Wednesday, April 17, 2013

And they called it Solvang!

Located within California’s Central Coast in northern Santa Barbara County is a little Danish village called Solvang. Established in 1911 by a small group of Danes, the city contracts its name from the Danish word “sunny field”.

After passing flamboyant scenery of rolling hills, spring grass, barns and farms and several vineyards, you will find yourself entering a European village called Solvang. 

This beautiful place nests in the Santa Ynez Valley of California and is restructured to discreet tree lined streets, Hønen(horse drawn wagons), windmills, Danish eateries and Wine tasting rooms amid antiquated shops of  true Danish architecture.

This weekend, my husband and I took a stroll in a Danish village right here in California. We were sputtering with excitement at the sight of the village and almost instinctively parked on the street. The air was crisp and warm with the smell of Danish pastries and hot coffee all around. It seemed so eventful for a Saturday afternoon and tourists were caught up in exploring windmills and bicycling, indecisively moving in and out of the varied little shops that were so attractively adorned. For us, just sauntering and absorbing the architecture, the aroma and the culture were exhilarating enough.

The building facades captivated me and the cobblestone sidewalk was fascinating. The people seem warm and friendly enough. There are a lot of Danish influences and references to Vikings and Hans Christen Anderson, in the names of buildings and squares and blocks and streets to horse drawn wagons and cobbled sidewalks. There are so many impressive diverse stores from needlework to chocolates to antiques, candles and souvenir shops all in this town.

The best part of it all, Mortensen’s Danish Bakery with their choice of Danish pastries and the sweet smell of sugar, butter and jam everywhere. We tried the Raspberry Coconut Macaroon Squares with some regular coffee and it was heavenly. There was good demand for Owl Eye cookies and Danish cream pastries. We enjoyed the desert and each other’s company in that quaint little coffee shop all relaxed and pleased.

It is an invigorating place to visit over a weekend and enjoy fine dining, wine tasting or even window shopping just like the Danes would. After taking a lot of touristy photographs of the place, we decided to just take in and absorb Solvang’s content to go home and narrate stories off the day we visited that Danish village in California.

For more information about this place and how to get there visit their webpage @

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