"Truly, a kaleidoscope of colours with a cocktail of scents which was unforgettable."
Edward & Jennifer
Our drivers, Stuart and Mike, led us smoothly through the busy Reception area.Entering the Park, the catchy sounds of the welcoming fairground organ played in the background and ahead lay 32 hectares of Tulips, hyacinths, daffodils, crocus’ and many other flowers. The plots were different shapes and sizes. Truly, a kaleidoscope of colours with a cocktail of scents which was unforgettable.
Dutch artists are renowned for the treatment of light and shade. At Keukenhof, the designer exploits these with the plantings; especially, in the wooded areas. Add legendary skilled management of land and water, and the result is a palate of success in English landscape style.
In addition, the seven Inspirational gardens provide professional and amateur alike with ideas and trends for the future. Each year, there is an international theme, particularly highlighted with a large floral mosaic outside, with displays in the indoor pavilions. To maximise the visit, we ate our main meal, early, at mid-day. The food and service was good. Later, we found adequate snack stations throughout the Park; where you can enjoy a drink and great bite sized Dutch caramel waffle with cream!
The Floralia in the grounds of the 17th century castle of Groot Bijgaarden near Brussels, is Belgium’s tribute to spring. Access to the castle is by bridge over a flooded moat. Tulips and many other bulbs and flowers including, azaleas and rhododendrons are set in 14 hectares. The lay-out is relaxed and spacious. Some judged the indoor glasshouse, with 150 highly imaginative floral displays, as another highlight of the tour.
The optional excursion to Brussels and Antwerp provided a good balance. We find these extras add to the overall enjoyment of the tour. The vibrant life of the Grand Place in Brussels, with its historic buildings and bustling side streets with specialist shops, was invigorating.
A visit to the statue of Maniken Pese was a must, usually he wears a decorated cape-just over his shoulders.
We also had time to people watch, with a glass of classic Flemish beer with local sausage and mash, it was good.
On our morning visit to Antwerp, we decided to make time to visit the Cathedral to view the world famous collection of Reuben’s paintings dating from the early 1600’s.These great works of art are as fresh as the day they were painted.
We liked Ghent with its ornate, medieval guild houses along the canal system. This afternoon excursion gave us time to see the many historic buildings, cobbled streets and lanes but Ghent also has the atmosphere of a modern lively, hospitable city.
The Novotel, at Mechelen, is central. The hotel is modern and very clean and the staff are efficient, and friendly. The menu is limited, but good. The town has a choice of eateries and dining out allowed time to mix with our new found friends.
Our team, Stuart and Mike, were brilliant from the moment we boarded at Dover. We had a clean coach daily and were kept fully informed at all times in a friendly and relaxed way. Beverage service, and timely stops were excellent. We love Silver Service for the extra leg-room.
Yes, another great holiday to add to the several we have enjoyed with Leger and we have booked another tour at Christmas because with Leger we feel part of a family.