Ideal Christmas vacation means something different for each of us. In the state of Washington is the town of Leavenworth. Nestled in the valley and surrounded by beautiful mountains, Leavenworth was once a booming lumber town. When the lumber industry died away, the city council came up with a new idea for saving their homes.
The plan was to change the town and make it one of the Pacific Northwest most attractive places for tourists to visit. So all the businesses came to an agreement and they redesigned the storefronts and the atmosphere to give Leavenworth a Bavarian look, feel and theme. Even the 7-11s and donut shops have a Bavarian feel.
Leavenworth has a festival for every season and one of the most amazing Christmas festivals in the Pacific Northwest, with the street and buildings decorated to bring a touch of Bavaria to the United States. Travelers can enjoy Oktoberfest, the Pumpkin Cross Country Run in October, Trunk o’ Treat, May Day activities that include a maypole erected right in the center of town — if there is a holiday, there is a festival in Leavenworth and all year long there are music and concerts to attract every kind of traveler.
Many of the shops in Leavenworth are filled with gifts for every member of the family. There are also the Cheese Monger’s shop and the Bavarian Bakery so each visitor can get a real taste of Bavaria. Leavenworth has wine tasting and foods that are authentic and flavorful.
German cuisine is very popular in Leavenworth, with several German restaurants lining the main street. Hotels are all along the downtown lanes with rooms above the shops, just as one would see in Bavaria and Germany. Room rates are reasonable, ranging from $98 per night to $350 a night, depending on which hotel or hostel the traveler chooses to stay at.
Visitors usually take a day or two and visit the local museums, like the Leavenworth Nutcracker Museum on Front Street. This museum delights visitors of all ages with nutcrackers from all over the world. There are delicately hand-carved nutcrackers from the 16th and 17th centuries and beyond. See over 5,000 nutcrackers from as many as 40 countries. Perhaps a visit to the Upper Valley Museum at Leavenworth; this museum is located in a former bed and breakfast and the building is an amazing structure built over a century ago. The Upper Valley Museum is an educational museum that provides different events and programs for residents and visitors in Leavenworth. The photo gallery can take the visitor through the history of Leavenworth, giving a view of how life was and is in this quaint Bavarian Village of Leavenworth, Wash.
Visitors need to make reservations months in advance for some of the festivals in the Leavenworth area, as it has become such a popular tourist area that it is difficult to get rooms in the local area hotels. Travelers need to give themselves six months to a year advance reservations if they wish to visit during the Christmas festival.