Travel To Keukenhof From Amsterdam

Last Updated: October 13, 2023

Gerrit Vandenberg

Gerrit shares his love for the Netherlands from his home near Amsterdam, helping thousands plan unforgettable trips to the lowlands. Discover his inspiring journey "From a critical health scare to celebrating Holland's charms". If you want to send Gerrit a quick message, you can contact him here.

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Hi, I'm Gerrit

I enjoy sharing useful tips about the beauty of this county.

Are you wondering how to travel to the Keukenhof from Amsterdam?

Look no further. As a Dutchman who has lived here my whole life, I know all the different ways to get to the Keukenhof

There is not one solution that works for everybody. It depends, as always, on your situation.

That is why we explore all options in this article today. So you can find the right option for you.

When you’re short on time:

For most people, using a combi-ticket is the most effective method to reach Keukenhof. This ticket includes a tour bus ride from Amsterdam and a time slot entry ticket to the Keukenhof Tulip Garden.

It’s hassle-free, convenient, and relieves the stress of managing multiple tickets or negotiating traffic.

You can also take a taxi. When you pre-book your taxi you can save a lot of money. It’s also better than taking an uber, since you can not book an Uber for your return journey. But you can pre-book a taxi to the Keukenhof and back.

It’s important to know starting in 2024, the Keukenhof Gardens will be using timed slots for entry. If you book a combination ticket including a transfer you don’t have to worry about this, the tour company will take care of the correct tickets.

If you choose private transportation book your Keukenhof ticket and time slot in advance here (only available in season).

Going to the Keukenhof from Amsterdam, this is the view why people go.
Beautiful outdoor tulips gardens at the Keukenhof – © Hidden Holland

Combi-Tickets Keukenhof or Guided Tour

When you book your Keukenhof tour you have two options:

  1. a Guided Tour with audio commentary on the bus. You have a fixed departure time, and a fixed return time, with enough free time at the park.
  2. a Combi tickets with a guaranteed seat on your booked departure, and for your return to Amsterdam, a seat is guaranteed for the departure 3 hours after your arrival. This option gives you more flexibility.

The price is the same for both options. You just select your preference when your booking your Keukenhof tour.

Taking a Taxi to the Keukenhof

Taking a taxi is a convenient way to travel to the Keukenhof. You can choose your own times, and you will not be traveling with a group of other people.

If you pre-book your taxi to the Keukenhof (and back) you save money compared to regular taxi fares. And pre-booked taxi’s have fixed prices. While a regular taxi is metered.

Pre-booking a taxi also has the benefit that you can book your return journey. You can not do so with Uber.

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Amsterdam to Keukenhof Express Bus

If you’re a holder of an Amsterdam & Region Travel Ticket, you’re in luck. This travel ticket covers Amsterdam and the surrounding area, including the Keukenhof Express, a convenient and direct bus service from Amsterdam to the Keukenhof Gardens.

Keukenhof buses depart from various locations like Amsterdam Rai (for Amsterdam), Schiphol Amsterdam Airport, and Leiden.

These are the three express bus lines that all travel non-stop from their departure points:

From Amsterdam, you can take the Keukenhof bus 852. They’re easy to spot, with images of flowers covered across the buses. Busses leave from the RAI convention center, a short metro ride from the Amsterdam City Center (included in the “Amsterdam & Region Travel Ticket.”)

The travel time is roughly an hour.

From Schiphol Airport, you can take Keukenhof Express bus 858. This is an ideal choice for those flying into the Netherlands and don’t need to go to the city center. The journey from the airport is direct and takes approximately 30 minutes, depending on traffic.

But this bus is popular, often waiting lines are long. It will remain to be seen if that is better this year now that Keukenhof started working with timed slots.

Keukenhof Express bus 854 departs from Leiden and is more useful for locals than for tourists unless you booked your hotel in Leiden.

Leiden is outside the cover area for the “Amsterdam & Region Travel Ticket”; thus, you can’t use it on this line.

The Keukenhof Bus from Amsterdam to Keukenhof is public transport. Anybody can board it, and they run on a schedule. So it’s slightly different than a tour. 

It’s important to note that the park works now with timed entry slots. Tickets are expected to sell out. Thus if you don’t travel on a tour, but with a pass like the “Amsterdam & Region Travel Ticket.” (or travel with a car), you must reserve a Keukenhof entrance ticket well in advance! 

Explore Beyond Keukenhof 

A trip from Amsterdam to the Keukenhof Gardens is a must on most visitors’ lists, but I have often heard they’re disappointed after their visit. Why is that?

Let’s first say the gardens are gorgeous. Beautiful, it’s not that.

But many people expect to see vast tulip fields, but it’s not a tulip field. Instead, it’s a meticulously maintained indoor and outdoor garden with various flower displays. It’s been around for decades and it’s gorgeous, but it’s not the same as the fields. There are tulipfields around Keukenhof, but not really inside.

Tulips bloom only very shortly. For about three weeks, tulip season is only from mid-April to the beginning of May. The park is open for six weeks. Double that time.

To have something to offer for all visitors, also those coming early, or late, most displays are indoors. And it’s not just tulips in the gardens either. They also display flowers other than tulips. 

We often call it the tulips gardens, but it’s a flower garden instead, a small but important difference.

PS: did you know it’s the largest flower garden in the world?

This Is How You Get More Out Of Your Experience

Here are a few tours options close to the Keukenhof to see a bit more. How about, a helicopter tour, or travel with your own electric vehicle from field to fields around Lisse?

But to truly experience the Dutch flower fields, I recommend traveling far from the Keukenhof area. This is very touristy.

A true Hidden Holland tip is to go to the large production fields far north of Amsterdam or to Flevoland. This is where you can see endless fields in every color imaginable

It’s best to rent a car, to visit these areas. Since there are not on the tourist (or train map).

Or consider a private tour by yours truly.

I offer a full-day private tour of the lesser-known production tulip fields in the North East and we visit the visit village of Giethoorn, where streets are canals.

This is where you experience the authentic Dutch tulip industry, with fields of vibrant tulips stretching as far as the eye can see in every color imaginable.

This tour is quite popular and tends to get booked quickly, especially because it can only be done in a short time window from mid-April to the first week of May.

It’s private so that no other people will join us. It’s just you and me as your guide. I recommend booking well in advance to secure your spot if you’re interested in this.

This private tour includes door-to-door transportation in a comfortable SUV to the production fields in the north. This is NOT in the direction of Lisse, and we will not visit the Keukenhof garden. You’ll need to do that on your own with one of the options above if you want to do both.

Traveling to Keukenhof Gardens By Train

While you can take the train from Amsterdam, I don’t recommend it. Because you can only travel by train from Amsterdam to Leiden. From there, you still need to transfer to a bus to get to the park. Then you can just as well board a bus from Amsterdam directly, or take one from the airport. 

Using this route by train will also be more expensive, will not save you money, and won’t be faster.

Keukenhof By Car

It’s not complicated to get from Amsterdam to Keukenhof by car. But prepare for potentially heavy traffic.

The roads from Amsterdam to Keukenhof Gardens can get quite busy, especially during the weekends when the locals come and visit in droves. 

And if you think you made it to the park, you might need to wait long to enter the parking lot

My best advice opt for a weekday visit and plan to arrive early!

Speaking about parking, it’s available for €8 (2024 price).

And again, tickets are now allocated through the new time-slot system to manage the influx of visitors. Make sure to get your skip the line Keukenhof tickets well in advance. You wouldn’t want to drive there only to be turned away at the gate.

The gardens are located in Lisse, about 25 miles / 40 kilometers from Amsterdam. Here is the address for Navigation:

Stationsweg 166A
2161 AM Lisse

This will get you to the main entrance.

The travel time from Amsterdam to the Keukenhof is 30 minutes from the airport and 60 minutes from the city center of Amsterdam.

I recommend Rental Cars and Discovery Cars if you’re looking for the best rental car deals. I always book with Rental Cars.

Find the lowest price for Car rental in the Netherlands

For the best car rental rates, I suggest checking both Rental Cars and Discover Cars. I often go with Rental Cars, but it’s worth comparing both.

Cars are hard to get, so book yours on time too! Especially Rental Cars has great policies if plans change, so it’s no risk to do so early.

Me at the Keukenhof.
Me at the Keukenhof, I know it’s emberassing – © Hidden Holland

Biking to Keukenhof

Althought this is theoretically possible, I won’t recommend it for most people.

The distance is 20 miles / 35 kilometers. Which is a long way. If you like to do this, it is a fun ride, past the airport, and some flower fields. Make sure to rent an electric bicycle. The journey should then take no more then 90 minutes each way (without stops, of course).

You can rent a bicycle here for the best prices.

Hotel Recommendations near the Keukenhof

There are no great hotels directly adjacent to Keukenhof Park

I would recommend Van Der Valk Sassenheim if you have your own car. It’s near enough and comfortable, with easy parking and a great breakfast buffet. 

But for most people, I recommend either staying at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. The airport has many hotels in all price classes for every budget, and from the airport, it’s easy to visit the Keukenhof by bus 858. 

Alternatively, you can opt to stay in Amsterdam. The city offers many hotels. From central Amsterdam, getting to Keukenhof Gardens with different options is easy.

Frequently Asked Questions About The Keukenhof

When is the Keukenhof open?

The Keukenhof is only open for a very short time in spring. Right now, it’s closed for the remainder of 2023. Next year, the opening times are from Thursday, March 21, through Sunday, May 12. The opening hours are from 8 a.m. to 7.30 p.m., seven days a week, including Sundays and holidays.

What are the Best Times to Visit Keukenhof?

The best time to visit Keukenhof from Amsterdam is on a weekday. These days are typically less crowded compared to the weekends.

I would recommend visiting from mid-April through early May because most people come to the Keukenhof to see the Tulips in bloom.

This window falls within the peak bloom period for tulips in the Netherlands. If you visit too early or too late, the tulips might not be there, especially outside.

April 20th is the day the Tulip Festival or Bloemencorso parade is held. This is extremely popular; millions visit the 25-mile-long parade on the same day.

And many think it’s also a great time to visit the Keukenhof Gardens since it’s so close. But it is not a great idea, it will be so crowded. Distances are short in the Netherlands, so return to the park the day before or after.

What if I miss my Tour or Bus departure?

If you happen to miss your scheduled departure, don’t panic. You can usually take the next departure if there is available space. However, I recommend arriving early to avoid such situations because of your time slot entry at the park. It will be easier to reschedule a tour with a combination ticket than when traveling alone. 

Most likely, they won’t send you away if you’re one bus later, but they might not honor your ticket if it’s by a lot. Don’t take the risk.

Do I need to pre-book my Keukenhof tickets?

Yes, A B S O L U T E L Y, starting in 2024, Keukenhof has introduced a new time-slot system. This means you must pre-book your tickets, which can easily be done online. It’s a measure to control the crowd and provide a better experience for visitors. Because since re-opening after Covid the visitor numbers have exploded, and it wasn’t fun anymore.

Are Keukenhof Buses Wheelchair-friendly?

The Keukenhof Express is designed to be accessible to all visitors since it is public transportation. It’s wheelchair-friendly, with a low-floor entry system for easy boarding. Each bus has places for two wheelchairs. Mobile scooters are not officially allowed, but I have seen them board. It depends on the driver.

The tour bus coaches like those from Tours and Tickets, and the transfer service from This is Holland will transport wheelchairs in the luggage hold, but they can’t be inside the seating area. You have to be able to take a few steps to get in. If this is a problem, travel with the Keukenhof Express instead.

Can I buy Keukenhof Combi tickets on the Bus?

No, starting in 2024, Keukenhof Park has implemented a time-slot system, requiring all visitors to book in advance. So, you’ll need to secure your entrance tickets online before you visit the park. The transit ride can be paid on board but will be more expensive than getting your combination in advance.

Can I use a GVB travel pass (like the GVB Day Ticket or the I amsterdam Card) in the Keukenhof Express?

No, the Keukenhof Express does not accept GVB travel passes. GVB is a transportation operator that serves Amsterdam only. Keukenhof, located in Lisse, is about 25 miles / 40 kilometers from Amsterdam. The Express buses are operated by Arriva, which is separate from GVB.

The only valid passes on these buses are Amsterdam & Region Travel Ticket, or OVpay (pay-as-you-go by contactless debit or credit card). However, OVpay is typically more expensive than a combination ticket or the Amsterdam & Region Travel ticket for most people.

Do Keukenhof Express buses stop along the way?

The Keukenhof Express and the transfer coaches are all direct services, meaning they do not make stops between the origin departure point and the Keukenhof. It’s as quick as traveling by car, without the hassle of driving and parking.

Can I visit Keukenhof Gardens directly from Schiphol Amsterdam Airport or Travel to Amsterdam first?

You can go directly from Schiphol Amsterdam Airport to the Keukenhof. The Keukenhof Express bus line 858 provides a direct service from the airport to the flower park, making your journey much quicker.

Can I Bring My Pet on the Bus?

Yes, small pets, are allowed on the bus (but not coaches). However, larger dogs might be refused entry if deemed too big. Dogs are required to fit on your lap and must not disrupt other passengers. 

The coaches will not allow pets.
In the Keukenhof Park itself, dogs are also permitted, but they must be kept on a leash at all times, and only one dog is allowed per person. Dogs are prohibited in indoor areas or restaurants within the park.

The only exception is guide dogs, which are permitted in all areas. It’s also important to remember that you are responsible for cleaning up after your dog.

Can I Travel with Luggage?

While you are technically allowed to bring luggage onto the Keukenhof Express buses, it’s generally not recommended because buses are often crowded. Large luggage items can be deeply uncomfortable to transport, and you might be refused entry if your luggage is too bulky. 

A much more comfortable and convenient solution would be to leave your luggage at a luggage locker at Amsterdam Central Station, at your accommodation, or at Schiphol Amsterdam Airport before you head to the park by bus. This way, you can experience the beauty of the flowers without the burden of heavy luggage.

What is the Tulip Festival Amsterdam?

For most people, it’s another way to refer to the Keukenhof.

Conclusion

Beautiful close up of tulip at the Keukenhof indoor display.
Beautiful close up of tulip at the Keukenhof indoor display – © Hidden Holland

With this extensive guide, you’re well-equipped, to make the right choice when visiting the amazingly beautiful gardens. I hope you’ll have an amazing time there no matter what you choose.

It’s such an easy day trip from Amsterdam that a Keukenhof day trip should be on every visitor’s to-do list when visiting the Netherlands during these few weeks in spring. Even though the park is not the same as the large flower fields, it is something different.

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Gerrit shares his love for the Netherlands from his home near Amsterdam, helping thousands plan unforgettable trips to the lowlands. Discover his inspiring journey "From a critical health scare to celebrating Holland's charms". If you want to send Gerrit a quick message, you can contact him here.

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