Fascinating Fauna

ostrich-land-ostrichesYou’ll have to admit, there’s something surreal about driving east into Solvang on Highway 246, glancing over and seeing dozens of ostriches grazing in a field! You’ll definitely want to pull over and visit OstrichLand USA, where a highlight is getting to feed the resident emus and ostriches. Did you know that ostriches are the largest & fastest birds in the world and can weigh up to 350 pounds and live up to 75 years? If you think OstrichLand USA looks familiar, you may have seen it featured in the Oscar-winning movie Sideways and The Simpsons TV show (and recently on an episode of Keeping Up With The Kardashians).

Then, a bit further along Highway 246 is Flag Is Up Farms, home of the amazing Monty Roberts, the “Man Who Listens to Horses,” where you’re welcome to see the equine facilities and trainers in action. For a total cute fix, from 10 a.m.-3:00 p.m on Monday through Saturday for free, you can visit Quicksilver Miniature Horse Ranch over on Alamo Pintado Road, a fascinating breeding facility for 34-inch-and-under horses! Guaranteed family fun for kids of all ages. For more details, visit http://www.solvangusa.com/explore-solvang/what-to-do/family-fun/

Holiday Weekend = Picnic Time

IMG_0349Tenley Fohl Photography_S3W-Solvang Park Gazebo Crowd Wide AngleHow can the Memorial Day holiday weekend be upon us? Do you like to picnic to celebrate? Our family does and I do like to pick items up vs. making everything from scratch! (Sorry Mom!) There are choices aplenty for perfect picnic ingredients and settings around Solvang.  Did you know all Solvang parks are free and open to the public daily? My family and friends really enjoy Solvang Park & Gazebo right in the center of town on Mission Drive at First Street—invariably, there’s something going on there including free concerts. For a more active group, check out Hans Christian Andersen Park at 775 Atterdag Road, with a skate park and tennis courts within easy walking distance of downtown. Then, there’s the super-fun, built by the community Sunny Fields Park on Alamo Pintado Road with a Danish-themed wooden play structure, swings, rope bridge, picnic area, ball field (and coming soon, a sand volleyball court).

Solvang Third Wednesday Picnic in the Park-close-upHere’s a few ideas for palate pleasing items including gourmet cheeses, local fruits, breads, sandwiches, deli, salads and desserts—Nielsen’s Market (688-3236); El Rancho Market (688-4300). New Frontiers Natural Foods Deli (639-1746) and Vin Hus (688-7117).For more details, visit http://www.solvangusa.com/explore-solvang/what-to-do/outdoor-activities/#Parks

Warm Sunny Days, Cool Nights & Hot Hotel Deals!

Hamlet Inn Solvang guest roomIt’s May and I’ll bet your thoughts are turning to sunny, summer vacation plans . . . Solvang (sunny fields in Danish) is really bursting with activities, events and family fun year-round, yet especially now! You know you want to getaway and visit—do some shopping, wine tasting, check out the new restaurants, sample Danish delights and just relax & renew, right? With 16 inns, hotels and resorts to choose from, there’s lodging options for every taste and budget here in California’s Little Denmark. I think that package deals make planning your getaway ever so simple—so check out this link to make it even easier on your wallet! http://www.solvangusa.com/explore-solvang/where-to-stay/deals/  

Solvang Loves Moms!

momCan you believe it’s May already and that means Mother’s Day is this Sunday, May 10. Here in Solvang, shopping for a gift for Mom (or the Mom-like) person in your life is made pretty simple by choices at 150+ retail shops, bakeries, restaurants and wine tasting rooms. Plus, if you want to give the gift of fresh chocolate, Solvang has lots of special confectionary options too! (My mom says she actually likes gift certificates the best so she can get what she really wants—so there’s that as well!) Check out all the options here: http://www.solvangusa.com/explore-solvang/what-to-do/shopping/

One of my favorite stops for mom-day or any-day flowers is the Solvang Village Farmer’s Market every Wednesday afternoon from 2:30-6:00 p.m on First Street between Mission and Copenhagen Drives. For details on all the happenings around town to share with the matriarch in your life, visit http://www.solvangusa.com/explore-solvang/calendar-of-events/

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