Spring is in the air, finally! Some may wonder if we’ll see a spring this year, as they battle through the last bit of a winter that refuses to leave. Rest assured, though. Spring is here. And, if you need a little extra dose of it this month (or next), we’ve got just the list for you. We’ve rounded up the top 10 places spring is in bloom. So take a deep breath and stop to smell the roses, tulips and more.
Bluebonnet fields, Texas, United States
Bluebonnets, Texas’ state flower, is nature’s way of showing off. Every March and April fields are flooded with this beautiful flower. Even major state highways are lined with them, making for very scenic drives. To really get your fill of them, head to a bluebonnet festival or trail located throughout all of Texas. Just remember to leave the bluebonnets where you find them. It’s illegal to pick them unless they grow on your own property.
Keukenhof Holland, Lisse, Netherlands
With more than seven million bulbs in bloom and 800 varieties of tulips, Keukenhof Holland in the springtime, is an unforgettable experience. This year, the inspiration for the flower shows, the new Selfie garden and the flower bulb mosaic (made up of thousands of tulips) is Van Gogh. Keukenhof Holland wanted to honor the 125th anniversary of his death by displaying the beauty of his paintings through the combination of thousands of flowers. Come see for yourself this year from March 20 to May 17.
Shibazakura Hill, Japan
Imagine 189,444 square feet covered in 400,000 bright and colorful petaled flowers. Well, you don’t need to imagine it. You just need to visit Shibazakura Hill at Hitsujiyama Park between April and May. Winding paths guide you through the thousands of magenta, red and white flowers, and cherry trees, while showing off views of more than just flowers. From Shibazakura Hill you get a picturesque view of the city below and the Daisetsuzan Mountain range above.
Chelsea Physic Garden, London, England
Chelsea Physic Garden is a one-of-a-kind place in many ways. For starters, it’s the oldest botanical garden in London, founded in 1673 by the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries, and it is now one of the most important centers of botany and plant exchange in the world. Each plant in this garden is edible and useful, all playing a part in natural medicines. Stroll through the relaxing scenery and top off your day with afternoon tea at the Tangerine Dream Café.
Canadian Tulip Festival, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Come to Ottawa and witness nearly 300,000 tulips in 60 different varieties bloom in 30 flower beds. Each year in May (this year from May 8 to May 18), Ottawa holds the world’s largest tulip festival to symbolize the gift given to the Canadian people for providing safe harbor to the Dutch Royal Family during the German Occupation of the Netherlands. Expect events for all ages including fireworks and a treasure hunt.
Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden, South Africa
No visit to Cape Town is complete without a visit to Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden. Situated on the slopes of Table Mountain and located in the Cape Floristic Region, this is the first botanical garden to be included within a natural World Heritage Site. Enjoy a free guided tour Monday’s to Saturday’s at 11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. or take a self-guided tour at your own pace. Even though Cape Town is entering into their fall, Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden is more bright and vibrant than ever this time of year.
Dunedin Botanic Garden, New Zealand
While most of the world is welcoming spring and warmer weather, our friends down under will soon be entering winter. But don’t let that fool you. You can still witness beautiful flowers this time of year in New Zealand by heading to Dunedin Botanic Garden. If you find yourself visiting on a chilly day stop by the Winter Garden Glasshouse, which includes The Tropical House; the east wing, which houses its sub-tropical plant collection; and the west wing, which is home to cacti and succulents.
Biltmore Blooms, Asheville, North Carolina, United States
From March 20 to May 25 see Biltmore in full bloom. Admire the works of landscape architect, Frederick Law Olmsted and stroll the 2.5-mile path of manicured gardens. Once you’ve taken it all in, spend the rest of your day at the Biltmore biking, horseback riding, hiking, shopping and dining. With 10 dining options, you will find something to satisfy every palette.
Madeira Flower Festival, Funchal, Portugal
For years, Madeira Flower Festival has been a crowd-drawing event for both locals and tourists, and this year (from April 16 to April 22) will be no different. Each spring, when the flowers are at their best, artists devote their time to creating unbelievable flower carpets, shop owners decorate their shop windows and children work together to craft a mural of flowers called the Wall of Hope. The Wall of Hope is a newer addition to the festival where children place their own flowers into the wall symbolizing the hope for a better and more peaceful world. Other activities include a parade, performances and awards for the best decorated shop.
Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers, Toowoomba, Australia
(Disclaimer: This festival is in the spring Down Under, so plan a visit here for a fall flower fix if you’re in the northern hemisphere.)
Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers takes place Friday, September 18 to Sunday, September 27 and is packed full with all kinds of events. From food and wine events to outdoor movies to steam trains and more, there is fun for the whole family to have. Oh, and of course we can’t forget about the flowers. From parades with flowered floats and daily garden tours you’ll be sure to get your fill. Book your events early though, because popular ones are already selling out.
Featured image: marfis75 used under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike license