The Train to Leiden

.
SGMT | Train to Leiden | Tulip fields
.
The plan, originally, was to spend three days in Amsterdam and leave for Paris on the 27th. This was April so we were thrilled we’d be able to join in the King’s Day festivities before having to depart. However, when we looked up tickets for the Thalys, we realized we had to rethink our schedule. Amsterdam at Koningsdag would be chaotic, which was something we already knew and even sort of looked forward to — but apparently that also meant that, for safety purposes, no international trains would be allowed to arrive at or depart from Amsterdam Centraal station.

Change of plans.

Since we were planning to see the Keukenhof Gardens on the 26th anyway, we decided to leave Amsterdam one day early and spend a night in Leiden.

.

SGMT | Train to Leiden | Amsterdam Centraal
At Amsterdam Centraal

.

So there we were, on the train to Leiden.

The scenery outside the window was pretty humdrum at first. Houses, modern windmills, bit of countryside.

.

.

.

But then a swath of color…

.

SGMT | Train to Leiden | Tulip fields

.

And another…

.

SGMT | Train to Leiden | Tulip fields

.

And another.

.

SGMT | Train to Leiden | Tulip fields

.

And before we knew it, tulip fields in all their blazing glory were parading outside like a color punch in the eye.

.

SGMT | Train to Leiden | Tulip fields

.

Some rows were still green and some just starting to blossom. Many, though, were already in full bloom.

.

.

.

There’s quite a bit of luck involved if you want to catch tulips in bloom. The general period is April to early May but it all depends on the weather — if it’s colder, the flowers will come out later. The last week of April is a relatively safe bet, though, and that’s exactly when we were travelling from Amsterdam to Leiden.

.

SGMT | Train to Leiden | Tulip fields

.

Almost looks unreal, doesn’t it?

Notes:

  • You can check train times and fares at NS.nl. The journey from Amsterdam to Leiden will take 37 minutes and cost €9.10 per person. Starting 2018, you can buy tickets online.
    .
  • For children under 12, there’s a Railrunner ticket (€2.50) that gives them unlimited travel all over the Netherlands for a single day. The lady at the train station automatically gave us that for H but it’s worth keeping in mind if you’re purchasing tickets from the machine or online.
    .
  • There are no cheap advance fares for trains within the Netherlands so there’s no difference in fare whether you buy a ticket online or at the station. However, if you buy a single ticket at the station, you are charged an extra €1 for the single-use OV-Chipkaart. The NS website says as much: “An e-ticket is 1 euro cheaper than a ticket from a vending machine!” So, if you can commit to a specific time for your train journey, you can save a euro by buying online. (And there are a lot of things you can do with a spare euro!)
    .
  • You really should go see Keukenhof at least once in your life but if you’re also after tulip fields, get on a train to Hillegom. There are fields right outside the station.

.

.

Just gorgeous.

.

.


Klook.com

.

.



5 thoughts on “The Train to Leiden”

Share your thoughts!


%d bloggers like this: