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National Tulip Day makes for a colourful splash in Amsterdam

Thousands of people gathered in Amsterdam in the Netherlands on Saturday to celebrate the country's national flower the tulip.

For the occasion, tulip growers created a colourful garden made up of 200,000 colourful buds in Museumplein square, inspired by a detail of Johannes Vermeer's painting 'Mistress and Maid'.

The flower takes its name from Johannes Vermeer’s painting, 'Girl with a Pearl Earring'.

Dutch skater Irene Schouten who is the daughter of top tulip producer, Klaas Schouten, was the special guest on the day. She won the gold medal by breaking the 20-year Olympic record with a time of 3:56.93 in the women's 3,000m speed skating event at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.

National Tulip Day is usually held on the third Saturday of January and attracts both professional and amateur gardeners as well as hundreds of snap-happy digital content creators every year.

"It's great, it's a great place to be. A lot of flowers, happy people. Perfect!" said one of the attendees, Jan Willem.

It's our first time. My friend told me about it, and waiting in line was totally worth it. It’s really nice, we love flowers and what a way to spend a Saturday, right?" said visitors Veronica Manzano and Rosanna Segrettan.

Over the season, Dutch producers grow between 1.7 and 1.9 billion tulips, which are exported to more than 100 countries worldwide.

The nearby Rijksmuseum, or National Museum, will host a Vermeer exhibit opening on Feb. 10, 2023, bringing together 27 of his paintings.


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