These American cities will make you feel like you’re in Europe
Solvang, California – Danish delight on the West Coast
Located in the heart of Santa Barbara County, Solvang, California is a quaint city showcasing Danish-inspired architecture and traditions. Known as the “Danish Capital of America,” Solvang offers visitors a glimpse into Denmark’s culture through its half-timbered buildings, windmills, and traditional bakeries. Stroll down Copenhagen Drive, filled with authentic shops and restaurants, and enjoy traditional Danish pastries. For a deeper European immersion, visit the Elverhoj Museum to explore Danish history and art.
Leavenworth, Washington – A Bavarian haven in the Pacific Northwest
Leavenworth is located in the Cascade Mountains of Washington State. The village stands as a testament to the power of transformation and looks much different now than it did several decades ago. Once a run-down logging town, it underwent notable renovation in the 1960s, adopting a Bavarian-themed aesthetic.
Today Leavenworth boasts picturesque buildings decorated with South German-style facades. Window boxes filled with flowers and charming specialty shops help complete the cheerful aesthetic. Visit during the annual Oktoberfest celebration to experience the lively atmosphere with traditional music, beer gardens and a one-of-a-kind Nutcracker Museum. Don’t forget to explore the nearby mountains and enjoy outdoor activities, such as hiking and skiing.
St. Augustine, FL – A taste of Spain in the Sunshine State
St. Augustine is the oldest continuously inhabited European settlement in the United States. Steeped in history, this Florida coastal city has a Spanish feel with its narrow streets, historic architecture and forts. Wander the cobblestone streets of the Old Town, where you’ll find Spanish colonial-style buildings, such as the stunning Castillo de San Marcos, a 17th-century fortress. Immerse yourself in the city’s Spanish heritage by visiting the Lightner Museum, housed in the former Hotel Alcazar, which displays artwork and artifacts from this era. For a touch of European elegance, explore Gilded Age splendor on the Flagler College campus, once a grand hotel built by industrialist Henry Flagler.
HOLLAND, MI – A Dutch dream on the shores of Lake Michigan
Located on the shores of Lake Michigan, Holland, Michigan captures the essence of Holland and transports visitors to a European wonderland. Known for its colorful tulip fields and original windmills, this picturesque city celebrates its Dutch heritage with pride. As you walk through the downtown area, you’ll find attractive buildings decorated with colorful Dutch architectural details. The best time to visit is undoubtedly during the annual Tulip Time Festival. This celebration is a spectacle of tulips, traditional music, dancing and lively parades. Explore Windmill Island Gardens and see a working Dutch mill, picturesque canals and beautiful gardens. Don’t forget to sample treats like stroopwafels and Dutch cheesecakes at local bakeries and shops.
New Glarus, Wisconsin – Swiss magic in the Midwest
Known as “America’s Little Switzerland,” New Glarus, Wisconsin, is a small town that pays homage to its Swiss roots. The city’s architectural style, decorated with chalet-style buildings and colorful facades, instantly transports visitors to the Swiss Alps. Take a stroll through the village and stop at the quaint shops to discover unique souvenirs and taste Swiss cheese and chocolate. To fully embrace the spirit of Switzerland, after exploring the city, head to New Glarus Woods State Park and take a hike to enjoy the natural beauty surrounding this enchanting destination.
(tags for translation) Travel Noir