Solvang is a great little town with international flair. We love it here.
Solvang is a two and half hour, 128 mile drive for us from Los Angeles. There are a few driving routes from Los Angeles. We took 101 N all the way for a nice scenic drive mostly along the ocean. This town is truly one of my favorite destinations. It’s the perfect distance to make for a day trip, or even better reserve a room and plan a weekend getaway.
Solvang (Danish for “sunny fields”) is a city in Santa Barbara County, California. Founded in 1911 by a group of Danes who traveled west to establish a home far from the harsh Midwestern winters, Solvang is home to great bakeries, restaurants, and merchants offering a taste of Denmark in California. The architecture of many of the buildings reflects traditional Danish style. There is even a copy of the famous Little Mermaid statue from Copenhagen, as well as one featuring the bust of famed Danish fable writer Hans Christian Andersen. A replica of Copenhagen’s Round Tower was finished in 1991 and can be seen in the town center.
There are several hotel options within the village of Solvang that are walking distance to the shops, wine tasting, dining and parks. All the businesses close early, like around 6:00 pm, so we like to begin our adventures early and stock up on pastries and wine to snack on later in the evening at our hotel.
On our latest trip, we stayed at the Holiday Inn Express Solvang who hosted our stay. The hotel is located at the end of Mission Drive. Amenities include free WiFi, a heated outdoor pool and jacuzzi and a Business Center in the hotel lobby. There is easy and free on-site parking. Upon check-in we picked up free, freshly baked cookies and gathered near the lobby TV and fireplace. Unfortunately pets are not allowed, so make alternative arrangements for Fido.
We found the front desk staff to be very accommodating. Guests are welcomed to check their luggage at the desk if they arrive early. This gave us a great opportunity to use the pool as we arrived. New to the area? As the front desk for a map of the area and some great recommendations. Nearby guests can find a golf course, hiking trails and tempting bakeries to maximize their authentic Danish getaway! I also recommend Mission Santa Ines, one of the California missions (National Historic Landmark), which is located near the center of the town, at the junction of State Route 246 and Alisal Road.
The Holiday Inn is an attractive property in a convenient location with good rates. Many of the rooms overlook the Hans Christian Anderson park. We had a loft suite that included three queen beds (two downstairs and one upstairs.) There was one large room with a sitting area and desk, microwave, mini fridge, and a flat screen television. The loft included a bed, nightstands and TV. The mattresses provided a comfortable night of sleep – not too firm, not too soft. I really like how the pillow styles are marked on the pillow covers. My daughter grabbed a ‘soft’ pillow while my husband and I chose the ‘firmer’ ones. It was a little item, but one that struck us as new and really helpful. The room was clean, although the carpet did show some wear and tear. The room was a nice size for our family of three. The bathroom was well appointed with a hair dryer and good, strong water pressure in the shower. Room rates begin at $139 (mid week), but can vary based on dates and seasons.
Breakfast is included in the room rate, and served Monday through Friday from 6:30am to 10:00am and weekends from 7:00am to 11:00am. Holiday Inn Express’ standard breakfast bar, a perfect way to power up for your day. Items includes omelets, bacon, bagels, breads, pastries, fruit, and yogurt. There is also a full choice of beverages from coffee and tea to an assortment of juices. We easily found the foods we liked and kept us satisfied until lunchtime.
Stay tuned for more posts about our Solvang travel adventures! We’ll tell you more about our favorite places to eat and see in the area!
* Our room was comped to help facilitate our review. Our opinions are solely our own. Photos by Tee Burgess.