Holland, Michigan, that is! Believe me, it's on my bucket list to visit The Netherlands during tulip season, but for now, Holland, Michigan was a happy and not-too-distant get-away! My friend Lara Joy and I drove to Michigan on Saturday in pouring rain (thank you, Lara Joy for your expert driving) and met our friend, Bryan, who had organized a photowalk in Holland for May 1st with the West Michigan Photographers Alliance. The Holland Tulip Festival runs May 7-14 but we planned the photowalk the weekend before to avoid the usual crowds. Luckily, the tulips were fully in bloom.
Sunday morning dawned and it was still raining, but miraculously the rain stopped just in time for our walk. It was a cold, cloudy day but as a tulip enthusiast, I was more absorbed in what I was photographing than paying attention to the cold. We walked among various parks in Holland, filled with beautiful tulips in full bloom and covered with raindrops. Holland is a quaint town with a beautiful historic district. I'd like to go back and explore the town more. There were tulips everywhere - lining the streets, in the medians, in the parks, in people's yards. After a couple of hours of photographing in town we headed to Veldheer, a fabulous tulip farm a few miles away. Oh my! I was in my happy place, surrounded by tulips of every variety and color in every direction you look - fields and fields of them, and oddly enough, a field of bison, too! It was a bit overwhelming to know where to start. We spent about two hours roaming from tulip bed to tulip bed, kneeling down to shoot one perfect tulip after another. Two hours was not enough; I could easily spend a whole day, two days at this place. For the $10 admission into the gardens, it was well-worth the price. The gift shop was fun to visit, too - beautiful delftware pottery and wooden shoes made and sold there. Below are a number of my raindrop-covered images from the day. Many more to process!