The Beautiful Keukenhof Tulip Garden

The Keukenhof tulip garden is a beautiful display of primarily tulips, but also other pretty flowers and not just your regular tulip varieties, but funky varieties! Each year a theme is chosen and when I went with my mum it was New York City, because in 2009 the Netherlands was celebrating the fourth centenary of their relationship with the United States. For 2013, the theme in the United Kingdom.


Keukenhof, tulip garden

Regardless of the theme, what you will find is over 7 million tulips arranged spectacularly around the grounds. A fascinating fact about tulips is that the funky petals and stripes were not originally due to cultivation, but rather the tulip breaking virus, the virus effects the bulb and the symptoms result in stripes, streaks, and feathering of different colours. Different symptoms occur as it depends on the age of the bulb when infected and also the plant variety.


Keukenhof, tulip garden

Keukenhof, tulip garden

The condition of the gardens depends on when you visit, Mum and I went toward the end of the gardens, so some of the flowers were dying, but it was quiet and not over run with people. We were fortunate to have a sunny day and we packed a picnic lunch, though there is a cafe located at the entrance to the garden. It was really peaceful and we didn’t mind that a few of the millions of flowers had already died.


Keukenhof, tulip garden

There is also a petting zoo in the gardens, I of course had to jump on in and pet the goats, lambs and llamas! Mum just stood by and watched, so it is a great place to bring children, or me!


keukenhof, tulip garden

A lot of people have asked whether I think it worth paying to visit the tulip garden, and in general I think so. While you can go to the tulip fields at the right time of the year and see rows and rows of tulips, which are amazing and beautiful, the gardens offer something a little different. You won’t see the funky varieties of tulips in the fields and mum and I spent the whole day there, so for our €21 it was worth it.


keukenhof, tulip garden

This year, 2013, the garden will open on the 21st of March and will close on the 20th of May. Entrance is 15 euro, but as the garden is between Amsterdam and the Hague you will need to travel a short distance to get there. If you are up for biking, it is about a 30km bike ride that will take approximately 2 hours (maybe that sounds ridiculous but the Dutch have a massive biking culture, though not usually at those distances). Or you can buy your bus ticket and entrance ticket for 21 euros and the bus leaves from Leidseplein in the center of Amsterdam or Schiphol Airport. They are open from 8am until 7:30pm daily during this time.

Keukenhof tulip garden

Where to Stay in Amsterdam?

First, you need a place to stay. Hotel prices in Amsterdam can vary wildly depending on time of year and availability. Try and book something with free cancellation well in advance when you can, especially for summer and the holidays! Then you can always cancel later if you need to.


Pulitzer Amsterdam is a great luxury choice with first class amenities and a lovely central location on Prinsegracht (western canal belt). It’s walking distance from everything, but a fair bit away from the Red Light District and other noisy parts of the city.

Radisson Blu makes for the one of the best value upscale stays in Amsterdam.

Mid Range:

Citizen M is a comfortable and modern hotel in Amsterdam. Rooms come with an Ipad and a big selection of entertainment options.

We also recommend Motel One Amsterdam and Motel One Waterlooplein as they’re good bang for buck, with an excellent breakfast.

Lloyd Hotel can also be great value, and it’s centrally located near the Red Light District and Amsterdam Centraal train station.


Backpackers should consider fun options like the popular Flying Pig Downtown and Flying Pig Uptown.

You’ll generally find the best value booking short stay apartments in the Netherlands, especially in Amsterdam’s historic center during summer and popular holidays like New Year’s and King’s Day. If you’ve never used Airbnb, sign up here for free and receive $40 credit off your first stay!

Want to travel to Holland for Free?

Play the credit card points game and use bonus point sign ups for free plane tickets! The most popular card among travel hackers is the Chase Sapphire Reserve. The card also includes complimentary priority pass lounge access with free food, drinks and wifi. The annual fee seems steep at $450, but it includes $300 in travel credits. The 50,000 bonus point sign up is good for $750 in travel credit, enough for a free plane ticket to Amsterdam from the United States! They’ll also compensate you $100 for free Global Entry and TSA pre-check to skip airport lines.

If you don’t travel very frequently, the Delta Skymiles American Express Gold Card is free the first year and just $95 each year after. They give a 40,000 point bonus after you charge just $1,000 in everyday purchases. A free flight to Amsterdam will start at around 60,000 points on Delta, and you can accumulate that difference through purchases over several months. There are other perks to having the Delta SkyMiles AMEX Gold Card, like free checked bags on Delta flights. Need tips on maximizing credit card bonuses for free flights? Get in touch!

Disclosure: This article contains some affiliate links. We receive a small commission when you book or sign up through these links and it costs you nothing extra. When it suits you, please use them, as it helps us help you! 

4 thoughts on “The Beautiful Keukenhof Tulip Garden

  1. I loved the tulips at Keukenhof and it was wonderful to wander around and the varieties are so beautiful. Holland is the home of the tulip. Definitely worth a visit if visiting Amsterdam at this time of year.

    1. Yes, the are lovely and so colourful, if we were in the Netherlands around this time of the year I would definitely go back and see the tulips, they are just so pretty!

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