In case you haven’t noticed, I’ve been spending a lot of time in the Pacific Northwest lately! Mainly because the region is absolutely gorgeous, especially compared to where I grew up! However, the fact that my boyfriend is now living there may also have just a tiny bit to do with it! During my last visit I explored Poulsbo, Washington – Little Norway, USA!
I tagged along for his last work last gig, which was on Bainbridge Island, just across the sound from Seattle. We stayed at a resort overlooking the Puget Sound. A nice getaway despite the fact that it’s attached to a casino.
After quickly tiring of the casino’s dining options, we researched TripAdvisor to diversify our palettes. Little did we know that we were staying less than ten minutes away from Poulsbo, a small town that tourists and locals alike love!
Since Poulsbo is a popular tourist destination, we were lucky to stumble upon this adorable little town by sheer accident. Poulsbo has a lot to offer to visitors year-round, but the town transforms into a winter wonderland just before Christmas. This includes everything from candy cane street lamps, Christmas lights as far as the eyes can see, and Saint Nikolaus cruising around on a motorcycle.
At the beginning of the trip, I mentioned to my boyfriend that it had been years since I experienced a European Christmas Market or a German Weihnachtsmarkt. While Poulsbo can’t compete with my favorite Nürnberger Christkindelsmarkt, it’s maybe the closest (though it has some fierce competition nearby) one can get to a European Christmas without crossing the Atlantic.
Wondering what to do in Poulsbo? Besides great Christmas decorations, Poulsbo has its own unique charm. While we loved admiring the historic downtown area’s Norwegian-inspired facades, we found ourselves most drawn to the food! There were so many restaurants and breweries in Poulsbo that we barely scratched the surface of this small town’s restaurant scene during our week-long visit.
Since I love pretty much anywhere I can pretend to be in Europe, I particularly enjoyed Tizley’s Europub. The restaurant offers a unique combination of European national specialties. Dishes ranged from Norwegian food to Scottish shepherd pies and Hungarian goulash.
I know restaurants that try to focus on too many cuisines are usually a flop. However, my Jaegerschnitzel was on point and definitely one of the better versions I’ve had in the US. They also have an awesome beer selection!
We also liked the 1950’s atmosphere at Green Light Diner (the food was meh, though) and a wonderful view with our coffee at Poulsbohemian Coffee House. While in Poulsbo, you can’t miss Sluys Poulsbo Bakery, a local favorite with amazing donuts and bread!
Even if your visit to Poulsbo isn’t around Christmas, this cute little town has a lot to offer year round. It’s a fun place to window shop with several antique stores, boutiques and bookstores.
For those looking to get a bit closer to nature in Poulsbo, there are plenty of trails, parks and overlooks nearby. The waterfront park near historic downtown is quite nice as well – even in the winter! If you’ve been to Poulsbo, what are some of your favorite things to do in Poulsbo?
For more information on what to do in Poulsbo, check out Visit Kitsap.
Looking for other things to do in Washington state and the Pacific Northwest? Check out my other PNW blog posts: