Summer means it’s time to get away. All season, we’re sharing some of our favorite U.S. summer travel spots. Find a destination to cure your wanderlust? Take the Summer Friday.
Solvang, California | Summer Fridays Series, Week 3
Located 45 minutes from Santa Barbara, in the middle of wine country, is the hidden gem of Solvang.
The city looks like it was pulled straight out of a storybook. Solvang was dubbed "The Danish Capital of America," and the eccentric architecture, landmarks and culture all aim to reflect that.
If you’re looking for a unique getaway in an even more unique-looking place, Solvang might be in your near future.
Sites of Solvang
Solvang’s distinct Danish theme makes the entire city a site worth exploring, but there are some can’t-miss highlights. Most iconic are the city’s 5 Danish-style windmills, plus a museum dedicated to Hans Christian Andersen (writer of The Little Mermaid), a Little Mermaid statue, and the historic Old Mission Santa Ines.
Stroll through a vineyard—there are more than 100 in the area—or head downtown to one of Solvang’s tasting rooms. Tasting rooms include Dana V. Wines, Casa Cassara, Sanger Wines and Sevtap—the last of which is housed in one of Solvang’s iconic windmills.
Luckily, Solvang’s celebration of Danish culture also extends to the food. Most popular is aebleskiver, pancake balls commonly served with powdered sugar and jam. They’re traditionally only served on Christmas in Denmark, but luckily they’re available in Solvang year-round. Along with aebleskiver, other traditional pastries like the danish, kringle, butter cookies and strudel are available in various bakeries around town.
Pair your aebleskiver with a warm glass of Milk. The rich, creamy scent of Cold Milk, Marshmallow and Mahogany Wood will satisfy your sweet tooth, then indulge any passersby as you stroll through Solvang.