The Netherlands with Kids: Tulips and Ocean

The Netherlands with Kids
Back in April, we traveled to the Netherlands with our kids. It was a short trip, just 2 days of exploring. We decided to drive, even though it ended up taking around 6 hours (we’re from California though where just about anywhere out of state takes that long or longer). Also, the countryside in Europe is just beautiful (again, we’re from Southern California- which is also beautiful, but nowhere near as green as Europe). We loved passing through Northern France and then Belgium and then into the Netherlands.
Netherlands with Kids

Our first full day in the Netherlands with our kids involved us going to Keukenhof Tulip Festival and then over to the ocean. We stayed in a tiny little house right next to the beach and about a 20 minute drive from the Tulip Festival. It had a fantastic playground that both our girls loved playing on right outside our house and also a little grocery store. It was exceptionally small though (Adeline had to sleep in the living room because neither of the bedrooms could fit a portable crib) and staying more than a few nights would have been a bit too claustrophobic for me.

The Netherlands with Kids
I loved these trees!

Tulips
Keukenhof is one of the most famous tulip gardens in the Netherlands. They had more than 7 million bulbs in bloom this year! Keukenhof Castle was built in 1641. In 1949, it was decided that the gardens would be used to showcase spring flowers and by 1950, it had opened its gates to the public.

The Netherlands with Kids
The Netherlands with Kids
We had a great time wandering through the garden seeing all the flowers. Our girls loved looking and smelling all of them. None of us had ever seen so many different kinds of flowers before!
The Netherlands with Kids
There were many family-friendly activities as well. Keukenhof had a petting zoo and a huge playground. Our girls enjoyed seeing the different animals and loved running around a bit on the playground.
The Netherlands with Kids
The Netherlands with Kids
The Netherlands with Kids

There were small boat tours (with stroller parking nearby) that took people around the tulip fields. It was about 45 minutes long and came with an optional audio tour. We opted out of the audio tour, but I wish at least one of us would have done it. It would have been interesting to learn more about the festival and the flowers in general.

The Netherlands with Kids
The Netherlands with Kids

The fields were very pretty! While not all of the flowers were in bloom just yet, there still was plenty of colorful flowers to admire.

The Netherlands with Kids

One thing we enjoyed while in the Netherlands with our kids was all the local food. We started by trying a couple new things in Keukenhof: warme beenham and stroopwafel. Warme beanham is basically a warm ham sandwich with really good mustard and a stroopwafel is a crunchy waffle with a caramel like syrup in the middle. Both were delicious!

The Netherlands with Kids
The Netherlands with Kids

Overall, the garden was a beautiful place to visit! Our girls took a nice long nap in the stroller in the afternoon and we enjoyed walking around the grounds.

One thing to keep in mind if you decide to visit the Netherlands with your kids is that Keukenhof is only open from mid March until about mid May. Make sure to check out their website for all the details.

The Netherlands with Kids

When the children woke up from their naps, we headed back to our tiny house and made dutch pancakes for dinner (I love when we stay somewhere with a kitchen!). After dinner, we walked down to the local beach to see the ocean.

The Netherlands with Kids
She was so happy to see the ocean too!

Ocean
I love the ocean! I grew up in Southern California, went to university in Hawaii, and after a couple of very cold years in Utah, ended up back in Southern California before we moved here to France. The ocean has always been my favorite place and it always makes me so happy to see it.

When planning our trip to the Netherlands with our kids, I realized that the place where we would be staying was walking distance to the beach! Our first day had such nice weather and so we ended our day with a walk down to the seashore.

The Netherlands with Kids

It was so pretty and there were seashells everywhere! London was beyond excited and had a blast picking up shells and walking through the sand. Our baby girl loved it too. She was just starting to walk at the time and loved holding our hands while running around.

The Netherlands with Kids
The Netherlands with Kids

Our first day had been a success! Everyone had a great time seeing the tulips and the ocean and we were excited for our next day exploring windmills.

The Netherlands with Kids
We found a fun sand castle while walking along the beach. Our toddler loved checking it out!
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