Solvang Named in Best Historic Small Towns Poll
Solvang was ranked #8 in a list of 10 Best Historic Small Towns by USA Today Readers' Choice 2018 travel contest.
These 10 total winners for Best Historic Small Town have big histories and small populations – fewer than 30,000 people as of the last census. Other cities who made the list include Natchitoches, Louisiana; Williamsburg, Virginia; Dodge City, Kansas; and Cody, Wyoming. The full list can be seen here.
Solvang is no stranger to winning awards as it also made this list in 2016 and in 2017 was named in "10 Great Places to Enjoy Global Christmas Traditions in the USA" by USA Today.
Tracy Farhad, Executive Director of the Solvang Conference & Visitors Bureau (SCVB), said, “Solvang is the only community in California to be honored in 2018 as one of the 10 Best Historic Small Towns in this USA TODAY travel contest. Initially, media experts nominated Solvang; then people locally and around the world voted for Solvang online. We’re thrilled to have this recognition, especially since we value and celebrate Solvang’s history year-round.”
SCVB offers a Solvang Heritage Audio Tour App that's a self-guided tour featuring 22 historic attractions and points of interest in a 1.9-mile tour walking route throughout the village.
Solvang, which means “sunny field” in Danish, was founded in 1911 by three Danish-American educators who traveled to California from the Midwest in search of a new settlement and warmer climate.
This year Solvang celebrates 107 years of its historic, cultural heritage with museums, attractions and seasonal festivals such as the 1804 National Historic Landmark Old Mission Santa Ines; Elverhoj Museum of History & Art; Hans Christian Andersen Museum (the only one in the USA); Wildling Museum of Art & Nature and the Solvang Vintage Motorcycle Museum as well as historic displays at The Copenhagen House including the Solvang House of Amber. Festivals are traditional parts of Solvang’s historic charm. Danish Days annual festival emerged in 1936 commemorating Solvang’s heritage every September with artisans, folk dancing, three parades, aebleskiver breakfasts and free entertainment for the whole family. Locals and visitors savor the Taste of Solvang every March and Julefest (Yule-fest) during December.
Over 1.5 million visitors enjoy the area each year which offers more than 35 restaurants, 5 authentic Danish bakeries, 25 wine tasting rooms, 150 retail shops and 18 hotels, inns and resorts along with myriad outdoor recreational opportunities.