One of my favorite Winter traditions is driving over to Leavenworth, WA with Josh for a fun little day trip. It has easily become one of our favorite Christmas time traditions since we have visited every December for the past five years and we always have so much fun when we go! If you’re unfamiliar, Leavenworth is a cute little Bavarian town just outside of Wenatchee, WA in the Central part of Washington State. If you’re a local to Washington, it’s about a two-three hour drive from the greater Seattle area, and if you’re not a local, I’d say it’s definitely worth the visit if you ever visit Washington during the Winter months!
While there’s so much to do year-round in Leavenworth, I personally think Winter is the best time to go because the whole town transforms into the perfect little Christmas village with so many fun Christmas festivities, there’s just nothing else like it. You’re also practically always guaranteed snow in this part of the state this time of year, especially being so close to the mountains, which makes it even more magical (and chilly!).
Walk around town and do some Christmas shopping in the giftshops, walk through the main town square and see all the pretty Christmas lights, check out the local restaurants and breweries, there’s so much to do!
My Favorite Shops:
- Kris Kringl
- Twisted Couture
- Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory
- Mountain Modern Supply Company
- A Paw Above (Pets)
- Leavenworth Boutique
- Culture (Men’s)
Around Christmas time, visiting Kris Kringl is a must because it’s probably the most Christmas-y store I’ve ever seen, it’s definitely a Christmas paradise! The store is also filled with an endless supply of Christmas tree ornaments for pretty much any category imaginable, we usually end up getting a new ornament when we go.
Twisted Couture is another favorite of mine. It’s a cute little boutique that carries some of my favorite clothing brands from AMUSE Society, Z Supply, Billabong, and so much more! And right nearby is a shop called Culture that is a pretty similar option but for men, Josh always loves to check out this store when we visit. Similar to Twisted Couture is Leavenworth Boutique that has a ton of cute clothing and little gifts too.
Being in Leavenworth, they have a ton of mountain/outdoorsy shops being so close to the mountains and ski areas. If you’re into any of that, Mountain Modern Supply Company is a great shop to check out and is a shop we always stop at when we’re in town! They always have a great selection of Hydro Flasks too.
Some of our other favorites are A Paw Above where we always pick up a little something for our dog Charlotte and of course Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory for a caramel apple for a little treat for us!
Our Favorite Restaurants:
- Leavenworth Pizza Company
- The Loft Bar & Grill
In my opinion, restaurants in Leavenworth can be very hit or miss from what we’ve experienced in the past. We usually stick to our favorites, either Leavenworth Pizza Company or The Loft Bar & Grill! The Loft is probably our first choice because the food is good and it’s in such a great location in town, from the windows of the restaurant you can look out over the main town square, it’s just a fun environment!
- Leavenworth Reindeer Farm
The Leavenworth Reindeer Farm was definitely the highlight of our last visit to Leavenworth since this was our first time going. We had actually been meaning to visit the past two years we have visited Leavenworth but never were able to book it in time. There are not too many places in the country where you can interact with and feed real reindeer and the experience, even as an adult, was one of the coolest things! My childhood self was probably screaming haha.
The farm is open year-round but gets more popular during Christmas time for obvious reasons. The farm is located just a quick five-minute drive from downtown Leavenworth and offers more than just reindeer interaction as well! Take pictures with Santa, shop around the gift shop, look at the cute farm ponies and bunnies, drink hot chocolate or apple cider, and more. It’s definitely a must-see!
If you’re planning to visit the Leavenworth Reindeer Farm in December, I’d recommend booking at least 2-3 weeks in advance, and for a weekday if possible. Weekends in Leavenworth can get very busy, this time of year especially with the number of tourists visiting the area, that you’ll want to ensure you secure your spot ahead of time.
The farm staff are also great and super helpful and provide all the information you need in order to have a fun and safe experience interacting with the reindeer. We had no fears while visiting and had so much fun!
Being in Leavenworth, you’re also within driving distance from Stevens Pass in the mountains if you’re looking to go skiing or snowboarding, as well as downtown Wenatchee as it’s the closest town to Leavenworth.
While there’s no main attraction to Wenatchee, it is a close option if you’re looking for a place to stay in the event that Leavenworth hotels are full – there is also more shopping and restaurants in Wenatchee as well.
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