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Holland

The Limmen Flower Show

 

The Dutch go bananas over tulips, which blossom in late April - early May.  Several towns stage shows where neighbors compete on elaborate displays made of flowers.  Limmen (in North Holland, about 50 km N from Amsterdam, 10 km S of Akmaar) is one of those towns, and here are photos of the their flower show on our visit in 2004.

 

Tulip Lane

 

Wooden shows

 

Citizens of Limmen touring their flower show (many on bicycles).  The right picture shows the Queen (made of flowers of course).

 

A Limmen display.  Many contain political or social messages.

 

Left: On one Limmen block the neighbors did variations on the "Tulips in jeans" theme.  Right: these pretty cheese gals where giving out cheese samples next to a flower display about Akmaar ("the cheese town").

 

 

No. 1 THING_TO_DO in Holland is leisurely biking in the countryside [***].   There are biking paths and trails everywhere and fact more bikes than cars.  Bike are cheap to rent.  Many railroad stations have bike rentals right within or nearby.  So a typical day adventure may be:  pick a destination, buy a round-trip train ticket, take a train ride, rent bike.  Above:  Fishermen on canal, photographed from the bike path.  Below: bike path into the sand dunes.

 

 

What to do near Limmen

 

Among the attractions in the vicinity of Limmen:  biking along canals, windmills, walking/jogging/biking on the coast trail, Akmaar ("the cheese town"), and lovely villages.    

 

The famous Indonesian "rijstafel" meal is popular throughout Holland and a very very good place to experience this feast is at the intimate family-owned restaurant Ropaja [$$], Vrouwenstreaat 16, in Alkmaar. 

 

Our favorite "picture village" is Driehuizen [**].  The more famous picture village, De Rijp is 5 kilometers away (as the crow flies) and overrun by tourists.

 

Amsterdam is a 30 minute train ride.  Trains run frequently.  Trams from Amsterdam Central take you to all points in the city.

 

 

A "Must Do" Dutch thing: eating raw herring [**].  Here our friend (and Limmen citizen) Mirjam is demonstrating the proper technique.