Spring Blooms in Benelux

Visit the Netherlands, Belgium & Luxembourg

The Benelux region, composed of Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg, includes the major draws of Amsterdam, known as the capital of culture, coffee shops and canals and, Brussels, with its top notch chocolate shops, Art Nouveau architecture and Belgium beer.  And although we can agree that we wouldn’t want to miss any of these, we can also assure you that there is so much more to discover in Benelux and no better way to do it than by train with a Eurail Benelux Pass!

Short distances and the availability of high speed rail connections are ideal, especially if you only have a short vacation.  For example travel by train from Amsterdam to Brussels in less than two hours and onto Luxembourg in less than three hours.  Some other beautiful cities in the Netherlands include Maastricht and The Hague, as well as Antwerp and Bruges in Belgium, and many more, all within reach with just a quick train journey.

Plus there is always the option to extend your travel with a Benelux-Germany or Benelux-France Eurail Pass, with quick connections to the likes of Paris, France in just 1h 20m from Brussels or to Cologne, Germany in just 2h 40m from Amsterdam.

What’s blooming this spring? As the Netherlands are known for their beautiful tulip gardens and Belgium with its numerous castle gardens, here are a few hot spots where you can get in the spring spirit!

The Netherlands


  • Keukenhof, situated between Amsterdam and The Hague, is open every year between mid March and  mid May: This historic park with more than 2700 trees is blooming full with tulips, hyacinths, daffodils and many other spring bulbs. The floral displays in the park and the unique flower shows in the various pavilions are not to miss. Also, look forward to the Flower Parade held annually as one of the highlights of Keukenhof.



  • Big annual Flower Market in Tournai: The flower market is held each year on Good Friday, starting at 8 AM and continuing throughout the day until 6 PM. More than one hundred horticulturists take part in this sumptuous multi-coloured market which goes as far back as 1825.
  • Royal Greenhouses Open to the Public in Brussels: Each year for a very short period of time the Greenhouses of the Royal Palace at Laeken are open to the public.
  • Some of Belgium’s most beautiful gardens can be found on castle properties. Here are a couple of particularly noteworthy castle gardens worth visiting:
    • Annevoie Castle & Gardens (Annevoie, Belgium)
      Designed and laid out between 1758 and 1776 by Charles-Alexis de Montpellier, the castle and gardens are an authentic historical record and above all a living work of art. Graceful fountains and waterfalls fill the garden. Open: Daily Apr-Nov from 9:30-5:30 except during Jul & Aug when it is open to 6:30 pm.
    • The Castle of Beloeil (Beloeil, Belgium)
      The Castle of Beloeil has been the residence of the Princes de Ligne since the 14th century. It houses a fantastic art collection, with paintings from the 15th to the 19th century. The castle has an outstanding library with 20,000 books and large French-style garden. Open: Daily May-Sep from 1:00-6:00 and on weekends the rest of the year.
    • Freyr Castle and Gardens (Hastiere, Belgium)
      Named after the Scandinavian goddess of beauty, Freyr (1554) is located along the River Meuse. Most of the orange trees originate from the Court of Lorraine and are nearing 350 years old. They are brought inside during the winter. The gardens are in the style of Le Nôtre and are surrounded by mazes made of horn beam hedges. Open: Daily in Jul & Aug (except Mon) from 10:30-12:45 and from 2:00-5:45.
    • The Castle of Seneffe and Gardens (Seneffe, Belgium)

This summer residence is at the center of a remarkable 18th century group of buildings which include outbuildings, an orangery, a small neo-classic theatre, an icehouse and a French garden, set in a park of 54 acres. It houses the Silversmiths’ Museum and the European Silver collection of Claude and Juliette D’Allemagne. Open: Daily (except Mon) from 10:00-6:00.

This entry was posted by Angela on March 31st, 2011, and is filed under Europe. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback from your own site.
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