Updated: Sep 26, 2019
When you think California can’t get any cooler, you find there’s a Danish Village only 2h from LA. If you are in Santa Barbara, it’s even closer, just about 45 min away.
So, we were in SB for a long weekend and decided to spend a day in Solvang. Super happy we did it as we had a wonderful time. Highly recommend taking the trip if you are looking for a short getaway from the city. Keep reading to learn why!
Solvang is a little village with less than 6 thousand residents, located in the Santa Inez Valley, California. It is known as the Danish Capital of America as it was founded by a group of Danish-American educators back in 1911 on 9,000 acres of land purchased for only about $75,000.
I’m so glad that the culture, the architecture and the lifestyle have been preserved until today.
Wandering around the streets of Solvang really feel like being in Europe. Even better, it feels liks Christmas! And if you know me you know that Christmas is my favorite time of the year and how crazy I get about it. Conclusion, I fell in love with Solvang!
What To Do
The village is really just a few blocks long, so a day trip or a weekend is enough to get to see most of the attractions.
You will spend your time finding the perfect souvenir at one the 100 specialty shops and boutiques, admiring the authentic European architecture of the houses and buildings along Mission Drive, exploring museums & parks.
Oh and the check out the windmills, there are 4 wooden windmills within only 4 blocks in Solvang!
Also, the village counts with a half sized replica of the “Little Mermaid” bronze statue that resides in Copenhagen Harbor, Denmark. The original statue is one of Denmark's most visited tourist attractions, created in homage to Hans Christian Andersen, the country's most famous writer and known for famous fairy tales such as "The Emperor's New Clothes", "The Little Mermaid", "The Snow Queen", "The Ugly Duckling", and many others. There's a museum and a park dedicated to him in Solvang.
Go For The Food & Wine
If you ask me what I loved the most about Solvang, I would say that it was the feeling of being a world away and yet so close to home. One of the greatest things about traveling is to experience different cultures, and this village does "transport" you to Europe.
Eating danish authentic food and sipping a glass of wine inside a windmill was really an amazing experience for me! There are many traditional savory and sweet dishes not to miss over there (save room for pastries from different Danish bakeries), as well as 20 wine & beer tasting rooms, what makes Solvang not only a tourist destination but a gastronomic experience as well.
Make sure to try the Aebleskiver: it’s a delicious Danish sweet made of pancake balls dusted with powdered sugar and served with raspberry jam!
Here are some of the main events that happen in Solvang yearly: January: Restaurant Week 🍽 March: Taste of Solvang 🍷 September: Danish Days October: Scarecrow Fest 🎃 December: Julefest Parade 🎄
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For more details visit the official Solvang website