and if you're tired of walking, or if your baby's hungry and needs his bottle, you can always sit back at the cafes, snack bars or even the benches, and watch other flower fanatics!





Tulips are not the only spring flower blooming at keukenhof. daffodils, hyacinths, and narcissi, are also all flowering simultaneously. there were also amarylis, magnolias, cherry blossoms, plum blossoms, bleeding hearts - those were just a few of them that i know of. so many types of daffodils and soso many types of tulips! we were overwhelmed by the colour, sights, shapes and their smells!



We had a beautiful easter, a beautiful sunday, a lovely stroll, a good time. we shall bring our tikar mengkuang (mengkuang mat), nasi lemak (coconut rice), karipap (currypuff) and sirap bandung (rose syrup with milk) next year!! hehe!

I then drove my boys back home (first time driving our estate! feels like i have a very long tail driving it!)

Z

6 comments:

Frankensteina said...

Oooo the flowers are just lovely! Here it's too darn hot to go for a picnic and if you go by the beach,chances are you'll definitely look like a crispy duck under an hour :)

More pics please

Aidan's Mama & Papa said...

they are really lovely! frankensteina, you guys honeymoon next spring to keukenhof, i'll bring nasi lemak ;) but we really gotta be careful before we sit on the grass, see if there are any dog's poo! hehehh..

Z

shidah shah said...

keukenhof is so beautiful and you have captured it well in your photos...but i guess we have to be there to really experience it, sight, smell and sound.the dutch really really love flowers!!!

Aidan's Mama & Papa said...

yes! you HAVE to come here! if sempat this year, we'll go again, if not, we'll plan it for next year, together with your 2 cucus! we cant wait!

love,
Z

mum&dad said...

Extracts from an article in "New Straits Times" ,a Malaysian daily,25 April2007: "Jaap Leenen, a 60 year old flower grower and the biggest daffodil breeder in the Netherlands, says seashells from the North Sea are the best thing that has ever happened to his daffodils. He says...We can produce flowers the whole year round through this way and not just in spring. The flowers are better and have a longer vase life. They are 100 percent free from all kinds of diseases and bacteria."

Aidan's Mama & Papa said...

we need to get seashells from the north sea then!!! my daffodils are almost gone :(

Z