Best Places to Visit in Solvang
Solvang is the cutest town, founded by Danish immigrants in the early 1900s. Beautiful Danish-style architecture, great wines, and an incredible bakery make this a great place for a California road trip or a nice long weekend getaway.
We visited Solvang for a few days and enjoyed walking around the city and checking out some of the incredible attractions nearby. Now we’re going to show you all the incredible things to do in Solvang, California during your visit! Have a look at our list of the Best Places to Visit in Solvang and make your trip enjoyable.
10 Best Places to Visit in Solvang
Let’s explore the top 10 Most Beautiful and Best Places to Visit in Solvang:
1. Solvang Vintage Motorcycle Museum
The Solvang Vintage Motorcycle Museum is one of the many attractions in this small California town. Located on what was once the Solvang Pines Outlet Center, the building took 20 years to complete. The museum is owned by Virgil Elings, who owns every motorcycle on display as part of his private collection.
The Vintage Motorcycle Museum displays a variety of vintage motorcycles, race cars and other rare cars from Europe. The rotating exhibits mean there’s always something to explore, from cars from the 1900s to more modern bikes. Brands such as BMW, Velocette, Ducati, Gilera and Triumph are on display.
2. Elverhoj Museum of History and Art
The mission of the Elverhoj Museum of History and Art is simple: to preserve, collect and display key features of Solvang, California’s rich history and the city’s Danish culture and the arts and crafts that stem from it. This is a community-based center designed to showcase the true legacy of Danish-American pioneers, Danish heritage, and the colorful and strong artistic endowment of the Danes.
Elverhoj History and Art Museum is located in the former home of one of the city’s famous art families. This beautiful building was built by Viggo Brandt-Erichsen himself, with decorative ironwork, hand and hand-painted carvings and panels, and the best Scandinavian architectural influences.
Despite its modest size and appearance, the Elverhoj Museum of History and Art is one of the best institutions of its kind in the city. It hosts many exhibitions, workshops, lessons, and activities for kids each year, and there is so much to see!
Address: 1624 Elverhoy Road, Solvang, CA 93463, USA
3. OstrichLand USA
If you are looking for attractions of interest in Solvang, California, the American Ostrich Farm is for you! Bird lovers, animal lovers and those wanting to have a good time will appreciate the large birds perching here. This “zoo” has ostriches and emus waiting to be seen, and hand feeding if you’re lucky! If you’re interested in ostrich-themed items, head to the gift shop to peruse the items. Besides souvenirs, there are also ostrich eggs and ostrich meat for sale, although none of the ostrich farm’s own birds are raised for meat.
Address: 610 E Hwy 246, Solvang, CA 93463, USA
4. Rusack Vineyards
Solvang (and most of California) is famous for its wines, and if you’re looking for this type of product in the city, Rusack Vineyards is undoubtedly one of the best places to visit. Located in the hills of Ballard Canyon and surrounded by beautiful trees, Rusack Vineyards is known for producing premium drinks for sale at its boutique winery.
Rusack Vineyards, run by Steven Garbac and owned by Gregg and Alison Rusack, has a motto that includes a mix of family, craft, art and world – at least according to their labels! The location is beautiful and worth checking out just for the trip. Rusack Vineyards’ tasting room features a lovely rosewood deck that overlooks the beautiful vineyards and beyond, with four old oak trees in the background.
Address: 1819 Ballard Canyon Rd, Solvang, CA 93463, United States
5. Hans Christian Andersen Park
Hans Christian Andersen Park is another fun thing to do for the Danish fairy tale writer in Solvang, California. The park is just off Mission Drive on Chalk Hill Road and is marked with a bust of the man himself. Resembling a castle in a fairy tale, Hans Christian Andersen Park has a gate at the entrance, the theme is a whimsical journey into its beautiful greenery.
Packed with activities for kids, the park is a fascinating theme around a story written by Andersen. In the park, you’ll find different playgrounds for kids of all ages, a skate park, large shady oak trees, old-fashioned music playing machines and even a climbing wall. Picnic tables allow you to relax and enjoy the relaxing Solvang mood.
Address: 633 Chalk Hill Rd, Solvang, CA 93463, United States
6. Old Mission Santa Inés
Former Mission Santa Inés has more than two centuries of history, gaining a reputation not only as an important Catholic church but also as a major tourist destination in Solvang and California. It overlooks the Santa Ynez Valley and the beautiful San Rafael and Santa Ynez Mountains. The mission was established in 1804 to help the Chuman people of the Santa Ynez Valley integrate into Spanish life.
Founded by Father Estevan Tapis, it is one of the 21 missions established in the state by missionaries of the Franciscan faith. Old Mission Santa Inés has experienced many events during its long life. From natural disasters to political and social turmoil, from economic hardship to all riots, the mission was not Solvang’s jewel in the beginning. In fact, years of disrepair, neglect and decay almost completely destroyed the building before several restorations brought it back to its current glory.
Today, Old Mission Santa Inés is still an active church, and its congregation hosts masses in Spanish and English. It also houses an extensive collection of rare art, including manuscripts, sculptures, artifacts, paintings and clothing. It also has a gift shop and beautiful gardens if you’re looking for more live event options.
Address: 1760 Mission Dr, Solvang, CA 93463, United States
7. Hans Christian Andersen Museum
The Hans Christian Andersen Museum is one of the most interesting places for literature lovers in Solvang, California. It’s on the second floor of a well-known bookstore in town: The Book Loft, the place to be if you’re a book lover. The Hans Christian Andersen Museum is small but a gem. As a testament to the excellent work of Danish legend, it is dedicated to its famous author, who was responsible for writing many fairy tales based on folklore as we now know it.
In fact, Andersen was as famous and respected in Denmark as Shakespeare! The Hans Christian Andersen Museum is more than stories about the prolific author, surprisingly deep, nuanced, and elegant in prose compared to his modern retellings. It is also dedicated to the meaningful and deep friendship he shared with the famous singer Jenny Lind, for whom he wrote The Nightingale.
While she didn’t reciprocate his love for her, she was her biggest muse and they remained close. A fascinating piece of the Hans Christian Andersen Museum is the kirigami exhibit, a collection of hand-folded papers that Andersen made while telling his story. He has a habit of starting cutting while telling a story, and when he’s finished he’ll unfold the paper to reveal something beautiful! There are also models of the author’s house, some early versions of his most famous stories, and character models for review.
Address: 1680 Mission Dr, Solvang, CA 93463, USA
8. Wildling Museum of Art and Nature
One of the great places to visit in America is the Savage Museum of Art and Nature! The Wildling Museum of Art and Nature in Solvang, California, was founded in 1997 by conservation advocate and artist Patti Jacquemain. It was established to promote the enjoyment, conservation and appreciation of nature and wildlife through the arts.
The Wildling Museum of Art and Nature has hosted more than 40 different events during its lifetime, including highly successful educational programs, art exhibitions, creative workshops, tours, fun outings and more. His dedication is to inspire others to care about nature and natural habitats, and many will say he succeeded! The museum houses a small art collection, but the diversity of the collection makes up for its size.
Look forward to seeing wonderful photographs by Richard Salas, Jeff Jones, Roger Craton and Ines Roberts, paintings by John Fery, and a variety of delightful works by Ray Strong, Lockwood de Forest, Everett Ruess and Russell Chatham.
Address: 1511-B Mission Dr, Solvang, CA 93463, USA
9. Solvang Festival Theater
Opened in 1974, the Solvang Festival Theater is a community-based organization whose mission is to support and promote the performing arts in California. Each work is of high quality and can be traced back to the first Once Upon a Time. Day and night, concerts, theatrical performances and various performances illuminate this festive theater.
Fundraising festivals and concerts take place here for a variety of charities and causes, including some big names like Jim Messina, Crosby and Nash, Tommy Castro, and Bonnie Reiter. If you’re not going to attend any major events but still want to make a choice about what to see at the Festival Theatre, don’t worry!
Certain family-friendly events take place more frequently, such as Sunday jazz in the garden and family night at the theatre. With 700 seats, a rentable stage and many modern amenities, the delightful open-air amphitheater is the perfect summer destination for your vacation!
Address: 420 2nd St, Solvang, CA 93463, United States
10. Bethania Lutheran Church
In 1928, the Bethania Lutheran Church was opened in Denmark, designed to look like a standard country church. It was made for Solvang’s new Danish-American Lutheran settlers who gathered here. It was one of the first buildings in this California town with a Danish look and inspiring design. The architecture of Bethania Lutheran Church is stunning, with amazing woodwork by Wisconsin native Jes Smith.
Today, it can be seen from the magnificent altar with its majesty, balustrades, pulpit, priesthood and baptismal pool. Sculptures and religious arts add meaning and splendor to the building. The stained glass windows in the church are also beautifully crafted.
From the ceiling of the Lutheran Temple in Bethany hangs a model boat designed to represent peace in the safe harbor during the harsh turmoil of the Sea of Life. A touching detail and a unique symbol. Whatever your religious inclinations, visiting this church should be on your list of things to do in Solvang!
Address: 603 Atterdag Rd, Solvang, CA 93463, United States
Hope you like our choice of the best places to visit in Solvang. If you think there are some more beautiful places to visit in Solvang, we should cover them. Write us below in the comment box.