Thursday, February 18, 2010

#110: Road Trip to Solvang

Solvang is about 50 minutes north of Santa Barbara. This past weekend we spent the night in Santa Barbara and then woke up early to drive out to this one of a kind Danish-American town.

Solvang was founded in 1911 by a group of Danish educators from the Midwest who were looking for a place to build a Danish-type folk school. The rich soil and picturesque setting led them to settle in this area. The Danish heritage is evident everywhere you look, from the architectural style to the many bakeries lining the streets.

Solvang loves Hans Christian Andersen, the child's storybook author who wrote The Little Mermaid, Princess and the Pea and The Ugly Duckling. There's a Hans Christian Anderson Park, a tiny "museum" (it's really just a room) that features a collection of his books, and even a Split Pea Soup Restaurant in honor of him.

I thought that downtown Solvang was cute--albeit a bit touristy. My favorite parts of the trip, however, were actually outside of the town center. The Quicksilver Ranch, just minutes from downtown, was a great find. The ranch raises miniature horses. It was a treat seeing these spunky creatures close up. The ranch is free to visit. We also stopped at Ostrich Land which is $4 admission and $1 for a food bowl. Brad said it was the best buck he's spent. The ostriches and emus at Ostrich Land can bite, so there are detailed instructions on how to feed them. It was fascinating seeing these animals eye to (giant) eye.

Solvang Attractions:


  1. What a wonderful blog... I accidentally stumbled upon your blog while searching for directions to the Chumash Casino near Solvang. After reading your blog, we decided to leave early in the afternoon to stop by Solvang before hitting the casino. It's truly a gem of a town, and the ostrich feeding experience was wonderful... my family loved it, and it's all thanks to you. I just spent the last hour reading your blog, discovering things that I never knew about LA.. places to go to escape the mundane work week. If you ever decided to turn this blog into a book, I'd be the first one to buy it. Good luck, god bless, and Thanks again

  2. Hi there, Thanks so much for your kind comments! :) I am so happy to hear that you enjoyed your Solvang trip and are discovering great places in L.A.! Haha, it would be amazing to make a book from this blog. Well, one step at a time--I gotta get to 365 first! ;) Happy adventuring! Keep me updated on what other places you visit!