Here’s a great idea for a springtime family excursion: Go see the flowers at the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival!
This very popular springtime tradition runs the entire month of April, although there is no guarantee of when the flowers will be blooming.
Logistical details are still coming together for the 2022 festival, with many COVID restrictions being lifted.
Two of the main gardens have begun advance ticket sakes, if you want to commit to a date and time. (Know that advance tickets are nonrefundable.) However, the gardens also say they will offer day-of, on-site ticket sales this year, as space is available.
Festival organizers suggest planning to visit one garden in the morning and the other in the afternoon. The roads may be congested on days that draw big crowds. The Tulip Festival reports that Saturdays are generally the busiest, followed by Sunday, Friday and Monday (in that order). And the wild card: any day that it’s sunny! (Rainy days = smaller crowds.)
There are other things to do while in the area, too, and the Tulip Festival website suggests restaurants and other activities.
Allow around 90 minutes to get to the Skagit Valley from the Seattle area. If you have a full day (or more than a day!), you could even make a side trip to Deception Pass State Park and come home via Whidbey Island and the ferry to Mukilteo.
Tulip Festival organizers emphasize that they cannot guarantee when the tulips will bloom (and of course, they don’t control the weather!) When planning ahead, aiming for mid-April is probably safest.
At Tulip Town, tickets will be available for April 1-30; general admission includes parking, entry and a trolley ride (weather permitting). Prices are $15 for ages 12 and up; $7 for kids 6-11; free for kids 5 and under. There’s a boutique and nursery for shopping. Tulip Town also has other admission options at higher prices. Tulip Town is warning people that heavy rain and fall/winter flooding mean the tulip bloom this year will not be the spectacular show they had hoped for. However, they still promise “an idyllic day on the farm for the whole family” with trolley rides, a cafe, indoor displays and a retail boutique.
RoozenGaarde charges $15 for everyone over 2 to see its 5-acre garden, 25-acre tulip field and 20-acre daffodil field. It also has a gift shop and tulip market.
This story was originally published on March 17, 2021. Updated for 2022.
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