love spring more than almost everything else in life. And one of the reasons I love it so much is a transplanted Dutch phenomenon here in the Fraser Valley – Tulips!
I love tulips so much that they are easily one of my favourite flowers. So, when the good people of the Fraser Valley took it upon themselves to perfect growing these seasonal beauties, AND THEN opened their fields up for us to frolic in, I was beyond overjoyed.
For the last three years I have made the short pilgrimage from Surrey to Abbotsford or Chilliwack to savour in the short season of the tulip. With my kids, husband or friends in tow, enjoying a few hours at the Tulip Festival is truly something I look forward to each spring.
But like all wonderous and popular things, attending the Tulip Festival is not without its challenges. Rain, crowds, heat and toddler meltdowns are all things worth enduring to take in the colourful beauty of the tulip fields. And if you plan accordingly, there’s no reason that any of these obstacles should prevent you from experiencing a magical adventure.
Even if the rain has stopped and the sun is shining, trust me, the fields that house the tulips are still on the muddy side. April showers do bring May flowers. And even if the sun has dried up all the rain, your kids are sure to find the three-remaining foot-deep muddle puddles and jump in them.
A Change of Clothes
And if they’re going to jump in mud puddles, they have the childlike potential of falling into said puddles. You’re out in nature. It’s spring. Dirt happens. Ride home in comfort without the crusty pants and wet socks.
Sunscreen and A Hat
Just because it’s has been a wet month doesn’t mean that the sun can’t make an appearance eventually. When you least expect it, the clouds will part, the wind will die down, and those UV rays will be out to get you. Protecting your skin is important and sunburn is not the souvenir you’re looking to take home with you.
While most ticket booths and vendors will now accept credit or debit cards, cash is still king at festivals. Whether it’s your entrance fee, lunch from a food truck, or purchasing cut flowers to take home, having some cash on hand is always a great idea. Particularly if the kids suddenly need a hot dog or a stroopwaffle.
My kids are ten, eight, and one, and one of them is always hungry. And I don’t mind allowing them a treat from an on-site food truck from time to time, but I like to come prepared. To appease a hangry toddler, we make sure to travel with a well stocked diaper bag full of granola bars, cheese strings and squeezy pouches.
Your Phone and Camera
This is why you’re there! Snap those pics! All around the fields are opportunities to stop, take in the magnificent beauty of the fields, and get that Instagram worthy shot. Make it fun and the kids will not mind posing in front of the variety of tulips, wood cut-outs and giant clogs.
The festivals draw in a lot of out of town visitors and so they should. These tulips need to be seen. Be sure to plan enough time to take in all that the festival has to offer, bring a little bit of patience for yourself, your kids and everyone else enjoying the tulips, and revel in the beauty that spring has brought us.
Hours: 9:00am to 7:30pm
Hours: 10:00am to 7:00pm