If you love cherry blossoms (who doesn’t!?), you should definitely check out the cherry blossom park in the Amsterdam Forest (Amsterdamse Bos)! In this post, we’ll explain when the cherry blossoms bloom and how to get to the Amsterdam Forest to see the cherry blossom trees.
The cherry blossom park
The cherry blossom park (kersenbloesempark in Dutch) is a beautiful area in the Amsterdam Forest, with 400 cherry blossom trees. In Japanese culture, the cherry blossom tree represents a new beginning, but also the fragility of life. These trees were a gift to Amstelveen from the Japan Women’s Club. A fun detail: all trees are named. 200 trees have a Japanese women’s name and 200 trees have a Dutch women’s name.
The blooming period of the cherry blossoms
Cherry blossoms have a short blooming period and usually bloom in the early weeks of Spring. The cherry blossoms in the Amsterdam Forest bloom from the end of March until the start of April, but the exact period depends on the weather conditions. It usually lasts around two weeks. We visited the park on the 31st of March (in 2019), and the blossoms were in their peak bloom, although the wind was already blowing some blossoms of off the trees.
What to do at the cherry blossom park
A typical Japanese thing to do is celebrate the coming of Spring, by having a picnic under the cherry blossom trees with friends and family. You can see many people doing exactly this at the cherry blossom park.
Of course, you can also just take photos of all the beautiful cherry blossom trees! This is what we did. If you’re there to take photos and you want to be alone in your shot, you have to get there early! The park gets crazy crowded by the end of the morning. We got there on a Sunday morning around 09.30 and there were already quite some people in the park. We still managed to get lots of photos with hardly anyone in the background, but by the time we left, at 11.00, it was so much more crowded. We’ve seen photos taken in the afternoon and we’re pretty sure there were more people than trees on those photos!
How to get to the Amsterdam Forest
Even though it’s called the Amsterdam Forest, it’s not exactly in Amsterdam. The Amsterdam Forest is in Amstelveen, which is a city nearby Amsterdam. We got to the Forest by car, which was a one-hour drive for us. From Amsterdam it’s a 20-30 minute drive to the Amsterdam Forest, so it’s actually pretty close. There are multiple small parking areas around the Forest and there’s also a large parking area at the main entrance. We parked our car at one of the small parking areas which was close to the cherry blossom park, click here for the location. The small parking areas are always free of charge. Click here to see all the parking areas in the Amsterdam Forest.
During the cherry blossom season there are signs indicating where to park your car to visit the cherry blossoms. These signs lead to the parking area at the main entrance. Parking at the main entrance is free on the weekends, and from Monday to Friday only the first three hours are free. After the first three hours it’s € 0,35 for every 15 minutes. Please note that the main entrance is not close to the cherry blossom park, so you’ll have to walk a bit if you enter here.
By public transport
The easiest way to get to the cherry blossom park by public transport from Amsterdam, is to take the train from Amsterdam Central Station to Schiphol Airport. At Schiphol Airport take bus 186 heading to Amstelveen and get out at the Raadhuis/Dorpsstraat stop in Amstelveen. From here it’s a 10-minute walk to the cherry blossoms. Click here to check the route.
Have you been to the cherry blossoms in the Amsterdam Forest or is it still on your bucket list? Let us know in the comments below!
Be sure to check out more of our visual experiences on Instagram!