Mister Tulip at Castello di Pralormo

Messer Tulipano

For admirers of the tulip, it’s common knowledge that for the ultimate experience in Europe, the Netherlands reign supreme. I’ve always figured on getting there one day but for those of us in Italy, the Pralormo Castle in Piemonte is where to satisfy your tulipani fix. For the entire month of April the castle rolls out the welcome mat, and thousands upon thousands of perfect blooms become the petalled protagonists of a fanciful display named Mister Tulip. Never having seen anything like this in my entire life, I was beyond thrilled to have such a magical photo op. The castle grounds exuded a charm that was all the more fairytale-like.

Tulips at Castello di Pralormo

One of the best things about the entire visit was this pistachio-chocolate gelato sold at a kiosk. Spring has been unusually warm with temps in the mid to upper 20°C. Bowls of water were placed at random throughout the castle grounds, ready to quench the thirsts of visiting doggies.

I swear it must've been 30° in the shade

We eventually made our way to the product stands and I couldn’t pass on getting some asparagus…would you believe that these were only 2.50€/kilo? I bought 2 bundles and will be eating them for the rest of the week. Other things to peruse were herb plants, berry plants, flowers, tulip bulbs, arts and crafts booths, bread stand and a thrift store. The theme this year focused on the 150th anniversary of Italy as a nation-state, so the colors of the flag (green, white and red) echoed everywhere you looked.

Piemonte asparagus

More photos at Messer Tulipano | Mister Tulip 2011 on Flickr.

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