Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Solvang, California

Solvang, CA
It's time to return to the write up of our holiday to California at the back end of last year. Only six months ago now!

I've been to the US quite a few times now, mainly with work and to the large cities of New York, Chicago and Charlotte. Our visit to Solvang was one of my first visits to small town America. Although admittedly Solvang isn't your typical small US town, originally settled in 1911 as a Danish colony, the place has hung onto it's Danish heritage and turned it into a tourist industry.

We were staying in The Landsby which, as expected, played up the Scandi minimalism. Despite a few quirks (no light switches next to the bed and stingy breakfasts) I enjoyed the laid back atmosphere and design.
Inside the Landsby
I kicked off our day first full day in Solvang with a run across the Santa Ynez river and along Alisal Creek, past a golf course (crazily green considering the drought) and past a ranch with its own rodeo stadium before turning round and heading back into town.

After breakfast we drifted through town and across to the Mission Santa Inés. Founded in 1804 the mission is now a basic museum and Parish Church with a small garden outside the church that you can look round.
Solvang Mission
After visiting the Mission we did another loop of town to see more of the Danish style buildings around town. All very cute, but none of them really tempted us inside to look round being filled with touristy knick-knacks.

 We thought we'd head over to the nearby, and equally chocolate box, town of Los Olivios in the afternoon. Being in wine country I quite fancied the idea of lunch in a vineyard somewhere nice. However, it wasn't clear that many of them had restaurants which were open midweek in winter so we ended up buying some sandwiches and eating them in Sunny Fields park instead. So glamorous!
Los Olivios
Los Olivios is even smaller than Solvang and is another town geared towards the tourists, although it felt like we are the only visitors in town. Los Olivios seemed to be a centre of the local wine business with quite a few offices / tasting rooms for the vineyards in town. We had a look around St Mark's-in-the-valley church before leaving town.

Having failed to visit a vineyard we enjoyed some local wines during happy hour in the hotel bar before heading over the road for dinner.
Fish of the day at the Succulent Cafe in Solvang. Seared tuna on 'risotto'

No comments:

Post a Comment