The "tulip coach" which has travelled some 2,000 miles (3,200 kilometers) across Europe from Istanbul since 6th March ended its journey at Rotterdam precisely at the scheduled time of 3.30 this afternoon and received an excited welcome as its four horses drew it through the main gates of the Floriade international horticultural exhibition there.
Comprehensive view of the main entrance to the Floriade exhibition, Rotterdam.
Close-up of the name "Floriade".
PAN Up from bed of tulips inside Floriade exhibition to inside of main entrance.
Two shots of the tulip coach arriving at the exhibition.
CU. Of the coach's mail bag with the name "Turkey" printed on it.
Mail bag transferred from the coach to a Post Office van.
Coach driven into the exhibition grounds.
Passengers dressed as M. de Busbecq and Professor Clusius I wearing (spectacles) emerge from the coach.
C.U. of "Professor Clusius" holding tulip bulbs in his hand.
C.U. Of "M. de Busbecq".
"Professor Clusius" hands box of tulip bulbs to Jonkheer Dr. Van Nispen tot Pannerden, President of the Royal Dutch Bulb Culture Society.
View looking down on the scene.
C.U. Of the horses pulling the coach.
Jonkheer Dr. Van Nispen tot Pannerden presents some tulips to the Turkish Ambassador to the Netherlands.
C.U. Of the Turkish Ambassador.
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Background: The "tulip coach" which has travelled some 2,000 miles (3,200 kilometers) across Europe from Istanbul since 6th March ended its journey at Rotterdam precisely at the scheduled time of 3.30 this afternoon and received an excited welcome as its four horses drew it through the main gates of the Floriade international horticultural exhibition there.
The journey was made to commemorate the 400th anniversary this year of the introduction of the first tulip bulbs into Holland - they were brought by coach from Istanbul in 1560 by the then Austrian Ambassador to the Ottoman Court, a Fleming, M. Ogier de Bousbecq, and presented by him to his friend Professor Clusius, the famous Dutch botanist.
Today, two passengers in the coach, dressed in 16th century clothes, represented de Bousbecq and Clusius. "Clusius" presented a box of tulip bulbs to the President of the Royal Dutch Bulb Culture Society, Jonkheer Dr. Van Nispen tot Pannerden, while the Jonkheer himself presented a bunch of tulips to the Turkish Ambassador to the Netherlands.
The coach created great interest in all the countries through which it passed on its long journey. Some 300,000 people lined the streets of Istanbul to see it off and tens of thousands of others cheered it on its way in other cities and towns en route. On the rougher roads of Greece and Yugoslavia many repairs were necessary but the team of 25 people who drove the coach and the accompanying lorries, and looked after the 10 horses which pulled the coach in relays of four, found the journey enjoyable as well as strenuous. The sturdy Dutch horses, which spent their rest periods in lorries, bedded down on peat, on which they soon learned to sleep peacefully, actually gained weight during the trip: hundreds of offers to buy them were firmly refused.