Floriade 2012 – A Theatre of Nature in Venlo

Floriade 2012 – World Horticultural Expo in Venlo – Netherlands:

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Photo Courtesy of Floriade 2012

Floriade 2012, the Netherland’s World Horticultural Expo is now open and takes place in Venlo from 5 April to 7 October 2012.

For lovers of garden and flower shows, this is an event to look forward to as Floriade only takes place once every 10 years.  And if you plan well, you can also link this to a visit to the Keukenhof springtime tulip festival.

About Floriade 2012

Covering 66 hectares of ground, the Floriade Park features five themed areas:

  •  environment
  • education & innovation
  • green engine
  • relax and heal
  • world show stage

There are more than 100 exhibitors showing off their horticultural talents and wares and plenty of events to cater to all ages and interests.

Floriade Cable Car

To get an orientation of the huge Floriade park and also to enjoy a bird’s eye view of the complex, be sure to buy your ticket with the gondola ride included.  Travelling a distance of 1.1 km and 30 metres above ground, the Floriade cable car is one of its unique attractions.

You can buy Floriade tickets online from their website.

How to Get to Floriade Venlo:

The Floriade grounds are very easy to reach by bus, car, air or train:

By Bus

AirExpress Bus is the official operator of the Floriade Express service and the good news is that service schedules and prices are now available.

Floriade Express from Amsterdam -

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Floriade 2012

There are daily departures from Amsterdam, early in the morning and returning in the evening. The Floriade Express leaves from  Amsterdam Central Station and Amsterdam Schiphol to the Floriade grounds in Venlo and back – travel time is between 2.5 – 3.0 hours each way.  You can make your Floriade Express bookings at Floriade Express Bus Here.

Floriade Express from other destinations -

The Floriade Express also departs from several other locations such as:

– Den Bosch
– Eindhoven Airport / Eindhoven Station
– Utrecht

For the complete list of Floriade Express stops and to make your bookings see Here.

Private Floriade Coach Tour from Amsterdam

A more comfortable way to get to Floriade is to join a guided tour from Amsterdam.  The cost of the tour includes return travel from Amsterdam to Venlo by airconditioned coach and your Floriade entrance fees.  During the journey, your guide will provide you with maps and other information about Floriade and then take you directly into the show on arrival.  To find out more about this Floriade tour and make bookings, see Here. 

By Road -

The Floriade Park is located at the intersection of the A73 and A67 motorways. The new A74, the road linking the German road network with the A73 at Venlo, will be open before the commencement of  Floriade.

By Train -

Visitors coming by train will alight at Venlo Railway Station and take a shuttle bus to the Floriade grounds.  For train schedule and fares check http://www.ns.nl/

By Air -

If you are flying into Venlo, the international airports that surround Venlo are Düsseldorf, Maastricht, Eindhoven and Weeze.

Venlo Hotels

If you are intending to make Venlo your base and fancy a room in a castle, the Bilderberg Château Holtmühle  is an authentic castle situated in Tegelen, (15.5km to Floriade) near the German border.

Other Venlo hotels include the Van der Valk Hotel (7.1km to Floriade), Hotel Puur in the old Venlo town centre, or if you prefer something close to Venlo Railway Station, the Hotel American (8.0 km to Floriade) is nearby and the Hotel Wilhelmina and Stationshotel Venlo are across from the train station.

Some may prefer to be based in other cities in Limburg and you can check out the Limburg hotels HERE.

Event : Floriade 2012
Venue: Floriade Park in Venlo
Dates  : April 5 – October 7, 2012

Website: www.floriade.com

Where is Floriade 2012:

How will you use this information to the fullest?

Comments

      • avatarCatherine Fruhauf says

        Thank you. I checked the route with and without high speed service and they are the same. A tour presenter her in USA says there is a train/bus/tram ? that goes from Amsterdam to Floriade and costs 5 euros, but I can find no such thing. I had strong doubts that a trip that far could cost so little, she didn’t have any more information. Are you aware of anything like that.
        We are looking at a trip for next April..

        • avatarRaoul Venlo says

          You have to take the train from amsterdam to Maastricht, in Eindhoven you have to take the train to Venlo. this is a 2hr ride and will cost you 42,20 euros.

          the 5 euro fare is the price for the shuttlebus between Venlo station and the floriade

  1. avatarMW Wallace says

    We are planning to visit Floriade in June 2012. This will be our first time ti visit the exhibition. How many days do you recommend planning to enjoy the exhibition? One day? One week?

    Thanks
    MW Wallace
    Texas, USA
    Mwallace@gt.rr.com

    • avatarRaoul Venlo says

      I think the best option is to combine the floriade with visits to Düsseldorf (very good airport destination) (30 min.), Maastricht (45 min.), Eindhoven (45 min.), Nijmegen (50 min.), Antwerp (1hr,15min.) Amsterdam (2hrs), Cologne (1hr)

  2. avatarIsaac says

    There will be a daily bus service between Amsterdam station and Floriade, its mentioned on this page, floriade express service. We phoned the tourist information and they are going to sell tickets for the bus and entrance fee included. The price will be at about 50 euro, for return and entrance fee. We do that next year

  3. avatarVirginia So says

    Hi! I am hoping to plan a trip to see Floriade and Keukenhof, and Amsteadam and maybe another pretty historical town as well. (friends from Canada are joining). Can you suggest a way of doing this please?

    Many thanks
    Virginia

  4. avatarGwen says

    We’ll be in Amsterdam around Sept 23-24. Do you think going to the Floriade in Sept. will be worth it?
    How will the gardens be in Sept?

  5. avatar says

    Hi Helen,

    The best way for you to get from Schiphol Airport to Venlo is by train. The train station is directly below the airport terminal complex. After you’ve collected your luggage you’ll exit onto Schiphol Plaza. There are escalators and elevators that will take you to the station’s platform. If you need assistance, the people at the information desks in Schiphol Plaza are very helpful.

    Below is an example of the train journeys from Schiphol to Venlo (I randomly chose a date and time). I suggest that you choose a trip that involves only 1 transfer. The Eindhoven transfer is easy, you only have to change from one platform to the other.

    http://www.ns.nl/reisplanner-v2/index.shtml

    http://www.travelsignposts.com/Netherlands/getting-around/venlo-railway-station

    Note: There is a Floriade Express shuttle from Schiphol to Venlo, but it leaves at 6 am and 8 am in the morning as the journey time is about 3 hours.

    I hope the above is helpful and have a great time at Floriade. Please feel free to share your Floriade experience here when you return.

    ————————————

    We are New Zealand traveling to Venlo in July and we arrive in Amsterdam airport at 3.30 and we have accommodation booked in Venlo are you able to tell me the best way to get there using public transport –

    thank you
    Helen Jackson

  6. avatarHelen Murray says

    To fully enjoy Floriade, do we need to plan for a few days or perhaps a week?
    Given the travel time between the site and Amsterdam, we would consider staying in the Venlo area for the time we would want for Floriade. We would visit Amsterdam and other areas after we are finished at Floriade.

    • avatar says

      Hi Helen,
      Floriade is a combination of horticultural show, educational and cultural programs and entertainment. How many days you need at Floriade depends on how deeply you want to immerse yourself in the Expo program. I suggest you have a detailed look at the Five Theme Worlds and get an idea of what you want to see and which ones you might give a miss.

      There’s 40 hectares of showgrounds and if your aim is to see everything, then you’ll need a few days. It also depends on fast you can get around.

      To give you an idea, according to past Floriade statistics, the average length of stay is 7 hours.

      As regards staying at Venlo, please note that it is only a small place and central hotels are likely to be fully booked. You’ll need to book way in advance for these hotels, or go a little further afield, in which case you may need a car.

      Regards,
      Helen

  7. avatarJohn says

    How will the Floriada cater for the disabled? In particular can I hire, preferably pre-booked, an electric buggy/chair to help me get around. If so, is there somewhere for me to safely store my walking frame? Will there be toilets for the disabled?

    • avatar says

      Hi John,

      Floriade has been working with the Disability Council of Venlo to make Floriade accessible to all. The first link below takes you to Floriade’s page explaining this.

      Kersten Revalidatietechniek is the company that is looking after the loan of wheelchairs, frames etc. to disabled visitors. The second link takes you to a page where you can book your scooter. The page is in Dutch so just hit the Translate button on the top right of your screen. I suggest that you book early as they do say that availability is subject to supplies.

      http://www.floriade.nl/bezoek-de-floriade/toegankelijkheid

      http://www.kerstenroermond.nl/floriadeenglish

      I hope you’ll have a great time at Floriade.

      Kind regards,
      Helen Page

    • avatarJohn says

      Hi Helen, thanks for your swift reply. However, neither my wife or I can find the translate button you mention above. Are we doing something silly?

      • avatarJohn says

        Sorry Helen, we were doing something silly. I have found it now on the ticket booking site rather than via the link in your e-mail.

        • avatarJohn says

          Helen, sorry to trouble you again. We have now got as far as booking our tickets thanks to your help. I believe I have reserved a scooter associated with my e-ticket. However, a further e-mail has arrived post reservation ass ociated with the entrance ticket.. This, again, is understandably in Dutch. Ever since I tried to unsuccesfully copy one of the links into Google my e-mail refusses to open any message from either the Floriade or scooter hire firm. I have no idea why and do not expect you to know either. However, do you have any odea what this ‘scooter e-mail’ might be saying? My guess is it is telling me the availability and presumable wanting payment for the hire. I know it is a long shot but do you have any idea as to the content or do you suggest I ring the hire company myself?

          • avatar says

            John,

            Not having seen your “scooter email”, I have no idea what it is and presume it must be a confirmation.

            Can I suggest that you:
            1. copy the below link into your browser. This takes you to Google Translate.
            2. copy the content of the “scooter email” into the translation box. Select translate from Dutch to English.

            http://translate.google.com/#nl|en|

            See if you can make sense of the email this way.

            Cheers,

          • avatarJohn says

            Wonderful, both you and the translater link. The e-mail says they will contact me to tell me about availability. Many, many thanks.

  8. avatarMaggie says

    Hello, I understand the parking is some distance from floriade and a shuttle bus is being provided. Can we park our motorhome in the parking and can I take my mobility scooter on the bus? thanks

    • avatar says

      Maggie,
      Munckhof are the official transport partners of Floriade and they are looking after the Car Park shuttles. I suggest you email them directly at : floriade@munckhof.nl.

      Floriade is supposed to be accessible to all and I am sure the Munckhof shuttle buses should be able to transport your mobility scooter. If not, you can always book a scooter through Kersten Revalidatietechniek, the company that is looking after the loan of wheelchairs, scooters, frames etc. to disabled visitors. http://www.kerstenroermond.nl/floriadeenglish

      Kind regards,
      Helen

  9. avatarPam says

    What is the best way to get to Venlo from Antwerp for the Floriade? Is it a local train? It looks like there is one that involves at least one transfer and takes three hours.

  10. avatarKai says

    Hi Helen,

    I’ve heard that there will be shuttle bus from Venlo Station to Floriade daily. Do you know the bus timings and how to buy the tickets?

    Thanks a lot!

    Kai

    • avatar says

      Hi Kai,

      Munckhof are the official transport partners of Floriade and they are looking after the Car Park shuttles. I don’t think you need worry about the bus schedules as there will be regular shuttles to transport visitors from Venlo Station to Floriade. You can buy the bus ticket when you are there. It’s only a few Euros.

      Enjoy your visit!
      Helen

  11. avatarroberts says

    Dear helen and tony

    Could you tell me is there any flower parade at floriade?
    I am going with a group of 18 people at 22apr
    Tks for your info
    Rgd

  12. avatarKate says

    Hi

    My Mum and her friend are due to visit in May, they are both in their 80’s. They both walk with sticks at a steady rate, but need plenty of rest breaks. Is there a train, or something simular available that they can travel around on inside the site that does drop offs/pick ups in the various areas they may be interested in?

    Thanks

    • avatar says

      Hi Kate,

      Apart from the cable car, which is a big feature of Floriade, I am not aware of any tourist train that will transport visitors within the Floriade park.

      What you can do is book mobility scooters for your mum and her friend and that will allow them to see more of the park. The Floriade organizers have done years of planning to make Floriade accessible to all, unfortunately a lot of that information is in Dutch. If your mum is agreeable with the mobility scooter idea, I know that some older people value their independence, I suggest that you book immediately as it is provided on an ‘availability basis’.

      The link below takes you to the booking page and you will receive an acknowledgment email, probably in Dutch. A few comments up from this, I’ve advised John on how to have his email translated in Google Translate.

      http://www.kerstenroermond.nl/floriadeenglish

      Kerstenroermond are the people looking after mobility aids for Floriade visitors and they will let you know if the equipment is available for the day of your travel.

      I hope the above helps.

      Kind regards,
      Helen

      • avatarJohn says

        Helen, with regard to the mobility scooter hire. The hire was simple, they expected me on the day and stored my rollator for me whilst I was in the park. A woman on the information desk informed my wife that scooters are not allowed on the cable car. Ignore this, they are allowed and the operatives help you get on easily (it is a tight fit).
        John

        • avatar says

          Great to hear that all went well in regard to your scooter. I can understand why they say that scooters are not allowed on the cable cars (in case of emergencies), but I’m glad that you got your way, got on and obviously enjoyed it.

          Are there any particular exhibits that you would especially recommend at Floriade? Did you enjoy the overall experience? There’s been a couple of comments complaining about the bad organization?

          Cheers,
          Helen

  13. avatarMary says

    How do you get to Floriade from Dusseldorf? The floriade express bus doesn’t give Dusseldorf as an option although it’s one of the nearest airports. Thanks for help. Mary

    • avatar says

      Hi Mary,

      BBA tours are the official transport partners for Floriade and on their website they say that they can organize private transfers from Dusseldorf International. See their AirExpressBus website http://www.airexpressbus.com and email them on info@airexpressbus.nl

      However, if the cost quoted is expensive, you can always catch the train from Düsseldorf Airport station to Venlo. The link below takes you to the Deutsche Bahn website.

      http://www.bahn.com/i/view/GBR/en/index.shtml

      Select FROM: Düsseldorf Flughafen Terminal TO: Venlo Station, Niederlande

      There are two trains that you can catch, the S1 and S11. S11 is easier as the train departs from the station that is just below the airport terminal. (Confirm this with the station staff when you’re there)

      The train goes to Düsseldorf Hbf where you have to change trains for Venlo. You have 12 minutes to make your transfer. From the DB website you can search for a trip that suits you and it also tells you the departure and arrival platforms.

      The fare for a return train journey is about Euros 26.20 and from Venlo Railway Station there is a regular shuttle transfer to Floriade that costs a few Euros.

      You can buy your train ticket at the airport station or online.

      Enjoy Floriade. P.S. What a lovely church you have.

      Kind regards,
      Helen

      • avatarJohn says

        Mary, we travelled to Venlo from Dussledorf airport. It was surprisingly easy. Given the other options available to travelling from Manchester it seemed the most complicated but as I said it was easy. John

  14. avatarRobert Sarpe says

    Six of us, from Belfast. visited the Floriade last weekend. What a disappointment , there was no colour, it lacked atmosphere, seemed to be ill planned. Little information provided about the so called individual projects. The world projects were certainly not of an international standard – visit the Spanish display and you will see what we mean. Fortunately we visited the beautiful Kerkenhoh – which was beautiful. We will certainly not be recommending to friends a visit to the Floriade.

    • avatar says

      Robert,
      Thanks for sharing your experience at Floriade and it’s a shame that you found it disappointing. I did read somewhere that because of the harsh winter, Floriade got off to a slow start in terms of the spring blooms. I hope you had the opportunity to provide feedback to them.
      Good to hear that you enjoyed Keukenhof.

      Kind regards,
      Helen

  15. avatarLesley Dixon says

    We have just returned from a visit to Floriade. What a huge disappointment !! The floral displays were very poor, signage and directions very bad, and you walk for miles to get between the exhibits, let alone from the car park to the bus, and from the bus to the entrance. Certainly not for the faint hearted. It is over commercialised with lots of very expensive but poor quality eating places and shops selling poor quality but expensive souveniers.It may be only once every 10 years, but I wouldn’t waste a day there. What a shame! especially when Keukenhof is so wonderful and a pleasure to visit.

    • avatar says

      Hi Lesley,
      Thanks for sharing your experience of Floriade and I’m sorry to hear that you found it disappointing. The Floriade Park is huge and perhaps it would have been a good idea to have “tourist trains” connecting the various theme parks.
      Floriade is a different concept to Keukenhof, which is undoubtedly the most beautiful park showing off the Netherlands’ spring blooms. Floriade is more than a floral show. The idea is that visitors to Floriade can learn about nature and find out about the importance of flowers, plants, trees, vegetables and fruit in our daily lives.
      We’re not due to visit till August, at which time we’ll be able to provide feedback on our experience.
      Regards,
      Helen

  16. avatarsandra hannan says

    Visited Floriade 1st June WHAT A HUGE DISAPPOINTMENT was so looking forward to what I though would be a mix of EDEN Project, Cheshire Show, Shrewsbury flower show it was absolutely nothing like (maybe the organisors could cross the channel and see how a real horticulural/flower show is done), there was no organisation everything was a hotch potch and EXPENSIVE, would not recommend anyone visit.

    • avatar says

      Thanks for sharing your experience Sandra. It’s a shame that you found the organization disappointing. I hope there was the opportunity to provide feedback at the show.

      Kind regards,
      Helen Page

  17. avatarKo says

    Can I buy the entrance ticket on the main entrance of Floriade instead of on-line?
    What is the time schedule for the shuttle bus from Venlo station and shoud I need to buy the ticket before or just at the bus station?

    • avatar says

      Hi Ko,

      Yes, you can buy your entry ticket at the main entrance, but you could possibly be standing in a long queue. It’s best to buy on-line and spend your time in Floriade rather than in a queue. You can buy on-line the day before you go if you’re not certain of your plans.
      If you are catching the Floriade Express from Amsterdam to Venlo, I recommend that you book in advance. As for the shuttle bus from Venlo station to Floriade you buy your ticket when you’re there. It’s only a few Euros. There are frequent shuttles between the Venlo station and Floriade and they’ve not published any timetables.
      I hope you enjoy Floriade.

      Kind regards,
      Helen

      • avatarKo says

        Hi Helen,

        Thank you for your information.
        I want to seek your advice as I can only have 5 hours staying inside the Floriade Park. Which areas that you will highly recommend me to see? And does it worthy to take ride on the cable car inside the park because I need to decide to buy the combine ticket (including both entrance and cable car fee) or not?

        Thanks a lot!
        Ko

          • avatar says

            Hi John,
            Welcome back. Did your Floriade visit go smoothly? Thanks for the input above. Perhaps you could share with Ko what you thought the best areas were.

            Kind regards,
            Helen

        • avatar says

          Hi Ko,
          As you’ll see from John’s comment “The cable car is an absolute must.” I agree with John’s recommendation. The Floriade Park is huge and the cable car ride gives you an aerial view of the whole park, which you won’t see at ground level. Since you’re only going to see it once, you might as well go for it.
          As for which areas are highly recommended – it’s a personal choice, depending on your interest. I’m only going to be there in August so I can’t speak from experience at this stage. But looking at the Floriade website, I know that there are quite a number of topics that I would like to see and experience such as under Relax & Heal (It’s a Tasty World which was very popular in Hongkong, Liggend rond het water, Relax in the City); under Environment (Footkiss for Butterflies, the Dome); under Education and Innovation (Bee for the World), etc. etc. I suggest you look at the Themes carefully and mark out the ones that you think you may be interested in.
          The average time that visitors spend at Floriade is 7 hours, so with your 5 hours you should be able to see plenty. As your time is limited, I would definitely suggest booking online.
          When are you going?

          Kind regards,
          Helen

          • avatarKo says

            Hi Helen,

            Thanks John ‘s information. I will go to the park on 11 July 2012. Any more recommendation?

            Ko

          • avatar says

            Ko, No more recommendation for Floriade except that:
            – if the weather looks grey, bring an umbrella or rain gear as there is no covered pathways between the exhibits
            – at the entrance gate ask them where you can get a big map of the park or at least familiarize yourself as to where the various themes are on the website map: http://www.floriade.com/map.html
            – consider taking a small snack with you if you don’t want to waste time stopping for food
            – just have a great time.

            Helen

  18. avatarLes Andrews says

    Hi Helen

    My wife and I will be visting Floriade on 11 July. I am taking my own mobility scooter and read that John managed to take his on the cable car despite being advised otherwise.
    Is the cable car ride a “round tip” or do you have to get off and queue again to return? If I cannot take my scooter on and it is a “round trip” I could probably manage. We would really like to do the ride and buy our tickets in advance. Alternatively can you pay extra for the cable car when you are inside the park?

    Many thanks Les

    • avatar says

      Hi Les,
      In a separate email to me, John advised “Scooters are more than welcome. There is a gate for the disabled to ease access onto the car” and “the operatives help you get on easily”.
      It’s best to buy your entrance and cable car combined ticket online to avoid having to queue at the Park. There is only one adult ticket type for the cable car so the ticket price is for the entire trip.

      John went on a rainy day and his feedback was “sitting on a scooter in the rain is like sitting in a puddle”.
      There’s not much shelter when you’re out and about so if it looks grey on July 11th, consider bringing your rain gear.

      Wishing you and your wife a great time at Floriade.

      Kind regards,
      Helen

    • avatarJohn says

      Helen, we bought our tickets on line but when we tried to use the return were told that we only had a single so had to queue. We may have had another piece of paper for the return but just wanted to get out of the rain. You would have to be very unluck to have as much rain as we did but yes I’d advise taking rain gear.

  19. avatarSunitha says

    I am traveling to Floriades How much would a cab charge to take me to Bilderberg de Mollen hotel from Dusseldorf intl airport?

  20. avatar says

    Ko, it’s very simple.

    First, hit the Order tickets button
    Step 1 – Select your tickets:
    Select Entrance+Cable Car Adult – € 30,00 – Select the number of tickets (i.e. how many of you are travelling). Then hit the orange button + Basket.
    Step 2 – Basket:
    Check that you’ve selected the right number of tickets. If so, hit the orange button Complete Your Order
    Step 4: Payment
    Enter your payment details. Tick Yes and Yes to the terms of payment and privacy policy. Then hit the Please continue your payment button.
    Next screen – select your credit card type
    Next screen – fill in your credit card details
    Then hit Submit.
    That’s it.

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