Solvang (Danish for "sunny field") is a little Danish village in the Santa Ynez Valley of California. Founded in 1911 by a group of Danish teachers, its quaint architecture, windmills, shops, Danish bakeries and restaurants, make it a tourist attraction a brief drive from Santa Barbara, and close to Santa Ynez wineries. Mission Santa Inez is just outside of the center of town.
We went for an early morning walk in search of coffee. Streets were wet from the overnight rain, but the clouds held back while we wandered the still empty streets.
We found coffee, and did our best to avoid the Danish pastry shops that seemed to be in every block of town.
We continued to wander around town as the shops began to open.
No clogs were purchased, but I did find some great walking shoes in the Solvang Shoe Shop!
I remember visiting Solvang as a child and thinking it was a magical place. The last time I was there was probably 20 years ago. Maybe it was the gloomy weather, but it seemed to have lost some of its "magic". The shops were mostly filled with touristy junk, and a few of the nicer stores were closed or gone. Houses in the residential streets were mostly kept up, and many former shops have now been replaced with wine tasting rooms for local wineries. Since the purpose of our visit was really to get Brad's car, the disappointment was minimal. It was time to have breakfast and head home to some sunshine!