As the song goes, “Spring is here at laaaaast! Dreary winter’s paaaast!!”
For those of you lucky enough to be considering a Spring getaway, why not check out my list of top spring destinations featured in issue 12 of Status Magazine.
PUT A SPRING IN YOUR STEP
As winter finally loosens her icy grip and the frost thaws, the warmer days yawn and stretch into life gently awakening the first buds of spring from their solitary slumber. The itch to get outside and shake off the weary winter blues can inspire even the sleepiest of hibernating homebodies and with summer still a distant mirage, spring is often considered the best season to travel and catch nature at its most vibrant. The scent of blossoming flowers and the wonder of new life are some of the season’s signature pleasures and as nature bursts into bloom all over the world, there is no better time to indulge in a little wanderlust with our top spring destinations.
Keukenhof Gardens, The Netherlands
Never has there been a sight more emblematic of spring than blooming tulips, and the Keukenhof Gardens in Holland are one of the best places to see more than seven million buds in all their glorious splendour. Open from March to May, the Gardens host various shows, parades and an annual flower festival with tulips, daffodils and hyacinths filling over 32 hectares with colour and fragrance. There is no better way to wander through the tulips than by bike, or take a boat trip around the park to enjoy all the enchanting events and activities on offer.
Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park, Japan
Home to Japan’s iconic Mount Fuji, Fuji-Hakone-Izu is the country’s most visited national park boasting waterfalls, hot springs, volcanic islands and deep lakes. In late March, cherry blossom season begins and plum trees across the region start to bloom. A scattering of pink trees can be seen all over the slopes, among the hot springs and along the shores of Lake Ashi and travellers can catch a peak of the majestic crown of Mount Fuji through pale-lavender and rose-coloured branches in the park. Other major attractions include the Aoikigahara ‘sea of trees’, the pure spruce forest, active volcanoes and the Japanese Dormouse.
Yosemite National Park, USA
Covering an area of 761,268 acres Yosemite National Park is internationally recognised for its rushing waterfalls, clear streams, spectacular granite cliffs, Giant Sequoia groves and biological diversity. During the warm days and cool evenings of April, May and June, travellers can enjoy fields of blooming flowers, fish for rainbow trout and spot herds of bighorn sheep. The first sign of spring starts with the Snow Plant, a fungus plant with a striking red stalk, while California poppies, goldfields, meadow foam and redbud flower in the foothills and through the Merced River Canyon. The big crowds don’t descend on the park until the summer, making spring the perfect time to catch the glorious array of Yosemite’s wildlife at its best.
The Halle Forest, in Flemish Brabant, also known as The Blue Forest, is widely renowned for its bluebell carpet which covers all 1,360 acres of the forest floor each spring. The bluebells thrive under the beech trees of the Hallerbos and the forest is rich in other plant-life including the cup-shaped wood sorrel, the star-shaped white flowers of ramsons and lily of the valley. In spring, wrens and nuthatches fill the air with birdsong and red squirrels, buzzards and other wildlife flock to the clearings. The Museum of the Hallerbos is another highlight of this beautiful place and there are trails not only for walkers, but also for cycling and horseback riding as well.
Known as the ‘City of Roses’, the town of Portland in Oregon is home to dozens of unique parks and gardens that bloom with botanical beauty in springtime. The Portland Rose Festival runs from mid-May through to Mid-June, featuring flower shows, parades, fireworks and food. The most popular park is the International Rose Test Garden, which features 65 rose variants. Other rose gardens surrounding the area include Avery Park Rose Garden in Corvallis, Heirloom Roses in St. Paul, Esther Short Park in Vancouver and Owen Rose Garden in Eugene.