Dog owners with an affinity for Denmark and a quaint style of living will find a fetching lifestyle in Solvang, California. The city is located in the Santa Ynez Valley and is known for its Danish-style architecture, excellent wineries, and "pawspurring" pet-friendliness.
Solvang is also home to a copy of Copenhagen's Little Mermaid statue, which serves as a reminder of the fairy tale written by Hans Christian Andersen. The city also pays homage to this Danish author with a famous bust of the writer and a city park which is named after him. Living here, you and Fido will have a hard time forgetting that you're not in Denmark and are actually living in sunny California! Solvang looks like a painting of a Danish village!
Dog owners pawsitively love living in Solvang. There are 5 veterinarians right in town. Also keeping the doggos happy are 3 city parks, 2 hiking trails, and 3 pet shops. Pet owners who are also "foodies" have options between 12 pet-friendly restaurants that have outdoor seating in the serene California weather. Popular with visitors are Birkholm's Danish Bakery, where you can get some authentic sweets, and Viking Garden Cellars, a winery with an open-door policy for doggos!
Grab the leash and travel back in time to 1900s Denmark in the city of Solvang!
Is breakfast your dog's favorite meal? If your dog's a morning canine, then he'll love eating with you at Paula's Pancake House in Thumbelina Solvang Village! Paula's Pancake House has been serving up delicious foods for over 100 years. The restaurant offers more than just pancakes. For your first-time visit, you gotta try Paula's Special — Danish pancakes topped with warm cinnamon apples, blueberries, or strawberries with whipped cream on top! After some breakfast, you and Fido can head to the Hans Christian Andersen Park, named after the famous Danish writer. The park has a castle arch entrance and huge oak trees for your pup to sniff out. It's a perfect place for an afternoon trip back in time and across the globe!
Is your dog too fancy for his collar? If your dog loves comfort food with a gourmet twist, then he'll adore living in the Pine Street neighborhood. Your first stop has to be Succulent Cafe, where your pup can get his fix of fine wines and charcuterie boards. You can also order the fanciest meatloaf sandwich you'll ever eat! If Fido doesn't fancy the finer things, then try The Big Bopper Drive-In. This drive-in is a little more greasy and a lot less fancy. You can try charbroiled burgers like the Solvang Special, or go for the classic fish and chips. If Fido's well-behaved, a fry or two from your plate can't hurt!
Does your dog dream of one day being the first canine sommelier? He'll get his chance in the Creekside neighborhood, where you can visit the Wandering Dog Wine Bar. This wine bar was envisioned specifically for two- and four-legged visitors! The owners bring their Goldendoodle and Labrador into the wine bar daily. You can enjoy charcuterie boards, wine flights, and cheese pairings at this doggie-loving joint! Also in Creekside, you can find the healthy Fresco Valley Cafe, which is a modern take on California cuisine. The restaurant even has a dog menu so Fido can order various types of dog-friendly proteins like an Angus beef patty or wild salmon that is prepared unseasoned just for dogs!
Does your dog have the heart of a horse with the body of a Pomeranian? In the Sunrise Village neighborhood, he can ride the Solvang Trolley and live out his equestrian dreams! The Solvang trolley is dog-friendly and offers a Honen Tour via horse-drawn carriage. A tour guide will catch you and Fido up on the history of Solvang, with stops for eating and drinking along the way. Also in Sunrise Village is Cali Love Wine. This dog-friendly winery is owned by musicians who invite dogs and children alike to their hip little winery! If this isn't enough to get your leash out, you can also take your pup to Mandarin Touch for some upscale Chinese Food. The chef's specials include tea-smoked duck, sautéed spinach, seafood pasta, and a ton more. Bone Appetit!
Does your dog appreciate tradition, especially when tradition isn't so, well, traditional? Then he'll be a huge fan of visiting the High Meadow neighborhood, where you can find the Fitzpatrick Tavern Pub & Grill. At Fitzpatrick Tavern, you can find tastes from Ireland with a California twist! Try the goat cheese and beet salad or the Dubliner burger. If you're just looking for a glass of wine with your doggo, then you can head to Carivinita's Winery, where wine bottles feature photos of dogs and other animals. The winery gives back portions of their profits to their partners Best Friends Animal Society, Return to Freedom, and others! Fido will be pleased!