‘Blij dat je hier bent!’… in the colorful, wonderful, magical Netherlands!

Waterdrinker’s Long Island Tulip Festival


“Blij dat je hier bent!” is Dutch for “Glad you are here!”  It’s a greeting you will hear at the 2024 Long Island Tulip Fest at Waterdrinker Farms. 

“And this year, we have two farms,” excitedly shared owner Marc Weiss.  “Twice the fun—Manorville and Riverhead!” 

Millions of tulips are blooming this year at both locations. 

“It almost feels magical,” Weiss continued. “We plant in November and they come up in April. There is an adage used at Disney that says, ‘It’s not the magic that makes it work… it’s the way we work that makes it magic!’  Our tried and true, old-fashioned farming methods equate to a lot of hard work.  But to see the looks on the faces of the families who visit us makes it all worthwhile… especially the little kids!”

As the world slowly emerges from the cocoon of indoor living, there’s no better time to embrace the rejuvenating power of fresh air and nature’s beauty. Amid the hustle and bustle of modern life, we often find ourselves ensnared by the monotony of daily routines and confined within the four walls of our homes.

However, as the tulips begin to bloom and spring beckons us outdoors, it’s time to seize the opportunity to reconnect with the natural world and revitalize our spirits.  Soil helps us get our serotonin fixes!

Previous guests have described the vibrant colors of the Tulip Festival as a “kaleidoscope of hues,” as millions of tulips burst into bloom.  “Mesmerizing” is how Caroline Gilmartin, of Center Moriches, described it. 

“I know people visit here from the city and even New Jersey and Connecticut, but we are so fortunate to have Waterdrinker in our own backyard!” continued Gilmartin. “Great for the kids to just run around… love this place!” 

From around April 12 to around May 5, the grey of winter seems to almost miraculously change into a sea of color, as far as the eye can see. 

“When they actually bloom is still up to Mother Nature,” according to Weiss.  “Visitors are encouraged to follow our Weekly Bloom Reports on www.water-drinker.com to really get the max enjoyment from your visit.”

This year, visitors will also be invited to take an enchanting journey through Dutch culture at Waterdrinker’s Tulip Festival. In Manorville, “Little Amsterdam” is introduced: an immersive experience played out in three parts. First up is the Tulip Tunnel, a captivating walk-through a museum narrating the rich history of Amsterdam and Tulip Mania, set amidst the stunning backdrop of blooming tulips (right in the middle of the fields!). Next up is Tulip Town, a charming miniature village where visitors of all ages can feel like giants, surrounded by colorful cottages and winding pathways. And finally, if you are visiting on the weekend, ride the Tulip Train, guided by our very own Farmer Frank. But during Tulip Time, Frank becomes our resident Bestuurder—yet another reminder we are participating in a celebration also held over 3,600 miles away in the Netherlands!   

Discover fascinating facts and insights about these exquisite flowers while enjoying a leisurely ride through nature’s colorful canvas. It’s an experience that combines education with relaxation, perfect for families and nature enthusiasts alike.  Whether you’re drawn to history, nature, or simply seeking a fun-filled outing, there’s something for everyone to enjoy at the Tulip Festivals at both farm locations.

At Manorville, the excitement doesn’t end with tulips; there’s a whole world of adventure waiting to be explored. Visitors will discover barnyard animals including some “cousins” from across the world, like Sulcata tortoises and Nigerian dwarf goats. From mini-golf and cornhole to wooden play areas and jumbo jump pads, there’s no shortage of activities to keep kids entertained for hours. 

At both Manorville and Riverhead (the former Garden of Eve Farm), you’ll find countless photo spots perfect for capturing precious moments with the whole family, including vintage cars, old bicycles, tractors, and flower displays.  After all the action, unwind at Long Island Farm Brewery at both locations! Find Tulip Fest on tap, a Dutch pilsner inspired by the Tulip Festival, along with a wide assortment of beer, cider, and wine on tap.

“Sometimes the world around us gets overwhelming for people,” shared Weiss.  “That’s why that quote from Lady Bird Johnson from so many years ago is still quite relevant: ‘Where flowers bloom, so does hope!’” 


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