The Netherlands and the flower markets of the world are a trading combination that is centuries old.
Whilst the Netherlands grows between 7 and 8 billion blooms per year and has been the biggest producer of cut flowers in the world, in the more recent past, it’s role as a Trader of the World Flowers has quite literally “blossomed”.
The Flower Market at Aalsmeer is the biggest flower auction in the world, and the Dutch do not only grow and sell flowers, they also have very strong cultural and social links to them too.
It’s totally normal to see people carrying bunches of blooms home, especially on Friday after work so that your house is full of fresh flowers for the weekend, but it’s also customary when visiting, or going out to dinner at someone’s home, to bring your host a bunch of flowers.
You will find flower stalls in every suburb of the Netherlands, so it’s no surprise to find that Amsterdam, like many larger centers also has an even larger “Bloemenmarkt” (Flower Market).
The Amsterdam Flower Market however is not like most in one respect: the market “stalls” are actually floating on the canal and so you can walk along the canal side and look in and pick out your blooms.
It’s the only floating Flower Market in the world.
The back-sides of these “houseboats for flowers” that face the water have been decorated in many cases with photographic scenes of what the boat contains. In a few cases the backside of the boat is made or either glass or perspex panels so you can see directly inside.
Certainly it’s a tourist attraction, but make no mistake, the locals come here to buy their flowers in their droves (prices can be cheaper because having the “shop” on the water means lower overhead costs for the sellers).
We pass by in our little boat from The St.Nicolaas Boat Club, so first get a prime view at water level and later Himself and I we walk past and see it from “top-side” too.
These shops specialise in selling seeds, bulbs and cut flowers and you will find them at: Singel, 1071 AZ / Tram: Muntplein: tram 4, 9, 14, 16, 24 & 25 Open: Monday – Saturday 9.30 am – 5.00 pm