The best way to experience the Dutch tulips, daffodils, hyacints and other flowers in bloom is during a bike tour! The flowering season in Holland lasts 5 to 6 weeks (April-May).
Holland and tulips is synonymous. The first tulip bulbs were brought to the Netherlands several centuries ago from Turkey and Iran. They immediately became very popular, and when the tulip become a sort of status symbol, and very expensive, demand outstripped supply, the prices sky-rocketed. In Dutch history this is known as Tulipomania, and reached its peak in 1630. Prices eventually came back to earth and today tulip cultivation is an important part of the horticultural industry. In springtime, the famous Dutch bulb fields are at their best, providing a dramatic display of more than 8 million tulips, hyacinths, and daffodils in bloom. The prime growing region lies between Haarlem and Leiden, just 20 km/12 mi southeast of Amsterdam. Cycling this region during the blooming season (second week of April till the second week of May) is quite an experience!
The huge Keukenhof Garden flower exhibition (from mid March till mid May) showcases hundreds of glorious outdoor and indoor gardens, creating a majestic and colorful atmosphere.
Another highlight is the annual flower parade. On the third or last Saturday in April, a procession of about twenty floats, including more than thirty vehicles that are completely covered with flowers and lavishly decorated, show off their eye-catching and unique ‘green’ charm over a 40 km/25 mi route from Noordwijk to Haarlem.