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Bavarian charm in Washington. Beautiful snow-capped mountains surround the tiny village of Leavenworth, giving the impression you are sitting in a Bavarian village amid the Alps. As we sit along the street, soaking in the scenery, horse-drawn carriages roll by, cloggers dance in the street and two men dressed in lederhosen blow the Alphorn. This charming town is bustling with activity.

Peering down the streets, large hanging flower baskets, flags and planters line the way for shoppers visiting everything from clothing stores to shops filled with nutcrackers and wooden wall clocks. The year-round Christmas Shoppe “Kris Kringl” boasts two stories of decorations and ornaments. If you are a candy lover, The Taffy Shoppe carries all kinds of candy, old-time lunchboxes and, of course, a taffy machine in the window. Many Washington wineries have tasting rooms here.

The area hosts a variety of festivals and events throughout the year to encourage visitors. Included in these are an outdoor summer concert series, wine tasting events, the popular Christmas Lighting Festival and the Bavarian Ice Festival in January. Whether you decide to experience an event or just go for a leisurely visit, you won’t be disappointed – the people, the food and the beautiful surroundings make this a perfect getaway.

While You’re There…

Eat

  • Visconti’s Italian Restaurant. Authentic Italian dining perfect for a romantic dinner for two or a celebration for 20. 636 Front St.
  • Café Mozart. Fine Bavarian dining with a 1,600-botle wine cellar and outdoor seating. 829 Front St.
  • Munchen Haus. This popular beer garden is family friendly, and lures diners with the smell of brats cooking on the open-air grill. Leavenworth-made Icicle Brewing Co. beers are on tap. 709 Front St.

Play

  • Outdoor enthusiasts will have no shortage of activities to choose from in any season.
  • Paddle boarding is the new hot sport in Leavenworth. Get started by contacting Leavenworth Mountain Sports.
  • Geocaching can be a great family activity. Find “treasures” with your GPS and get to know the area in and around Leavenworth. www.geocaching.com

Stay

  • The elegant Sleeping Lady profiled on the following page, along with the Solstice Spa & Suites are two best bets. The Solstice offers a relaxing adults-only facility with a full menu of spa treatments that will entice you to stay an extra day. 925 Commercial St.

Getting There

  • From Everett – Take Highway 2 through Monroe and across Stevens Pass, it will be a short 1-1/2 hour drive.

 

August/September 2012 – Bellingham Alive/North Sound Life