Keukenhof 2023 with Visits to Private Gardens and a Journey along the Famous Tulip Trails ‘Noordoostpolder Tulip Route’ & ‘Tulip Route Flevoland’

Celebrate spring time in the Netherlands! This fabulous flower-filled four days/ three nights holiday offers blooms at every turn from the magnificent Keukenhof Gardens to an unmissable journey along the country's iconic Tulip Routes and visits to beautiful private gardens. And there are two cities and a 700-year-old castle too!

 

Tulip fields travel to Keukenhof 2023

 

Utrecht City Keukenhof holiday in 2023

 

 

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Muscari Sea Keukenhof holiday in April 2023

What we love

Flowering gardens of Keukenhof 2023

Experiences you will treasure

What people say

An utter joy! I was so overwhelmed seeing the variety of flowering bulbs and clever planting - the colours were wonderfully vibrant. Exploring the pavillions I found some interesting new varieties of tulips and I have come home with so much inspiration - I will be planting lots of bulbs in my borders this year!

H. Sheldon

How much is it?

Arrange your own flights to Amsterdam- join us at the airport & return to the airport £915p/p
You may choose to include flights* with your programme with KLM departing from:
London Heathrow, Manchester or Birmingham
*luggage included in our cost see below
Single Room Supplement £189 in total
Optional Extra Day 1: Schuttevaed Canal Cruise Utrecht approx £15p/p
Optional Extra Day 4: Blue Boat Cruise Amsterdam approx £8.50p/p
Tulips in Keukenhof April 2023
Utrecht City Keukenhof 2023

What's included in your holiday

Tulip Fields holiday to Keukenhof Netherlands

Itinerary - what you will do when

Flevoland the Netherlands April 2023
Utrecht  Keukenhof 2023 Castle Muiderslot
Amsterdam and Keukenhof 2023 holiday from the UK

Flights

Park Plaza Raddison Utrecht

Where you will be staying

A Deeper Dive

Keukenhof Gardens Netherlands Flowers Spring

Rightly known as the ‘most beautiful spring garden in the world’, the history of Keukenhof dates back to the 15th century when Countess Jacoba van Beieren [Jacqueline of Bavaria] gathered fruit and vegetables from the Keukenduin [kitchen dunes] for the kitchen of Teylingen Castle. Keukenhof Castle’s imposing castle was built in 1641 and the estate grew to encompass an area of over 200 hectares. The English landscape-style park we see today is based on the 1857 redesign by landscape architects Jan David Zocher and his son Louis Paul Zocher.
In 1949, a group of 20 leading flower bulb growers and exporters came up with the plan to use the estate to exhibit spring-flowering bulbs, signalling the birth of Keukenhof as a spring park. The park opened its gates to the public in 1950 and was an instant success, attracting 236,000 visitors in the first year alone. 2022 will be the 73th edition of Keukenhof and people can expect a heady mix of seven million tulips, anemones, daffodils, freesias and hyacinths. There is also a spectacular sculpture garden with extraordinary displays created by the world’s leading floriculturists, as well as exhibition zones such as the Beatrix Pavilion with its stunning collection of orchids and the Orange Nassau Pavilion where florists give daily demonstrations.

Utrecht city Netherlands canal bridge

Less well-known than Europe’s other canal cities, but just as picturesque, Utrecht has a special charm. Quintessentially Dutch, it offers visitors both an authentic taste of the contemporary Netherlands and also a fascinating insight into its history. Initially designed as a medieval fortified city, the heart of Utrecht is enclosed by an inner canal ring measuring just under 6km so can be easily explored in a few hours. Here are our highlights.

The Dom Tower. At 112.5m high, this is the tallest church tower in the Netherlands and is considered the symbol of Utrecht. The tower was part of St. Martin's Cathedral, also known as the Dom Church, and was built between 1321 and 1382, to a design by John of Hainaut on the site of a Roman fortress. Most of the church was destroyed in a tornado in the 1500s, so only some parts remain, including the tower. There are 465 steps to the top, but the views when you get there are stunning! (Please note, you can only visit the tower as part of a 1hr guided tour.)

                              Dom Tower Utrecht

While you’re here, take a moment to visit the Pandhof garden. Once part of the old monastery garden, it is one of the most elaborately designed courtyards in the Netherlands. You can admire the 15th century cloister surrounding the courtyard as well. (Entry here is free and does not require a ticket to Dom Tower)

DOMunder: Located in the centre of Dom Square, this underground space traces 2,000 of Dutch history. Follow a route with special torch to experience history from the time the Romans built the castellum Trajectum, around 45 A.D, learn why Utrecht was the center of the Netherlands in the middle ages and even experience the destructive tornado that caused the nave of the Dom Cathedral to collapse in 1674.

The Centraal Museum: housed in a medieval cloister on the Nicolaaskerkhof, this museum boasts the largest collection of Gerrit Rietveld pieces in the world, as well the work of the world-famous Dick Bruna, and Dutch icons Jan van Scorel, Abraham Bloemaert and Hendrick ten Brugghen. It also provides a broad overview of 2,000 years of the country’s turbulent history.

The Utrecht canals: the only canals in the world to have wharfs and wharf cellars, the city’s waterways date back to the 12thC when the first canal, Oudegracht, was dug to change the course of the Oude Rijn River. Connecting the river Vecht in the north to the Vaartsche Rijn in the south, the Oudegracht became an elongated harbour. Large city castles were built along the canal and wharfs were added where boats could unload their cargos directly onto the land. These wharfs had deep cellars which served as water level storage spaces and pedestrian walkways, creating a unique two-level street system. Today these cellars are filled with shops, restaurants, galleries and cafes and no visit to Utrecht is complete without a drink or a meal in one of these atmospheric cellar restaurants. 

Located slightly outside the city centre, but easy to get to from Utrecht Central Station (which is close to your hotel), The Rietveld Schröder House is a must for anyone with an interest in art and design. Built in 1924 by the designer Gerrit Thomas Rietveld for Ms Truus Schröder, this small family house is still strikingly modern. With moveable walls and design elements that connect inside with out, it embodies the principals of De Stijl artistic movement and has become one of icons of the Modernism. (Please note, advanced booking is required.)

      Rietveld Schroder House Utrecht Netherlands

And don’t forget Miffy! Or Nijntje as this cute white rabbit is known in her home town. Created by the artist Dick Bruna, Miffy is one of the Utrecht’s most famous stars. Visit Nijntje Pleintje, or Miffy Square, to see the statue by Dick Bruna’s son, Marc Bruna, and cross the road at the world’s one and only Miffy traffic light on the Lange Vliestraat.

Amsterdam Bridge Modern Architecture

Here are our highlights for an afternoon in the capital city.

Art lovers should head straight for Museumplein where you will find a cluster of world-beating museums, including the Van Gogh Museum, the Stedelijk Museum, devoted to modern and contemporary art, and the Rijksmuseum with its stunning collection of Dutch Golden Age paintings such as ‘The Milkmaid’ by Johannes Vermeer, ‘The Night Watch’ by Rembrandt, and ‘Portrait of a Young Couple’ by Frans Hals. The city’s favourite park, Vondelpark, is also here and is a perfect place to sit and digest everything you have seen before setting off for the Rembrandt House Museum at Jodenbreestraat 4 where the artist lived and worked from 1639 to 1658.

Rijksmuseum Amsterdam Art Netherlands

Amsterdam’s Golden Age history can be seen in all its elegance at the Herengracht, the first of the four main canals in the city centre’s Canal Belt. Completed along with its neighbours in the 17th century as part of an expansion project that is now UNESCO listed, this is where Amsterdam’s social elite built their grand gabled houses. Look out for the former office of the Dutch West India Company at Herenmarkt, one of Amsterdam’s oldest residences (built in 1590) at no. 81 and, at no. 172, the magnificent 1617 Bartolotti House, considered the finest of all of Amsterdam’s Golden Age merchant’s houses. Museum Van Loon, in the neighbouring Keizersgracht, provides an insight into the splendour these 17th C merchants lived in. A magnificent private residence built in 1672 by the architect Adriaen Dortsman, its first resident was the painter Ferdinand Bol, a pupil of Rembrandt. The interior of the house has remained largely intact and includes a large collection of paintings, fine furniture, precious silvery and porcelain. Behind the house is a beautiful garden, laid out in formal style and bordered on the far side by the classical facade of the coach house. The original unity of the canal house, garden and coach house is unique. You should also visit The Royal Palace on Dam Square. Designed by architect Jan van Campen to reflect the power and wealth of this city in 17thC, this is the largest and most prestigious building of the era.

The Anne Frank House on the Prinsengracht preserves the secret annexe where the young diarist hid from Nazi persecution from 1942 until she was captured, along with her family and four other inhabitants, in 1944. The secret rooms are on an enclosed courtyard behind a 17th-century canal house and give a visceral sense of what it was like to live in hiding.

And if you are looking for cafes to watch the world go by, as well as specialist shops and galleries for interesting souvenirs, head for the Jordaan, a grid of little streets and filled-in canals bordered by the Singel. Created in the 17th century, this area was first inhabited by Amsterdam’s working class and an international array of migrants, such as the Huguenots from France and Puritans from England, all seeking the city’s famous religious tolerance. Today it offers a picture postcard slice of Amsterdam life. Don’t leave without dropping into a ‘brown café (a Dutch pub), or tasting a traditional bitterballen (deep fried breaded meatball).

Dutch Golden Age buildings architecture Amsterdam

April tour to Keukenhof 2023

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