One of the things I was really looking forward to upon moving to the Pacific Northwest was the tulip festivals. Maybe it’s not as exotic as going to see the spring tulips in Holland, but from all of the photos I have seen of the ones here, they are impressive in their own rights.
To the north of Seattle, multiple tulip farms host the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival. I couldn’t visit this spring, but it’s on my to-do list, perhaps next year if the timing is right. To the south of Portland, the Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm hosts their own tulip festival. This one is more accessible to me, and very easy for a short day trip, so I hopped in my car and went there a couple of weeks ago on the first 70-degree day in Portland in 2014.
Let me set the scene for you. You drive along country roads with farms on either sides of you; there was green as far as the eyes could see. You start to wonder if this tulip farm will live up to its famous photographs because, other than a few flowers here and there in front of people’s houses, there aren’t any fields of colors in sight. Finally, you reach the Wooden Shoe Farm, where you enter through an unpaved road into their parking lot. Still no tulips. You pay your entrance fee, and are told that you can park immediately to the left of the entrance or take the road to the tulip field. Well, of course I drove straight to the tulip field. And then the colors show up all at once, and you wonder why you even doubted it in the first place.