Thursday, April 12, 2012
Todat we visited the most beautiful place we have ever seen, the Keukenhof Gardens.
Our trip couldn't have been planned any better. I wouldn't have left out one stop. We saw the Veneration of the Holy Blood on Holy Thursday and kept building to Keukenhof on Tuesday.
The farther we got from Amsterdam and the closer we got to Keukenhof, we started seeing beautiful dairy farms with more and more fields of tulips. By the time the bus turned off the freeway, all you could see was flowers as far as you could see.
There are empty fields though that will be planted to another crop as they only raise tulips once in five years. Grandpa's five year rotation rang in my head once more!
Where Keukenhof is situated now, was a hunting area in the 15th century. Herbs for the kitchen of the castle of Jacoba van Beieren were also collected here; hence the name Keukenhof.
The current park was a section of the sizeable estate of Slot Teylingen, with beautiful untamed bushes and dunes. After the decease of Jacoba van Beieren Keukenhof fell into the hands of rich merchant families. Baron and baroness Van Pallandt invited landscape architects J.D. and L.P. Zocher, designers of the Amsterdam Vondelpark, to make a design for the garden around the castle. This design, in the English landscape style, has always been the basis of Keukenhof.
At the moment the estate belongs to a Foundation. On the initiative of the Lisse mayor of that time and a number of leading flower bulb growers and exporters, an open air flower exhibition was organised here for the first time in 1949. This expanded to an annually recurring event that has always drawn great numbers of visitors from all over the world. This is how Keukenhof became the park that we now know."
Put it on your bucket list, NOW! Better yet, let's put together a HyMark trip to it next spring!