Posts Tagged With: places to see san jose

Solvang In Pictures

California has its own little Europe corner. Head to Santa Ynez Valley in Santa Barbara County to enjoy your slice of Denmark. Solvang is known as the Danish capital of California. Solvang literally means ‘Sunny Fields’. Quitely aptly named, Solvang was created by a group of Danish teachers who were looking for a settlement away from Midwestern winters. But it was only in 1947 when Saturday Evening Post ran an article on the “spotless Danish village that blooms like a rose in California’s charming Santa Ynez Valley” that Solvang gained attention and attracted visitors.

Solvang decided to retain its Danish look and constructed buildings that offer a taste of Denmark in California. There are several quaint windmills all over the town and the half timbered houses are very typical Danish. Some other well known pieces are the copy of Little Mermaid statue from Copenhagen, bust of famed Danish fable writer Hans Christian Andersen and replica of Copenhagen’s Round Tower.

Solvang is a cute place to spend half a day. You can walk around enjoying the Danish feel of the place, take a surrey ride, browse through cute souvenir shops, lay around on the grass of one of their parks, enjoy some ice cream and Danish pastries. Oh yes, the food there is a highlight. I had had lunch at Paula’s Pancakes. Their French Toast was amazing.

Solvang residents celebrate many festivals. If you are lucky, you can experience one of their festivity celebrations.

Attractions: Solvang Festival Theater, Vintage Motorcycle Museum, Elverhoj Museum (check out old B&W pictures on their website. Quite enchanting).

Interesting facts: Michael Jackson’s Neverland Ranch is 10 miles north of Solvang.

Windmill @ Solvang

Brewery in Solvangsolvang main square

art shop solvang


copenhagen inn solvang

Hamlet square solvang


vintage bench solvang

Categories: California, Photography, Travel, USA | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Berryessa Flea Market, San Jose

I had a very fascinating motion of flea markets when I came here. I had seen pictures on some blogs before and totally loved the idea of a colourful, lively market where one could find interesting finds. And so I was dying to visit one.

I turned out to be lucky. The biggest flea market in San Jose happens to be 5 minutes away from our house. Last Sunday, weather was beautiful – sunny and warm – perfect for a day outing. Yippie!

This flea market is located in a huge space and even though it was pretty crowded at 2 pm, we had no difficulty moving around.

We meandered through broad and narrow lanes of sellers selling everything under the sun – jewellery, clothes, shoes, soaps, electronics, ear phones, kitchenware, cosmetics, bags, baby clothes, toilet cleaners, hats, country clothing, boots, vintage crockery.. phew! It took us a while to sink into the expanse. I was enthralled at the idea of buying handy stuff (like washing brushes and floor mats) at cheap rates.

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Flea MArket SJ

And yeah, haggling is allowed!

A flea market is like a family outing spot. Because there is something for everyone. There is food, there are toys, there are clothes, there is face painting. And some pretty entertaining sights.

Flea market 1

So, everyone is entertained.

This reminded me of the many exhibitions I have seen in Baroda with M. One of the many good things in the flea market is that one can take photographs freely! No one is stopped from taking photographs of the stalls and products, unlike in India.

Flea market san jose

Flea market san jose 1

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The most crowded area is the fruits and vegetables section. Basic fruits and veggies to dried spices to exotic fruits to fresh breads – everything found its way into this colourful aisle. We ended up buying some basic veggies, yummy soft cinnamon bread and the most heavenly honey ever. Most fruits and veggies were of the same price as supermarkets but we did find some different variety of fruits that are not available elsewhere. Things like eggs turned out to be much cheaper.

Flea MArket SJ 2

Flea market berryessa 3

If you become a regular at flea markets or farmer’s markets, you would know what to buy there. Also, it becomes convenient if these markets are close to your place of residence.

I know for sure that I am going to be a regular visitor at this flea market. I didn’t get to explore it fully this time. I am sure there are many treasures yet to be discovered by me.

The Berryessa flea market is open on Wed, Fri, Sat and Sun. For more details, visit their website.

Categories: Bay Area, California, Photography, San Jose, Travel, USA | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

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