By Sharon McDonnell

Scandinavia, Denmark, France: You could find the previous world appeal of European nations in locations like Wisconsin and California.

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Skip the jet lag and in a single day flights: there are locations proper right here in North America whose structure and atmosphere will transport you to Europe within the short while. Listed here are 4 locations to discover.

Leavenworth, Wash.

Like a small city in Bavaria, half-timbered buildings, carved picket balconies, murals painted on constructing facades (a people craft referred to as luftlmalereien), and German meals served by waitresses in people costume abound in Leavenworth, a small city a 2.5 hour drive east of Seattle. Nestled in opposition to a backdrop of snow-capped mountains in winter, when over 500,000 lights adorn bushes and buildings, it is postcard-perfect. In spring and summer season, window containers are full of flowers. In fall, bushes that flip crimson and orange.

You may suppose you are within the Alps whenever you spot Pension Anna, the place carved wooden balconies adorn the facade, floral-painted wooden armoires stand in hallways and a few visitor rooms, and a breakfast of chilly cuts, cheese and hazelnut and fruit jams is served in a comfy wood-paneled room embellished with Bavarian panorama pictures and cowbells with beaded leather-based straps. Ditto for the Enzian Inn, the place friends are serenaded by an alpenhorn at breakfast; floral-painted carved picket beds and a fire are in all suites. The foyer has a stone wooden burning hearth, view of an out of doors heated pool and two sizzling tubs and a 1786 floral-painted Austrian hope chest.

At Andreas Keller, a rathskeller with a muraled inside and an accordionist at night time, pork schnitzel Cordon Bleu, filled with ham and Swiss cheese, and the sausage platter are favorites. A big upstairs terrace with “hearth tables” and a scenic view of the city is a alternative place to dine on sausages and beer at Rhein Haus. The city of two,300 individuals has dozens of outlets, together with Ganz Klasse, a house items and reward store that includes many imports, nearly 20 wine and cider tasting rooms and a Nutcracker Museum, whose over 7,000 nutcracking units embody some centuries previous.

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Scandinavia in Wisconsin’s Door County

Pancakes with lingonberries, people crafts like pink picket Dala horses (a Swedish craft with Seventeenth-century roots) and rosemaling (a colourful stylized floral portray type) and a store promoting Nordic clothes, residence items and books on hygge at Al Johnson’s Swedish Restaurant in Sister Bay conjure up Scandinavia. So does the reproduction of a Twelfth-century Norwegian picket stave church, the Stavkirke, whose six-tiered shingled roofs finish in open-mouthed dragons. Bjorklunden, a lakeside campus for weeklong seminars in Baileys Harbor, has murals depicting Norse myths, and small carved wooden Viking ship motifs in its stave church-inspired chapel.

Thick forests and snow in winter add to the Nordic phantasm in these small cities between Lake Michigan and Inexperienced Bay in Door County, settled by immigrants from Scandinavia beginning within the 1840s.

You may discover a great assortment of rosemaling at Binkhaven, a non-public residence on a 12-acre property in Ephraim, open for month-to-month excursions June to October. Right here, ceilings, roof beams and a few furnishings had been painted by Norway’s best-known rosemaling artist, Sigmund Aarseth, whereas cupboards, bowls and different objects had been rosemaled by different Nordic Revival artists.

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Quebec Metropolis, Canada

An impressive castle-like resort perched on a cliff prime, huge stone fortifications, small stone homes with gabled roofs and huge chimneys, and French you hear in every single place: rub your eyes, since you’ll suppose you are in France. A 1.5 hour flight from New York Metropolis, Quebec Metropolis is the oldest French settlement in North America, based in 1608, and the one walled metropolis north of Mexico. Its Previous City, a Unesco World Heritage website, has an Higher City ringed by stone ramparts, reached by steep streets and stairways from the Decrease City.

In winter, strolling Petit-Champlain, a cobblestone avenue of small quaint retailers and comfortable eating places with illuminated Christmas bushes in entrance (and that castle-like resort looming above, the Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac), is solely magical. No shock it is referred to as one of many prettiest streets in Quebec Metropolis. Within the Previous Port part, the Rue Saint-Paul, thronged with vintage retailers galleries and cafes, is one other charmer.

In heat climate, Quebec Metropolis is filled with sidewalk cafes, and a scenic place to walk is the Dufferin Terrace, a picket boardwalk subsequent to the Fairmont which overlooks the St. Lawrence River. The terrace is the location of a toboggan slide in winter, when the 10-day Carnaval de Quebec is marked by day and night time parades with whimsical floats, snow and ice sculptures, and actions for all ages.

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Is that this Denmark? Solvang, Calif.

A slice of Denmark transplanted to southern California (however a lot sunnier and with extra wine tasting rooms), Solvang is a small city of below 6,000 individuals 35 miles north of Santa Barbara within the Santa Ynez Valley, immortalized within the film “Sideways.” Danish-style structure, windmills and bakeries fill the city, based by Danish immigrants in 1911. The “Little Mermaid” fountain is a duplicate of Copenhagen’s well-known statue, and the Hans Christian Andersen Museum is dedicated to the Danish author of fairy tales. A museum, the Elverhoj Museum of Historical past & Artwork, explores the historical past of the “Danish Capital of America” and Denmark’s heritage.

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Snack on Kringles, that are pretzel-shaped pastries with almond paste and custard fillings, and Cinnamon Crisps, spherical puff pastries with beneficiant quantities of cinnamon, at Birkholm’s Bakery & Cafe, a third-generation family-owned Danish bakery based in 1951, and Olsen’s Danish Village Bakery, opened in 1970. Aebleskivers, pancake balls doused with powdered sugar served with raspberry jam, are the specialty at Solvang Restaurant.

The walkable city, which boasts over 150 retailers and about 20 wine tasting rooms, holds occasions like Danish Days in September, that includes costumed people dancers, dwell music, axe-throwing contest and an artisan market, and Julefest in December. One in all many half-timbered buildings homes Mirabelle Inn, a luxurious inn of 13 rooms furnished with antiques, most with gaslit fireplaces.

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Sharon McDonnell is a San Francisco-based journey and meals/beverage author who’s whale-watched within the Azores, ridden a camel in Morocco, seen the Northern Lights in Alaska and brought cooking courses from India to Thailand.

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