European Trip of May '09

Share your holidays and points of interest during your travels. It could also be a spot you stumbled on your way to work.

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naim
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Re: European Trip of May '09

#11 Post by naim » Sat May 16, 2009 2:22 am

Part 2

Arriving Schiphol Airport, we promptly take a cab to this delightful hotel, near the town of Lisse, some 30km southwest of Amsterdam.
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I always love to start the day with continental breakfast, plus a good helping of yoghurt. Somehow European egg yolk tastes 'sweet-ish' which I like. :)
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Energized for the day, we start our trek to Keukenhof, the very reason we come to Lisse. We have our kid #3, who joined us from Toronto, and his friend. They took Air Transat to Gatwick and on to Amsterdam with easyJet, arriving AMS a couple of hours before us.
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Re: European Trip of May '09

#12 Post by naim » Sat May 16, 2009 2:23 am

What we initially thought was idyllic farmland ...
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... turns out to be a huge flower plantation!
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Soon we start seeing blooms everywhere, ...
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... hectares of them.
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Re: European Trip of May '09

#13 Post by naim » Sat May 16, 2009 2:25 am

Across the huge expanse of blooming field, I spot two Dutch icons.
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Soon a junction in the road, ...
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... past beautiful pasture and a canal, ...
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... and we enter the woods of Keukenhof. Whatever is this thing called 'Keukenhof'?
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> MORE TO COME
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Re: European Trip of May '09

#14 Post by cruiser » Sat May 16, 2009 4:03 am

naim wrote: ... and we enter the woods of Keukenhof. Whatever is this thing called 'Keukenhof'?


Keukenhof simply en literally can be translated as, kitchen court or park. It is located to the Northwest of Lisse, a very popular place attracting visitors who are certainly flower fans from around the world.

I was there too, very recently, visiting a lady friend that lectures at the University of Leiden and she flew back from Curacao that weekend.

It is our Dutch way of describing that place, which once was part of and it once belongs to the castle called Keuken during the 15th Century.

It has always been central in the flower exhibition delivered by surrounding tulip growers of the region between end of March to end of May.

I trust the weather was kind and welcoming during your short stint in Holland? :thumbsup:
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Re: European Trip of May '09

#15 Post by naim » Sun May 17, 2009 5:13 pm

Part 3

So back to my query, what is 'Keukenhof'? It's a piece of woodland belonging to an aristocrat which has been converted into the worlds largest 'flower garden'. And yes, this year's its 60th anniversary.
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Dubbed as the 'Garden of Europe', it's only open for some 9 weeks per year, between March and May. Keukenhof's specialty is its amazing collection of tulips, daffodils and lillies, with about 7mil bulbs being planted each year just for the 9-week show.
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Past the gate, and a you are most welcomed.
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Re: European Trip of May '09

#16 Post by naim » Sun May 17, 2009 5:23 pm

Once inside, it's glorious tulips everywhere ...
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... of all shades and hues!
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And you can actually touch them. Dutch awesome world-beating horticulture technology in full display for the world to see.
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The flower bulbs were planted under the shades of the mature trees.
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Re: European Trip of May '09

#17 Post by naim » Sun May 17, 2009 5:30 pm

The blooms are everywhere, carpeting the ground.
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These plants grow from bulbs, like the humble onion, and coaxing colourful things out of such things is sheer technology.
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The plants are sponsored by bulb suppliers, who proudly display their names next to their creations. Keukenhof is virtually a flower expo.
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Re: European Trip of May '09

#18 Post by naim » Sun May 17, 2009 5:31 pm

There are food kiosks ...
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... and clumps of cafes, trinket shops, galleries, amenities, etc, scattered in the grounds - to replenish yourselves, to rest your tired limbs and to relax, and also to cool down overloaded eyes.
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Waterways aplenty too, where native avians make their homes.
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Re: European Trip of May '09

#19 Post by naim » Sun May 17, 2009 5:47 pm

If you are keen you can buy your own bulbs to plant at home.
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But first check out the extensive catalogue.
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Then enter the hut to be served.
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In any case, you can easily spend 5-6 hours trudging the countless chromatic footpaths in search of your most perfect tulip!
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> MORE WILL FOLLOW
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Re: European Trip of May '09

#20 Post by Noah » Sun May 17, 2009 6:04 pm

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Are those brick red lanes meant for pedestrians or bicycles?
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