July Online Exclusive Sale! Book Online For Savings On EVERY Online Bookable Cruise This Month Only!*

Best Places in the World to See the Flowers Bloom

As we enter spring, the weather starts to get warmer, flowers bloom, and we can spend more time outside, which can feel really uplifting.

Cities all around the world are home to famous flower festivals, making them the perfect travel destination for spring. If this sounds like something you’d love to experience, then read on, as we’ve looked at major festivals, alongside the search volume they get, social media sentiment, the number of observed flower species and more, to uncover the best places to see the flowers bloom. 

And, if you already know where you want to go, make sure you take a look at our range of cruise deals, to get a great deal with us.

Best Places in the World to See the Flowers Bloom Index

1. Tulip Festival, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Amsterdam’s annual Tulip Festival makes it into first place for seeing the flowers bloom, with more than 85 locations home to colourful tulips – whether you choose to stay in Amsterdam and admire the public gardens and museums; or travel 30 minutes outside to see fields of tulips.

June is officially the best time to see the flowers in Amsterdam, with 9.5 hours of sunlight a day on average. The festival also has the most number of social media mentions, at an impressive 59,050; as well as the joint third highest search volume (6,600), and the fourth highest number of observed flower species, at 1,671 – including lily-flowered, fringed, and viridiflora tulips; all of which you can enjoy on one of our cruises in the Netherlands.

2. Calla Lily Festival, Taipei, Taiwan

Taipei’s pretty Calla Lily Festival comes in second place - which you can visit on one of our Far East cruises - with a 97% positive sentiment score on social media, alongside the highest search volume of all the other festivals on our list, at 9,900 every month.

The festival runs from late March through to late April at Yangmingshan National Park; with the nearby Bamboo Lake home to over 45 calla lily farms. For that reason, if you want to see the flowers bloom here, the best time of the year to visit is April, where you’ll get to see 1,426 different flower species.

3. National Cherry Blossom Festival, Washington DC, USA

Taking place from 20th March – 14th April, Washington DC’s Cherry Blossom Festival kicks off with an opening ceremony featuring the Japan Foundation, with events happening throughout the month including the festival parade, and Petalpalooza, featuring live music and fireworks.

The National Cherry Blossom Festival ranks highly for several reasons: not only does it have the second highest search volume and social media mentions, at 8,100 and 32,410 respectively; but it’s also home to the third most observed flower species, at 1,673. The best time to visit is in April, with 8.8 hours of sunlight a day on average, and 86mm of rainfall a month.

4. Girona Flower Festival, Girona, Spain

With 2,646 observed flower species, and a 94% positive sentiment score on social media, Girona Flower Festival comes a well-deserved fourth place. Held for a week in May (which is also, coincidentally, the peak month for visiting), it takes place in the Barri Vell district, where the streets are lined with plants and flowers.

5. Canadian Tulip Festival, Ottawa, Canada

Rounding up our top five places to watch the flowers bloom is the Canadian Tulip Festival in Ottawa, with 6,600 monthly searches on Google, and 16,980 social media mentions.

Taking place on the 10th-20th May 2024, there are tons of things to do throughout the 10 days, including movies in the park, and the nightly blacklight boardwalk, where you’ll get to see flowers through the eyes of butterflies and bees.

Best flower festivals to visit in the USA

The National Cherry Blossom Festival scores the best in the USA, but the states featured six times throughout our list; with Biltmore Blooms in eighth place, Rochester Lilac Festival in 11th, Holland, Michigan’s Tulip Festival in 16th, Skagit Valley Tulip Festival in 20th, and the Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival in 20th.

Between the six of them, it’s North Carolina’s Biltmore Blooms that has the most positive social media sentiment score, at 91%; with Skagit Valley falling in last place, at just 15%. If you want to visit any of these, April – July are the best times to visit, and you could even do a mini tour of them, with one of our North American cruises.

Europe features eight times on our list; with Floralia Brussels in sixth place, The Garden of Versailles in seventh, Derry’s Springhill in ninth, and Italy’s Infiorata Flower Carpet Festival in 10th. And, except for Brussels, all of them scored 100% positivity for social media sentiment – the only three to score so highly.

Outside of the USA and Europe, other destinations of note include Shibazakura Festival in Japan, South Korea’s daffodil covered mountain at Yugibang Gaok, and the Tulip Festival in India. For a sunny experience, Srinagar in India is your best bet, with 12.2 hours of sun a day on average; followed by Holland, Michigan, at 11.2 hours.

While most of the destinations have peak months of spring and early summer, if you’re looking for a winter escape, then you might want to consider the Chiang Mai Flower Festival, which is most popular in December, and has 879 observed flower species.

So, if you’ve been waiting all winter to watch the flowers bloom, make sure you book onto one of our cruise ships so you can visit at least one of these festivals, and celebrate the start of spring!

Methodology

Sources

Factor Data Point Collection Method Link
Search Volume All Data gathered manually. https://ads.google.com/home/tools/keyword-planner/
Social Media Mentions, Social Media Sentiment All Data gathered manually. https://www.brandwatch.com/
No of Observed Flower Species Peak Month All Dataset's downloaded. https://www.gbif.org/
Avg Daily Sun Hours, Avg Monthly Rainfall All Data gathered manually. https://en.climate-data.org/


This dataset provides a list of locations that are famous for their flowers, and ranks them based on 4 factors. Additional factors were included to provide information regarding the optimum time of year to visit, to observe the most flowers. The 4 ranking factors were normalised to give each one a score of between 0 and 1. These values were then summed, to give a total score out of 4. The locations were then ranked based on this value.

 

The factors used are as follows:

  • Search Volume - The average number of monthly searches for the prompt "Flowers" in each location. [Ranking Factor]
  • Social Media Mentions - The total number of mentions for the prompt "Flowers in X", where X is each location, between 20 Jan 23 - 23 Feb 24. [Ranking Factor]
  • Social Media Sentiment - The percentage of mentions from the previous factor that have the "joy" emotion. [Ranking Factor]
  • No of Observed Flower Species - The total number of unique flower species within the Magnoliopsida & Liliopsida classes (flowering plants) that have been observed and recorded within each location between 2014 - 2024. [Ranking Factor]
  • Peak Month - The month that has the most observations of species within the Magnoliopsida & Liliopsida classes (flowering plants) in each location.
  • Avg Daily Sun Hours - The average daily sun hours for each location in the peak month.
  • Avg Monthly Rainfall - The average monthly rainfall in mm, for each location in the peak month.

 

The factors were indexed as follows:

  • Search Volume - High values get a high score. Low values get a low score.
  • Social Media Mentions - High values get a high score. Low values get a low score.
  • Social Media Sentiment - High values get a high score. Low values get a low score.
  • No of Observed Flower Species - High values get a high score. Low values get a low score.

 

All data is correct as of 23/02/24. The ranking data shown is a compilation of multiple data sources and may not be representative of real life. All data is accurate with regards to the sources provided.

 

Speak to a Cruise expert

0239 327 7800