Floraholland Aalsmeer Is The Largest Flower Auction Centre in the World:
Aalsmeer is a city just 10 km south of Amsterdam Schiphol Airport. Aalsmeer’s claim to fame is that it is the largest flower auction centre in the world. With its massive auction complex and surrounded by numerous nurseries, Aalsmeer is also sometimes called “The Flower Capital of the World”.
Holland is the largest commercial centre for flowers and plants in the world. The Aalsmeer auction complex is one of the six operated by FloraHolland, a cooperative of 6,000 flower growers. The Aalsmeer auction complex houses businesses that trade and export flowers and decorative plants. Although it is set up for processing and distributing large quantities of products quickly and efficiently, the Aalsmeer centre also has a Cash & Carry for smaller buyers.
For visitors, the flower auctions make for a fascinating experience. From a gallery, visitors will be dazzled by the sea of flowers stretching as far as the eye can see. The flowers and plants are auctioned at thirteen clocks in five auction rooms. Bidding is by Dutch auction which starts with a high price which works its way down. The clock dial counts down from 100 to 1 and as the number decreases so does the price of the auction lot. The first bidder to buzz in stops the clock and secures the lot at that price.
The FloraHolland auction is open to the public from Monday to Friday between 7.00 and 11.00 am with trading peaking before 9 am. So its worthwhile getting there early to see the best of the action. At the end of the visit there’s the possibility of buying something from their souvenir shop.
For those who want to learn more about the history of flower-cultivation in Aalsmeer, you can visit the Aalsmeer Historical Gardens, where you’ll find a replica of an auction room complete with original 1930s auction clock. On auction days visitors too can bid for lovely bunches of roses from the garden. The trick is not get carried away and pay too much.
There is a € 5.00 fee for visiting the auction centre or for € 13.00 you’ll get to visit the Historical Gardens as well.
How to Get to Aalsmeer by Public Transport
Aalsmeer can be easily reached by bus from various cities. The bus interchange in Aalsmeer is called Hortensiaplein.
From Amsterdam Zuid Station, the 171 to Kudelstaart goes through Aalsmeer; from Amsterdam Centraal catch the 172 to Kudelstaart; from Amsterdam Schiphol Airport catch the 188, 198 or N72.
For journey details, see the journey planning website www.9292.nl and www.connexxion.nl.
1430 BA Aalsmeer
Tel: +31 (0)297 – 39 39 39
Website: www. floraholland.com
Map of Aalsmeer: