Keukenhof in the Netherlands is staying closed this year to help prevent the spread of the new coronavirus. But viewing its stunning carpets of spring flowers online is the next best thing to actually being there.

By Hannah Bruneman and Andrea Beck
Updated April 03, 2020
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Tulip fields are blooming all across the Netherlands, but because of the new coronavirus, there aren’t many opportunities to see them in-person. Keukenhof, the largest flower park in the world, usually hosts a festival celebrating its blooming tulips in April, but the park won’t open this year because of COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019). Luckily, Keukenhof is still finding ways to take advantage of its millions of flowers and is making it easy for people all around the world to enjoy the blooms. Right now, the park is virtually open for everyone to explore from home through videos from the park’s gardens.

The Netherlands grows up to 2 billion tulips each year, but Keukenhof is usually one of the most popular destinations for seeing them.
| Credit: StefanSorean/Getty Images

Every year, more than 7 million bulbs are planted in the fall at Keukenhof, comprising about 800 different tulip varieties (and other flowers like daffodils, hyacinths, and crocuses). Everything starts blooming toward the end of March, running until mid-May. The 2020 Keukenhof Flower Exhibition was set to open on March 21, but safety precautions in the Netherlands extending through June 1 make it impossible for the park to open at all.

Millions of tulips bloom at Keukenhof every year in April and May.
| Credit: StefanSorean/Getty Images

Still, most of the flowers at the park and in the Netherlands' famous tulip fields are in peak bloom right now, so instead of letting them go to waste, the team at Keukenhof is bringing the incredible view to your home. So far, they’ve posted six different videos from areas all around the park, including the Willem-Alexander Pavilion (which has over 1,000 flowerbeds and 500 different species of tulips) and the lake garden, a large pond surrounded by thousands of flowers. Each video has both close-ups and wide shots of fields with hundreds of flowers so you can see the blooms in detail and get a sense of what the entire park looks like in peak season.

From above, the Netherlands' tulip fields look like gorgeous strips of solid color.
| Credit: Powerfocusfotografie/Getty Images

It’s obviously not the same as seeing and smelling the blooms for yourself, but in some ways, the park is more accessible than ever. You don’t have to travel to see all the beauty it has to offer, and the hosted videos are an opportunity to learn more about Keukenhof and its flowers from the people who grow them (you probably wouldn’t get a one-on-one tour of lake garden from Andre Beijk, who has been a gardener at the park for 34 years, if you visited in person).

There are six short videos to watch now on the park’s website, and they’ve been posting a new one every couple of days since March 21. There are also plenty of new photos of the park in bloom on their Instagram, @visitkeukenhof. A trip to see the flowers in person may be impossible right now, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy them from home!

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