My parents took us to Solvang many times as children probably on the way too or from Los Angeles. When I was small I thought I was actually in Denmark! A child’s mind can’t understand why a town would dress itself up like Hans Christian Andersen and still be in California.
Solvang is much bigger than it used to be. An hour isn’t enough time to enjoy some good hardy food, try on a dirndl, have a pretzel and some chocolate, and to visit all the shops.
Let’s face it Solvang is as kitschy as kitsch can be. But, it’s classy and fun. The shops are somewhat upscale and the touristy shops are enjoyable too. Breweries and coffee shops line the streets now next to the traditional bakeries, antique stores, chocolate shops, and restaurants.
Next time you are in the Santa Barbara area looking for a great way to kill and afternoon transport yourself to Denmark and give Solvang a try. It’s got something for everyone.