“Christmas” in American Bavaria – Leavenworth 2019

German professor: Have any of you ever visited any small German towns?
Class smart-aleck: I’ve been to Leavenworth!

—true story

This past Thanksgiving, my folks decided it would be fun to do something different. We hadn’t taken any family vacations this year, so when our conflicting schedules finally came together, it seemed like a great chance to get out of town. So, like a car commercial, we jumped into our Volvo and headed for the mountains. Cue yodelling music…

Leavenworth is the quintessence of 20th-century American ingenuity…and its quirks. It used to be a logging community, but in the 60s, a couple of businessmen transformed it into a charming, Bavarian-themed town to save it from going under. Now it’s one of the main tourist attractions in Washington state (even for locals), hosting events like Oktoberfest and an annual accordion festival.

This was our first time visiting during the holiday season, and the lights and festive atmosphere did not disappoint! The snow levels were still too low for skiing, but in any case we just came to enjoy the decor, shopping, and German food (Andreas Keller is where it’s at).

Author: Marian

Blogger, podcaster, reader, and scribbler. I love classic literature, tea, and rain, preferably all at once.

7 thoughts on ““Christmas” in American Bavaria – Leavenworth 2019”

  1. Holy cow! I had no idea this place existed. It looks astonishingly pretty in the late fall, judging by your pictures. Is it high enough that snow is persistent throughout much of the year? (And no wonder you had your mountain haiku on the brain!)

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    1. Google is telling me the snow season is from late October to late March, which sounds about right. I think the last time we visited that area was in late June, and it was clear and summery! Not to go full Rick Steves here, but it’s a great stop en route to/from Eastern WA, and only about 2-3 hours to the Puget Sound. 😀

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      1. I’m hoping to go to Oregon in autumn 2020, though I don’t know if there will be time for a quick trip to WA. I ran a Seattle visit by a friend of mine who lives in Portland, because there’s a computer museum there, but she tells me it’s a half a day trip. Doesn’t seem right to me, but she does live there, so I’ll take her word for it..

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      2. Yeah, it’s about 3 hours if you take I-5 up, but then you miss out on the coastal scenery, which is the best part.

        There’s a fair amount of neat things to see south of Seattle…Mt. St. Helens is really impressive, and not too far from Portland. Would definitely recommend that if you’re short on time!

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  2. we stayed there for a Xmas night several years ago and ate at the German place… it was a lot of fun except for the snow all over the place which made driving back somewhat interesting: fingerprints in the steering wheel still there… even going back thru Yakima was bad…

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    1. I can imagine! On the way over, we took a southern route to avoid the snow, though we did go back home through the mountain pass. Most people were pretty careful, but we did see one or two “adventurous” drivers…

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