Holland, Michigan is famous for its Tulip Festival and I 100% understand why that is. The Holland Tulip Festival has been held for over 90 years and is the largest Tulip Festival in the country. Every year in early May the city of Holland decorates the city with millions of tulips. I actually heard about it for the first time in 2018 and went there with my Johannes and my brother. This year I decided to do another day trip to Holland and visit a different farm this time.
Best time to visit the Holland Tulip Festival
Tulips are usually starting to bloom in late April or early May. The Holland Tulip Festival is usually held at the beginning of May. In fact, the dates for next year’s Tulip Festival are already published. It will be held from 7-15 May 2022 but you can also visit the town before and after those dates. There is even a Tulip Tracker that you can use to track the blooming process of the tulips.
Attractions of the Holland Tulip Festival
The Holland Tulip Festival is perfect for families, singles, couples and groups. There are plenty of activities and events during the festival and there is simply something for every age group. Check out the Show & Events to get an overview about all the activities.
Which Tulip Farms to visit
Here is a list of locations around Holland where tulips are planted and where you can take amazing photos when visiting Holland. Keep in mind that some of these attractions come with admission whereas others are free.
WINDMILL ISLAND GARDENS
During spring you can admire more than 100,000 tulips in bloom throughout the Gardens which makes this place so beautiful. In addition to that, there is also the only authentic Dutch windmill operating in the United States. You can even enter the windmill and admire the views from the top of the windmill.
I highly recommend visiting the Windmill Island Gardens since this place is probably the closest you will get to a tulip field like in the Netherlands. But do not expect to find huge fields of tulips like you can find them in Europe. But the Windmill Island Gardens definitely give you a little bit of the vibe of Europe.
Make sure to visit early and during a weekday if you want to avoid crowds and have better lighting for photos. The tulip festival gets extremely crowded, especially during the weekends.
Opening Hours: April – October from 9:30AM – 6PM
During Tulip Time: 9AM to 7PM
Address: 1 Lincoln Avenue Holland, MI 49423
Admission fee: 10$ for adults and 5 $ for children (3-15)
VELDHEERS TULIP FARM
The Veldheer Tulip Farm is another fun spot to visit during spring. I have been here in 2018 and had so much fun exploring the farm. It has been open since 1929, with over five million beautiful tulips planted each year. You can even find other flowers like daffodils, hyacinths, and crocus during the time of the festival. This farm has definitely its own charm with windmills, a drawbridge, and canals that have cherry blossom trees.
Opening Hours: April – October from 10AM – 4PM
During Tulip Time: 10AM to 7PM
Address: 12775 Quincy Street, Holland MI 49423
Admission fee: 15$ for adults and 8 $ for children (3-13)
NELIS’ DUTCH VILLAGE
I have not been to Neli’s Dutch Village myself but heard great things about it. As the name already reveals it is inspired by a typical Dutch village. Strolling around this park will make you feel like you are actually wandering around Europe with the Dutch-style buildings and a canal like in Amsterdam. Tulips are planted all around the village but if you want to see more tulips I would suggest the Veldheer Tulip Farm or the Windmill Island Garden.
Opening Hours: April – October from 10AM – 5PM
Address: 12350 James Street, Holland MI 49423
Admission fee: 14$ for adults and 12 $ for children (3-15)
WINDOW ON THE WATERFRONT PARK
Another great spot that we were actually not able to visit is the Waterfront Park. Apparently this is a hidden gem for photographers to escape crowds. Would definitely put it on my list for next time.
Address: 110 Columbia Ave., Holland MI 49423
The tulip lanes can be found all around the town and it was so fun hunting them back in 2018. There are six miles of curbside plantings, most of which can be found in the historic district. The most picturesque areas feature cherry, crab, and plumb trees along Washington Ave. and 12th St. boulevards.
Another great spot to admire some tulips and snap a couple of photos is Centennial park and the park has no admission fee. You can wander around the park as long as you want and will find plenty of photo opportunities. If you want a shot with a row of multiple tulips though, you should visit one of the farms.
Address: 250 Central Avenue, Holland MI 49423
How much time to plan for your visit
I have only done day trips from Chicago to Holland since it is only a 2 h drive. You can easily spend a weekend at the Holland Tulip Festival, especially when you want to see several farm and explore the town as well.
If you are looking for other locations during spring in the USA, check out my blogpost about Best spring photo locations in Chicago.