MOUNT VERNON, Wash. — Spring has sprung in western Washington as picturesque fields of colorful tulips and daffodils once again blanket Skagit Valley.
This is the second year visitors are allowed back into the fields for the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival after it went virtual in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Those looking to get outside and peep at the colorful fields of flowers have until April 30 to visit the annual event and get their Instagram-worthy photo.
People from all 50 states and more than 85 foreign countries visit the festival during a “normal” year, according to the festival website.
Below are a few things you should know before visiting the annual event:
Where is the festival?
The Skagit Valley Tulip Festival is located about 60 miles north of Seattle and 70 miles south of Vancouver, British Colombia, adjacent to Interstate 5.
There is no specific “site” to enter the festival as millions of tulips and daffodils are scattered across multiple fields throughout the Skagit Valley.
The festival is designed as a driving tour as the fields are in different locations each year due to crop rotations.
Festival officials suggest visitors stop in town to take advantage of public restrooms before going to the tulip areas because “it can take a fair amount of time to journey from the I-5 exits to the tulip area” on busy days.
There are public restrooms at all visitor information centers and the transit station in downtown Mount Vernon. According to the festival website, “the Shops at Burlington is an easy stop with a chance to use the restrooms, stretch your legs (perhaps shop a bit) and then journey on to the tulip area.”
Three tulip gardens to visit
In addition to the fields of tulips, there are three gardens guests can walk around and explore.
RoozenGaarde is a world-renown garden with over 1 million flowering spring bulbs. The flower garden features a 30-acre tulip field, a 20-acre daffodil field and a full-sized Dutch windmill. The display garden is hand-planted and redesigned each year with more than 200 flower varieties on display. RoozenGaarde is located at 15867 Beaver Marsh Rd in Mount Vernon.
For nearly 40 years, Tulip Town has been a blossoming boutique tulip farm. The farm planted five acres of colorful tulips but has about an acre of outside flowers to show for their work due to regional flooding during the planting season last fall. Though the field may look a bit different this year, visitors can explore 10,000-square-feet of indoor garden space “brimming with goods and gifts from area artisans" and "thousands of potted tulips for purchase." Tulip Town is located at 15002 Bradshaw Rd in Mount Vernon.
Garden Rosalyn is the newest addition to the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival. The garden is a 13-acre complex with six acres of tulips “planted in fun designs, including stars, animals and manicured beds.” Garden Rosalyn is the only garden of the three that allows leashed, well-behaved dogs. Garden Rosalyn is located at 16648 Jungquist Rd in Mount Vernon.
RoozenGaarde is open year-round, while Tulip Town and Garden Rosalyn are only open during the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival.
When is peak bloom?
Bloom dates vary “according to Mother Nature” and peak bloom depends on the weather. Tulips were blooming and the gardens were "looking very pretty" as of April 7. "With that said, every day more tulips are coming into bloom. The tulip bloom has not yet reached its peak," according to the Tulip Festival website.
RoozenGaarde said Facebook post, “The entire month of April will be filled with tulips (plus daffodils for at least the first half) and we will keep the bloom going as long as nature allows - possibly into May.”
An interactive bloom map is also available on the festival website to help guests plan their trip.
Tulips in bloom: A look at the 2022 Skagit Valley Tulip Festival
Do I need tickets?
While tickets are not required to enjoy festival events in town or to drive around looking at the colorful fields, tickets are required if you plan on visiting the unique tulip gardens.
Garden owners set admission pricing and hours.
RoozenGaarde is open from 9 a.m. until 7 p.m. during the week, and 8 a.m. until 7 p.m. on weekends during the spring bloom. Visitors are allowed entry into the garden until 7 p.m., and guests can stay until sunset. Parking lot gates close and are locked 5 minutes after sunset. Tickets are $15 for ages 3 and up, and admission is free for ages 2 and below. Tickets can be purchased online or at the gate. Click here for more information.
Tulip Town is open daily from 8 a.m. until 7 p.m. Tickets are $15 for ages 12 and up, $7 for ages 6-11 and kids under 5 are free. Tickets can be purchased online or at the gate. Click here for more information.
Garden Rosalyn is open from 8 a.m. until 7 p.m. from April 1-30. Tickets are $12, and admission is free for kids ages 5 and under. Tickets can be purchased online or at the gate. Click here for more information.
What about parking?
Parking is available for free at all three of the participating display gardens, but roadside parking is limited in the fields due to traffic regulations and shoulder conditions. Paid parking is also available in some locations.
Weekends are the busiest time to visit the festival. Festival officials suggest anyone visiting as a group with multiple cars should meet at a Park N Ride location and carpool.
Anyone experiencing COVID-19 symptoms is asked to stay at home.
According to the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival website, “Our office/store/information center, the three gardens (Garden Rosalyn, RoozenGaarde and Tulip Town), our venues and the flower fields will all be adhering to COVID-19 regulations. Aggregated outdoor venues are a great outing and we know we can have you visit safely IF YOU HELP US.”
Washington state lifted its indoor mask mandate at 11:59 p.m. on March 11 after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released new guidance. However, some businesses may still require visitors to wear a mask inside.
The festival is open rain or shine from April 1-30. Saturdays are the busiest days of the festival, followed by Sundays, Fridays and Mondays.
Photography is allowed, but drones are not allowed in the tulip gardens or the fields.
Pets are not allowed at Tulip Town or RoozenGaarde, but leashed dogs are allowed at Garden Rosalyn.