Monday, May 19, 2014

Windmills and Tulips

On Tuesday 22nd April we headed to the Netherlands.  Our first stop was Kinderdijk, an area close to Rotterdam with 19 preserved windmills. We spent an enjoyable few hours walking around the area and taking photos before heading to Amsterdam.

The next day we visited the Keukenhof gardens which was totally amazing.   We spent five hours exploring the 79 acres, containing around 7 million tulips, daffodils and hyacinths which are planted each year.  The garden is only open for 2 months, and is designed to be a living exhibit for the major growers in the country.

On Thursday 24th we spent the day exploring Amsterdam. We wandered around the streets and canals checking out the sights and watching the crowds.   A shower of rain had us sheltering outside a shop trying to decide our dinner options when John noticed a Tibetan restaurant.  Perfect, so we hurried in for an excellent meal, including some more great local beer.

The next day we headed to the tiny harbor town of Marken, and spent a delightful few hours there, including another great meal.  It seems our vacation was mostly walking a lot, taking photos and stopping to eat!  We next stopped at another site full of windmills, which was interesting, but very busy. 

To finish the day we returned to what is now our happy place – a second visit to the Keukenhof gardens.  A perfect way to relax after the crowds.  We stayed there again until closing enjoying the flowers, the scents of hyacinths and the sounds of the birds.  A tip for future visitors, the crowds start to leave the gardens after 4pm, leaving you three hours to enjoy the place almost alone! 

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